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James Roday
James Roday by Gage Skidmore.jpg
Roday at the San Diego Comic-Con International in July 2013
Born James David Rodriguez
(1976-04-04) April 4, 1976 (age 41)
San Antonio, Texas, U.S.
Occupation Actor, director, screenwriter
Years active 1999–present

James Roday (/rˈd/; born James David Rodriguez;[1] April 4, 1976) is an American actor, director and screenwriter. He starred on the USA Network series Psych as hyper-observant consultant detective and fake psychic Shawn Spencer.


Early life and educationEdit

Roday was born in San Antonio, Texas, as James David Rodriguez.[1] He attended Taft High School in San Antonio.[2] His father, Jaime "Jim" Rodriguez, is of Mexican descent, and his mother, Irene Rodriguez, is of English, Irish, and Scottish ancestry. Roday's father is a retired Air Force Master Sergeant and used to be the regional catering manager of Taco Cabana.[3][4]

At New York University's Experimental Theatre Wing, Roday studied theatre and earned a bachelor's degree in fine arts.[5] At the age of 22 he selected the professional name James Roday as there was already another "James Rodriguez" registered in the Screen Actors Guild.[2]


Roday has acted in various theatrical productions, including Three Sisters, A Respectable Wedding, Severity's Mistress, and Sexual Perversity in Chicago and Extinction with his theater company, Red Dog Squadron, for which he also directed the play Greedy and wrote and directed the one-act play Sustenance. In December 2016 he starred in the New York production of White Rabbit Red Rabbit by Iranian playwright Nassim Soleimanpour.[6]

He starred in the 2003 film Rolling Kansas, and appeared in the 2005 film adaptation of The Dukes Of Hazzard as Billy Prickett and the 2006 film Beerfest. Behind the scenes, he and writing partners Todd Harthan and James DeMonaco wrote the screenplay for the film Skinwalkers. The team also worked on a script for the film adaptation of the video game Driver. Roday directed his first feature film, Gravy in 2013, written by him and Todd Harthan.

Roday's television credits include starring roles on NBC's Miss Match in 2003 as "Nick Paine" and 2001's First Years as "Edgar 'Egg' Ross". The July 7, 2006 series premiere of USA Network's original series Psych (airing following the season premiere of USA's other comedic success, Monk) was the highest-rated scripted basic cable TV show premiere of 2006.[7] It ran for 8 seasons.

After Psych, Roday starred in various pilots and independent films before focusing more and more on his work behind the camera. He has since directed episodes for Battle Creek, Rush Hour, Rosewood and the upcoming SyFy show Blood Drive.

Awards and nominationsEdit

In 2006, Roday was nominated for the Best Actor in a Series, Comedy or Musical for Psych by the Satellite Awards. He was listed as #62 in People magazine's 100 Most Beautiful People issue in 2007. In 2008, he was nominated for Outstanding Actor In a Comedy Television Series for Psych by the NCLR ALMA Awards.[8]

His role as Shawn Spencer in Psych earned him an EWwy Award nomination in 2009 for Best Actor in a Comedy Series. In 2009, he was nominated by the ALMA Awards for Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series for Psych. In 2011, he was nominated again by the ALMA Awards for Favorite TV Actor-Leading Role for Psych. In 2010, he was nominated by the Image Awards for Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series for Psych for the episode "High Top Fade Out." In 2009 and 2011, he was nominated by the Imagen Foundation Awards for Best Actor-Television for Psych. Roday also won the award for Best Lead Actor in a Drama Series at the 2nd Annual Timmys Awards in 2012, after being nominated the previous year, but lost to Hugh Laurie. In 2012, Roday won the award for Best Actor in a television series for Psych at the Imagen Awards.

Personal lifeEdit

Roday is the co-artistic director of the Red Dog Squadron, a Los Angeles theater company he co-founded with Brad Raider.[9][10] In 2012, Roday, on behalf of Red Dog Squadron, and Black Dahlia Theatre artistic director Matt Shakman purchased[11] the El Centro Theatre in Los Angeles, which is still undergoing renovations and will reopen under its original name "Circle Theatre."

Filmography (actor)Edit

Year Title Role Notes
1999 Coming Soon Chad
1999 Ryan Caulfield: Year One Vic Series Regular
2000 Believe Bruce Arm / Agent Johnny Short
2000 Get Real Trent Sykes
2001 First Years Edgar Series Regular
2002 Repli-Kate Max Lead
2002 Providence Alexander Conrad
2002 Showtime 'Maxis' Cameraman
2002 Rolling Kansas Dick Murphy
2003 Miss Match Nick Paine Series Regular
2005 Don't Come Knocking Mickey, First Assistant Director
2005 The Dukes of Hazzard Billy Prickett
2006 Beerfest German Messenger
2006–14 Psych Shawn Spencer Also writer, director, and producer 2009–2014
2008 Fear Itself Carlos Episode: "In Sickness and in Health"
2009 Gamer News Co-Host #1
2011 WWE Tough Enough Himself Episode: "I've Been Bamboozled & Flabbergasted"
2011 Love Bites Jeff Episode: "TMI"
2012 WWE Raw super show Himself Special guest ring announcer
2013 Mr. Payback Malikai Short
2015 Gravy Marty Also director and co-writer
2015 Good Session Joel
2015 Christmas Eve B Aka Stuck
2015 Baby Baby Baby J.B.
2015 The Nerd Herd Kip Mitchell Aka The Brainy Bunch
2016 Pushing Dead Dan Schauble Lead
2017 Untitled Hollywood Hills Project Officer Duane
2017 Psych: The Movie Shawn Spencer Also co-writer and executive producer

Filmography (director)Edit

Year Title Notes
2009–14 Psych (TV series) 8 seasons
2014 Shoot The Moon[12] Pilot, also writer
2015 Gravy Also actor and co-writer
2015 Battle Creek (TV series) Episode: "Homecoming"
2015 Quest For Truth Pilot, also co-writer
2015-16 Rosewood (TV series) 5 episodes
2016 Rush Hour (U.S. TV series) Episode: "Knock, Knock... House Creeping!"
2017 Blood Drive (TV series) Upcoming, 2 episodes


  1. ^ a b Lee Hernandez (October 12, 2011). "EXCLUSIVE: 'Psych' Star James Roday Explains Why He Changed His Latino Last Name for Hollywood". Latina. Retrieved May 15, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b Martinez, Kiko. "Psych out". Hispanic Magazine. Archived from the original on February 10, 2009. Retrieved February 17, 2011. 
  3. ^ Hernandez, Lee. "EXCLUSIVE: 'Psych' Star James Roday Explains Why He Changed His Latino Last Name for Hollywood". Latina. Retrieved 2013-01-17. 
  4. ^ Wednesday, February 29, 2012 (2012-02-29). "'Psych' star James Roday on life, family in Waxahachie". Retrieved 2013-01-17. 
  5. ^ Roberts, Robin (August 9, 2007). "Psych's Two Sleuths Reveal Their Poker Faces". TV Guide.
  6. ^ BWW News Desk (October 24, 2016). "Psych Tony Nominee Micah Stock and PSYCH's James Roday Headed to WHITE RABBIT RED RABBIT". 
  7. ^ Reuters (July 11, 2006). "Psych premiere sets basic cable mark". 
  8. ^ Dare, Johnny (June 25, 2009). "Interview: James Roday". Retrieved December 30, 2010. 
  9. ^ Tarnoff, Brooke (February 9, 2010). "'Psych' Star James Roday Is a Big, Fat Liar". PopEater. Retrieved December 30, 2010. 
  10. ^ Lufkin, Bryan (July 7, 2010). "James Roday, Steve Franks Promise "Twin Peaks" Episode of Psych". Retrieved December 30, 2010. 
  11. ^ "'Psych' star James Roday and Matt Shakman buy El Centro Theatre". latimes. Retrieved 7 January 2016. 
  12. ^ "James Roday Signs with ICM Partners". Deadline. Retrieved January 24, 2017. 

External linksEdit