Paul Benjamin Mendelsohn
3 April 1969
(m. 2012; div. 2016)
Paul Benjamin Mendelsohn (born 3 April 1969) is an Australian actor, who first rose to prominence in Australia for his breakout role in The Year My Voice Broke (1987).
Since then he has had roles in films such as Animal Kingdom (2010), The Dark Knight Rises (2012), Starred Up (2013), Mississippi Grind (2015), Rogue One (2016), Darkest Hour (2017) and Steven Spielberg's Ready Player One (2018). In 2017, he joined the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Talos in Captain Marvel (2019) and Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019). He will reprise this role in Marvel Studios' upcoming Disney+ series Secret Invasion, which is set to premiere in 2022.
Mendelsohn starred in the Netflix original series Bloodline (2015-2017), for which he won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series in 2016. In 2020, Mendelsohn starred in the HBO crime miniseries The Outsider.
Mendelsohn was born in Melbourne, Victoria, the son of Carole Ann (née Ferguson) and Frederick Arthur Oscar Mendelsohn. His father is a prominent medical researcher who previously headed the Howard Florey Institute in Melbourne, where he maintains the status of Professor Emeritus. Ben and his two brothers, Tom and David, as well as his mother (deceased), a registered nurse, lived in Europe and the US for long periods of time, and returned to Melbourne when he was in high school. He attended Mercersburg Academy in the U.S. before attending Heidelberg Primary School and Eltham High and Banyule High schools. He took drama because he thought it was an easy class. Mendelsohn was the only one of his friends to follow up with an audition for Crawford Productions that was being advertised.
In October 2009, he was featured in an episode of the Australian series Who Do You Think You Are?, which traced the ancestry of his paternal grandfather Oscar Mendelsohn, who was from a Jewish family. It also found convicts on his mother's side. Searching for a connection to composer Felix Mendelssohn, which was eventually dismissed, he discovered links to 19th-century Prussia. His paternal ancestors were among the first Prussian Jews to be naturalised in Schneidemühl in the province of Posen, now Pi?a in modern Poland. He also has Greek, German, and British Isles ancestry.
After several early television roles, including The Henderson Kids alongside Kylie Minogue, he attracted notice in his breakout film, The Year My Voice Broke (1987), and won the Australian Film Institute Award for Best Supporting Actor. His next major role was in The Big Steal (1990), and Spotswood (1992), co-starring with Anthony Hopkins; this was followed in 1994 by Metal Skin and in 1996 by Cosi and Idiot Box. In 2000, he was in two contrasting films, the Australian Mullet and the Hollywood Vertical Limit.
Mendelsohn starred in the second (2005) and third (2006) season of the TV series Love My Way, and in 2008, he appeared in Baz Luhrmann's Australia. He starred in the first season of the Melbourne TV series Tangle, which premiered on Showcase in 2009. In 2009, he appeared in the American science fiction film Knowing directed by Alex Proyas. The same year, Mendelsohn starred as Ned in Beautiful Kate, directed by Rachel Ward, opposite Bryan Brown and Rachel Griffiths.
In 2010, he appeared in Animal Kingdom, starring in the film as Andrew "Pope" Cody, a criminal on the run from the law living in the notorious Melbourne Underworld. The role won him many awards, including IF Award's Best Actor and the AFI's award for Best Actor in a Leading Role. He was also named by GQ Australia as Actor of the Year for 2010.
Mendelsohn was selected as one of the subjects in the Who's Who in Australia 2012 edition. In 2012, Mendelsohn played the supporting roles of John Daggett in Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight Rises and Robin Van Der Hook in Derek Cianfrance's The Place Beyond the Pines.
In 2012, he appeared in Florence + the Machine's music video for "Lover to Lover". The video was directed by Vincent Haycock. In 2013, he guest starred in the TV series Girls as the father of Jessa, played by Jemima Kirke. The following year, he appeared in the critically acclaimed Starred Up, directed by David MacKenzie, for which he won Best Supporting Actor at the British Independent Film Awards.
In 2014, Mendelsohn joined the cast of Bloodline, a Netflix original from the creators of Damages. The first season premiered on the site on 20 March 2015 and was well received. Mendelsohn's performance on the series was lauded by critics, resulting in a Primetime Emmy Award win as well as a Golden Globe Award nomination. In September 2016, Netflix announced that the show had been cancelled, and that it would end after its third season in 2017. Season 3 of Bloodline received negative reviews, and Mendelsohn appeared in two episodes of it.
He portrayed the villain Director Krennic in the Star Wars franchise's Rogue One in 2016. He called the opportunity to act in a Star Wars film "a childhood dream come true". A couple of years later in 2018, he played the role of Nolan Sorrento in Steven Spielberg's science fiction film Ready Player One. He was cast in the role of Talos in Marvel's film Captain Marvel alongside Samuel L. Jackson and Brie Larson. He reprised the role for a brief cameo in Spider-Man: Far From Home, also in 2019.
In 2020, Mendelsohn starred in the lead role in the HBO crime miniseries The Outsider. In December 2020, it was announced he would be reprising his role as Talos, along with Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, in the upcoming Disney+ series Secret Invasion.
Mendelsohn married British-American journalist Emma Forrest in June 2012. He has one daughter with Forrest, born in 2014, and another daughter, Sophia Wright (from a previous relationship), who, like Mendelsohn, is an actor. He and Forrest divorced in 2016.
|1986||The Still Point||Peter|
|1987||The Year My Voice Broke||Trevor Leishman|
|1990||Nirvana Street Murder||Luke|
|1990||The Big Steal||Danny Clarke|
|1990||Quigley Down Under||O'Flynn|
|1992||Map of the Human Heart||Farmboy|
|1993||Say a Little Prayer||Nursery Manager|
|1997||True Love and Chaos||Jerry|
|2000||Vertical Limit||Malcolm Bench|
|2001||Mullet||Eddie "Mullet" Maloney|
|2002||Black and White||Rupert Murdoch|
|2005||The New World||Ben|
|2006||Hunt Angels||Rupert Kathner|
|2008||$9.99||Lenny Peck (voice)|
|2009||Beautiful Kate||Ned Kendall|
|2010||Animal Kingdom||Andrew "Pope" Cody|
|2012||Killing Them Softly||Russell|
|2012||The Dark Knight Rises||John Daggett|
|2012||The Place Beyond the Pines||Robin Van Der Hook|
|2013||Starred Up||Neville Love|
|2014||Exodus: Gods and Kings||Viceroy Hegep|
|2015||Guns for Hire||Kyle Sullivan|
|2016||Rogue One||Director Orson Krennic|
|2017||Darkest Hour||King George VI|
|2018||Ready Player One||Nolan Sorrento|
|2018||The Land of Steady Habits||Anders Hill|
|2018||Robin Hood||Sheriff of Nottingham|
|2019||Spider-Man: Far From Home|
|2019||The King||King Henry IV|
|2019||Spies in Disguise||Killian (voice)|
|2019||Gorillaz: Reject False Icons||Himself|
|TBA||The Marsh King's Daughter||Jacob Holbrook||Post-production|
|1984||Special Squad||Episode: "Slow Attack"|
|1985||A Country Practice||Luke Dawson||2 episodes|
|1985||The Henderson Kids||Ted Morgan||4 episodes|
|1986||Prime Time||Bartholomew "Bart" Jones|
|1986||Fame and Misfortune||John||6 episodes|
|1986-1987||Neighbours||Warren Murphy||19 episodes|
|1987, 1989||The Flying Doctors||Brad Harris, Brian||2 episodes|
|1988||All the Way||Lindsay Seymour||3 episodes|
|1989||This Man... This Woman||Matthew Clarke||3 episodes|
|1989, 1994||G.P.||Max Fisher, Phillip Barton||2 episodes|
|1994||Roughnecks||Joe 90||1 episode|
|1995||Snowy River: The McGregor Saga||Dale Banks||Episode: "High Country Justice"|
|1995||Police Rescue||Dean Forman||Episode: "Wild Card"|
|1995||Halifax f.p.||Peter Donaldson||Episode: "My Lovely Girl"|
|1997||Good Guys, Bad Guys||Brian O'Malley||Episode: "Unfinished Business"|
|1999||Queen Kat, Carmel & St Jude||Vince McCaffery||4 episodes|
|1999||Secret Men's Business||Doug Petersen||Television film|
|2001||Child Star: The Shirley Temple Story||Alexander Hall||Television film|
|2002||Farscape||Sko||Episode: "I-Yensch, You-Yensch "|
|2005||The Secret Life of Us||Rob||5 episodes|
|2005||Second Chance||Dr. Larry Stewart||Television film|
|2006-2007||Love My Way||Lewis Feingold||15 episodes|
|2009||Tangle||Vince Kovac||10 episodes|
|2013||Girls||Salvatore Johansson||Episode: "Video Games"|
|2015-2017||Bloodline||Danny Rayburn||23 episodes|
|2019-2020||Infinity Train||Special Agent Mace (voice)||6 episodes|
|2020||The Outsider||Det. Ralph Anderson||10 episodes; also executive producer|
|2022||Secret Invasion||Talos||Main role|
|1987||AACTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role||The Year My Voice Broke||Won|
|1990||AACTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role||The Big Steal||Nominated|
|1992||AACTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role||Spotswood||Nominated|
|1994||Film Critics Circle of Australia Award for Best Actor - Male||Metal Skin||Won|
|1994||AACTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role||Metal Skin||Nominated|
|1997||Camério Award for Best Actor||Amy||Won|
|2001||AACTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role||Mullet||Nominated|
|2001||Film Critics Circle of Australia Award for Best Actor - Male||Mullet||Nominated|
|2007||Logie Award for Most Outstanding Actor||Love My Way||Nominated|
|2007||AACTA Award for Best Lead Actor in a Television Drama||Love My Way||Nominated|
|2007||ASTRA Award Most Outstanding Performance by an Actor - Male||Love My Way||Nominated|
|2008||ASTRA Award Most Outstanding Performance by an Actor - Male||Love My Way||Nominated|
|2009||AACTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role||Beautiful Kate||Nominated|
|2009||Film Critics Circle of Australia Award for Best Actor - Male||Beautiful Kate||Nominated|
|2010||AACTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role||Animal Kingdom||Won|
|2010||IF Award for Best Actor||Animal Kingdom||Won|
|2010||Film Critics Circle of Australia Award for Best Actor - Male||Animal Kingdom||Won|
|2010||Logie Award for Most Outstanding Actor||Tangle||Nominated|
|2010||ASTRA Award Most Outstanding Performance by an Actor - Male||Tangle||Nominated|
|2013||BIFA Award for Best Supporting Actor||Starred Up||Won|
|2013||Village Voice Film Poll for Best Supporting Actor||Starred Up||Nominated|
|2015||Independent Spirit Award for Best Male Lead||Mississippi Grind||Nominated|
|2015||Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series||Bloodline||Nominated|
|2015||Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series||Bloodline||Nominated|
|2015||Satellite Award for Best Actor - Miniseries or Television Film||Bloodline||Nominated|||
|2016||Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series||Bloodline||Won|||
|2016||Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor - Series, Miniseries or Television Film||Bloodline||Won|||
|2016||Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor - Series, Miniseries or Television Film||Bloodline||Nominated|
|2017||Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series||Bloodline||Nominated|
|2017||AACTA International Award for Best Supporting Actor||Darkest Hour||Nominated|
|2019||AACTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role||The King||Nominated|
|2021||Critics' Choice Super Award for Best Actor in a Horror Series||The Outsider||Nominated|||
|2021||AACTA International Award for Best Supporting Actor||Babyteeth||Nominated|||