Peter Sarsgaard

Born March 7, 1971, on Scott Air Force Base in Illinois, Peter Sarsgaard graduated from St. Louis's Washington University, co-founded a comedy improv group and trained with the Actors' Studio in New York.

After notable off-Broadway work such as Horton Foote's "Laura Dennis," Sarsgaard made his film debut as the male murder victim in 1995's Dead Man Walking. Desert Blue and The Man in the Iron Mask followed, but it was his unnervingly convincing performance as a rural Midwesterner turned murderer in Boys Don't Cry (1999) that riveted viewers and critics.

He continued to generate interest with K-19: The Widowmaker and The Salton Sea, then nabbed a National Society of Film Critics Award and other nominations for his work in Shattered Glass. Sarsgaard's effective underplaying in Garden State and Kinsey (both 2004) continued to put his star on the rise.