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Peter O'Toole


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Elisha Cuthbert


Julian Morris


Dennis Quaid


Ashley Olsen


Julianna Margulies

Jared Padalecki Biography


Home > Actors > P > Padalecki, Jared > Biography


Birth Name: Jared Padalecki
Born: 07/19/1982
Birth Place: San Antonio, Texas, USA


Born Jared Tristan Padalecki on July 19, 1982 in San Antonio, TX, he was the middle child of Gerald, a tax accountant, and Sharon, a high school English teacher. Padalecki became interested in acting at the age of 12, but it was his winning of a national academic competition in 1998 that would pave the way to his future success as a thespian. His achievement in the National Forensic League championship helped earn him a winning spot in Fox's "Claim to Fame Contest," which in turn garnered Padalecki an appearance on "The 1999 Teen Choice Awards" (Fox, 1999), where he met a talent manager. A candidate for the prestigious 2000 Presidential Scholars Program, he instead gave up plans for attending the University of Texas and moved to Los Angeles after high school graduation in order to pursue acting as a career. Almost immediately, he landed a small part in the direct-to-video tear-jerker "A Little Inside" (1999), the story of a single dad trying to juggle fatherhood with a professional baseball career.

Soon after, Padalecki was tapped for the role of Rory Gilmore's (Alexis Bledel) first flame on the comedy/drama series "Gilmore Girls" (The WB, 2000-2007). He enjoyed a four-year run on the popular show about a young, single mother (Lauren Graham) trying her best to raise her daughter, Rory, while still pursuing her own adult dreams in a small Connecticut town. He spent four years on The WB hit, even as he picked up side jobs in made-for-TV movies like the adaptation of Madeline L'Engle's "A Ring of Endless Light" (Disney, 2002) and a small appearance in the Steve Martin family feature "Cheaper by the Dozen" (2003). As his time on "Gilmore Girls" wound down, the size of parts in mainstream films increased, with such projects as the Olsen Twins misfire "New York Minute" (2004), and a remake of the aeronautical survival adventure "Flight of the Phoenix" (2004), starring Dennis Quaid and Giovanni Ribisi.

Padalecki's first post-"Gilmore" project was the poorly received horror movie "House of Wax" (2005), a remake of the atmospheric 1953 Vincent Price classic. By and large an unremarkable thriller starring Elisha Cuthbert and Chad Michael Murray, "House of Wax" was most notable for co-star Paris Hilton's graphic, onscreen death. Establishing a bit of a career trend, Padalecki also took on a supporting role in the serial killer feature "Cry Wolf" (2005) that same year. The young actor's breakout role, however, came with his return to the network that essentially gave him his start. Paired with the equally fresh-faced Jensen Ackles, Padalecki co-starred on "Supernatural" (The WB, 2005-06/The CW, 2006- ), a horror/adventure series about two brothers who travel the countryside doing battle with evil spirits as they attempt to uncover dark family secrets. Despite a rocky third season, due in large part to the 2007 writers strike, the series became a substantial hit and earned its young stars legions of fans.

The popularity of "Supernatural" also presented Padalecki with further feature film opportunities, including a rare non-horror movie, the inspirational family drama "Thomas Kinkade's Christmas Cottage" (2007). The semi-biographical story about the humble beginnings of the titular American painter (Padalecki) also starred Marcia Gay Harden and Peter O'Toole. Back in gruesome, yet familiar territory, Padalecki next appeared in the remake of the seminal teen slasher movie "Friday the 13th" (2009). An attempt to reboot the blood-soaked franchise, the movie was directed by Marcus Nispel and starred stuntman Derek Mears as the unstoppable killing machine, Jason Voorhees, with Padalecki playing a brother desperately searching for his missing sister (Amanda Righetti) amidst the abandoned cabins of the foreboding Camp Crystal Lake. Despite the film's mixed-to-negative critical reviews, it nonetheless performed relatively well at theaters.