TIM ROTH (Emil Blonsky) has made a career out of portraying unforgettable characters in one independent film after another. He made his studio feature debut in MGM’s Rob Roy, opposite Liam Neeson and Jessica Lange, in a role that has been touted as one of the best villains in screen history, earning him a Golden Globe nomination and an Academy Award® nomination for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama. He also co-starred in Tim Burton’s remake of the classic Planet of the Apes, opposite Mark Wahlberg and Helena Bonham Carter.
Roth was most recently seen in Francis Ford Coppola’s Youth Without Youth and Michael Haneke’s Funny Games, opposite Naomi Watts. He was also recently seen in the Wim Wenders’ film Don’t Come Knocking. He will next be seen in The Other Side, opposite Ryan Gosling and Brittany Murphy.
Roth made his return to the stage in Sam Shepard’s off-Broadway production of The God of Hell, for the first time since early in his career in London where he received great notices in Kafka’s masterpiece The Metamorphosis.
He made his directorial debut with the stunning, critically acclaimed film The War Zone, starring Ray Winstone (Nil by Mouth), based on the book by Alexander Stuart. The film premiered at the 1999 Sundance Film Festival to rave reviews and was also at the Cannes Film Festival and Toronto International Film Festival.
Roth gained worldwide recognition for his roles in two Quentin Tarantino films: Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction. In Reservoir Dogs, Roth starred with Harvey Keitel, Michael Madsen, Chris Penn and Steve Buscemi in a grim tale of a jewelry heist gone wrong. Roth’s portrayal of Mr. Orange, an undercover cop who gets caught in the line of fire, is a compellingly realistic glance at the agony of dying. Roth also co-starred in Pulp Fiction (Golden Globe and Academy Award® winner for Best Original Screenplay) as a petty robber who picks “the wrong place to hold up.” The ensemble cast included John Travolta, Uma Thurman, Samuel L. Jackson and Harvey Keitel.
This British-born actor’s career was surprisingly spawned out of a schoolyard dare. With art being his passion, Roth spent his youth aspiring to become a sculptor and painter. But when he jokingly auditioned for a play in high school and landed the role, Roth soon found that he truly loved the craft of acting. After graduation, he went on to study drama at a fine arts school in London.
Working steadily in public theater, his first job in front of the camera was the lead in the controversial and Prix Italia Award-winning telefilm, Made in Britain. Roth’s second project came immediately after, starring in Mike Leigh’s critically acclaimed film, Meantime.
As his success continued, Roth starred in over 15 film and television projects including Stephen Frears’ The Hit, for which he won the Evening Standard Award for Best Newcomer; The Cook, The Thief, His Wife and Her Lover; Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead, with Gary Oldman; and Robert Altman’s Vincent & Theo, in which he portrayed Vincent Van Gogh.
Brought up on American films like Taxi Driver and Mean Streets, Roth had always wanted to come to the U.S., so he jumped at the chance when asked to take part in a publicity tour for Vincent & Theo. He soon after moved permanently to the States, and has since continued on the same path of offbeat films.
His other credits include Lucky Numbers, directed by Nora Ephron; Giuseppe Tornatore’s The Legend of 1900; Werner Herzog’s first English-language film, Invincible; Jumpin’ at the Boneyard; Bodies, Rest & Motion; Murder in the Heartland; Heart of Darkness, opposite John Malkovich; Four Rooms; Little Odessa; Captives; Gridlock’d; Woody Allen’s Everyone Says I Love You; Hoodlum; Dark Water; and The Beautiful Country.