Joel Edgerton is an Australian actor and filmmaker. He has appeared in the films ', ' as a young Owen Lars, Zero Dark Thirty, The Great Gatsby, Black Mass, Loving, Bright, Red Sparrow, and The King.
In Australia, Edgerton portrayed Will McGill in the drama series The Secret Life of Us, for which he won the AACTA Award for Best Lead Actor in a Television Drama. He has also appeared in several Australian films, such as The Square, Animal Kingdom, for which he won the AACTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role, Wish You Were Here, and Felony.
In 2015, Edgerton received a nomination for the Directors Guild of America Award for Outstanding Directing – First-Time Feature Film for The Gift, a psychological horror-thriller film he wrote, directed, co-produced, and in which he co-starred. Edgerton garnered further critical acclaim for his performance as Richard Loving in the 2016 historical drama Loving, for which he received a nomination for the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor. In 2018, he wrote, directed and starred in the drama Boy Erased, about gay conversion therapy. The next year The King, which he co-wrote and starred in, was released on Netflix.
Early lifeEdgerton was born in Prospect, New South Wales, the son of Michael, a solicitor and property developer, and Marianne Margarethe Edgerton. His mother is a Dutch immigrant, who was born in The Hague. He graduated from The Hills Grammar School in 1991. He attended the Nepean Drama School at the University of Western Sydney, before moving on to various stage productions, including at Sydney Theatre Company.
CareerEdgerton has appeared in such films as Erskineville Kings, King Arthur, Ned Kelly, and as a young Owen Lars in ' and '. He played Will on The Secret Life of Us, for which he won an AACTA Award in 2002. In 2005, he lent his voice to the title character of The Mysterious Geographic Explorations of Jasper Morello, an Academy Award-nominated animated short film. The same year, he appeared as the son of a deceased shoemaker in the British comedy Kinky Boots. He also appeared in Smokin' Aces.
Edgerton appeared in the film Whisper, The Square, Acolytes, and Separation City. In 2009, he starred alongside as Stanley in the Sydney Theatre Company's acclaimed production of A Streetcar Named Desire. He appeared in a production of the same play at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in December 2009. He appeared in the Crime Drama film Animal Kingdom as Barry Baz Brown in 2010 in which he won an AFI award. He starred as fictional MMA fighter Brendan Conlon in the MMA film Warrior.
In February 2010, Edgerton was cast in Matthijs van Heijningen Jr.'s 2011 prequel to The Thing, portraying helicopter pilot Sam Carter. He played Tom Buchanan in Baz Luhrmann's 2013 remake of The Great Gatsby. He was honoured for his work in international roles with the 2011 Australians in Film Breakthrough Award.
In 2013, it was revealed that Edgerton and David Michôd had collaborated on writing an adaptation of Shakespeare's "Henriad" plays, Henry IV, Parts 1 & and Henry V, for Warner Bros. Pictures.
In 2014, Edgerton starred in the biblical film , as Ramesses II, Moses' adoptive brother, who became a notorious king. Edgerton directed, starred in, wrote, and produced the thriller The Gift, which was released on August 7, 2015. He co-starred in the 2015 film Black Mass as John Connolly, FBI contact and childhood friend of notorious gangster Whitey Bulger.
In 2016, he starred in the Jeff Nichols films Midnight Special and Loving, and in 2017, he starred in the film Bright as Officer Nick Jacoby, an orc who is a cop.
In 2018, Edgerton headlined Francis Lawrence's thriller film, Red Sparrow, with Jennifer Lawrence, and based on the book by Jason Matthews. He plays Nathaniel Nash, a CIA agent who becomes involved with a Russian spy Dominika Egorova. In February 2018, Timothée Chalamet joined the cast of The King, with Brad Pitt, Dede Gardner, and Jeremy Kleiner producing, alongside Liz Watts, under their Plan B Entertainment banner. In March 2018, Edgerton joined the cast of the film.
In April 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic in Australia, it was announced that a new film, The Unknown Man, will begin filming in South Australia as soon as enough of the COVID-19 restrictions are lifted. Directed by Thomas M. Wright, it will also star Sean Harris.
PhilanthropyEdgerton has been an distinguished ambassador for The Fred Hollows Foundation for a number of years and has strong personal ties to the organisation, which works to restore people's sight in poor countries and to improve the health of Aboriginal Australians. In 2012, he visited Nepal, where he saw sight restored first hand. He has described social activism and his involvement with The Fred Hollows Foundation as "an escape" from the "materialistic life" that often surrounds an actor. The Fred Hollows Foundation is an international non-profit organization that educates and provides equipment for undersupported surgeons to help cure avoidable blindness.
Personal lifeEdgerton's brother, Nash, is a stuntman and filmmaker.
|Denotes films that have not yet been released|
|1996||Race the Sun||Steve Fryman|
|2001||Saturn's Return||Barney||Short film|
|2003||Ned Kelly||Aaron Sherritt|
|2005||Kinky Boots||Charlie Price|
|2005||'||Jasper Morello||Voice only|
|2006||Smokin' Aces||Hugo Croop|
|2006||Open Window||Peter Delaney|
|2007||Crossbow||The Dad||Short film|
|2009||Separation City||Simon Nicholson|
|2010||'||Metal Beak||Voice only|
|2010||Animal Kingdom||Barry Brown|
|2012||Wish You Were Here||Dave Flannery|
|2012||Zero Dark Thirty||Patrick|
|2015||Life||John G. Morris|
|2015||The Gift||Gordon "Gordo" Moseley|
|2015||Black Mass||John Connolly|
|2015||Jane Got a Gun||Dan Frost|
|2017||It Comes at Night||Paul|
|2018||Red Sparrow||Nathaniel Nash|
|2018||Boy Erased||Victor Sykes|
|2020||The Green Knight||Lord||Post-production|