Thursday, August 11, 2011

Topher Grace

Christopher John "Topher" Grace (pronounced /ˈtoʊfər/; born July 12, 1978) is an American actor. He is best known for his portrayal of Eric Forman on the FOX sitcom That '70s Show, Eddie Brock/Venom in the Sam Raimi film Spider-Man 3, and Edwin in the 2010 film Predators. Grace was born in New York City, the son of Pat, an assistant to the schoolmaster of the New Canaan Country School, and John, a Madison Avenue executive. Grace grew up in Darien, Connecticut, where he knew actress Kate Bosworth, as well as Opie & Anthony producer Nathaniel Bryan, and was sometimes babysat by actress Chloë Sevigny, who later appeared with him in high school stage plays. Grace chose the name Topher because he did not want his full name abbreviated to Chris at school. Grace was cast as Eric Forman on Fox's That '70s Show, which debuted in 1998. The sitcom was successful and Grace became well known among television watchers; he played the role until the seventh season. The series was renewed for another season despite his absence before its ending in 2006. His character was written out and was replaced with a new character named Randy Pearson who was portrayed by Josh Meyers. Grace makes a very brief guest appearance in the final episode. Grace plays a prep school student who uses cocaine and introduces his girlfriend to freebase cocaine in director Steven Soderbergh's 2000 film Traffic, as well as having uncredited cameos as himself in Soderbergh's Ocean's Eleven, and its 2004 sequel, Ocean's Twelve. " He planned to cameo in Ocean's Thirteen but due to his filming Spider-Man 3 he had to drop out. He also appeared in director Mike Newell's 2003 film Mona Lisa Smile.

In 2004, Grace had the starring role in two major feature films; he played the leading roles in the Robert Luketic-directed Win a Date with Tad Hamilton! and the Paul Weitz dramedy, In Good Company, in which he played an ambitious but troubled corporate executive. That same year, Grace also starred in the film P.S., which received only a limited theatrical release. Grace won the National Board of Review's 2004 award for Breakthrough Performance Actor for his work in In Good Company and P.S. On January 15, 2005, Grace hosted Saturday Night Live. In 2007, Grace portrayed Eddie Brock/Venom in Spider-Man 3, directed by Sam Raimi. Grace himself was a fan of the comics, and read the Venom stories as a kid. A spin off film of Venom is in the works, but it is unknown if he will reprise the role. Grace is set to appear in the 1980s retro comedy Take Me Home Tonight. Grace co-wrote the script and will be co-producing the film. In 2010, Grace appeared in the ensemble comedy Valentine's Day alongside That '70s Show co-star Ashton Kutcher, and also played the character of Edwin in Predators, the newest installment of the popular science fiction franchise. In 2011, Grace will star opposite Richard Gere in the Michael Brandt directed spy thriller, The Double. In 2009, Grace became the subject of a recurring Videogum column entitled "What's Up With Topher Grace?" which relates the latest news in a snarky fashion.

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