Wentworth Earl Miller III (born June 2, 1972) is an English-born American actor, model, and screenwriter who rose to stardom following his role as Michael Scofield in the Fox Network television series Prison Break. Born in Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire, England, Miller is the son of American parents Joy Marie (née Palm), a special education teacher, and Wentworth Earl Miller II, a lawyer and teacher. Miller's father, a Rhodes Scholar, was studying at Oxford at the time of Miller's birth. Miller is of multiracial origin: his father is of African-American, Jamaican, English, German, Jewish and Cherokee descent, and his mother is of Russian, French, Dutch, Syrian and Lebanese ancestry. He says about his ethnic identity, "My father is black and my mother is white. Therefore, I could answer to either, which kind of makes me a racial Lone Ranger, caught between two communities." Despite his family's decision to move to Park Slope, Brooklyn, New York, at the age of one, Miller retains dual citizenship. He has two sisters, Leigh and Gillian. Miller attended Midwood High School in Brooklyn, New York. He was a member of SING!, an annual musical production that was started by Midwood. His family moved to Aleppo Township outside of Pittsburgh Pennsylvania, where he graduated from Quaker Valley High School, in Leetsdale, Pennsylvania in 1990.
He graduated from Princeton University completing his bachelor's degree in English Literature. While at Princeton, he performed with the a cappella group the Princeton Tigertones and was first a member of the Quadrangle Club, and later the Colonial Club. In 1995, he went to Los Angeles to pursue an acting career. He has stated about his rocky road to stardom that "it was a long time in the coming and there were a lot of upsets and a lot of failures and roadblocks, but I couldn’t walk away from it. I needed it like I needed air, it was just something I had to do." Miller's first starring role was as the sensitive and introverted David Scott in ABC's mini-series Dinotopia. After appearing in a few minor television roles, he moved on to co-star in the 2003 film The Human Stain, playing the younger version of the Anthony Hopkins character, Coleman Silk. He identified strongly with the core dilemma of the movie, being that of a man struggling with his heritage. Miller worked extensively on the role, not only in researching Anthony Hopkins, but by embarking on a 4 month regime to accurately portray Silk as a boxer. Miller's first TV appearance was as student-turned-sea monster Gage Petronzi on Buffy the Vampire Slayer ("Go Fish", 1998).
In 2005, Miller was cast as Michael Scofield in Fox Network's television drama Prison Break. He played the role of a caring brother who created an elaborate scheme to help his brother, Lincoln Burrows (Dominic Purcell) escape death row after being found guilty of a crime he did not commit. His character had a full upper body (front and back) tattoo. Covering both the front of his torso and his back, along with both arms from shoulders to wrists, the special effects for the tattoo took over four hours to apply. His performance in the show earned him a 2005 Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Actor in a Dramatic Series. He played a minor role of a doctor and friend of main character Michael Corvin in the movie Underworld (2003 film). Miller appeared in two Mariah Carey music videos, "It's Like That" and "We Belong Together" as a party guest. Director Brett Ratner, who directed the pilot episode of Prison Break, was signed on to also direct the two Carey videos. Ratner brought up the idea to Carey about using Miller in the videos. After showing her Miller's picture, she agreed to use him.
Since both the videos and the pilot episode of Prison Break were being filmed at the same time, a special set was constructed on the set of the videos, so that Miller would be able to work simultaneously on both projects. He says, "Mariah's an international icon. The two days I spent working on her video did more for my career, gave me more exposure, than anything I had done before Prison Break. I'm grateful for the opportunity." Miller also guest starred on the season 11 premiere of Law and Order: Special Victims Unit as Detective Nate Kendall, a detective from Precinct 24 of the NYPD. Miller starred in Resident Evil: Afterlife as Chris Redfield, "Claire's brother and popular character from the game series". Miller wrote a screenplay for a film tentatively titled Stoker, as well as a prequel Uncle Charlie. He used the pseudonym Ted Foulke, later explaining "I just wanted the scripts to sink or swim on their own." Miller's script was voted to the 2010 "Black List" of the 10 best unproduced screenplays making the rounds in Hollywood. The film is about a teenage girl who must deal with a mysterious uncle following the death of her father. Miller described it as a "horror film, a family drama and a psychological thriller."
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