Home / Biography / Karl Urban

Karl Urban

Biography

New Zealand actor famous for his part as Eomer in the next and third installments of god, the father of the Bands film franchise. He also performed Vaako within the Chronicles of Riddick and McCoy in Celebrity Trek: Into Darkness. At age group 8, he produced his first televised appearance having a one-line part in Pioneer Female. He previously sporadic functions in advertisements and acted in college plays. He performed the titular personality in Judge Dredd and it has stated that he’s a devoted rugby lover. His father managed a leather products store and his mom worked for the business Film Services. He married make-up designer Natalie Wihongi in Sept 2004. That they had two sons before divorcing in 2014. He started dating celebrity Katee Sackhoff in 2016. He costarred with Lucy Lawless in Xena: The Warrior Princess.

Quick Facts


Full Name Karl Urban
Date Of Birth June 7, 1972
Place Of Birth Wellington, New Zealand
Height 1.85 m
Profession Movie Actor
Education Wellington College, St Mark's Church School, Victoria University of Wellington
Nationality New Zealand
Spouse Natalie Wihongi
Children Hunter Urban, Indiana Urban
Partner Katee Sackhoff
Awards Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture, Critics' Choice Movie Award for Best Acting Ensemble, Boston Society of Film Critics Award for Best Cast
Movies Dredd, Star Trek, Star Trek Beyond, Star Trek Into Darkness, Thor: Ragnarok, The Bourne Supremacy, Pete's Dragon, The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, The Chronicles of Riddick, Riddick, Doom, The Loft, Ghost Ship, And Soon the Darkness, Priest, RED, Pathfinder, The Price of Milk, Walking with Dinosaurs, The Irrefutable Truth about Demons, Black Water Transit, Out of the Blue, Chunuk Bair, Hangman, Via Satellite, Heaven, Acts Of Vengeance
TV Shows Almost Human, Xena: Warrior Princess, White Fang, Shark in the Park, Comanche Moon, Shortland Street, Short Poppies, Riding High
Star Sign Gemini

  • Facts
  • Filmography
  • Awards
  • Salaries
  • Quotes
  • Trademarks
  • Pictures

#Fact
1 Is a huge fan of rugby union; in particular, the New Zealand All Blacks national team.
2 On the set of The Chronicles of Riddick (2004), he passed the time by playing Dungeons & Dragons with Vin Diesel, Judi Dench and Thandie Newton.
3 Has been a huge fan of the 2000 AD Comics' character Judge Dredd since his teens and got to play the character in the film adaptation Dredd (2012).
4 He named his son "Indiana" after Harrison Ford's iconic character Indiana Jones, of whom Karl is a huge fan.
5 His accent as Dr. Leonard "Bones" McCoy in Star Trek (2009) was so reminiscent of DeForest Kelley that it reportedly moved Leonard Nimoy (who starred alongside Kelley in the original series and films) to tears.
6 Enjoys video games, which is what influenced him to take a role in the film adaptation Doom (2005).
7 Has stated that his favorite Xena: Warrior Princess (1995) episode is Xena: Warrior Princess: A Day in the Life (1997), in which he did not appear.
8 Was a huge fan of both the Doctor Who and Star Trek franchises long before being cast as Dr. Leonard "Bones" McCoy in the Star Trek (2009) remake.
9 His father is a German immigrant and owned a leather-goods factory. His mother worked for Film Facilities in Wellington, New Zealand.
10 Started his acting career at the age of 8.
11 Is an ambassador for KidsCan, a charity that supports more than 16,000 disadvantaged children by providing shoes, food, and coats.
12 Has two sons: Hunter (born November 2000) and Indiana (Indy) (born January 2005).
13 Has replaced Tommy Lee Jones as Woodrow Call in the Lonesome Dove series, and Sylvester Stallone as Judge Dredd. Both characters previously appeared in films opposite Diane Lane.
14 Very good friends with his Star Trek (2009) co-stars Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto.
15 Has played the younger versions of iconic characters in two "prequels". He plays Woodrow Call in the Lonesome Dove (1989) prequel Comanche Moon (2008), and Dr. Leonard "Bones" McCoy in Star Trek (2009).
16 Has German ancestry on his father's side.
17 Has appeared in The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003), which was previously made as an animated film with the voice of John Huston. Urban later appeared in Comanche Moon (2008), a prequel to Lonesome Dove (1989), which featured Anjelica Huston.
18 Was considered for the role of Kainan in Outlander (2008), which went to Jim Caviezel.
19 Good friends with co-stars Viggo Mortensen from The Lord of the Rings and Renée O'Connor from Xena: Warrior Princess (1995).
20 Was introduced in the second installment of each of the three huge franchises he has appeared in: The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002), The Bourne Supremacy (2004) and The Chronicles of Riddick (2004).
21 His character of Cupid was originally written into the Xena: Warrior Princess (1995) Season 5 finale episode "Motherhood", but Urban was unavailable because he was filming The Lord of the Rings elsewhere in New Zealand. As compensation, Rob Tapert wrote the Season 6 episode "When Fates Collide" specifically for him, this time for his more-popular character of Julius Caesar. Tapert also used this episode as an opportunity to bid farewell to two other fan-favorite recurring characters: Alti and Brutus, portrayed by Claire Stansfield and David Franklin. "When Fates Collide" became one of the most popular episodes of the entire series.
22 Did roles on Xena: Warrior Princess (1995): Emperor Julius Caesar, Kor the caveman, and Mael (biblical character), Icas's brother. Also did roles on Hercules: The Legendary Journeys (1995): Cupid, son of Aphrodite and Caesar.
23 Has a son, Hunter Urban (born November 1, 2000), with wife Natalie Wihongi.
24 Reportedly received a $400,000 bonus for his work on "The Lord of the Rings" [London Daily Mail, December 5, 2003].
25 Primary school classmates with Jack Yan.
26 Had a beret and coat to perform self-written Frank Spencer skits at ages 11 and 12 as school assembly entertainment.
27 His hobbies include fishing, surfing, golf and gardening.
28 Has a black Lab terrier named Ire (pronounced eye-ree) after a Bob Marley song (from the album "Uprising").
29 He is, and has almost always been, very active. He worked on his aunt and uncle's farm for many years doing odd jobs. For filming the Lord of the Rings movies, he realized that Eomer was a consummate horseman and he was nowhere near that level, so he invested a lot of time learning: six to eight weeks, five days a week, two hours a day. He wanted to learn to neck rein, a method of steering a horse using one hand while leaving the other hand free to wield a sword. He wanted to be so at one with the horse that he wasn't conscious or concerned about what the horse was doing. In addition, he also enjoys indoor rock climbing.


Actor

Actor

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Stoic 2017 post-production Strode
Thor: Ragnarok 2017 post-production Skurge
Hangman 2017/II post-production Detective Ruiney
Entry Level pre-production
Pete's Dragon 2016 Gavin
Star Trek Beyond 2016 Doctor 'Bones' McCoy
The Loft 2014 Vincent Stevens
Short Poppies 2014 TV Series Alex the Hair Dresser
Almost Human 2013-2014 TV Series Detective John Kennex
Walking with Dinosaurs 3D 2013 Uncle Zack
Riddick 2013 Vaako
Riddick: Blindsided 2013 Short Vaako (voice)
Star Trek Into Darkness 2013 Bones
Star Trek 2013 Video Game Bones (voice)
Dredd 2012 Judge Dredd
Priest 2011 Black Hat
And Soon the Darkness 2010 Michael
RED 2010 William Cooper
Black Water Transit 2009 Earl Pike
Star Trek 2009 Bones
Comanche Moon 2008 TV Mini-Series Woodrow F. Call
Pathfinder 2007 Ghost
Out of the Blue 2006/I Nick Harvey
Doom 2005 John Grimm
The Bourne Supremacy 2004 Kirill
The Chronicles of Riddick 2004 Vaako
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King 2003 Eomer
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers 2002 Eomer
Ghost Ship 2002 Munder
Xena: Warrior Princess 1996-2001 TV Series Julius Caesar Caesar Cupid ...
The Privateers 2000 TV Movie Capt. Aran Dravyk
The Price of Milk 2000 Rob
Truth About Demons 2000 Harry Ballard
Hercules: The Legendary Journeys 1996-1998 TV Series Julius Caesar Cupid
Via Satellite 1998 Paul
Heaven 1998 Sweeper
Amazon High 1997 TV Movie Kor
Cover Story 1996 TV Series Damien Marshall
Riding High 1995 TV Series James Westwood
White Fang 1993 TV Series David
Chunuk Bair 1992 Wellington soldier
Homeward Bound 1992 TV Series Tim Johnstone
Shortland Street 1992 TV Series Paramedic Jamie Forrest (1993-1994)
Shark in the Park 1991 TV Series Rohann Murdoch

Self

Self

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Building Star Trek 2016 TV Movie documentary Himself
Días de cine 2016 TV Series Himself
50 Years of Star Trek 2016 TV Movie Himself
Film HQ 2016 TV Series Himself - Guest
Made in Hollywood 2016 TV Series Himself
The Talk 2016 TV Series Himself
Up Close with Carrie Keagan 2007-2016 TV Series Himself - Guest / Himself
Access Hollywood Live 2016 TV Series Himself
Entertainment Tonight 2016 TV Series Himself
Today 2016 TV Series Himself - Guest
Good Morning America 2016 TV Series Himself - Guest
For the Love of Spock 2016 Documentary Himself
Secrets of the Force Awakens: A Cinematic Journey 2016 Documentary Himself
Future Shock! The Story of 2000AD 2014 Documentary Himself
Vin's Riddick 2014 Video documentary short Himself
Good Day L.A. 2013 TV Series Himself - Guest
Fox Fall Preview 2013 TV Movie Himself
Star Trek Into Darkness Special 2013 TV Movie documentary Himself
The Wendy Williams Show 2012 TV Series Himself - Guest
Big Morning Buzz Live 2012 TV Series Himself - Guest
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon 2012 TV Series Himself - Guest
Comic Con 2012 Live 2012 TV Movie Himself
MSN Exclusives 2012 TV Series Himself
The Bloody Frontier: Creating the World of Priest 2011 Video short Himself
Film Fiend 2011 TV Series Himself - Guest
Jimmy Kimmel Live! 2010 TV Series Himself
Star Trek: The Gag Reel 2009 Video short Himself
Scream Awards 2009 2009 TV Special Himself
Qantas Film and Television Awards 2009 2009 TV Special Himself
Big Night In 2009 TV Movie Himself
Making of... 2009 TV Series documentary
Xposé 2009 TV Series Himself
Special zu 'Star Trek XI' 2009 TV Movie documentary
Reclaiming the Blade 2009 Documentary Himself
Pathfinder: The Shoot 2007 Video documentary short Himself
Pathfinder: The Build 2007 Video documentary short Himself
Basic Training 2006 Video documentary short Himself
Du kommst nicht vorbei - Fans im Bann des Ringes 2005 Video short Himself
Cameras in Middle-Earth 2004 Video documentary Himself
Home of the Horse Lords 2004 Video documentary short Himself
The Bourne Supremacy: Crash Cam - Racing to the Streets of Moscow 2004 Video short Himself
The Bourne Supremacy: Keeping It Real 2004 Video short Himself
The Bourne Supremacy: Matching Identities: Casting of 'The Bourne Supremacy' 2004 Video documentary short Himself
Cameras in Middle-Earth 2003 Video documentary Himself
The Battle for Helm's Deep Is Over... 2003 Video documentary short Himself
Weta Workshop 2003 Video documentary short Himself

Archive Footage

Archive Footage

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Entertainment Tonight 2016 TV Series Himself
Extra 2016 TV Series Himself
Lennon or McCartney 2014 Documentary short Himself
Troldspejlet 2013 TV Series Himself - Actor
Lego the Lord of the Rings: The Video Game 2012 Video Game Eomer
First Person Shooter Sequence 2006 Video documentary short John Grimm (uncredited)
The Lord of the Rings: The Third Age 2004 Video Game Eomer
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King 2003 Video Game Eomer
Xena: Warrior Princess 1997-1998 TV Series Julius Caesar

Won awards

Won awards

YearAwardCeremonyNominationMovieAward shared with
2009 BSFC Award Boston Society of Film Critics Awards Best Ensemble Cast Star Trek (2009) · Chris Pine
· Zachary Quinto
· Zoe Saldana
· Leonard Nimoy
· John Cho
· Simon Pegg
· Anton Yelchin
· Ben Cross
· Eric Bana
· Clifton Collins Jr.
· Bruce Greenwood
· Jennifer Morrison
· Chris Hemsworth
· Winona Ryder
· Tyler Perry
· Faran Tahir
2009 DFCS Award Denver Film Critics Society Best Acting Ensemble Star Trek (2009) · Chris Pine
· Zachary Quinto
· Zoe Saldana
· Leonard Nimoy
· Eric Bana
· Simon Pegg
· John Cho
· Anton Yelchin
· Bruce Greenwood
· Ben Cross
· Winona Ryder
· Clifton Collins Jr.
· Chris Hemsworth
· Jennifer Morrison
· Faran Tahir
· Jonny Rees
· Tyler Perry
2008 Film Award New Zealand Film and TV Awards (II) Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in Film Out of the Blue (2006)
2004 Critics Choice Award Broadcast Film Critics Association Awards Best Acting Ensemble The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) · Sean Astin
· Sean Bean
· Cate Blanchett
· Orlando Bloom
· Billy Boyd
· Bernard Hill
· Ian Holm
· Ian McKellen
· Dominic Monaghan
· Viggo Mortensen
· John Noble
· Miranda Otto
· John Rhys-Davies
· Andy Serkis
· Liv Tyler
· Hugo Weaving
· David Wenham
· Elijah Wood
2004 Gold Derby Award Gold Derby Awards Ensemble Cast The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) · Sean Astin
· Sean Bean
· Cate Blanchett
· Orlando Bloom
· Billy Boyd
· Bernard Hill
· Ian Holm
· Ian McKellen
· Dominic Monaghan
· Viggo Mortensen
· John Noble
· Miranda Otto
· John Rhys-Davies
· Andy Serkis
· Liv Tyler
· Hugo Weaving
· David Wenham
· Elijah Wood
2004 Actor Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) · Sean Astin
· Sean Bean
· Cate Blanchett
· Orlando Bloom
· Billy Boyd
· Bernard Hill
· Ian Holm
· Ian McKellen
· Dominic Monaghan
· Viggo Mortensen
· John Noble
· Miranda Otto
· John Rhys-Davies
· Andy Serkis
· Liv Tyler
· Hugo Weaving
· David Wenham
· Elijah Wood
2003 ACCA Awards Circuit Community Awards Best Cast Ensemble The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) · Sean Austin
· Sean Bean
· Cate Blanchett
· Orlando Bloom
· Billy Boyd
· Brad Dourif
· Bernard Hill
· Ian Holm
· Ian McKellen
· Dominic Monaghan
· Viggo Mortensen
· John Noble
· Miranda Otto
· John Rhys-Davies
· Andy Serkis
· Liv Tyler
· Hugo Weaving
· David Wenham
· Elijah Wood
2003 NBR Award National Board of Review, USA Best Acting by an Ensemble The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) · Sean Astin
· Sean Bean
· Cate Blanchett
· Orlando Bloom
· Billy Boyd
· Bernard Hill
· Ian Holm
· Ian McKellen
· Dominic Monaghan
· Viggo Mortensen
· John Noble
· Miranda Otto
· John Rhys-Davies
· Andy Serkis
· Liv Tyler
· Hugo Weaving
· David Wenham
· Elijah Wood

Nominated awards

Nominated awards

YearAwardCeremonyNominationMovieAward shared with
2010 Gold Derby Award Gold Derby Awards Ensemble Cast Star Trek (2009) · Eric Bana
· John Cho
· Bruce Greenwood
· Leonard Nimoy
· Simon Pegg
· Chris Pine
· Zachary Quinto
· Zoe Saldana
· Anton Yelchin
2009 WAFCA Award Washington DC Area Film Critics Association Awards Best Ensemble Star Trek (2009) · Zoe Saldana
· Zachary Quinto
· Eric Bana
· John Cho
· Chris Pine
· Bruce Greenwood
· Ben Cross
· Anton Yelchin
· Clifton Collins Jr.
2006 Chainsaw Award Fangoria Chainsaw Awards Bloodiest Beatdown Doom (2005) · Dwayne Johnson
2004 PFCS Award Phoenix Film Critics Society Awards Best Ensemble Acting The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) · Sean Astin
· Sean Bean
· Cate Blanchett
· Orlando Bloom
· Billy Boyd
· Bernard Hill
· Ian Holm
· Ian McKellen
· Dominic Monaghan
· Viggo Mortensen
· John Noble
· Miranda Otto
· John Rhys-Davies
· Andy Serkis
· Liv Tyler
· Hugo Weaving
· David Wenham
· Elijah Wood
2003 DVDX Award DVD Exclusive Awards Best Audio Commentary (New for DVD) The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002) · Elijah Wood
· Sean Astin
· John Rhys-Davies
· Billy Boyd
· Dominic Monaghan
· Orlando Bloom
· Christopher Lee
· Sean Bean
· Bernard Hill
· Miranda Otto
· David Wenham
· Brad Dourif
· John Noble
· Craig Parker
· Andy Serkis
2003 Gold Derby Award Gold Derby Awards Ensemble Cast The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002) · Sean Astin
· Cate Blanchett
· Orlando Bloom
· Billy Boyd
· Bernard Hill
· Christopher Lee
· Ian McKellen
· Dominic Monaghan
· Viggo Mortensen
· Miranda Otto
· John Rhys-Davies
· Andy Serkis
· Liv Tyler
· Hugo Weaving
· David Wenham
· Elijah Wood
2001 Film Award New Zealand Film and TV Awards (I) Best Actor The Irrefutable Truth About Demons (2000)
2000 Film Award New Zealand Film and TV Awards (I) Best Actor The Price of Milk (2000)


Looks like we don't have salary information. Sorry!


#Quote
1 Dredd (2012) represented a failure in marketing. I saw the tracking of that film weeks before it came out and the fundamental problem was no one knew it was being released. Once it came out on DVD and it sold 750,000 copies in the first week alone in North America alone, it was very clear that the audience had discovered it. [2016]
2 When you work so hard on making a film, it's all worthwhile when you get to experience seeing that film with an audience who thoroughly enjoy it and react to the movie.
3 There's only so much you can do until you get on set and see the aesthetics of what you're dealing with. Then you see what the other players are giving to you. It's all about the transfer of energy between different actors.
4 That's always an interesting concept when you try to make your dream into a reality and you come up against the facts of exactly what it is you're attempting to do.
5 That is a big danger, losing your inspiration. When I work in film and television I try to do each take a little differently. I never want to do the same thing twice, because then you're not being spontaneous, you're just recreating something.
6 My philosophy is whatever you do, you've got to invest in yourself. If you don't, there are a lot of people out there who will get the job because they're more prepared than you.
7 It's such a small industry here, you inevitably end up working with the same people over and over again. There are only so many actors to go around, which is good for us.
8 It was always something I knew I was capable of and from an early age my mother was involved in the film industry. She used to work at a production company. So I was exposed to a renaissance period of films in New Zealand back in the early 80s.
9 If I read a script and find it engaging and I start making choices in my mind on how to approach the work, than that's a good indication that it is something worth pursuing.
10 I'll need every ounce that I have to drive it through. Film and TV require that energy. Sometimes fight scenes can be pretty intense. When I was shooting Heaven (1998), it was truly guerrilla filmmaking.
11 I don't see a benefit in accepting every single little morsel of work that comes along because I think, in essence, what you're doing is you're raping yourself really.
12 I did a little theater work after that and the following year I got another part in a television series. Then it was almost to the end of the year before I got more work. That was coming to terms with the reality of the vocation I had chosen.
13 Now I'm this far up the ladder and I've got so much farther to go with what I want to achieve with it.
14 I'm high-energy.
15 I was a fan of the Dredd comics when I was a teenager.
16 I never envisioned when I was reading that comic as a 17-year-old that I would have the opportunity to actually play the character.
17 I love fishing and surfing, and I work out every day.
18 I like the time frame involved in being an actor.
19 I don't believe I could work as effectively at what I do without the support of my wife.
20 Nothing beats a great smile.
21 When I work, I try to eat as much vegetarian as possible. When I do Cupid, I eat vegetarian because I need the energy. I've got those wings on my back.
22 [on a Dredd (2012) sequel] It's not off the agenda. Clearly everyone has woken up to the fact that an audience has found this movie and loves it. It's entirely possible, and if people want to see another installment then they should be vocal about that, because it can happen. The power of fandom can resurrect projects. In fact, that's what happened with Star Trek (1966). They weren't going to do a third season until fans did a letter-writing campaign and they continued that series.
23 [on his fondest memory of working with Peter Jackson while shooting the Lord of the Rings trilogy] Peter's really open to the humor in the day-to-day. One time, we were referencing a line in the book, "We counted all the slain and despoiled them, then we piled the carcasses and burned them." Of course, we went on all sorts of disgusting tangents about what else these Rohan soldiers did to the poor Orcs.

#Trademark
1 Often plays wisecracking, highly adept characters
2 Dark intense staring eyes
3 Deep commanding voice

Check Also

PJ Carlesimo

Basketball coach using the Portland Trailblazers as well as the Golden Condition Warriors. He became …