Ian Somerhalder

Ian Somerhalder
Somerhalder in 2013
Born Ian Joseph Somerhalder
(1978-12-08) December 8, 1978
Covington, Louisiana, U.S.
Occupation Actor, model
Years active 1997–present
Nikki Reed (m. 2015)
Children 1

Ian Joseph Somerhalder[1] (born December 8, 1978)[2] is an American actor, model and director.[3] He is known for playing Boone Carlyle in the TV drama Lost and Damon Salvatore in The CW's supernatural drama The Vampire Diaries.

Early life

Somerhalder was born and raised in Covington, Louisiana, the son of Edna, a massage therapist, and Robert Somerhalder, an independent building contractor.[4] He is the second of three children, with an older brother, Robert, and younger sister, Robyn.[5] He attended Mandeville High School, a public school in Mandeville, Louisiana.[6] He embarked on a modeling career from age 10 to 13,[7] and by the age of 17 he decided to go into acting.


In the summer of 2000, Somerhalder starred in the short-lived WB series Young Americans, a spin-off of Dawson's Creek. He played Hamilton Fleming, the son of the dean of a prestigious boarding school. In 2002, Somerhalder played bisexual character Paul Denton in Roger Avary's adaptation of Bret Easton Ellis' novel, The Rules of Attraction, alongside James Van Der Beek, Shannyn Sossamon, and Jessica Biel.[8]

In 2004, Somerhalder scored his breakthrough role when he played Boone Carlyle in the hit TV show Lost. Despite his character's death in the twentieth episode of the first season, Somerhalder returned to the role of Boone for seven more episodes between 2005 and 2010, including the series finale. Somerhalder was one of the first actors to be cast in a role for the series[9] and the first major character to die.[10]

In 2009, Somerhalder appeared in the movie The Tournament where he played the role of an assassin participating in a lethal competition with other assassins. He appears in the coffee table book About Face by celebrity photographer John Russo.[11][12]

In June 2009, Somerhalder was cast in the role of Vampire Damon Salvatore as a series regular in The CW television drama series The Vampire Diaries. The series premiere attracted The CW's highest premiere ratings of any season premiere since the network began in 2006. The series has continued to be the highest rated series on its channel with both Somerhalder's performance and the show receiving a positive response from critics. Somerhalder began directing The Vampire Diaries in its thirdth season and produced the series at the start of season 8. Somerhalder has received several Teen Choice Award's and a People's Choice Award for his participation on the series.[13]

In October 2012 it was reported that Somerhalder had been cast in the film Time Framed, which had begun filming in Los Angeles.[14] In April 2018, Somerhalder was cast in the role of Dr. Luther Swann as a series regular in Netflix Vampire drama series V-Wars.[15]

Foundations and causes

Somerhalder was involved in the cleanup after the Deepwater Horizon oil drilling disaster on April 22, 2010. His efforts included cleaning of oiled wildlife and taping public service announcements to let the public know how they could help.[16] Somerhalder also supports the St. Tammany Humane Society, an organization for animal shelter and welfare. On November 13, 2010, he hosted a Bash on the Bayou charity fundraiser for the Society. During the event, Somerhalder was presented with a donation of $11,100 by The Vampire Diaries fandom for his birthday project.[17][18][19][20]

Together with his The Vampire Diaries co-stars Candice Accola and Michael Trevino, Somerhalder supports the It Gets Better Project, which makes it a goal to prevent suicide among LGBT youth[21] associated with The Trevor Project.[22] For his second campaign, Somerhalder teamed up with The Vampire Diaries co-star Paul Wesley to release a limited edition shirt designed by a fan, with the words "Blood Brothers Since 1864."[23] This campaign sold almost 10,000 shirts.[24]

Somerhalder announced, via Twitter and in various interviews that he was setting up "Ian Somerhalder Foundation" (launched on December 8, 2010, Somerhalder's 32nd birthday), which he hopes will educate people on the importance of protecting the environment and animals: "Instead of gifts this year, my birthday wish is that we come together and raise funds to support projects that protect our habitat and nurture our furry friends.[25][26] He opposes GMO foods and factory farming, and supports ecologist Allan Savory in his crusade to let cows graze in sync with nature to enrich soil, enhance biodiversity, and reverse climate change. In 2011 Somerhalder visited Savory in Africa and announced he was making a documentary about him with the goal of winning him a Nobel Prize.[27][28]

Somerhalder is also a celebrity campaigner for RYOT, a Los Angeles-based media company known for RYOT.org, its cause-based, take action online news source.[29]

Personal life

Somerhalder dated his The Vampire Diaries co-star Nina Dobrev from 2010 to 2013.[30] In mid-2014, Somerhalder began dating actress Nikki Reed.[31] They confirmed their engagement in February 2015[32] and married on April 26, 2015, in Malibu, California.[33] On May 2, 2017, the couple announced they were expecting a child.[34] They welcomed their child, a daughter, Bodhi Soleil, on July 25, 2017.[35]



Year Title Role Notes
1998 Celebrity Unconfirmed Uncredited
2001 Life as a House Josh
2002 Changing Hearts Jason Kelly
2002 The Rules of Attraction Paul Denton
2004 In Enemy Hands U.S.S. Swordfish Danny Miller
2004 The Old Man and the Studio Matt Short film
2006 National Lampoon's TV: The Movie Unconfirmed Uncredited
2006 Pulse Dexter McCarthy
2006 The Sensation of Sight Drifter
2008 The Lost Samaritan William Archer
2009 Wake Tyler
2009 The Tournament Miles Slade
2010 How to Make Love to a Woman Daniel Meltzer
2013 Caught On Tape Officer Lewis
2013 Time Framed Agent Black Short film
2014 The Anomaly Harkin Langham


Year Title Role Notes
1997 The Big Easy I.Q. Episode: "The Black Bag"
1999 Now and Again Brian Episode: "A Girl's Life"
2000 Young Americans Hamilton Fleming Main role
2001 Anatomy of a Hate Crime Russell Henderson TV film
2002 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Tony Del Nagro Episode: "Revenge Is Best Served Cold"
2002 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Charlie Baker Episode: "Dominance"
2003 CSI: Miami Ricky Murdoch Episode: "The Best Defense"
2004 Fearless Jordan Gracie Unsold TV pilot
2004 Smallville Adam Knight 6 episodes
2007 Marco Polo Marco Polo TV film
2007 Tell Me You Love Me Nick Recurring role; 6 episodes
2008 Lost City Raiders Jack Kubiak TV film
2009 Fireball Lee Cooper TV film
2004–2007; 2010 Lost Boone Carlyle Main role (season 1); Special Guest Star (seasons 2–3, 6); 28 episodes
2014 Years of Living Dangerously Himself Documentary series; Episode: "Ice & Brimstone"
2009–2017 The Vampire Diaries Damon Salvatore Main role; Producer (season 8)
TBA V-Wars [36] Dr. Luther Swann Main Role; Netflix Original Series


Year Title Role Notes
2009 The Vampire Diaries: A Darker Truth Damon Salvatore Episode: "A Darker Truth Part 4"

As director

Year Title Notes
2015 The Vampire Diaries Episode: "The Downward Spiral"
2016 The Vampire Diaries Episode: "Days of Future Past"
2017 The Vampire Diaries Episode: "We Have History Together"

Awards and nominations

2002 Young Hollywood Awards Exciting New Face – Male N/A Won
2005 Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Breakout Performance – Male Lost Nominated
2006 Screen Actors Guild Award Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Lost (with cast) Won
2010 Young Hollywood Awards[37] Cast to Watch (with Paul Wesley and Nina Dobrev) The Vampire Diaries Won
Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Villain Won
Teen Choice Awards Choice Male Hottie Nominated
2011 Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Actor Fantasy/Sci-Fi Won
Teen Choice Awards Choice Vampire Nominated
Teen Choice Awards Choice Male Hottie Nominated
People's Choice Awards Favorite TV Drama Actor Nominated
2012 People's Choice Awards Favorite TV Drama Actor Nominated
Genesis Awards Humane Society N/A Won
Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Actor Fantasy/Sci-Fi The Vampire Diaries Won
Teen Choice Awards Choice Male Hottie Won[38]
Do Something Awards Best TV Star Nominated
Do Something Awards Twitter N/A Nominated
Environmental Media Awards EMA Futures Award N/A Won
Fright Night Awards Favorite Male TV/Movie Vampire The Vampire Diaries Won
International Green Awards Most Responsible Celebrity N/A Won
2013 People's Choice Awards Favorite Dramatic TV Actor The Vampire Diaries Nominated
Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Actor: Fantasy/Sci-Fi Won
2014 People's Choice Awards Favorite Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Actor Won[39]
People's Choice Awards Favorite On-Screen Chemistry (with Nina Dobrev) Won
mtvU Fandom Awards Ship of the Year (with Nina Dobrev) Won[40]
Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Actor Fantasy/Sci-Fi Won
Teen Choice Awards Choice Male Hottie Won
Teen Choice Awards Choice Twit N/A Nominated
Teen Choice Awards Choice Social Media King N/A Nominated
Young Hollywood Awards Best Threesome (with Paul Wesley and Nina Dobrev) The Vampire Diaries Won
2015 People's Choice Awards Favorite Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Actor Nominated
People's Choice Awards Favorite TV Duo (with Nina Dobrev) Won
Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Actor Fantasy/Sci-Fi Nominated
Teen Choice Awards Choice TV: Chemistry (with Kat Graham) Nominated
Teen Choice Awards Choice TV: Liplock (with Nina Dobrev) Won
mtvU Fandom Awards Ship of the Year (with Kat Graham) Nominated
2016 People's Choice Awards Favorite Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Actor Nominated
Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Actor Fantasy/Sci-Fi Nominated
Teen Choice Awards Choice TV: Chemistry (with Kat Graham) Nominated
2017 People's Choice Awards Favorite Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Actor Nominated
Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Actor Fantasy/Sci-Fi Nominated
Teen Choice Awards Choice Changemaker N/A Nominated


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