Brian Thompson

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Brian Thompson
Brian Thompson.jpg
Brian Thompson in 2008
Born(1959-08-28) August 28, 1959 (age 54)
Ellensburg, Washington, U.S.
Years active1983–present
Spouse(s)Shari Braun
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For other uses, see Brian Thompson (disambiguation).
Brian Thompson
Brian Thompson.jpg
Brian Thompson in 2008
Born(1959-08-28) August 28, 1959 (age 54)
Ellensburg, Washington, U.S.
Years active1983–present
Spouse(s)Shari Braun

Brian Thompson (born August 28, 1959) is an American actor. His distinctive square-jaw profile, powerful voice, and imposing stature (195. 5 cm, six foot Four) has led to him being cast in many action films and television series, but has also appeared in several comedies.


Brian Thompson was born in Ellensburg, Washington, located in the same area where Northern Exposure (1990) would later be filmed. Raised on the Columbia River in Longview, Washington, he learned the value of academics and athletics, as the son of two teachers and the second of six siblings. Brian's father, Bert, taught science at R. A. Long High School. Brian attended the cross town rival Mark Morris High School, where he was on the swimming and football teams. His interest in acting was first sparked during his senior year of high school with the role of the Russian ballet instructor Boris in the comedy "You Can't Take it With You". Under the pretense of attending Central Washington University to play football and study business management, he quietly auditioned for every available play, treading the boards for a dozen school productions, from musicals and operas to the more lighthearted fare of Neil Simon.

Earning a scholarship to the University of California-Irvine, he sailed through a three-year Master of Fine Arts program, learning from such theatrical luminaries as playwright Edward Albee, Robert Cohen and Jerzy Grotoswski, and supplementing his education through work with the Colorado Shakespeare Festival. Before graduation he began to audition theatrically, and by the time school ended he had his SAG card, an agent, and five pro credits, including James Cameron's movie The Terminator (1984), where he and Bill Paxton's clothes were forcibly removed by a naked Arnold Schwarzenegger. About a year after Arnold took Brian's clothes, Sylvester Stallone wanted a hack at Brian as well. After seven auditions and a screen test, Brian earned the right to get impaled on a meat hook, then burned alive, in Stallone's Cobra (1986). This began a string of credits that has left Thompson in and around some of Hollywood's biggest and most successful projects.

Brian has tackled two superhero roles as well: first, Conan the Librarian (1999), starring in the title role, a PBS special to encourage kids to read. He also earned critical acclaim playing the larger-than-life role of Hercules in Jason and the Argonauts (2000) (TV). Probably the first part that demanded use of his classical background as well as his 6' 3" muscled frame. Brian says that no gym can claim him as a member and that his physique is kept toned by years of windsurfing and now kitesurfing. Taking a curiously "musical" approach to his craft, the actor continually seeks fresh rhythms for each new role. Brian verifies his well rounded nature with a resume that lists such special skills as martial arts (black belt Hapkido), piano and sushi rolling. He lives at home with his son Jordan and daughter Daphne.

"I do not have a hapkido school, but I studied with Master Ho Jin Song's Hapkido in Studio City, CA." Brian Thompson June 2, 2013.



Thompson has played supporting roles in a number of movies, including Dragonheart, The Terminator and Joe Dirt. He played the role of Tenctonese Trent Porter in the film Alien Nation and Hercules in Jason and the Argonauts. Thompson has also often been cast as the villain such as in the movies Cobra and Mortal Kombat: Annihilation.


Thompson has also appeared in a wide variety of television shows, including seven seasons on the The X-Files as an alien bounty hunter, and the pilot episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, as well as Kindred: The Embraced as Eddie Fiori, the leader of the Brujah clan, and Charmed as both War from the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse and the Titan Cronos. He appeared on the Fox Network cult science fiction TV series Alien Nation as a Newcomer named Peter Rabbitt, as well as in the 1988 film upon which is based, though playing a different character. Thompson has also appeared in Hercules: The Legendary Journeys as the warlord Goth, and in Birds of Prey as the Crawler in Episode 7 "Split", as well as in the series NCIS, Californication, and in the television movie Love's Christmas Journey on the Hallmark Channel.

Cast as a more fatherly figure, Thompson starred in the family film, Tillamook Treasure as Uncle Jimmy, an Oregon logger.

Other Work[edit]

Thompson also appeared in the video game inspired movie Mortal Kombat: Annihilation as the Emperor Shao Kahn. He has also directed and produced a feature comedy, The Extendables.

Selected Filmography[edit]

1984The Terminatorstreet punkBit character attacked and robbed by The Terminator
1986CobraNight SlasherKey villain
1986Three AmigosThugA lackey of The German
1986Doctor MordridKabalKey villain, an evil wizard
1988Fright Night IIBozworthBug-eating lackey
1988Alien NationTrent Porter
1988Miracle MileHelicopter Pilot
1990LionheartRusselBilled 5th
1990Moon 44Jake O'Neal
1991Life StinksMean Victor
1993The Naked TruthBruno
1994Star Trek GenerationsKlingon HelmKlingon helmsman
1996DragonheartBrokTask executor
1997Mortal Kombat: AnnihilationShao KahnOutworld Ruler
2000Jason and the ArgonautsHerculesTV miniseries
2001Joe DirtBuffalo BobParodies the Buffalo Bill role from Silence of the Lambs
2001EpochCaptain Tower
2001The OrderCyrus JacobKey villain
2007Fist of the WarriorMax
2007Flight of the Living Dead: Outbreak on a PlaneKevin
2011The ArcadianAgmundr
2014The Extendables[1]Vardell Duseldorferwith Mark Dacascos, Kevin Sorbo, Martin Kove, Patrick Warburton, Gary Graham and Marisa Ramirez
1988Favorite SonRolf Petersen3 Episodes
1988WerewolfNicholas Remy6 Episodes
1989Star TrekVarious KlingonsAppeared as different named or unnamed Klingons in four Star Trek series
1993Key WestSheriff Cody Jeremiah Johnson13 episodes
1994The X-FilesAlien Bounty HunterEpisodes: "Colony", End Game, 7 more episodes
1996Kindred: The EmbracedEddie Fiori6 episodes as the leader of the Brujah clan of vampires
1997Buffy the Vampire SlayerLukeEpisodes: "Welcome to the Hellmouth", "The Harvest"
1998Buffy the Vampire SlayerThe JudgeEpisodes: "Surprise", "Innocence"
2000CharmedHorseman of WarEpisode: "Apocalypse, Not" (season 2, Episode 21)
2002Birds of PreyThe CrawlerEpisode: Split
2003CharmedTitan CronosEpisode: "Oh My Goddess (Part 1 & 2)" (season 5, Episodes 22 & 23)
2004NCISMaster Chief NutterEpisode: "The Truth is Out There"
2005Star Trek: EnterpriseRomulan Admiral Valdore3 Episodes
2009ChuckCliff Arculin / Cliff SiljakEpisode: "Chuck Versus the Suburbs"
2012CalifornicationMr. ScaryEpisode: At the Movies (Directed by Helen Hunt)
2012Spirit of a DentureCaptain Jasper Crowwith Kevin Spacey


External links[edit]