Robert Knepper – Where’d He Come From? A Personality Focus

by on December 1, 2010

in Entertainment

Robert Knepper

(Stargate Universe, Heroes, Prison Break)

Robert Knepper and Sarah Wayne Callies (The Walking Dead) in Prison Break

Originally published Dec 1, 2010: When I was first introduced to Robert Knepper, it was during his tenure on the Fox television series Prison Break when he was playing Theodore ‘T-Bag’ Bagwell. In Prison Break he starred alongside Sarah Wayne Callies (The Walking Dead), Wentworth Miller (Resident Evil: Afterlife) and Dominic Purcell (3 upcoming TV projects, 1 being Straw Dogs).

Since Prison Break, Robert has starred in Heroes as Samuel Sullivan and made 2 one-up guest appearances, one on Chase and another on Criminal Minds this year. His latest role I’ve seen was on Stargate Universe as the focused, evil-minded Simeon, who, as you’ll see, well… if you’ve watched it, you’ll see.

Robert Knepper and Julia Benson from Earth's Final Hours a Syfy Channel Movie

In upcoming projects, Robert Knepper has a TV movie in production that’s due out in mid-2011, titled Earth’s Final Hours where he’ll star alongside Julia Benson, Cameron Bright & Bruce Davison. Maybe I should be saying they’ll star alongside Robert. According to an update from Julie Benson’s blog, it is a Syfy Channel movie.

Julia Benson on Stargate Universe on the Syfy Channel

(BTW: Julia Benson is also on Stargate Universe as Vanessa James. Maybe you remember her? I do!)

Back on Track:

Right now Robert has 34 films/videos on his IMDb resume and 55 TV titles behind him.

According to IMDb, his first TV role (1-up) was that of Howard on The Paper Chase, back in 1986. His first multi-episode role (three) was that of dr., on E.A.R.T.H. Force in 1990.

Robert Knepper in Heroes

He’s also passed through other shows that I’m sure we’ve seen him in, but being new to the viewing audience at the time, we just never took notice. Some of those shows included China Beach, Red Show Diaries, L.A. Law, Law & Order(1995), Murder, She Wrote, ER, Star Trek: Voyager, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, CSI: Miami & Ronald D. Moore’s Carnivale. Carnivale was his last stint before Prison Break.

Robert Knepper and Sally Kirkland in Criminal Minds

His first noted movie was also in the same time frame as his first TV role in 1986, titled That’s Life. Since then he has been in Young Guns II, Everyone Says I Love You, D-Tox, Hostage, Hitman (w/ Timothy Olyphant), Transporter 3 & the 2008 movie remake of The Day The Earth Stood Still.

Upcoming Robert Knepper News

Other news and notes is that Robert will be appearing in Showtime’s Shameless, and it looks like Robert Knepper will reprise his Prison Break character T-Bag on A&E’s new series that is in production, titled Breakout Kings. (The show comes from the creators of Prison Break and the outline reads as follows: “A squad of U.S. marshals team up with ex-cons to work together on tracking down prison escapees.“)

As a bit of a spoiler, in an interview Knepper admitted that he wasn’t going to take up the mantle of T-Bag again if they were going to kill him off. (You put the pieces together.) Thirteen episodes have been ordered by AMC. With AMC’s recent track record with shows like The Walking Dead I have a feeling that this might NOT suck.

Robert Knepper as T-Bag in Prison Break and soon, in Breakout Kings

OK, if you must know, I always felt bad for T-Bag in Prison Break. Not at first, but once he got out and started to enjoy his pseudo life as a salesman, you could see there was something that Robert telegraphed so eloquently, a sad and confused criminal who, if the circumstances were right, could have had a decent life at one time. For but a fleeting moment, he had the taste of what could have been.

And that’s what Robert does for me… sure, he can play evil. But there’s always something underneath it… sometimes we’re allowed to see it and sometimes, not. In his guest appearance on Criminal Minds, the character twist was brilliant! He made it even that much more believable! So now, I find that I will once again be pulling for T-Bag??? Well, let’s see what more Robert Knepper can pull out of that character. If there’s something there, he’ll do it.

Update 12-16-11: In 2011 he’s appeared in The Morning Hour, and his upcoming projects include R.I.P.D., Cloclo & Into the Americas, so keep your eye out for Robert!

If you didn’t know, Robert was born in Fremont, Ohio on July 8th, 1959 and is married to Tory Herald. His dad was a veterinarian and his mother used to work in a props department in a local theater in Fremont. He was bitten by the acting bug then!

He lives in Southern California and is repped by Fortitude Talent Agency.

Robert Knepper in Burning Daylight








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