Casper Van Dien

Casper Van Dien
Casper Van Dien

Casper Van Dien (Wikipedia)

Casper Van Dien was born and raised in Milton, Florida, the son of Diane (née Morrow), a nursery school teacher, and Casper Robert Van Dien Sr., a U.S. Navy Commander and fighter pilot.

There is a long military tradition in Van Dien’s family. Aside from his father, his grandfather was a Marine during World War II. Van Dien is descended from an old Dutch family long settled in the New York area; his other heritage includes SwedishFrench, and English.

The street on which Van Dien grew up in Ridgewood, New Jersey, Van Dien Avenue, was named after his great-great-great-grandfather. When Van Dien was older, his family moved to Florida, where he enrolled at the St. Petersburg campus of the Admiral Farragut Academy, graduating 3rd in command. While in the Florida prep school, Van Dien was often referred to as “Ken doll” due to his good looks, and got into many fights for that reason. Even some writers later described him as a “perfect life-sized Ken doll.” After high school, Van Dien attended Florida State University in Tallahassee, where he was a member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity.

After moving to Los Angeles, Van Dien landed a number of small parts in various television series and movies. Two early breaks were recurring roles as Ty Moody on the daytime soap opera One Life to Live and the prime time drama Beverly Hills, 90210. Keen to expand his acting talents, Van Dien took a bit part in the video game, Wing Commander IV.

In 1996, Van Dien played King Tal in Beastmaster III: The Eye of Braxus, the second sequel to the 1982 cult classic, The Beastmaster. Van Dien also starred in the 1997 James Deanbiopic James Dean: Race with Destiny. Soon after, he got the breakthrough role of Johnny Rico in Paul Verhoeven‘s 1997 science fiction action film Starship Troopers. His success in Starship Troopers subsequently resulted in his casting as Tarzan in Tarzan and the Lost City (1998).[6] Van Dien next played Brom von Brunt in Tim Burton‘s 1999 film Sleepy Hollow, a reworking of the classic Washington Irving tale.

In 2000 Van Dien appeared in Cutaway as well as Aaron Spelling‘s short-lived NBC prime time soap Titans with Yasmine BleethJohn BarrowmanPerry King and Victoria Principal. He filmed several scenes as Patrick Bateman, the character that Christian Bale had played in 2000’s American Psycho, in 2002’s The Rules of Attraction. However, the scenes were unused in the final film.

In 2008 Van Dien returned to the role of Rico in Starship Troopers 3: Marauder, a direct-to-video sequel to Starship Troopers.

Van Dien replaced Matt Mullins as Johnny Cage for the second season of the YouTube webseries Mortal Kombat: Legacy.

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