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Ian Somerhalder: The Multi-Faceted Actor and Activist

Full Name Ian Joseph Somerhalder
Age 44 years old
Birthday December 8, 1978
Birthplace Covington, Louisiana, United States
Relationship Status Married to Nikki Reed since 2015
Height 5‘ 9"
Net Worth $12 million
Social Media Facebook

Ian Somerhalder is an award-winning American actor known for his memorable roles in hit television dramas like Lost, The Vampire Diaries, and Tell Me a Story. With piercing blue eyes and undeniable charisma, Ian has captivated audiences for over 20 years. Let‘s take a closer look at his acting career, activism, and personal life.

Early Beginnings

Born in Louisiana in 1978, Ian knew from an early age he wanted to be an actor. He started modeling at age 10, which paved the way for commercial gigs. At 17, Ian made the move to New York City to attend acting school. His dedication to honing his craft led to his big break in 1998 on the drama Young Americans. Though the show only lasted one season, it put Ian on the map. According to creator Jason Katims:

Ian brought a fierce charisma and emotional depth to the role. It was clear he had that intangible ‘it‘ factor.

Rise to Fame on Lost

In 2004, Ian achieved global recognition when he was cast as Boone Carlyle on the smash hit Lost. As one of the show‘s core characters, Ian played the privileged yet earnest Boone. The role challenged Ian with intense physical and emotional storylines. During a key moment when Boone dies, Ian delivered a devastating performance that had fans mourning for weeks.

Producer Carlton Cuse said:

Ian took what could have been a forgettable, unlikeable character and made Boone truly memorable. His work ethic was incredible.

Though his time on Lost was relatively short, it propelled Ian to stardom and huge opportunities.

Defining Role on The Vampire Diaries

Without a doubt, Ian Somerhalder‘s career-defining role came in 2009 when he landed the part of the vampire Damon Salvatore on The Vampire Diaries. As one of the leads in the smash supernatural teen drama, Ian appeared in all 8 seasons and 171 episodes.

Over the show‘s run, Damon transformed from villain to romantic anti-hero, thanks largely to Ian‘s nuanced portrayal. Showrunner Julie Plec raved:

As Damon, Ian could simultaneously break your heart and scare the hell out of you. His dedication and passion for the role was clear every day on set.

Ian received numerous Teen Choice Awards for his performance. Playing Damon also led Ian to find love on-screen and off with co-star Nina Dobrev. Their electric chemistry as Elena and Damon was a huge draw for fans.

Displaying Range in Recent Roles

Even during his Vampire Diaries height, Ian made time for other projects too. In 2015, he took on the menacing role of serial killer Dr. Elliott Anderson in The Anomaly. This marked a departure from his frequent good guy roles and showcased his acting range.

After Vampire Diaries ended, Ian quickly found more high-profile gigs. He played the dual lead role in Netflix‘s 2019 sci-fi series V-Wars. During the same year, Ian also starred as a creepy surgeon in the Apple TV+ anthology show Tell Me a Story, proving his ability to captivate across mediums.

Passion for Philanthropy

Beyond acting, Ian Somerhalder has dedicated his platform to environmentalism and charity work. He runs The Ian Somerhalder Foundation, which promotes biodiversity, wildlife conservation, and more.

Some highlights of Ian‘s activism include:

  • Launching the ISF Kids Campaign to empower youth conservation efforts
  • Partnering with Habitat for Humanity after natural disasters like the 2010 Haiti earthquake
  • Testifying before Congress about the importance of the Clean Water Act
  • Serving as a celebrity ambassador for thenon-profit RYOT, focused on social impact storytelling

Ian also helped create Ian‘s Dog Foundation to rescue stray and abused animals. His hands-on efforts and ability to inspire change have bettered many important causes.

Family and Personal Life

While much of his life is public, Ian still values his privacy. He dated his Vampire Diaries co-star Nina Dobrev from 2011-2013. In 2015, Ian married actress Nikki Reed, known for the Twilight films. They have one daughter, Bodhi Soleil, born in 2017.

Off-screen, Ian maintains a healthy lifestyle through activities like yoga, meditation, and martial arts. He also makes time to interact with loyal fans at conventions and online. Despite his fame, those close to Ian describe him as humble, generous, and dedicated to meaningful work.

With his striking talent, philanthropic spirit, and passion for his craft, Ian Somerhalder has proven himself to be an unforgettable actor and role model. We can‘t wait to see what this multi-faceted star takes on next!