Michael Emerson - Rotten Tomatoes

Michael Emerson

Lowest Rated:   26% The Legend of Zorro (2005)
Birthday:  
Birthplace:   Cedar Rapids, Iowa, USA
A stage and screen actor with an enigmatic stare, Michael Emerson has made a name for himself with roles that capitalize on his unique, expressive face. An Iowa native, he studied theater arts at Drake University in Des Moines before moving to New York to pursue an acting career. Unfortunately, like a lot of up-and-comers, he found himself spending most of his time doing other work to support himself; in his case, it was freelance illustrations for publications like The Boston Globe and The New York Times. In 1986, he relocated to Florida, where he worked in regional theater and, in 1993, enrolled in the Alabama Shakespeare Festival's University of Alabama-sponsored Master of Fine Arts/Professional Acting Training program. It was there that he met his future wife, Carrie Preston, whom he married in 1998. Shortly after graduating, he began scoring bigger and better roles in productions like 1997's off-Broadway show Gross Indecency: The Trials of Oscar Wilde, in which he played the title role. Other prominent roles followed in plays like The Misanthrope and The Iceman Cometh. It was around this time that Emerson parlayed his success into a career onscreen, starting out with roles in projects like the independent film The Journey and the TV movie Grace & Glorie. A particularly prominent role came in 2004, when he was cast in the sadistic horror movie Saw. The movie was a huge success, setting off a major trend in horror that made graphic, up-close torture a new staple subgenre, and ingraining Emerson's memorably large eyes and eerily placid voice into the minds of millions. He continued to do interesting work, playing a bad guy in 2005's The Legend of Zorro and a butler to a Rock Hudson-style movie star in the comedy Straight-Jacket, which he made with his wife. Then in 2006, Emerson joined the cast of the hit TV series Lost, playing the mysterious and manipulative Ben, whose role in the island's secrets and power over its inhabitants drew in countless viewers who loved how well he played the creepy and nefarious villain. After Lost ended, he moved into a starring role on the TV series Person of Interest opposite Jim Caviezel.

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Highest Rated Movies

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT BOX OFFICE YEAR
No Score Yet Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 2
  • The Joker
2013
100% Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1
  • The Joker
2012
No Score Yet Ready? OK!
  • Charlie New
2008
No Score Yet Jumping Off Bridges
  • Mr. Nelson
2006
26% The Legend of Zorro
  • Harrigan
$45.4M 2005
No Score Yet 29th & Gay
  • Gorilla
2005
48% Saw
  • Zep Hindle
$55.1M 2004
48% Straight Jacket
  • Victor
2004
92% The Laramie Project
  • Reverend
2002
46% For Love of the Game
  • Gallery Doorman
1999
62% The Impostors
  • Burtom's Assistant
1999
60% Playing by Heart
  • Bosco
1998
No Score Yet Grace & Glorie
  • Arnold Dudley
1998
No Score Yet El Viaje
  • Michael
1997

TV

RATING TITLE CREDIT YEAR
92% Person Of Interest
2011-2016
  • Finch
  • 2016
  • 2015
  • 2014
  • 2013
  • 2012
  • 2011
No Score Yet Late Show With David Letterman
1993-2015
  • Guest
  • 2011
90% Parenthood
2010-2015
  • Guest
  • Amazing Andy
  • 2011
No Score Yet The Talk
2010
  • Guest
  • 2011
No Score Yet The View
1997
  • Guest
  • 2011
No Score Yet Jimmy Kimmel Live
2003
  • Guest
  • 2010
86% Lost
2004-2010
  • Henry Gale/Ben Henry Gale Ben Benjamin Linus Ben Linus
  • 2010
  • 2009
  • 2008
  • 2007
  • 2006
  • 2005
No Score Yet Late Night With Jimmy Fallon
2009-2014
  • Guest
  • 2009
No Score Yet Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
1999
  • Allan Shaye
  • 2004
No Score Yet Without a Trace
2002-2009
  • Stuart Wesmar
  • 2003
No Score Yet Law & Order: Criminal Intent
2001-2011
  • Gerry Rankin
  • 2002
No Score Yet The X-Files
1993-2016
  • Oliver Martin/Anthony Fogelman
  • 2002
No Score Yet Vigilados: Person of Interest
2011
  • Finch

Quotes from Michael Emerson's Characters