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Shane West

Shane West
West at the 2015 Wondercon
Born Shannon Bruce Snaith
(1978-06-10) June 10, 1978
Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S.
Residence Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Other names Shannon Snaith, Shane Wrestler
Occupation Actor, musician, songwriter, producer, writer
Years active 1995–present

Shane West (born Shannon Bruce Snaith;[1] June 10, 1978) is an American actor, punk rock musician and songwriter. West is known for his portrayal of Eli Sammler in the ABC family drama Once and Again, Landon Carter in A Walk to Remember, Darby Crash in What We Do Is Secret, Dr. Ray Barnett in the NBC medical drama ER and Michael Bishop in The CW spy drama Nikita. He currently stars in the WGN adventure/historical/fantasy drama Salem as John Alden.

As well as acting, West has performed with punk rock band Germs and Johnny Was.


  • Early life 1
  • Career 2
    • In music 2.1
  • Filmography 3
    • Film 3.1
    • Television 3.2
  • Awards 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

Early life

West was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, the son of Leah Catherine (née Launey), a lawyer, and Don Snaith, a drugstore owner.[2][3] Both his parents were musicians and had their own punk bands.[4] His mother is of Cajun French descent and his father was born in Jamaica, of British and Portuguese origin.[5][6] He is the eldest of three children with a sister Simone and a half-sister Marli Ann. His parents divorced in 1982 when he was four years old.[7] Influenced by his parents, he grew up listening to The Clash, The Jam, Blondie, Elvis Costello, and The Kinks.[4] He revealed: "I always thought I would be doing music rather than acting."[4]

At the age of ten, West and his sister Simone moved to Compton, California with their mother because she was looking for a better job. They later moved to Norwalk, California.[7][8] When he was fifteen or sixteen, West moved to Los Angeles to pursue an acting career. He struggled for two years and lived at his manager's house,[8][9] before making his acting debut in 1995, appearing in the CBS drama Picket Fences in the season 4, episode 6 "Heart of Saturday Night", where he played Dave Lattimore.


West at the 2010 CBS Summer Press Tour Party.

In 1998, West guest-starred in several television series including Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and played Mark Tapper in the stage production of The Cider House Rules.[10] He landed his first major role in 1999 in the ABC family drama Once and Again, playing Eli Sammler for three seasons. West's feature film debut was in Liberty Heights, a film about a Jewish family in Baltimore, directed by Barry Levinson. He also co-starred in teen comedies Whatever It Takes (2000) and Get Over It (2001).

West was cast as Landon Carter opposite singer and actress Mandy Moore in 2002's adaptation of Nicholas Sparks' novel A Walk to Remember, which was a modest box office success, grossing over $41 million in the United States.[11] Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times found him "quietly convincing".[12] His performance in the film earned him a Teen Choice Award for Choice Chemistry with Moore. He also appeared in the Mandy Moore music video "Cry". That year, West won the Young Hollywood Award Male Superstar of Tomorrow.

In 2003, West starred as an adult version of Mark Twain's Tom Sawyer in The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen alongside Sean Connery. The film was a commercial success, earning over $179 million worldwide from a production budget of $78 million.[13] A year later, he joined the cast of the long-running NBC medical drama, ER in the eleventh season premiere, playing resident Ray Barnett. In May 2007, West left ER at the end of the thirteenth season after winning a role in Supreme Courtships,[14] but the series was not picked up by the Fox Network. In October 2008, West returned to ER for three episodes during its fifteenth and final season.[15]

During hiatus between seasons of ER, West worked on shooting What We Do Is Secret (an independent film), which premiered at the 2007 Los Angeles Film Festival after much delay.[16][17] West helped to finance it.[18][19] In the film, he portrays Darby Crash, a member of the 1970s punk band Germs. Members of the band were so impressed by West's performance that they re-formed the band with West taking the deceased Crash's place. West received positive reviews for his portrayal in the movie; the San Francisco Chronicle stated that he is the one who "lifts the entire film to a whole other level".[20] Similarly, the Seattle Times wrote that his impersonation was "worth saluting" while TV Guide called it "pretty impressive".[21][22] In 2008, he received the Rising Star Award in Philadelphia Film Festival for his work in What We Do is Secret.[23][24]

West starred as Michael Bishop in The CW spy drama Nikita from 2010 to 2013. In 2014, he began starring in the WGN adventure/historical/fantasy drama Salem as John Alden.

In music

West performing with The Germs in Madrid in December 2009.

West was the lead singer of punk rock band Jonny Was[25] for "seven or eight years".[4] The band was originally known as Average Joe but had to change its name for legal reasons.[26] The band contributed to the A Walk to Remember soundtrack, appearing under the names "West, Gould, and Fitzgerald" because they had not yet decided on a new name.[26] West described their style as "a pop-punk type band, more Green Day-ish".[4]

In November 2005, while What We Do Is Secret was still in production, it was announced that West would be fronting Germs on tour.[27] He performed with the band for nearly five years, doing an American tour (including the 2006 Warped Tour) and a European Tour.[28][29] He described the experience as "more exciting" than acting.[30] However, after booking a leading role in Nikita, West had less time to play with the band. His last performance was in December 2009.[28]



Year Title Role Notes
1997 Get a Clue Chris Theodorakis Television movie
1997 The Cider House Rules Mark Taper
1999 Liberty Heights Ted
2000 A Time for Dancing Paul, the DJ
2000 Whatever It Takes Ryan Woodman
2000 Dracula 2000 JT
2001 Get Over It! Bentley "Striker" Scrumfeld
2001 Ocean's Eleven Himself
2002 A Walk to Remember Landon Carter Teen Choice Awards for Choice Movie Chemistry (with Mandy Moore)
2003 The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen Tom Sawyer Nominated—Saturn Award for Face of the Future Award
2006 The Elder Son Bo
2007 What We Do Is Secret Darby Crash
2009 The Lodger Street Wilkenson
2009 Red Sands Spc. Jeff Keller Also co-producer
2009 Echelon Conspiracy Max Peterson
2010 The Love Affair Carter Troy Short film
2010 The Presence Ghost
2014 Red Sky Tom Craig


Year Title Role Notes
1995 Picket Fences Dave Lattimore Episode: "Heart of Saturday Night"
1995 California Dreams Doug Episode: "Community Service"
1996 The Crew Store Manager Episode: "Retail Slut"
1996 Boy Meets World Nick Episode: "A Kiss Is More Than a Kiss"
1997 Mr. Rhodes Mick Episode: "The Valentine Show"
1997 Meego Guy with Big Hat Episode: "Morality Bites"
1997 Buffy the Vampire Slayer Sean Episode: "Go Fish"
1997 Sliders Kirk Episode: "California Reich"
1997 To Have & to Hold Mitch Maloney Episode: "Tangled Up in You"
1999–2002 Once and Again Eli Sammler 54 episodes
Nominated—Teen Choice Award for Choice TV Actor: Drama
2004–2009 ER Dr. Ray Barnett 67 episodes
2007 Supreme Courtships N/A Unsold TV pilot
2010 The Search for El Dorado Jack Wilder 2 episodes
2010–2013 Nikita Michael 73 episodes
Teen Choice Awards for Choice TV Actor: Action
Nominated—Teen Choice Award for Choice TV Actor: Action (2012–13)
2014–present Salem John Alden 26 episodes


Year Recipient/Nominated work Award Result
2002 A Walk to Remember Teen Choice Awards, Film - Choice Chemistry A Walk to Remember Won
2002 Once and Again Teen Choice Awards, TV - Choice Actor Nominated
2002 Young Hollywood Awards, Superstar of Tomorrow – Male Won
2003 The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen Cinescape Genre Face of the Future Awards, Best Male Performance Nominated
2004 The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen Cinescape Genre Face of the Future Awards, Best Male Performance Nominated
2008 What We Do Is Secret Philadelphia Film Festival, Rising Star Award Won
2011 Nikita Teen Choice Awards, TV – Choice Actor, Action Won
2012 Nikita Teen Choice Awards, TV – Choice Actor, Action Nominated
2013 Nikita Teen Choice Awards, TV – Choice Actor, Action Nominated


  1. ^ Weisbard, Eric. Listen again: a momentary history of pop music Experience Music Project
  2. ^ Shane West - Biography, Yahoo! Movies
  3. ^
  4. ^ a b c d e """Shane West on Joining the Germs and "What We Do Is Secret.  
  5. ^ Nguyen, Hanh (August 26, 2010). Nikita' set visit: Shane West tells tattoo stories, needs yoga"'".  
  6. ^
  7. ^ a b "'Go West!'". Teen People. April 2003. Retrieved January 6, 2013. 
  8. ^ a b Scharf, Lindzi. "shane west (interview from 2002)". Retrieved January 7, 2013. 
  9. ^ Hirschberg, Lynn (September 5, 1999). "Desperate to Seem 16".  
  10. ^ "The Cider House Rules".  
  11. ^ A Walk to Remember (2002) - Box office / business
  12. ^ Ebert, Roger (January 25, 2002). "A Walk to Remember".  
  13. ^ "The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved January 7, 2013. 
  14. ^ Weisman, Jon (March 14, 2007). Nine' actors head to pilots"'".  
  15. ^ Ausiello, Michael (July 31, 2008). "'"Exclusive: Shane West's 'ER' Comeback a 'Double Surprise.  
  16. ^ Radish, Christina (September 7, 2010). "Shane West Exclusive Interview NIKITA". Retrieved January 7, 2013. 
  17. ^ Schruers, Fred (June 22, 2007). "Resurrecting legacy of doomed punker Darby Crash".  
  18. ^ Yao, Laura Yao (August 28, 2008). "After 15 years, his 'Secret' is out".  
  19. ^ Perez, Rodrigo (June 25, 2007). "While You Were Sleeping, Shane West Somehow Got Cast As Darby Crash". The Playlist. Blogspot. Retrieved January 7, 2013. 
  20. ^ Wiegand, David (August 29, 2008). "'"Movie review: Germs' toxic 'Secret.  
  21. ^ Hartl, John (October 9, 2008). What We Do Is Secret": A standout bad-boy performance in conventional punk-and-drugs biopic""".  
  22. ^ Fox, Ken. "What We Do Is Secret: Review".  
  23. ^ Longsdorf, Amy (April 11, 2008). "Valley tells the story in award-winning documentary Why don't people vote?".  
  24. ^ "Shane West receives 2008 Rising Star Award At 17 Philadelphia Film Festival Philadelphia".  
  25. ^ Jonny Was myspace
  26. ^ a b Murray, Rebecca; Topel, Fred. """Interview with Shane West from "A Walk to Remember.  
  27. ^ "Germs to Tour with Actor West Out Front".  
  28. ^ a b Potts, Kim (September 9, 2010). "Shane West Talks 'Nikita,' Punk Rocking With The Germs and His 'Top Gun'-ish Action Flick".  
  29. ^ Charaipotra, Sona (September 9, 2010). "Shane West of 'Nikita' Chats With The Stir". The Stir. Retrieved January 7, 2013. 
  30. ^ Ratledge, Ingela (May 30, 2012). "A Day Out With Nikita's Shane West".  

External links

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