James Todd Spader (born February 7, 1960) is an acclaimed American actor. Famed for playing sex-crazed weirdos and preppy snobs, Spader has appeared in many films throughout his respected career, with roles such as Troubled, but Cute voyeur Graham in sex, lies, and videotape, Steff in Pretty in Pink, Edward Grey in Secretary, Daniel Jackson in Stargate, and drug dealer Rip in Less Than Zero. Today, he's best known among audiences for his role as Alan Shore in The Practice and then Boston Legal.
Spader's career provides examples of tropes such as:
- Badass Baritone: His deep voice screams badassery.
- Deadpan Snarker: His characters are generally very sarcastic. When playing villains, this only serves to make them more intimidating.
- Money, Dear Boy:
"Acting, for me, is a passion, but it's also a job, and I've always approached it as such. I have a certain manual-labourist view of acting. There's no shame in taking a film because you need some fucking money."
- He unashamedly admitted to half his career being due to this trope, Stargate in particular.
- Though pointedly subverted in Lincoln according to him.
- Quizzical Tilt: Utilizes this trope a lot as Raymond Reddington, toned down as Ultron but still present. He almost never uses it in a manner where he's confused; to the contrary, he uses it instead to listen to whomever is talking and also during his speeches as both characters.
- Seems to be very fond of this trope. He also employed it frequently while playing Alan Shore.
- Those Two Actors:
- With Robert Downey Jr..
- Andrew McCarthy (three time costar).
- Pretty in Pink (1986)
- Mannequin (1987)
- Baby Boom (1987)
- Less Than Zero (1987)
- Wall Street (1987)
- sex, lies, and videotape (1989)
- Bad Influence (1990)
- Bob Roberts (1992)
- Dream Lover (1993)
- Wolf (1994)
- Stargate (1994)
- Crash (1996)
- Supernova (2000)
- The Watcher (2000)
- Secretary (2002)
- The Practice (2003-2004)
- Boston Legal (2004-2008)
- Shorts (2009)
- The Office (2011-2012)
- Lincoln (2012)
- The Blacklist (2013-)
- Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)