It's a long journey from the stage to the center of the ocean, but whether he's reciting Shakespeare or trying to hold his own against the circling sharks of Open Water, Daniel Travis knows how to captivate an audience. Though the prospect of floating among real circling sharks in a low-budget, shot-on-video horror film may not seem like the most logical progression for an actor who sites his major influences as Tennessee Williams and the Bard, Travis' role in the breakout indie hit may just be the boost needed to take his onscreen career to the next level. Drawn to the theater from an early age, the Clarkston, MI, native received his B.F.A. in theater from Miami University before earning his M.F.A. from the Mason Gross School of Arts at Rutgers University. Subsequent performances as John Buchanan in Summer and Smoke and as Richmond in Richard III gained the rising star positive critical notice and sent him touring around the country. After making his small-screen debut in the short-lived series The Education of Max Bickford, Travis next courted the ladies of HBO's Sex and the City. When he heard that casting was taking place for filmmaker Chris Kentis' waterlogged fright flick Open Water, he jumped at the opportunity and was soon cast opposite female up-and-comer Blanchard Ryan.