Possessing the sort of moody good looks that can melt the hearts of teenage girls everywhere, actor Chad Michael Murray impressed television audiences early on with his role on the popular family drama series Gilmore Girls. Later breaking into feature territory with roles in the apocalyptic Megiddo: Omega Code 2 and Freaky Friday, the up-and-comer seemed poised to become the next Josh Hartnett. Born and raised in Buffalo, NY, Murray gave his family a taste of his talent early on when the assured young entertainer kept them in stitches with a series of amusing skits and songs. A career in high-school athletics was cut short when the gridiron runner was sidelined with a serious football injury, and it was during his recovery that a nurse persuaded Murray to pursue a career in modeling. Subsequently awarded a modeling scholarship from a nearby Buffalo agency, Murray was spotted by a Hollywood talent scout during a convention in Orlando and convinced to try his hand at acting. With high school behind him and stars in his eyes, the handsome young model made for the West Coast while supporting himself with a series of modeling jobs. As with many L.A. newcomers, Murray's early career consisted mainly of supporting performances in such shows as Diagnosis Murder, and in 2001, his profile was given a considerable boost with roles on both Dawson's Creek and Gilmore Girls. A feature debut in Megiddo was quick to follow, and in 2003, Murray strapped on the famous identity-concealing mask for the lead in the made-for-TV remake The Lone Ranger. A role opposite teen sensation Lindsay Lohan in the Disney remake Freaky Friday offered Murray some prime exposure, with One Tree Hill finding him returning to the small screen as a basketball-playing teen who shares a dark secret with his estranged brother. After appearing opposite Lizzie McGuire star Hilary Duff in the romantic teen comedy A Cinderella Story (2004), Murray moved into darker territory with the horror remake House of Wax (also 2004). With One Tree Hill a hit, Murray focused on his TV show, starring on the show until 2009 and making occasional guest appearances in later seasons. He starred in Day One (2012) and had a supporting role in the Sundance hit Fruitvale Station (2013). In 2014, he starred in Left Behind opposite Nicolas Cage. The following year, he returned to television, with a lead role in the Marvel series Agent Carter.
Biography by Jason Buchanan
- Had small intestine removed after a serious football injury in high school; it was one of his nurses who suggested he go into modeling.
- First job was delivering newspapers; also worked as a janitor.
- Worked as a model in campaigns for Tommy Hilfiger, Gucci and Sketchers.
- Had nose broken during an attack at a fast-food restaurant in Panama.
- Is a big lover of dogs.
- Named by TV GUIDE one of TV's Sexiest Men in 2005.
- On his last season of One Tree Hill, he wrote one episode and directed another.
- Left One Tree Hill after the show's sixth season because contract negotiations over salary issues fell apart.