Peter Stormare

Active - 1986 - 2020  |   Born - Aug 27, 1953 in Arbra, Halsingland, Sweden  |   Genres - Comedy, Thriller, Drama, Action, Fantasy

Share on

Biography by Jason Buchanan

With a cool stoic gaze suggesting unmentionable thoughts lurking somewhere deep behind those deep, blank eyes, popular character actor Peter Stormare offered American audiences slightly discomforting comic relief in Joel and Ethan Coen's popular dark comedy Fargo (1996), though his versatility and adaptability have since led him to roles in everything from major Hollywood blockbusters to the stripped-down Dogma 95 efforts of eccentric Danish director Lars von Trier's Dancer in the Dark (2000). Born Peter Rolf Stormare in Arbra, Sweden, on August 27th,1953, the dynamic Nordic actor began his career with an 11-year stint with the Royal National Theater of Sweden. Aside from appearing in such productions as Don Juan and The Curse of the Starving Class, Stormare would pen such original plays as El Paso and The Electric Boy. Later earning positive critical reception in such classic Shakespearian productions as King Lear, the actor made his big-screen debut, and began a 15-year association with legendary Swedish director Ingmar Bergman, with a brief appearance in Fanny and Alexander in 1982. Later earning positive critical reception for his role in the legendary filmmaker's stage adaptation of Shakespeare's Hamlet in 1988, Stormare continued to gain career trajectory with numerous memorable stage and film roles in his native country. In 1990, Stormare became the Associate Artistic Director at the Tokyo Globe Theatre and made his American screen debut as a neurochemist who questions Robin Williams' experimental medical tactics in the touching Awakenings. Subsequently appearing in numerous international films (Freud's Leaving Home [1991] and Damage [1992]), Stormare hit his stateside stride with his chilling turn as a woodchipper-happy kidnapper in Fargo. Though he would continue to make appearances in such Swedish efforts as Ett Sorts Hades and Bergman's In the Presence of a Clown (1996 and 1997 respectively), his Hollywood star was on the rise with memorable roles in such increasingly mega-budgeted efforts as The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997) and Armageddon (1998). Equally adept in comparatively low-budget efforts such as director George Romero's Bruiser (2000) and the aforementioned Dancer -- two roles which couldn't possibly be more polar opposites -- Stormare branched out into sitcom territory with his turn as Julia Louis-Dreyfuss' enamored superintendent in the ill-fated Watching Ellie in 2002. It wasn't long before Stormare was back on the silver screen, and with the same year potential blockbuster triple threat of The Tuxedo, Windtalkers, and Minority Report, it appeared as if Stormare's unique talents were as in-demand as ever. 2002 also found the established actor branching out with his role as producer of the romantic comedy The Movie Nut and His Audience.

In 2005 he joined the cast of The Brothers Grimm in the role of an interogator, and took on a regular role in the television drama Prison Break. Stormare made guest appearances on a variety of television stand-outs throughout the 2000s, among them including Weeds, Monk, Entourage, and Hawaii Five-0.

Movie Highlights

See Full Filmography


  • Worked with Ingmar Bergman and the Royal National Theatre of Sweden for 15 years as actor, director and playwright.
  • Was associate artistic director at the Globe Theatre in Tokyo.
  • Plays in a band called Blonde from Fargo, a nod to his role as one of the killers in the Coen Brothers' Fargo (1996).
  • Starred in Volkswagen's "Unpimp My Ride" commercials in 2006.
  • Made his Broadway debut in 2009 opposite Mary-Louise Parker in a revival production of Hedda Gabler; he appeared again with Parker in a recurring role on the TV series Weeds in 2010.