Known for playing villains and terrorists in numerous films and television series (and often mixed up with his North American doppelganger Billy Zane), South African-born actor Arnold Vosloo was an award-winning theatre actor in his native country prior to making a name for himself in America. He performed in plays throughout the '80s before moving to the States in the early '90s to pursue a film career. His breakthrough role came in the 1993 action-thriller, "Hard Target," directed by John Woo and starring Jean-Claude van Damme. Vosloo landed the role of Pik Van Clear, a murderous thug, after Woo saw him perform in a short-lived stage production of "Salome" on a New York Stage. Vosloo appeared as John the Baptist in the production, which was closed after a mere 18 performances. Yet it was enough for Vosloo to be discovered by Woo, who subsequently cast Vosloo in his upcoming action film. For Vosloo, it was the start of a decades-long career as one of Hollywood's go-to bad guys, which he would perfect in such films as "The Mummy" (1999) and "G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra" (2009), as well as on the FOX action series, "24" (2001-2010).
Born into an acting family (both his parents were traveling theater actors), Arnold Vosloo was exposed to the craft at a very young age. His family settled in Pretoria, South Africa when he was still a young boy, where he was raised. He began acting in several of Shakespeare's plays at Pretoria's State Theatre while still in his teens, and before long started receiving numerous accolades for his work. In 1987 he appeared in the South African drama, "Saturday Night at the Palace," in addition to making his American film debut alongside Patrick Swayze in the action adventure movie, "Steel Dawn." By the early '90s, Vosloo was living and working in America. He appeared in several stage productions in Chicago and New York, but it was his 1992 performance as John the Baptist in "Salome" that changed his life forever. Director John Woo was in the audience during one of Vosloo's performances, and immediately decided to cast him as one of the villains in his next action movie, "Hard Target." Despite receiving mixed reviews, the film was a major success at the box office - the first of several hits for Arnold Vosloo.
His next major role came in 1995 when he was cast as the lead in "Darkman II: The Return of Durant." Vosloo filled the role that was vacated by Liam Neeson, who appeared as Darkman in the original film, and despite being a straight-to-video release, the film was a moderate success. Vosloo reprised his role as Darkman the following year in "Darkman III: Die Darkman Die" (1996), before he was offered the role of a lifetime as the lead villain in the big-budget fantasy horror revamp, "The Mummy." The film, which starred Brendan Fraser and Rachel Weisz, went on to gross over $400 million at the box office, quickly becoming one of the most profitable films of the '90s. Vosloo reprised his role in the 2001 sequel, "The Mummy Returns," which was equally successful. Following the massive success of both films, Vosloo was cast as a Middle Eastern terrorist, Habib Marwan, on the fourth season of the widely popular Fox series, "24," as well as a colonel in the Academy Award-nominated adventure drama, "Blood Diamond" (2006). In 2013 Vosloo reprised his role as Zartan, a devious make-up expert, in "G.I. Joe: Retaliation." Vosloo previously appeared as Zartan in 2009's "G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra."
Cast (Feature Film)
Special Thanks (Feature Film)
Cast (TV Mini-Series)
First major role in John Woo's "Hard Target"
Appeared as villain Habib Marwan in the entire fourth season of "24"