To a certain extent, Matt Letscher's early career highlight playing the villainous Captain Harrison Love opposite Antonio Banderas in Martin Campbell's hit feature film adaptation "The Mask of Zorro" (1998) overshadowed much of the young actor's early career. For the University of Michigan drama major, however, a slow-burning career as a television character actor brought recurring roles in ever more high-profile shows, including "Good Morning, Miami" (NBC 2002-2004), "Joey" (NBC 2004-06), "The West Wing" (NBC 1999-2006), "Entourage" (HBO 2004-11) and "Scandal" (ABC 2012- ). His proven versatility as a character actor, with many of the square-jawed attributes of a traditional leading man married to a certain depth and sensitivity, also kept his career buoyant in independent cinema.
Letscher began his acting career in the theatre, his first role coming in Jeff Daniels' "The Tropical Pickle" for the actor's Michigan-based Purple Rose Theatre Company. It was through Daniels that Letscher was introduced to film director Ronald F. Maxwell, who cast Letscher alongside Daniels for a small part in his in his Civil War epic "Gettysburg" (1993), a high-profile first screen credit for the fledgling young actor.
Various one-off television roles in the mid-1990s led to recurring roles in the short-lived sitcoms "Almost Perfect" (CBS 1995-97) and "Living in Captivity" (Fox 1998). Following his film success in 1998's "The Mark of Zorro," Letscher briefly specialized in playing historical figures in TV movies, including pop singer Mike Love in "The Beach Boys: An American Family" (2000), Senator Ted Kennedy in "Jackie, Joan, Ethel: The Women of Camelot" (2001), and broadcaster Larry King in the tennis epic "When Billie Beat Bobby" (2001).
"Gods and Generals" (2003) saw Letscher reunite with both Maxwell and Daniels in the film prequel to "Gettysburg." The same year brought a small role in director James Mangold's well-received thriller "Identity" (2003). A co-starring role as supercilious newscaster Gavin Stone in the sitcom "Good Morning, Miami" showcased Letscher's comedic talents and took him into a five-episode guest arc on the much-hyped "Friends" spin-off "Joey."
In tandem with his increasingly high-profile television roles, Letscher's work in the theatre grew more prominent over the next several years. One-off guest roles in the popular TV dramas "The West Wing" (NBC 1999-2006), "Boston Legal" (ABC 2004-08) and "CSI: Miami" (CBS 2002-12) let to a co-starring role in quirky cult-favorite legal drama "Eli Stone" (ABC 2008-09) as the title character's doctor brother. Also during this era, Letscher wrote and directed his own play, "Sea of Fools" (2007), for Daniels' Purple Rose Theatre Company. Another play he wrote, "Gaps in the Fossil Record," premiered in 2009. His high-profile stage appearances include "The Rivals" at Lincoln Centre and Neil Simon's "The Proposal."
Following a recurring guest role as Alec, lover of the married Kitty Walker (Calista Flockhart) in family drama "Brothers & Sisters" (ABC 2006-11), Letscher secured his highest-profile co-starring television role as Tom, widowed father of the young Carrie Bradshaw in "Sex and the City" prequel "The Carrie Diaries" (The CW, 2013-14). Meanwhile, his film career continued with roles in Atom Egoyan's "Devil's Knot" (2013) and the low-budget indie comedy "Teacher of the Year" (2013).
Cast (Feature Film)
Cast (TV Mini-Series)
Debut television role in NBC's "Saved By the Bell: The College Years"
Film acting debut in small role in "Gettysburg"
Broadway debut in Neil Simon's "Proposals"
Had featured role as Capt. Love in "The Mask of Zorro"
Cast as Mike Love in the ABC biopic "America's Band: The Beach Boys"
Portrayed Ted Kennedy in the TV miniseries "Jackie, Ethel, Joan: The Women of Camelot"
Played Gavin Stone on the NBC comedy "Good Morning, Miami"
Recurring guest television role in NBC's "Joey"
Played a Hollywood movie star trying to conceal his homosexuality in "Straight-Jacket"
Featured television role in CW Television's "The Carrie Diaries"