Tim Blake Nelson (born May
11, 1964) is an American director, writer, singer
born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, the son of
Ruth Kaiser Nelson, who is a noted social activist and
philanthropist in Tulsa.
Nelson is Jewish
; his maternal grandparents escaped the Nazis
shortly before World War
, fleeing to the UK in 1938 and immigrating to the United
States in 1940.
attended the Oklahoma Summer Arts Institute at Quartz Mountain Resort Arts and Conference
Center in Lone Wolf, Oklahoma. He is a 1982 graduate of Holland Hall School in Tulsa, and a 1986
graduate of Brown
University, where he
studied Classics. He graduated from
Juilliard in 1990, and currently resides in New York City with his wife, Lisa Benaveides, and his three
On May 8, 2009, Nelson was inducted as an honorary
member of the University of Tulsa's Beta of Oklahoma chapter of the
Phi Beta Kappa national collegiate honor society.
debut play, Eye of God was produced at Seattle
Repertory Theatre in 1992. The
premiered at MCC
in New York in 1996 where his 1998 work
was also produced.
Nelson has appeared as an actor in the film, TV and theatre. He had
a featured role as Delmar in the film O Brother, Where Art Thou?.
According to directors Joel
and Ethan Coen
, he was the only one in the cast or
crew who had read Homer
, a work upon which the film is loosely
based. He sings "In the Jailhouse
" on the soundtrack.
He plays Samuel Sterns
in the 2008
film The Incredible
, and has signed on to play his alter ego
, the Leader
, in the sequel.. Tim plays an
attorney in the upcoming film American Violet
He also narrates the 2001 audiobook At the Altar of Speed: The
Fast Life and Tragic Death of Dale Earnhardt, Sr.
appeared on stage at theatres including Manhattan
Theater Club, Playwrights
Horizons and Central Park's Open Air Theater plus a show
at Blue Cross Arena in Rochester New York to talk to kids about
He has directed film versions of his plays The Grey Zone
, and Eye of God
as well as writing and
directing two original screenplays: 1998's Kansas
Leaves of Grass
which will be released in 2009. He is also the director of O
, based on William Shakespeare
's play Othello
but set in a modern-day high school
. He is on the Board of Directors for The Actors Center in New York City, as well as Soho Rep Theatre.
Tim guest starred on CSI:
Crime Scene Investigation season 10 episode Working Stiffs.