Sharlto Copley photograph

Sharlto Copley

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Sharlto Copley Life story

Sharlto Copley is a South African actor. He has played Wikus van der Merwe in the Academy Award-nominated science fiction film District 9, Howling Mad Murdock in the 2010 adaptation of The A-Team, Agent ...

Sharlto Copley (born 27 November 1973) is a South African actor. He has played Wikus van der Merwe in the Academy Award-nominated science fiction film District 9, Howling Mad Murdock in the 2010 adaptation of The A-Team, Agent M. Kruger in the science fiction film Elysium, James Corrigan in the science fiction horror film Europa Report and King Stefan in the dark fantasy adventure film Maleficent. He also played the title character in the science fiction film Chappie, as Jimmy in Hardcore Henry, and starred in two seasons as Christian Walker of the TV series Powers. Copley is married to fellow South African actress and fashion model Tanit Phoenix.

Early life

Sharlto Copley was born in Johannesburg and educated at St. Andrew's Preparatory School in Grahamstown and Redhill School in Morningside, Johannesburg. His father is Dr. Bruce Copley, a former university professor. His brother, Donovan, is the lead singer of the Cape Town band Hot Water.


A year after leaving high school, Copley met director Neill Blomkamp. Blomkamp was 16 and Copley was 22, and Copley provided Blomkamp with use of computers at his production company to assist the company with pitches for various projects and allow Blomkamp to further pursue his passion and talent for 3D animation and design.Copley starred in Peter Jackson and Neill Blomkamp's District 9, where he played the lead role of Wikus van der Merwe, an Afrikaner bureaucrat assigned to relocate a race of extraterrestrial creatures unexpectedly stranded on Earth. In the film, the aliens, popularly and derogatorily referred to as "prawns", must be moved from District 9, a military-guarded slum in Johannesburg, South Africa, to an internment camp outside the city. Copley improvised all of his dialogue in the film.In 2009 Copley won the Favorite Hero award at the IGN Summer Movie awards, and Best Performance of 2009 for his role in District 9.In 2010 Copley produced, wrote and directed an insert for the South African Film and Television Awards called "Wikus and Charlize", featuring fellow South African star Charlize Theron. The clip features Copley as Wikus attempting to track down Charlize Theron in Hollywood to help him present the Award for Best Afrikaans Pop album.Copley then starred alongside Liam Neeson, Bradley Cooper and Quinton "Rampage" Jackson in the feature film adaptation of The A-Team, which was produced by Ridley Scott and Tony Scott. Copley used a Southern American dialect for his portrayal of A-Team member H. M. Murdock, and employed other dialects, including Scottish, English, Australian and his native South African, as part of the character's rapid-fire style. Dwight Schultz, who played Murdock in the original TV series, praised Copley's performance and said Copley was the only actor he knew of who was "true to his character."Copley guest co-hosted WWE Raw on 7 June 2010, along with his A-Team co-stars Bradley Cooper and Quinton Jackson.

In 2013, Copley played fictional astronaut James Corrigan in Europa Report, the story of a crew of international astronauts sent on a private mission to Jupiter's fourth moon. The same year, Copley portrayed the villain Agent Kruger in Elysium, a science fiction film written and directed by Neill Blomkamp, starring Matt Damon and Jodie Foster.Copley played villain Adrian Pryce in Spike Lee's Oldboy, a remake of the 2003 South Korean film of the same name. He also starred opposite Angelina Jolie in the 2014 Disney film Maleficent and played King Stefan, Princess Aurora's father. He also provided the voice, reference work, and interaction with the cast as Chappie, the titular character of the 2015 film Chappie, also directed by Neill Blomkamp.In 2015, Copley was announced to star as Christian Walker in the superhero TV series Powers. He later provided the voiceover for the e-tron GT concept promotional video by Audi Sport GmbH.In March 2018, Copley starred in the crime comedy film Gringo as Mitch Rusk. Copley is also set to portray the titular character of a biographical film about Ted Kaczynski titled Ted K.

Personal life

Copley has been in a relationship with actress and fashion model Tanit Phoenix since January 2012. They wed on 15 February 2016, in Cape Town, South Africa. The couple have a daughter together.

Copley resides alternately in Cape Town and Los Angeles.




Video games


Awards and nominations


External links

Official website

Sharlto Copley at IMDb

Sharlto Copley Photos

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