Space: Above and Beyond
Actor Rod Rowland, also known as Rodney Rowland, worked on numerous New York stage productions before gaining his breakout role on the short lived science fiction series “Space: Above and Beyond” (1995-1996), playing Lieutenant Cooper Hawkes. Commenting about the show, he said, “A lot of television shows are made so that people can turn their sets on, walk away and get a glass of milk or talk on the telephone for five minutes and then come back in and know exactly what is going on. ‘Space: Above and Beyond’ is not one of those types of shows. It's made like a feature film. You've got to sit and watch the little things that add up and make it all interesting. Sometimes, I wish it was simpler because then perhaps more people would watch it, but it is what it is.”
After the demise of the show, Rowland, who enjoyed a career as a model before becoming an actor, had a regular role on the syndicated show “Pensacola: Wings of Gold” (1997-1998) and acted in several movies, including “The 6th Day” (with Arnold Schwarzenegger) and “Run for the Money” (with Christian Slater and Val Kilmer), before delivering a remarkable turn as Liam Fitzpatrick on the series “Veronica Mars” (2005-2007). His more recent film credits include “I Know Who Killed Me” (2007, played Kenny Scaife). Rowland has also guest starred in a number of TV series, including “The X-Files,” “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” “Strong Medicine,” “V.I.P.,” “Charmed,” “Without a Trace,” “The O.C.,” “Life,” “Weeds,” “The Closer,” “Saving Grace” and “FlashForward.”
As for his personal life, Rowland dated actress Gillian Anderson during 1997 to 1998. He mentions Hunter S. Thompson's “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas” as his favorite book. Talking about his favorite sport, he said, “My favorite sport, hands down, is surfing. The only sport I follow and I do it constantly.”
Childhood and Family:
The son of a minister and an aquatics athlete, Rodney G. Rowland was born on February 20, 1964, in Newport Beach, California. He grew up in Malibu Canyon. The youngest of four siblings, Rod has a brother and two sisters. He worked as a swimming tutor at age 12 and later earned a water sport scholarship to Pepperdine University in Malibu, California. He quit school to begin a career as a model. At the suggestion of photographer Bruce Weber, he began taking acting lessons in New York City and gradually switched gears to acting.
After dropping out of college, Rod Rowland traveled to Europe and worked as a model for labels like Versace, J.Crew, and Gucci. He also appeared on the covers of several publications and in a number of catalogs. Following a lucrative career in modeling, Rowland tried his hand at acting and moved to New York City where he landed work in various theater productions, including “The Mayor's Limo” at the American New Theater, “Who's Got The Edge” at the Madison Avenue Theater, and “Fuel” at the Manhattan Class Theater. He later headed to Los Angeles in search of more opportunities.
Rowland made his big screen debut with a bit part in the comedy “Under the Boardwalk” (1989), which starred Keith Coogan and was directed by Fritz Kiersch. He, however, did not have another screen role until six years later when he appeared in director/writer Tyler Bensinger's dramatic film “Just Looking” (1995), starring James LeGros and Michelle Forbes. That same year, he also guest starred in “Baywatch” and made his TV movie debut in the NBC drama “If Someone Had Known” playing Doug Pettit.
Rowland did not score a big break until he won the regular role of Lieutenant Cooper Hawkes on the Fox science fiction series “Space: Above and Beyond,” which was created by Glen Morgan and James Wong. He costarred in the show with Lanei Chapman, Kristen Cloke, Joel de la Fuente, James Morrison and Morgan Weisser. Originally planned for five seasons, “Space: Above and Beyond” ran from September 24, 1995, to June 2, 1996. Despite its short life, it received Emmy nominations for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Music Composition for a Series and Outstanding Special Visual Effects and a Saturn nomination for Best Genre Television Series. While filming the episode “Who Monitors the Birds,” Rowland was hospitalized twice for exhaustion and bronchitis.
Following the cancellation of the series, Rowland worked with Sydney Penny and Kathleen Noone on the television film “Hearts Adrift” (1996) as well as with Kristy Swanson and LeGross in the Showtime thriller “Marshal Law” (1996, directed by Stephen Cornwell) before being reunited with Wong and Morgan on “The X-Files” in the season four episode “Never Again,” which aired on February 2, 1997. While on the set, he met and fell in love with star Gillian Anderson. Later that same year, in September, Rowland returned to series television as a regular on the syndicated series “Pensacola: Wings of Gold,” playing Lieutenant Bobby 'Chaser' Griffin. He stayed with the show until May 1998. He also appeared in episodes of “Welcome to Paradox” and “To Have & to Hold” (both 1998) and in the TV film “A Crime of Passions” (CBS, 1999), where he played the ex-boyfriend of Kelly Rowan.
Rowland next had the supporting role of Charlie in the drama film “Dancing at the Blue Iguana,” which was co-written and directed by Michael Radford and starred Sandra Oh, Charlotte Ayanna, Jennifer Tilly, Sheila Kelley, Elias Koteas, Chris Hogan and Daryl Hannah, was cast as an assassin working for Michael Drucker (played by Tony Goldwyn) in the Arnold Schwarzenegger action vehicle “The 6th Day,” for director Roger Spottiswoode and screenwriters Cormac and Marianne Wibberley, and guest starred as Mitch in Fox's “Dark Angel” (all 2000) before starring as Nick in the direct to video action film “Panic” (2001), opposite Kristanna Loken. Also in 2001, he starred as Corey Mahoney in Darin Ferriola's horror film “Soulkeeper,” with Robert Davi, Tommy Lister and Brad Dourif, as well as appeared as Commander William Streck in an episode of “Seven Days” called “Crystal Blue Persuasion.” He then appeared as Gavin Pallard in the “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation” episode “You've Got Male.”
From 2002 to 2004, Rowland landed guest spots in several TV series, including “Strong Medicine,” “V.I.P.,” “Fastlane,” “Angel” and “Charmed” (as Rick Gittridge). He also portrayed roles in the films “Run for the Money” (starred Christian Slater and Val Kilmer) and “Shade” (written and directed by Damian Nieman). In November 2005, he began his recurring role of Liam Fitzpatrick in “Veronica Mars,” starring Kriten Bell. In 2006, Rowland appeared in episodes of “Without a Trace” (as Vince Weaver), “The O.C.” (as Jack Harper) and “Bones” (as Dane McGinnis), portrayed Chip in the short film “Riptide” and supported David Boreanaz and Alana De La Garza in “Mr. Fix It,” a comedy written and directed by Darin Ferriola.
2007 saw Rowland have recurring roles on “Life” (2 episodes, as Neil Cudahy) and “Weeds” (2 episodes, as Chess) and one episode appearances on “Lincoln Heights” and “Cold Case.” In addition, he costarred with David Leitch in the 18 minute length film “Fetch,” appeared in the TV series pilot “Born in the USA” and had the notable supporting role of Kenny Scaife in the mystery movie “I Know Who Killed Me,” opposite Michael Adler and Garcelle Beauvais.
Rowland resurfaced in 2009 with a string of guest appearances on “The Beast” (as William Dove), “Burn Notice,” “The Closer” (as Peter Benjamin), “NCIS: Los Angeles” (as LAPD Detective Douglas Grozen), “FlashForward” and “Saving Grace.” Recently, in 2010, he played Victor in the “FlashForward” episode “Revelation Zero: Part 2.”