Christopher Meloni

Christopher Meloni
Chris Meloni by Gage Skidmore.jpg
Christopher Peter Meloni

(1961-04-02) April 2, 1961 (age 58)
ResidenceLos Angeles, California, U.S.
Other namesChris Meloni
EducationUniversity of Colorado Boulder (1983)
Neighborhood Playhouse
Years active1988–present
Known forChris Keller on Oz
Elliot Stabler on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
Doris Sherman Williams (m. 1995)

Christopher Peter Meloni (born April 2, 1961)[1][2] is an American actor. He is known for his television roles as NYPD Detective Elliot Stabler on the NBC legal drama Law & Order: Special Victims Unit for its first twelve seasons and as inmate Chris Keller on the HBO prison drama Oz. In June 2012, he returned to HBO, as the vampire Roman on the main cast of True Blood for the series' fifth season. Meloni starred in and was an executive producer of the Syfy series Happy! (2017–2019), based on the comic book series created by writer Grant Morrison and artist Darick Robertson. The series was canceled on June 4, 2019.

His films include Man of Steel, Wet Hot American Summer, Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle, 12 Monkeys, Runaway Bride, 42, and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.

Early life[]

Meloni was born in Washington, D.C., the youngest of three children (he has a brother and sister) of Cecile (née Chagnon; 1926–2016),[3] a homemaker, and Charles Robert Meloni (1927–2012),[4] an endocrinologist.[5][6][7][8] His maternal ancestry is French Canadian and his paternal ancestry is Sardinian (from Italy).

Meloni attended St. Stephen's School[9] (now St. Stephen's & St. Agnes School) in Alexandria, Virginia, and played quarterback on the football team.

He studied acting at the University of Colorado at Boulder and graduated with a degree in history in 1983.

After graduation, Meloni went to New York where he continued his studies with Sanford Meisner at the Neighborhood Playhouse School of the Theatre as well as the Center for the Media Arts.


Meloni worked as a construction worker prior to getting his acting break. He has also worked as a bouncer, bartender, and personal trainer.

Meloni worked his way up the acting ladder with commercials,[10] short-lived TV series, and bit parts in a number of films.

His first noticeable role was as the hotheaded son of a Mafia don in the 1996 thriller Bound. He appeared as Robbie Sinclair's friend Spike in Dinosaurs in the early 1990s. He played criminal Jimmy Liery in eight episodes of NYPD Blue during 1996-1997 and the fiancé of Julia Roberts's character in the 1999 romantic comedy Runaway Bride.

Oz and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit[]

From 1998 to 2003, Meloni portrayed the bisexual criminal Chris Keller on the HBO series Oz.

Law & Order producer Dick Wolf signed Meloni to play Elliot Stabler on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit in 1999. Meloni appeared on both Oz and Law & Order: SVU simultaneously, until Oz went off the air in 2003. Meloni was nominated for an Emmy Award in 2006,[11] in the category of Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series, for his role as Elliot Stabler.

In May 2011, Meloni announced that he would not be returning to SVU in fall 2011 for its 13th season after the failure of negotiations over a new contract.[12]

Other work[]

Meloni in New York City, 2006

He returned to his comedic roots when he portrayed the character Gene in Wet Hot American Summer in 2001, the puppet-loving pediatrician Dr. Norris in a 2003 episode of Scrubs, and the character of "Freakshow" (albeit in heavy make-up) in the 2004 comedy Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle. He made another cameo in its sequel, Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay, as "The Grand Wizard". In 2005, he appeared on episode 107 of MTV2's adult puppet show Wonder Showzen in a series of parody public service announcements warning of the threat of cooties. He also had an uncred role as a gay hotel desk clerk in Fear and Loathing In Las Vegas.

In July 2009, Meloni portrayed DC Comics character Hal Jordan/Green Lantern in the DC Universe Animated Original Movie Green Lantern: First Flight. He briefly appeared in the first episode of the Comedy Central series Michael & Michael Have Issues portraying himself for a fake movie starring Michael Ian Black and Michael Showalter.

Meloni played Colonel Hardy, a supporting role, in the Superman reboot film Man of Steel (2013).[13] That year, he also played Brooklyn Dodgers manager Leo Durocher in the historical baseball feature 42.

On November 30, 2011, it was announced that Meloni was in talks with HBO to take on a "major" role in the fifth season of True Blood as an "incredibly powerful" vampire.[14] It was later confirmed that he would be taking a role as a series regular for season 5 as Roman, an "ancient, powerful vampire who holds the fate of Bill and Eric in his hands."[15] He also starred in the 2014 comedy They Came Together.[16] He also stars as John Taylor in the video game Call of Duty: Black Ops III.

In 2018, Meloni guest starred in two episodes of the FX drama series Pose, opposite Dominique Jackson.[17]

Public appearances[]

Meloni has appeared in many public service announcements in support of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) issues.[18] In 1999, Meloni jokingly kissed Lee Tergesen (who played Tobias Beecher, Meloni's on-screen boyfriend on Oz) at an awards dinner for GLAAD. In 2006, Meloni was given the Human Rights Campaign's Equality Award, along with actor Jake Gyllenhaal and director Ang Lee, for his work on behalf of LGBT issues.[18] In addition, in 2011, Meloni appeared in a Human Rights Campaign's "New Yorkers for Marriage Equality" video.[19]

In 2004 and 2006 respectively, Meloni competed in both the fourth and the eighth series of Bravo's Celebrity Poker Showdown; in the eighth series he finished in second place, behind Robin Tunney, and ahead of Macy Gray, Joy Behar, and Andy Dick. He played for Feed the Children.

He also appeared on Celebrity Jeopardy! on November 10, 2006, defeating fellow Law & Order stars Sam Waterston and Kathryn Erbe. Meloni split his $50,000 charity prize between the Big Apple Circus Clown Care Program and the Montefiore Advocacy Center. He also appeared on the program's Million Dollar Celebrity Invitational that aired on December 17, 2009. Although defeated by Joshua Malina and Harry Shearer, he won a $25,000 charity prize in the name of Smile Train.

Meloni was included in the 2006 ion of People magazine's Sexiest Men Alive.

Personal life[]

Meloni has been married to production designer Doris Sherman Meloni (née Williams) since July 1, 1995, and they have two children, daughter Sophia Eva Pietra Meloni (b. March 23, 2001),[20] and son Dante Amadeo Meloni (b. January 2, 2004).[21] Former Law & Order: SVU co-star Mariska Hargitay is the godmother to his daughter.

He has a Cubist-inspired representation of the crucifixion of Christ tattooed on his upper left arm, a butterfly tattoo on his left upper thigh, and a Chinese astrological chart of his family on his right lower leg.[22] In 2007, Meloni was inducted into his high school's athletic Hall of Fame as a member of the undefeated 1978 football team, for which he was quarterback.[23]

Meloni currently resides in Los Angeles in a home made famous on The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet.[24][25]



Year Title Role Notes
1994 Clean Slate Bodyguard
Junior Mr. Lanzarotta
1995 12 Monkeys Lt. Halperin
1996 Bound Johnnie Marzzone
1997 Money Talks SPY
1998 Brown's Requiem Sgt. Cavanah Uncred
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas Sven, Clerk at Flamingo Hotel
The Souler Opposite Barry Singer
1999 Carlo's Wake Bennetto Torello
Runaway Bride Bob Kelly
2001 Wet Hot American Summer Gene Jenkinson
2002 That Brief Moment Ken Short film
2004 Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle Freakshow
2008 Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay Grand Wizard Cred as "Reverend Clyde Stanky"
Nights in Rodanthe Jack Willis
2009 Brief Interviews with Hideous Men R / Subject #3
Carriers Frank
2010 Green Lantern: First Flight Hal Jordan/Green Lantern Voice role
2011 National Lampoon's Dirty Movie Producer Charlie LaRue
2013 Awful Nice Jon Charbineau
Man of Steel Colonel Nathan Hardy
42 Leo Durocher
2014 Beef Lou
White Bird in a Blizzard Brock Connors
Small Time Al Klein
2014 They Came Together Roland
2014 Sin City: A Dame to Kill For Mort
2015 The Diary of a Teenage Girl Pascal MacCorkill
2016 I Am Wrath Dennis
Marauders Agent Jonathan Montgomery
Almost Friends Howard
2017 Snatched Roger Simmons


Year Title Role Notes
1989–1990 1st & Ten Vito Del Greco/Johnny Gunn 11 episodes
1990 When Will I Be Loved? Ron Weston TV film
1990–1991 The Fanelli Boys Frankie Fanelli 17 episodes
1991 In a Child's Name Jerry Cimarelli TV film
1991–1994 Dinosaurs Spike 11 episodes
1992 Something to Live for: The Alison Gertz Story David TV film
1993 Without a Kiss Goodbye Ray Samuels TV film (aka Falsely Accused)
The Boys Doug Kirkfield 6 episodes
Golden Gate Douglas 'BW' Carlino Unsold pilot
1995 A Dangerous Affair Tommy Moretti TV film
Hope and Gloria Billy Episode: "Love with an Improper Stranger"
Misery Loves Company Mitch 8 episodes
1996–1997 NYPD Blue Jimmy Liery 5 episodes
1997 The Last Don Boz Skannet Miniseries
Leaving L.A. Reed Sims 6 episodes
Every 9 Seconds Richard Sutherland TV film
Brooklyn South Joe 3 episodes
1998 Target Earth Det. Samuel 'Sam' Adams TV film
Homicide: Life on the Street Bounty Hunter Dennis Knoll 2 episodes
1998–2003 Oz Chris Keller 38 episodes
1999 Shift Louis TV film
1999–2011 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Det. Elliot Stabler 272 episodes
2000 Law & Order Elliot Stabler Episodes: "Entitled", "Fools for Love"
2002 Murder in Greenwich Mark Fuhrman TV film
2003 Scrubs Dr. Dave Norris Episode: "My White Whale"
2004 Sesame Street Himself Episode: 4065
2005 Wonder Showzen Cooties Spokesman Episode: "Health"
Law & Order: Trial by Jury Det. Elliot Stabler Episode: "Day"
2008 Gym Teacher: The Movie Dave Stewie TV film
2009 Michael & Michael Have Issues Himself Episode: "Greg the Intern"
2011 The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Tony Bologna Cameo
Ice Loves Coco Himself Cameo
2012 True Blood Roman Zimojic 5 episodes
2013 Comedy Bang! Bang! Dr. Phillip Banhauser Episode: "Aziz Ansari Wears a Charcoal Blazer"
2014 Veep Ray Whelans 2 episodes
Surviving Jack Jack Dunlevy 8 episodes (inc. 1 episode unaired in the US)
2015 The Jack and Triumph Show Agent Ryker Episode: "Siri"
Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp Gene Jenkinson/Jonas Jurgenson Main cast; 6 episodes
Drunk History Othniel Marsh Episode: "New Jersey"
2016–2017 Underground August Pullman Main cast; 15 episodes
Directed episode: "Auld Acquaintance"
2017 Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later Gene Jenkinson 4 episodes
At Home with Amy Sedaris Ranger Russell Episode: "Nature"
2017–2019 Happy! Nick Sax Lead role
2018 Pose Dick Ford Episodes: "The Fever", "Pink Slip"
2019 Harley Quinn[26] James Gordon
The Handmaid's Tale[27] Commander Winslow

Video games[]

Year Title Voice role
2015 Call of Duty: Black Ops III Commander John Taylor

Awards and nominations[]

Year Award Category Work Result
1999 OFTA Television Awards Best Guest Actor in a Cable Series Oz Won
2004 Prism Awards Best Performance in a TV Drama Series Episode Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Nominated
2006 OFTA Television Awards Best Actor in a Drama Series Nominated
Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series Nominated
2008 Prism Awards Best Performance in a TV Drama Series Episode Nominated
2009 Nominated
2014 Gold Derby Awards Best Comedy Guest Actor Veep Nominated
2019 Gold Derby Awards Best Drama Guest Actor Pose Nominated

See also[]


  1. ^ "NewsBank for DDN |". Retrieved August 16, 2013.
  2. ^ "Birthdays of the week". March 27, 2005. Retrieved August 16, 2013.
  3. ^ "Cecile Meloni passed 3:02 today". Facebook. August 8, 2016.
  4. ^ "Charles R. Meloni". Legacy. August 12, 2012.
  5. ^ Jewel, Dan. "Runaway Guy". Retrieved August 16, 2013.
  6. ^ "Eric S. Atwater: Vaughan board of directors need to do the right thing". Archived from the original on January 19, 2013. Retrieved August 16, 2013.
  7. ^ "Obituary". Retrieved August 12, 2012.
  8. ^ "CHARLES R. MELONI Obituary: View CHARLES MELONI's Obituary by The Washington Post". Retrieved August 16, 2013.
  9. ^ "1978 St. Stephen's Yearbook". Retrieved July 26, 2014.
  10. ^ "McDonald's Commercial". Archived from the original (MP4) on September 11, 2008.
  11. ^ "Christopher Meloni Emmy Nominated". Retrieved May 18, 2014.
  12. ^ Abrams, Natalie (May 24, 2011). "Christopher Meloni Exits Law & Order: SVU". TV Guide. Portland, Oregon: NTVB Media. Retrieved May 24, 2011.
  13. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (June 24, 2011). "Christopher Meloni To Co-Star In 'Man Of Steel'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved June 25, 2011.
  14. ^ "True Blood season 5 spoilers: Christopher Meloni to join cast?". November 30, 2011. Archived from the original on December 27, 2011. Retrieved November 30, 2011.
  15. ^ "'True Blood' casts Christopher Meloni as a vampire". CNN. December 14, 2011. Retrieved December 15, 2011.
  16. ^ "Christopher Meloni Joins They Came Together". Retrieved May 18, 2014.
  17. ^ Hinzmann, Dennis (June 20, 2018). "Christopher Meloni Joins This Week's 'Pose'". Out. Retrieved June 27, 2018.
  18. ^ a b "Jake Gyllenhaal, Ang Lee and Christopher Meloni to Accept Award at Human Rights Campaign New York Gala Dinner". HRC. January 17, 2006. Archived from the original on June 16, 2012. Retrieved August 3, 2011.
  19. ^ "Law & Order SVU Star Christopher Meloni is a New Yorker for Marriage Equality". April 12, 2011. Archived from the original on March 10, 2014. Retrieved March 10, 2014.
  20. ^ Stewart, Andrew (April 11, 2001). "Sophia Eva Pietra Meloni". Variety. Retrieved August 16, 2013.
  21. ^ Staff, Variety (February 27, 2004). "Dante Amadeo Meloni".
  22. ^ Jeffrey Podolsky (November 3, 2009). ""Don't Ask, Don't Tell?" Sir Ian McKellan Will Have None of That". The Wall Street Journal.
  23. ^ Amy Argetsinger; Roxanne Roberts (May 1, 2007). "'Law & Order's' Chris Meloni Goes Long, and Winds Up in 1978". Retrieved May 18, 2014.
  24. ^ David, Mark (December 16, 2014). "Chris Meloni Picks Up Piece of Hollywood History (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety.
  25. ^ "Chris Meloni buys Ozzie and Harriet Nelson's old haunt". Los Angeles Times. December 17, 2014.
  26. ^ Melrose, Kevin (October 25, 2018). "Alan Tudyk to Voice The Joker in Harley Quinn Animated Series". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved October 26, 2018.
  27. ^ "The Handmaid's Tale Season 3 Adds Christopher Meloni, Elizabeth Reaser". Retrieved January 24, 2019.

External links[]