Actor Scott Bakula is known for his starring roles on the TV series ‘Quantum Leap,’ ‘Star Trek: Enterprise,’ Men of a Certain Age’ and ‘NCIS: New Orleans.’
Actor Scott Bakula was born on October 9, 1954, in St. Louis, Missouri. Nominated for a Tony Award for his early theater work, he became widely known to audiences as the star of the popular TV series Quantum Leap from 1989 to 1993. Bakula has since headlined the cast of such shows as Star Trek: Enterprise, Men of a Certain Age and NCIS: New Orleans.
Early Life and Career
Born on October 9, 1954, in St. Louis, Missouri, Scott Stewart Bakula developed an interest in performing at an early age, appearing in local church productions and creating his own musical groups. In school, he also proved to be a strong athlete. Bakula played tennis, soccer and baseball. During his time at Kirkwood High School, he was a member of the swim team. He also loved to water-ski.
The son of a lawyer, Bakula first studied business and law in college before pursuing his passion for theater. He moved to New York City to further his career in 1976, where he found work on the stage. After performing off-Broadway and in regional productions for several years, Bakula made his Broadway debut in 1983 in the musical Marilyn, playing the star's second husband, baseball great Joe DiMaggio.
Breaking into television, Bakula spent time out in California. He filmed guest spots on such shows as My Sister Sam and Designing Women. He starred in two short-lived series, Gung Ho and Eisenhower & Lutz, before returning to Broadway. In 1988, Bakula won raves for his performance in Romance/Romance. One critic said, "Bakula has the leading man qualities of Cary Grant or Gregory Peck," and noted his "egregious good looks" and "ingratiating smile." The actor received a Tony Award nomination for his work on the show, which featured two different musicals.
Following the success of Romance/Romance, Scott Bakula was cast in a new television series, Quantum Leap, opposite veteran character actor Dean Stockwell. He played Sam, a scientist who gets transported into another time, another place and another person's body in each episode. He earned numerous accolades for his work on the series, including a Golden Globe Award and four Emmy Award nominations. The show also proved to be quite popular with television audiences, lasting for five seasons. In addition to starring on the series, Bakula worked behind the camera, serving as a director for several episodes.
During the run of Quantum Leap, Bakula also took on some film roles. He appeared in the 1990 comedy Sibling Rivalry with Kirstie Alley, Bill Pullman and Carrie Fisher. The following year, Bakula again showed his humorous side, in the sports comedy Unnecessary Roughness. He tackled more movie parts after Quantum Leap ended in 1993, but none matched his television success.
'Star Trek: Enterprise'
For several years, Bakula had a recurring role on the hit sitcom Murphy Brown, playing Candice Bergen's love interest. He then starred on his own show, the short-lived spy series Mr. & Mrs. Smith, from 1996 to 1997. Bakula had better luck with science-fiction fare, starring on Star Trek: Enterprise beginning in 2001. In this prequel to the original Star Trek series, he played Captain Jonathan Archer and commanded the spaceship Enterprise in its early days. The syndicated series ran for four seasons.
'Men of a Certain Age' and 'NCIS'
After Star Trek: Enterprise ended in 2005, Bakula made a string of guest appearances. He worked on Boston Legal with William Shatner and on the comedy State of the Union with Tracey Ullman. He also landed a few recurring roles. On The New Adventures of Old Christine, he appeared with Julia Louis-Dreyfus. He also played the title character's father on the spy comedy Chuck.
Bakula went on to tackle a role that showed both his dramatic and his comedic talents, starring on Men of a Certain Age with Ray Romano and Andre Braugher from 2009 to 2011. The three portrayed a group of college friends battling the challenges of middle age, with Bakula playing an actor with a sagging career and a fear of commitment. After the show's conclusion, he took on a supporting role in the 2013 TV movie Behind the Candelabra, directed by Steven Soderbergh and starring Michael Douglas as Liberace.
In 2014, Bakula returned to prime-time television on the NCIS spinoff NCIS: New Orleans. The show marked another successful addition to the CBS franchise, with Bakula earning strong reviews as Special Agent Dwayne Cassius Pride. Also in 2014, the veteran actor began appearing on the HBO series Looking.
Bakula is married to actress Chelsea Field. The couple has two sons, Wil and Owen. Bakula also has two children, Chelsy and Cody, from his first marriage, to actress Krista Neumann.