(written from a Production point of view)
|Lostpedia has conducted an interview with Michael Emerson. To read this interview, please see here.|
Background and personal life
Emerson was born September 7, 1954 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and grew up in the nearby town of Toledo, Iowa. In 1976, Emerson graduated from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, where he studied theater and art. After graduation, he moved to New York City, looking for a job in acting. However, he was unable to find a job in this industry, so he took up retail jobs, becoming a freelance illustrator as well. In 1986, Emerson moved with his first wife to Jacksonville, Florida, where he appeared in and directed local stage productions, and also worked as a teacher until 1993.
In the early nineties, Emerson's marriage with his first wife ended. Emerson continued his studies of acting at the University of Alabama's Fine Arts Program. In 1998, Emerson married Carrie Preston, a fellow actress, whom he had met while performing Hamlet in Alabama.
After finishing his studies of acting at the University of Alabama's Fine Arts Actor Training Program, Emerson participated in the Alabama Shakespeare Festival. However, Emerson's first well-known stage work was as Oscar Wilde in the 1997 off-Broadway play, wikipedia:Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde''Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde.'' In 1998, he appeared alongside actress Uma Thurman in The Misanthropist, another off-Broadway play. He appeared in many more stage productions, including The Iceman Cometh with Kevin Spacey, and Give Me Your Answer, Do! with Kate Burton.
Emerson's first major television acting role was on The Practice in 2001, where he had a recurring role as a serial killer, William Hinks. This performance garnered him an Emmy Award as "Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series." Emerson also portrayed the mysterious Zepp Hindle in Saw, a film which also featured Ken Leung. The character he played in Saw will now be featured in a video game from the film of the same name.
In 2006, Emerson took the role of the enigmatic Henry Gale, a character who lied to the survivors. The character's name was later revealed to be Benjamin Linus. Emerson received much critical praise for his role as Linus, being called "a genius in [the] role" by Entertainment Weekly. For his role as Linus, Emerson was nominated for an Outstanding Supporting Actor Emmy in 2007 (which he lost to fellow Lost actor Terry O'Quinn), 2008, 2009 (which he won), and 2010 along with fellow Lost actor Terry O'Quinn. Emerson was also the narrator in the clipshows "Lost: A Tale of Survival", "Lost: Past, Present and Future" and "Lost: A Journey in Time".
- In September of 2010, NBC picked up a pilot for a TV show Odd Jobs starring Michael and his Lost co-star Terry O'Quinn.
- -Despite being picked up by NBC, further development of the show has been postponed. Michael Emerson has since joined the pilot of a different J.J. Abrams pilot, Person of Interest. 
- According to Deadline.com, stage and screen star Michael Emerson is set to star in CBS pilot entitled Person of Interest. The pilot will be written and executive produced by Jonah Nolan and executive produced by J.J. Abrams.
- -The series was officially picked up by CBS on May 13, 2011, and is slated to debut on Thursday, September 22, 2011, in the 9 pm (E/P) time slot.
- -According to CBS, Person of Interest received the highest test ratings of any drama pilot in 15 years, what one CBS executive called "crazy broad appeal you don't usually see." The ratings prompted CBS to move CSI, which had occupied that slot for over 10 years, to Wednesday 10/9c to make room for Person of Interest. 
|Person of Interest||Television series||Harold Finch||2011-2016|
|Saw||Video Game||Zepp Hindle||2009|
|Ready? OK!||Movie||Charlie New||2008|
|Lost: Via Domus||Video game||Benjamin Linus||2008|
|Lost||Television series||Benjamin Linus||2006-2010|
|The Legend of Zorro||Movie||Harrigan||2005|
|Law & Order: Special Victims Unit||Television series||Allan Shaye||2004|
|The X-Files||Television series||Oliver Martin||2002|
|The Laramie Project||Movie||Reverend||2002|
|The Practice||Television series||William Hinks||2000-2001|
- Emmy for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series (for playing "William Hinks" on The Practice), 2001
- Nominated for a Saturn Award for Lost
- Nominated for an Emmy Award at the 59th Primetime Emmy Awards for Lost
- Won a 2007 Saturn Award for Lost.
- Nominated for an Emmy Award at the 60th Primetime Emmy Awards for Lost.
- Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Drama Series (for playing Benjamin Linus on Lost), 2009. 
Emerson has appeared as a talk show guest, host, or was interviewed in the following:
- January 15, 2007 - e-Talk Daily (S3 E9)
- May 25, 2007 - Best Week Ever (S5 E26)
- February 14, 2008 - The View - (S11 E108)
- January 29, 2008 - The Primetime Emmy Awards: The 53rd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards
- January 29, 2008 - e-Talk Daily (S4 E110)
- June 22, 2008 - I Love the New Millenium: 2000 (VH1)
- June 24, 2008 - I Love the New Millenium: 2002 (VH1)
- March 19, 2009 - The Bonnie Hunt Show (NBC)
- September 23, 2009 - The Bonnie Hunt Show (NBC)
- September 30, 2006 - Sunset on the Beach
- October 21, 2006 - Hawaii International Film Festival - Lost discussion panel
- January 13, 2007 - Academy of Television Arts & Sciences - "An Evening with Lost"
- 2009 - Comic Con 2009
- October 17, 2009 - Hawaii International Film Festival - "An Evening with Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse"
- March 10, 2010 - Special guest on Jorge Garcia and Bethany James Leigh Shady's Geronimo Jack's Beard podcast, discussing "Dr. Linus". 
- May 13, 2010 - Lost Live
- In "The Man Behind the Curtain," Emerson's wife, Carrie Preston, played his character's mother.
- Appeared in The Laramie Project which also featured Clancy Brown, Nestor Carbonell, and Jeremy Davies.
- Emerson hopes to one day make a guest appearance on True Blood, a show his wife Carrie Preston has a recurring role on.
The following websites are dedicated to Michael Emerson:
- NY Mag: NBC Picks Up J.J. Abrams' Linus & Locke Show, 9/22/2010
- Biography - at ABC Medianet
- ABC Upfront (Lost-Media) - Emerson at a Lost publlicity media event
- Federal Bureau of Prisons educational video - an early acting job for Emerson
- Death, Dear Ones and the Monster: Michael Emerson Talks Lost