Garrett John Hedlund (born September 3, 1984) is an American actor known for his roles in the films Friday Night Lights, Four Brothers, Eragon, Country Strong, for his role as Patroclus in the movie Troy, as Sam Flynn in Tron: Legacy and as Dean Moriarty (a fictionalized Neal Cassady) in the film On the Road.
Hedlund was born in Roseau, Minnesota, the son of Kristine Anne (née Yanish) and Robert Martin Hedlund. He has an older brother, Nathaniel, and an older sister, Amanda. His father is of Swedish descent. Hedlund was raised on a remote beef cattle farm near the small town of Wannaska, Minnesota. At fourteen he moved to live with his mother in Arizona, where he saved his waiter's tips to pay an acting coach $60 an hour to work on speeches and script material. Modeling gigs for LL Bean and Teen magazine followed. "Someone said to me, 'If you want to catch a fox, you've got to be in the forest." In 2003 at the age of eighteen, Hedlund moved to Los Angeles to pursue his acting career.
His first film role was as Patroclus in Troy. The film, which starred Brad Pitt, was released on May 14, 2004. He also starred as Don Billingsley in the 2004 drama film Friday Night Lights in which Tim McGraw played his abusive father.
He starred as Jack Mercer alongside Mark Wahlberg in the action/crime film Four Brothers. He next appeared in the film Eragon in a supporting role as Murtagh. In 2007, he starred in the Garry Marshall-directed comedy-drama Georgia Rule, alongside Lindsay Lohan and Jane Fonda. The film, which was released May 11, 2007, was negatively received by critics and failed to surpass box office expectations, only making a lifetime gross of $41 million. He also starred in Death Sentence opposite Kevin Bacon. In 2010, he played a leading role alongside Jeff Bridges in Tron: Legacy, a sequel to the 1982 film Tron. The film was released on December 17, 2010.
Hedlund also co-starred with Gwyneth Paltrow, Leighton Meester and reunited with country singer/musician Tim McGraw in the country music drama Country Strong; which was released on January 7, 2011. For this film, he recorded several songs among which "Chances Are", which appeared on Country Strong: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack. His performance was well received by critics; noting voice similarities between him and Charlie Robison, Roughstock said "the best song on this album belongs to him" and Country Weekly wrote that of all the songs performed by actors in this film, his was "the most convincing". Six other songs including a duet with Leighton Meester were featured on a second soundtrack titled Country Strong: More Music from the Motion Picture.
Hedlund was cast as Kaneda Shotaro in the live action version of Akira, but production of the film is cancelled. He also appears as Dean Moriarty in the 2012 film On the Road, along with Kristen Stewart, Amy Adams, Steve Buscemi, Terrence Howard, Kirsten Dunst and Viggo Mortensen. The film was directed by Walter Salles and based on the novel of same name by Jack Kerouac. Disney stated in December 2012 that Hedlund would reprise his role of Sam Flynn in a sequel to Tron: Legacy. He reportedly turned down the role of Finnick in the sequel to the Hunger Games called Catching Fire.
As of November 2013, Hedlund is filming Unbroken in Australia which is being directed by Angelina Jolie.
In 2012, Hedlund began dating his On the Road co-star, Kirsten Dunst.
Nominated--Teen Choice Award for Choice Male Breakout Movie Star
Friday Night Lights
Nominated--Black Reel Award for Best Ensemble
Maui Film Festival Rising Star Award,
Young Hollywood Award for Actor of the Year,
Nominated--Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor
On the Road
Inside Llewyn Davis
When I Was 17
Season 2 Episode 45