|Ronald N. “Ron” Perlman is an American television, film and voice actor. He is known for having played Vincent in the TV series Beauty and the Beast (for which he won a Golden Globe), Slade in the animated series Teen Titans and Clarence “Clay” Morrow in Sons of Anarchy. He has starred in the Guillermo del Toro films Cronos, Blade II, and as the comic book character Hellboy in both 2004’s Hellboy and its 2008 sequel Hellboy II: The Golden Army. He has also played Mr. Kellerman in an episode of Charmed titled Wrestling with Demons and as the narrator of the post-apocalyptic game series Fallout. In 2010, he provided the voice of the Stabbington brothers in Tangled, Disney’s animated film adaptation of “Rapunzel.” He narrated the television series 1000 Ways to Die on Spike. In July 2013, he appeared as Hannibal Chau in del Toro’s film Pacific Rim.|
Perlman was born in Washington Heights, New York, to a Jewish family. His mother, Dorothy, was a municipal employee, and his father was a jazz drummer and repairman. Perlman stated in a 1988 interview that “It was not a bad childhood but...I had a perception of myself that was, I was terribly overweight as a young kid, and it was sort of a low self image.” Perlman continued to say that this experience is one thing that attracts him to “playing these sorts of deformed people who are very endearing.” Perlman was also made fun of for looking like a monkey, which also significantly lowered his self-esteem.
He attended George Washington High School and later Lehman College in New York City in 1971, which did not have a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Theatre at that time. He has said that he and his father were “very close,” and that it was his father, after seeing Perlman in a college production of Guys and Dolls, who told Perlman, “You have to do this... You understand this? You gotta do this.” Perlman says, “So, he gave me permission to be an actor...wow.” Perlman attended the University of Minnesota, where he graduated with a master’s degree in theater arts in 1973.
Perlman made his feature film debut in Jean-Jacques Annaud’s film Quest for Fire (1981). After various minor and supporting roles in films and television series, his breakthrough role came when he played Vincent in the TV series Beauty and the Beast, opposite Linda Hamilton from 1987 to 1990. This earned him a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series in 1989.
He went on to play roles in many films and television series throughout the 1980s and 1990s as well as the 2000s. His most notable film appearances were in films such as The Name of the Rose (1986), Romeo is Bleeding (1993), The Adventures of Huck Finn (1993), Police Academy: Mission to Moscow (1994), The Last Supper (1995), The Island of Dr. Moreau (1996), Alien Resurrection (1997), Enemy at the Gates (2001), Blade II and Star Trek Nemesis (both 2002) and two Stephen King story-to-movie adaptations, Sleepwalkers and Desperation. His appearances in television series include Highlander: The Series, The Outer Limits and The Magnificent Seven.
He played his first leading film role in 1995, when he played “One” in Jean-Pierre Jeunet and Marc Caro’s French-language The City of Lost Children. In 2003, Perlman starred in a commercial for Stella Artois beer. This commercial, which was called “Devil’s Island,” won a Silver Award at the 2003 British Advertising Awards. He got another leading film role in 2004 when he played the title role in the comic book adaptation Hellboy. Perlman reprised his role as Hellboy in Hellboy II: The Golden Army, released on July 11, 2008.
In 2008, Perlman joined the cast of the TV show Sons of Anarchy on FX playing Clay Morrow, the president of the motorcycle club and the protagonist’s stepfather.
Perlman is known for playing roles which require make-up, some to the point where his entire body is covered or his face requires full facial prosthetics. Some examples include his first film role in Quest for Fire, where he played a Neanderthal, The Name of the Rose where he plays a disfigured hunchback, Beauty and The Beast, where he played Vincent, a man with the face of a half-man half-lion-like beast, The Island of Dr. Moreau where he plays a half man/half animal, Star Trek: Nemesis in which he is the Reman viceroy and the Hellboy films where he plays the titular demon. He even gave his Beauty and The Beast co-star Armin Shimerman advice when Shimerman was going to be in full-facial prosthetics as Quark for Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.
Perlman also has a successful career as a voice actor in addition to his onscreen acting, having portrayed characters in numerous video games and animated series. These include Casper High teacher Mr. Lancer in Danny Phantom, Kurtis Stryker in Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm, Justice in Afro Samurai and various characters in DC Comics based series such as the villainous Slade, a version of DC character Deathstroke the Terminator, in the Teen Titans animated series, Clayface in Batman: The Animated Series, Jax-Ur in Superman: The Animated Series, Sozin in ‘“Avatar: The Last Airbender, Orion in Justice League and Justice League Unlimited, Killer Croc, Rumor, Bane in The Batman, Doctor Double X in Batman: The Brave and the Bold, and Sinestro in Green Lantern: The Animated Series.
His video game credits include Fleet Admiral Lord Terrence Hood, who commands Earth’s space defenses against the Covenant in the games Halo 2 and Halo 3, Jagger Valance in The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay, and Batman in Justice League Heroes. He is well known by Fallout fans for narrating the introductory movies in the series, including uttering the famous phrase “War. War never changes.” He also voices “Slade” in the 2008 Turok game, and Emil Blonsky/Abomination in Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction, Conan for the PS3 and Xbox 360, and voices the fast-talking Mayor Hoodoo Brown in the Neversoft game Gun.