“You know one of the things about going from modeling to acting is it’s so much more fulfilling. With modeling, you get your picture taken, which is great, good for you, you know? But in acting, you’re able to reach in and show a little bit more of yourself.” Tom Welling
An American model-turned-actor, Tom Welling is best known for playing Clark Kent in the well-liked Warner Bros television series “Smallville” (2001-?), where he took home a 2001 Teen Choice Award, as well as received four Saturn nominations and three Teen Choice nods. He also starred in films Cheaper by the Dozen (2003) and its installment Cheaper By the Dozen 2 (2005), with Steve Martin, and the horror remake The Fog (2005).
Off camera, the Smallville star was chosen one of People Magazine’s “Breakthrough Stars” in 2001. On more personal note, Welling married model-girlfriend Jamie A. White in Martha’s Vineyard, on July 5, 2002, after a three year relationship. He is a big fan of celebrities Bob Saget, Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, Christopher Walken, Robert De Niro, Steve Martin and Jerry Seinfeld. His pastimes include playing basketball with friends, running and reading.
Childhood and Family:
In Putnam Valley, West Point, Thomas John Patrick Welling, later famous as Tom Welling, was born on April 26, 1977, to a retired General Motors executive father and a home engineer mother. Due to his father’s profession, Tom and his family, including his two older sisters and his younger brother (actor Mark Welling), moved frequently. He spent his childhood in Wisconsin and moved to Hockessin, Delaware, in the third grade. Tom stayed there until his family decided to settle in Okemos, Michigan, when he was in the start of his junior year in high school.
He attended Okemos High School in Okemos, was active in numerous team sports, and excelled in soccer, playing the position of goal keeper. He also took part in several school theater productions. After graduation in 1995, Tom opted not to go to college. Instead, he worked as a construction worker until a catalogue shoot scout spotted him in 1997. After a few years of modeling career in New York, he headed to Los Angeles to pursue a career in acting.
The owner of a pug named Cook, Tom tied the knot with fashion beauty Jamie A. White on July 5, 2002. The pair met on a local coffee shop, when Tom did photo shoots in Miami, Florida, in 1998, and they soon became romantically involved.
While on vacation with a few friends in Nantucket, 20-year-old Tom Welling caught the eye of an Abercrombie & Fitch catalogue shoot scout who worked for the world-top photographer Bruce Weber and was encouraged to try modeling. Later on, he made his way to Lake George, New York, where the shoot was to take place, and launched his modeling career with appearance in the Christmas Abercrombie & Fitch Quarterly, that same year. He then left his family in Michigan to further chase the career in Manhattan, where he modeled sporadically over the next two years for New York Model Management. During this period, he also made a European trip with Louisa Models, modeling in Germany, Italy and Spain.
In January 2000, Welling relocated to Los Angeles in pursuit of a career in acting. While entering many auditions, he continued to model for a few more months with L.A. Models and the world-famous Wilhelmina Models. Welling received his early acting jobs in television commercials for T.J. Maxx, 7 Up and Verizon and in the Angela Via music video “Picture Perfect.” Helped by the CAA talent agency, the young actor finally scored a major break with a recurring role in the popular CBS drama series “Judging Amy” (2001). He portrayed Rob Meltzer, a karate coach who wins the heart of the titular jurist (played by Amy Brenneman) while he teaches her daughter. The same year, he also appeared as Male Victim #1 in an episode of “Special Unit 2” and made a cameo appearance as a frat guy in the pilot episode of the Fox sitcom “Undeclared.”
Welling’s biggest break, however, arrived when he won the lead role of a teenaged Clark Kent/Superman in the WB series “Smallville” (2001-?). Offering an impressive performance opposite other young actors like Kristin Kreuk (played his love interest Lana Lang) and Michael Rosenbaum (as friend/future enemy Lex Luthor), Welling earned four Saturn Award nominations for Best Actor in a Television Series, and after receiving three Teen Choice award nods, he eventually won a statue in 2001 for Male Breakout Star. The praised performance, combined with the success of the show made Welling a TV star.
With a newfound fame, Welling branched out to films. He made his feature film debut in the wide screen version of Cheaper by the Dozen (2003), playing Charlie, Directed by Shawn Levy, the plain but popular comedy cast Wiling as Steve Martin and Bonnie Hunt’s oldest, football star son Charlie. In 2005, he ventured into horror genre by taking on the staring role of Nick Castle in director Rupert Wainwright’s remake of the John Carpenter classic The Fog, opposite Maggie Grace and Selma Blair. Welling also reprised his role of Charlie for the sequel Cheaper By the Dozen 2, that same year.