Adam Beach began his screen career by rowing the canoe that held the stars of the television adaptation of Farley Mowat's Lost in the Barrens (1990). A little over a decade later, the hardworking Native American actor -- who used to run home from school to watch Johnny Depp on 21 Jump Street -- had a coveted spot in Vanity Fair's notorious Hollywood Issue and was one of E! Entertainment Network's Sizzling Sixteen.
A member of the Saulteaux Tribe, Beach was born on the Dog Creek Reserve, located north of Lake Winnipeg in Canada. He was only seven years old when a drunk driver killed his mother, who was eight months pregnant. Beach's father drowned only two months later. The tragic deaths of their parents forced Beach and his brothers to move south to live with relatives in Winnipeg, Manitoba. There, he attended Gordon Bell High School, where he became interested in music and theater. He formed a short-lived garage band called Lethic (which covered heavy metal bands like Black Sabbath) and took drama classes. He soon earned roles in local theater productions and eventually dropped out of school for a lead role in Red River Valley at the Manitoba Theatre for Young People.