Considering his previous experience essaying the recurring role of Julius Caesar on the popular small screen fantasy adventure series Xena: Warrior Princess, it seems only natural that New Zealand born actor Karl Urban would advance to slay orcs in Peter Jackson's epic Lord of the Rings trilogy. Appearing as a somewhat more rugged version of screen heartthrob Leonardo DiCaprio, it's obvious from his work in such films as The Price of Milk that the handsome young actor has the looks and the skills to make it on his own.
A Wellington native and son of a leather goods manufacturer, Urban's first acting experience came with an appearance in a New Zealand television show at the age of eight. Though he would subsequently eschew an acting career until after graduating from high school, Urban was drawn back in front of the cameras when he was offered the opportunity to appear on an evening soap opera entitled Shortland Street while preparing to attend Victoria University. The acting bug was a bit harder to shake the second time around, and after a mere year at Victoria, Urban abandoned higher education for a career on the stages of Wellington. A relocation to Auckland found Urban gaining exposure on New Zealand television, and after a turn as a heroin addict in Shark in the Park, he made an impression in the 1998 Scott Reynolds thriller Heaven. An unaired pilot for a show called Amazon High was eventually incorporated into an episode of Xena, and Urban would next take to the screen for the gory horror outing The Irrefutable Truth About Demons.