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Tim Abell is a man of contrasts. An exciting and passionate actor, Tim is an expert horseman, a martial artist, a firearms professional, an artistic wood worker and yet possesses an equal expertise on the dance floor whether he is performing the Tango, Cha Cha, Waltz or Swing. Also a cook, scuba diver, snow skier, and fly fisherman... the list goes on. This former Army Ranger is able to draw on his diverse blend of skills and experience for his chosen profession. Dedicated to his craft and a consummate professional, Tim is as much at home playing the lover, as he is the fighter, the clown as he is the wise man.
The youngest of three children, Tim came from the Maryland and Virginia area, where summers were spent fishing on the Chesapeake for striped bass, blue fish, blue crabs and oysters in his father's fifty-year-old 47-foot bay built boat 'Lena M'. A shy young man, Tim indulged his imagination by reading biographies of great military leaders, American Presidents and courageous adventurers exploring far off mysterious lands. Not just a bookworm, he also took up martial arts and boxing and under the tutelage of his uncle found a respect for wildlife conservation and a love for the land while hunting deer, wild turkey and raccoon on the Marine Corps base at Quantico, Va. Little did Tim know that the Armed Forces were going to be something of a constant in his life and in both careers he would follow.
At the age of 17 Tim watched an army recruitment video in the school canteen featuring the work of 'Special Forces' units; he was immediately hooked. He had signed up within a week and was off to basic training. Promoted in that basic training owing to outstanding leadership skills, Tim advanced quickly, attending AIT, Airborne School and Ranger School all at Fort Benning, Ga. He was assigned to the 2nd Ranger Battalion Ft. Lewis, Wa., as a US Army Ranger after enduring the Ranger Indoctrination Program. Gaining further promotions, Tim also achieved his Ranger Tab, Expert Infantry Badge, West German Jump Wings, J O T C Patch, Expert Rifle Badge, was an Honours Graduate at Primary NCO School and qualified at the Equestrian Riding School.
During his final year in the Army Tim served with the 3rd US Infantry, 'The Old Guard', Caisson Platoon. Here he excelled as a horseman and played Robert E. Lee and Andrew Jackson, charging into battle on his trusty steed, in the US Army dramatic re-enactment of the History of the United States Torch Light Tattoo, at the Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC, and a longer version called 'The Spirit of America' performed in various places. Not content with the activities the Rangers had to offer, Tim spent his spare time scuba diving, sky diving and snow skiing.
After five years of very active service that saw Tim undertake arctic, jungle, desert and amphibious combat training all around the world and across the United States, he decided his future lay with the Army, but as an Officer. Entering OTS meant getting a degree and E5 Sergeant Timothy Abell took the brave step of leaving the Army to return to College at the University of Maryland. Attempts by the Army to entice him back by offering him the assignment of his choice failed, Tim was determined to be more than an enlisted man. Fate however had a different idea.

The same uncle who had been young Tim Abell's hunting mentor now encouraged him to join the Arthur Murray Dance Studio. He was soon teaching class to support himself through College and it was there he decided to take an additional occasional class, 'Acting for Non-actors'. Tim was bitten by the bug and taking a tough but single-minded decision, he left College and the Army behind. He headed to Los Angeles where he took classes with Jeff Corey while searching for that all-important break.

After a series of low budget films early on Tim's first real success came courtesy of the Internet. He was an original cast member of American Cybercast's groundbreaking first ever episodic web site based soap opera 'The Spot'. Running from June 1995 until July 1997, the show regularly attracted 150,000 people per day to the site to follow the antics of Jeff, played by Tim, his housemates and the dog, Spotnik.


Tim's next break came when he played opposite Gary Busey, Billy Dee Williams and Billy Warlock in 'Steel Sharks', playing Cord, second in command of a group of Special Forces sent on a rescue mission. Tim showed not only could he act, but also that he could act hurt convincingly well and chew tobacco at the same time. A man who could multi-task, how refreshing!

In 1997 Tim was brought in by Casting Director April Webster, and was chosen by Jerry Bruckheimer to play Benny Ray Riddle, sniper and master armourer in a team of spec ops experts, in the Rysher TV series 'Soldier of Fortune, Inc.' An ex-Marine, drummed out of the Corps for hitting a UN Task Force Officer, Tim's portrayal of the no nonsense, hard nosed, Southerner was an immediate success. Men loved his intensity, loyalty and skill, he was as dangerous as hell and THE man you would want on your side when things got down and dirty. It wasn't all boys' own stuff though, the show attracted a large female following and much of that was due to Tim's ability to be all things to all men and all women. They found him irresistible, courteous to the point of being a gentleman and although divorced, a doting father. Exuding sexuality, with a wicked dry sense of humour and stunning good looks, Tim balanced sensitivity and being sexy in equal parts.

By Season Two the writers were allowing Tim room to explore his character fully, but with a title change to 'S.O.F. Special Ops Force', on and off screen personnel arriving and departing, ad hoc scheduling and poor advertising the series was on a hiding to nothing. It didn't survive to the end of the Season, despite being nominated for an Emmy in 1998. Notwithstanding the loss of the series, four years on something akin to cult status is building up around the program, with new viewers seeing the series for the first time as it is shown across Europe and being entranced as much by Tim's performance now as Americans were five years ago.

Tim got to make the most of his military experiences during 'Soldier of Fortune, Inc.' and as Sergeant Gammon in 'The Base'. An accomplished performance as the misunderstood, frustrated but ultimately doomed Sergeant who believed his only chance to leave the world a legacy was to take control of the drug trade in LA and wipe out the opposition and anyone else who got in his way. Tim received many great reviews for his performance and was compared to a young Willem Dafoe. Mark Dacascos, who played opposite Tim in 'The Base' was to experience Tim's attention to detail, as hours were spent beforehand perfecting the choreography of the final fight scene to ensure it's authenticity.
Dacascos and Tim renewed their on screen antagonism in the film of Lisa Gardner's book 'The Perfect Husband'. Renamed 'Instinct to Kill', many consider this Tim's finest performance to date. He played the psychotic killer Jim Beckett, who after his escape from prison sets out on a killing spree that ends with a final showdown with Dacascos and Beckett's ex-wife, played by Missy Crider; a confrontation that leads to Beckett's ultimate demise. A thoughtful insight into the ordinary face of the killer amongst us, 'Instinct to Kill' gave Tim a chance to spread his acting wings with startlingly realistic effect. Co-written by Randall Frakes, and also starring Kadeem Hardison, the film has not yet been shown in the US.

Much of 'Instinct to Kill' had Tim in one disguise or another, displaying his ability to inhabit and become other characters and master their accents. An ear for languages, throughout 'Strategic Command' he spoke in German and produced a flawless Southern accent for Benny Ray Riddle in 'SOF'.

In the 2000 film 'Substitute 4: Failure is not an option', Tim's martial arts expertise was again on show, but on this occasion he was a good guy, starring opposite Treat Williams as they hunted down a group of neo-nazi students. Red headed beauty Angie Everhart also starred in the fourth of 'The Substitute' series and it was here that Tim took the opportunity to display another of his talents, ballroom dancing. A more than accomplished dancer, Tim has taken this particular skill and put it into practice in a number of ballroom dance competitions, from Tango to Salsa to Waltz to Swing to Cha Cha...

2001 was a very busy year for Tim. Not only did he make 'Instinct to Kill', but he also starred in the third feature length episode of 'Murder, she Wrote'. The Angela Lansbury project had Tim playing the jilted lover of actress Lisa Lackey. 'The Last Free Man' was set against the background of the Deep South during the Civil War and with a story line that dealt with racism at its most ugly. Tim's performance was sympathetic and understanding of the attitudes prevalent at the time, though quite controversial and archaic by today's standards. Michael Jace, Mack Davies and Phylicia Rashad also starred.

Later that same year Tim appeared in Jason Bloom's award-winning black comedy 'Dead Simple' a.k.a. 'Viva Las Nowhere'. The electrifying part whilst small was still perfectly performed. This tale of a Country and Western singer entering the life of a downtrodden singer/songwriter starred Daniel Stern, James Caan, Sherry Stringfield and Patricia Richardson.


The film won the 2001 New American Cinema Special Jury Prize at the Seattle International Film Festival. It was a movie that Director Bloom could not turn down, likening it to many of the Coen Brothers films. "Some of the jokes are very uncomfortable. It's not a 'pleasing' joke'. You're kind of guilty for laughing at a guy getting electrocuted. You're (sic) shocked, you're guilty and then you laugh and that kind of uncomfortableness is really interesting to me." The Special Jury agreed and Tim is rightfully proud of his part in the film, which captured the ironic essence of the whole film. Bath time and rubber ducks will never be the same again.

Early in 2002 saw Tim cast as the dedicated Intelligence Officer who knowingly passes ambiguous intelligence information to Mel Gibson's character and then monitors the ensuing carnage from the Saigon war room, via his 'intelligence' over the radio, in the Randall Wallace directed epic war film 'We Were Soldiers' which starred Mel Gibson, Sam Elliott and Greg Kinnear. The remainder of 2002 has seen Tim filming in Europe on different projects.

Whilst much of Tim's work has been in films or on TV, he also has an impressive record on the stage to his credit. Tim has studied at Arena Stage, the Studio Theatre and the Shakespeare Theatre at the Folger in Washington DC. He has appeared in such productions as 'Edward II', 'Bus Stop', and 'Romeo and Juliet', as well as many others. Tim has also trodden the boards in Los Angeles with appearances in 'Rocks' at The Room Upstairs, 'Beltway Roulette' at Le Cafe, 'Pearly's' and 'Heaven's Den' at The Complex, 'The White Biting Dog' at The Odyssey Theatre, Eddie in Sam Sheppard's 'Fool for Love' at The Power House Theatre and the very antithesis of that role, Oberon in 'A Midsummer Night's Dream'. Most recently. Tim played an on the edge 'super-hyper, type A, tweaked' New York Director, dealing with acting styles and prima donnas in 'Method to the Madness' directed by Kevin Kennedy at The Jewel Box Theatre in Los Angeles.

When not working Tim can be found at home in LA indulging in one of his favourite hobbies, cooking. A willingness to taste or try almost any dish that can be made regardless of ingredients has been borne out of Tim's love of creating in the kitchen. Recipes, new and old, from far and wide around the globe are sought out and prepared with his usual attention to detail and flair for the exotic.

Not content with all the activity already referred to, Tim has found time to pursue another of his interests in the downtime between films. For those of you who recall the episode of Soldier of Fortune from Series 2 called "Tethered Goat", you will remember Tim's prowess on skates. Well it seems that Tim has turned his talent into an opportunity and has qualified as an inline skate coach. He currently coaches beginners at the California Skate School. So if you feel like a lesson, get on your skates, literally!
Special Forces/Films/Theatre/Soldier of Fortune/Television/Internet/Biography/Links/Contact/Dish of the Day