Francis Eugene Harper
May 17, 1966
Iowa City, Iowa, U.S.
|Other names||Frank Harper|
F. Hill Harper
|Education||Brown University (BA)|
Harvard University (MPA, JD)
Early life and education
Harper was born in Iowa City, Iowa, the son of Harry D. Harper, II, a psychiatrist, and Marilyn Harper (née Hill), who was one of the first black practicing anesthesiologists in the United States, and, co-authored a book called Wearing Purple. Born Francis Eugene Harper, he adopted the name "Hill" as a tribute to both his maternal and paternal ancestors.
Harper has been acting since the age of 7. Harper graduated from Bella Vista High School in 1984.
Harper then graduated magna cum laude from Brown University in 1988. In 1992, he graduated with a JD, cum laude, from Harvard Law School. In addition, he also received his Master of Public Administration degree from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. During his years at Harvard, he was a full-time member of Boston's Black Folks Theater Company, one of the oldest and most acclaimed black theater troupes in the country. While a student at Harvard, Harper befriended Barack Obama, with whom he played basketball.
Although Harper earned three Ivy League degrees, he decided to pursue acting and moved to Los Angeles. He has received several honorary degrees, including honorary doctorates from both Westfield State College and Howard University.
Harper's first roles in television began in 1993, in a recurring role on the Fox series Married... with Children, while also making his film debut in the short film Confessions of a Dog. He had his first acting role in a feature film with Spike Lee's Get on the Bus (1996), which cast him as a UCLA film student riding a bus to the Million Man March in Washington, D.C. He went on to further demonstrate his versatility in such films as Christopher Scott Cherot's Hav Plenty (1997) and Lee's He Got Game (1998), the former of which featured him as an egotistical pop-soul singer.
His profile subsequently rose on both the mainstream and independent film circuits, thanks to roles in films ranging from Beloved (1998) to the independent romantic comedy Loving Jezebel (1999) to The Skulls (2000). Harper did some of his most acclaimed work in Jordan Walker-Pearlman's The Visit (2000), an independent drama in which he starred as a prisoner dying of AIDS who tries to put his life back together. He also portrayed Leshem in the 2010 Syfy original movie Stonehenge Apocalypse.
From April 21, 2015, to May 10, 2015, Harper starred as "Hard Rock" in the Off-Broadway play ToasT. The play (produced by Lemon Andersen and co-starred Keith David) is set in the Attica Prison around the time of its 1971 prison riot and tells of the lives of its prisoners using poetic prose.
From May 1, 2018, to June 17, 2018, Harper starred as "Rooftop" in the Off-Broadway play Our Lady of 121st Street. This Dark Comedy (written by Stephen Adly Guirgis and directed by Phylicia Rashad) is about former students paying their respects to Sister Rose, only to find that Sister Rose's body has been stolen.
Since 2017, Harper has portrayed Dr. Marcus Andrews on the ABC series The Good Doctor.
Writing career and political advocacy
Harper is the author of several books: Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny, published in 2006; Letters to a Young Sister: DeFINE Your Destiny, published in 2008; and The Conversation: How (Black) Men and Women Can Build Loving, Trusting Relationships, published in 2010. His books, The Wealth Cure: Putting Money in Its Place and The Wiley Boys were both published in 2011. His book, Letters to an Incarcerated Brother: Encouragement, Hope, and Healing for Inmates and Their Loved Ones was published in 2013.
In January 2008, Harper participated in "Yes We Can", a music video produced by will.i.am supporting presidential candidate Barack Obama. Harper is a member of the Obama for America National Finance Committee.
As of October 2009, Hill has made several contributions to political candidates, exclusively to Democrats. Harper endorsed the 10,000 Bookbags back-to-school backpack campaign to help local disadvantaged children with Urban Change Ministries founder Pastor Jay Cameron of the Life Center, and R&B singer Ginuwine.
Harper stated that he is a fiscal conservative when he appeared on the political talk show Hannity on September 10, 2009. On February 22, 2016, the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law announced that Harper would be their national spokesman.
Harper serves as the Executive Director for New York City personal injury law firm Napoli Shkolnik.
Personal care product career
Be The Architect
After being diagnosed with thyroid cancer, Harper researched the effects skin care products can have on a person's system. This led to his creating an all-natural personal care line for men and women, called Be The Architect.
Awards and recognition
In the fall of 2008, Harper was initiated as a member of the Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity with his Co-Initiates (called "Line Brothers") Dr. Naim Akbar of Florida State University and former NFL player Leo LeMarcus Newman.
Harper won the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series for three consecutive years (2008–2010) for his portrayal of Dr. Sheldon Hawkes on CSI: NY. Previously he had been nominated for the award for three consecutive years (2005–2007), for the same character. In 2000, he had also been nominated for the award, for his role in the medical drama City of Angels. On January 9, 2014 his book Letters to an Incarcerated Brother: Encouragement, Hope, and Healing for Inmates and Their Loved Ones was nominated for an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work – Non-Fiction.
In 2018, the Audience Development Committee, Inc. (AUDELCO) nominated Hill Harper for a Vivian Robinson Award; Lead Actor in a Play, for his role as Walter "Rooftop" Desmond in the Off-Broadway play: Our Lady of 121st Street.
Harper is noted to be private about his romantic and personal life.
While writing his book The Wealth Cure: Putting Money In Its Place, Harper was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. After treatment, he was given a clean bill of health.
In November 2015, Harper received a call to adopt a baby boy from a homeless woman. He agreed, and by May 2017, the adoption of Pierce (named after Pierce Brosnan) Hill Harper was finalized.
|1993||Pumpkinhead II: Blood Wings||Peter|
|1996||Get on the Bus||Xavier|
|1997||Hav Plenty||Michael Simmons|
|1998||The Nephew||Chad Egan-Washington|
|1998||He Got Game||Coleman 'Booger' Sykes|
|1998||Park Day||Steve Johnson|
|1999||Slaves of Hollywood||Fisher Lovelace||Feature Film|
|1999||In Too Deep||Breezy T.|
|2000||The Skulls||Will Beckford|
|2000||The Visit||Alex Waters||Nominated—Independent Spirit Award for Best Male Lead|
|2003||Love, Sex and Eating the Bones||Michael Joseph|
|2004||America Brown||John Cross|
|2006||Max and Josh||Max||Short film|
|2008||A Good Man Is Hard to Find||Damion Marshall|
|2008||This Is Not a Test||Carl|
|2010||For Colored Girls||Donald Watkins|
|2011||Mama, I Want to Sing!||Jeff Andrews|
|2011||The Shanghai Hotel||Carlos|
|2013||Miss Dial||Political Nutcase|
|2014||Parts per Billion||Rick|
|2015||The Boy Next Door||Principal Edward Warren|
|2017||All Eyez on Me||Journalist||Biographical film debuted Friday, June 16, 2017; what would have been Tupac Shakur's 46th birthday.|
|2018||An Interview with God||Gary||Theater Release Dates: August 20, 21 & 22, 2018 only.|
|2019||The Sun Is Also a Star||Lester Barnes||Film debuted Friday, May 17, 2019 on Hill Harper's 53rd birthday.|
|2020||The Prison Within||Himself / Narrator||Documentary|
|1993||Life Goes On||Nurse No. 2||Episode: "Incident on Main"|
|1993–94||Married... with Children||Aaron Mitchell||Recurring|
|1994||Renegade||Clarence 'Dex' Dexter||Episode: "South of 98"|
|M.A.N.T.I.S.||Episode: "Tango Blue"|
|Walker, Texas Ranger||B.J. Mays||Episode: "Badge of Honor"|
|The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air||Dana||Episode: "Will Steps Out"|
|1995||The Client||J-Top||Episode: "Them That Has..."|
|Live Shot||Tommy Greer||Main|
|1996||NYPD Blue||Bo-Bo Thomas||Episode: "The Blackboard Jungle"|
|Dangerous Minds||Darryl||Episode: "Family Ties"|
|1997||Oddville, MTV||Episode No. 44|
|ER||Mr. Jackson||Episode: "Obstruction of Justice"|
|1998||Cosby||Preston||Episode: "Men Are from Mars Women Are from Astoria"|
|Mama Flora's Family||Don||Television film|
|2000||City of Angels||Dr. Wesley Williams||24 episodes|
Nominated—NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
|2002||The Court||Christopher Bell||Unsold TV pilot|
|The Twilight Zone||Professor John Woodrell||Episode: "Shades of Guilt"|
Nominated—Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor – Television Series
|2004||Soul Food||Kelvin Chadway||Recurring|
|The Sopranos||Stokley Davenport M.D.||Episode: "Irregular Around the Margins"|
|CSI: Miami||Dr. Sheldon Hawkes||Episode: "MIA/NYC NonStop"|
|2004–13||CSI: NY||Dr. Sheldon Hawkes||Main|
NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series (2008–10)
Nominated—NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series (2005–07, 2011–13)
|2005||The 4400||Edwin Mayuya||Episode: "Rebirth"|
|Lackawanna Blues||Ruben, Jr. (Adult)||Television film|
|2009||The Game||Himself||Episode: "Hill Street Blues"|
|2010||Stonehenge Apocalypse||Joseph Lesham||Television film|
|2011||The Real Housewives of Atlanta||Himself||Episode: "Tour-Ture"|
|2013–14||Covert Affairs||Calder Michaels||32 episodes|
|2015||Madam Secretary||Aiden Humphrey||Episode: "The Kill List"|
|2015–16||Limitless||Spelman Boyle||22 episodes|
Character named after Spelman College.
|2016||Braxton Family Values||Himself||Episode: "You Gotta Get Pelvic to Pelvic!"|
|Unsung Hollywood||Himself||Episode: "Hill Harper"|
|2017||The Real Housewives of Potomac||Himself||Episode: "Don't Let the Zip Code Fool Ya"|
|Homeland||Chief of Staff, Rob Emmons||Recurring|
|2017–present||How It Really Happened||Himself||Host and Narrator of 12-episode anthology reality series.|
|2017–present||The Good Doctor||Dr. Marcus Andrews||Main|
|2018||Black Love||Himself||Special Episode: "Motherly Love"|
|2019||The $100,000 Pyramid||Himself||Episode 409 (Season 4 ; Episode 9)|
|2001||Blue||(Adult) Reuben Clark|
|2018||Our Lady of 121st Street||Walter "Rooftop" Desmond|
- Harper, Hill (2007). Letters to a Young Brother: Manifest Your Destiny. Gotham. ISBN 978-1592402496.
- Harper, Hill (2009). Letters to a Young Sister: DeFINE Your Destiny. Gotham. ISBN 978-1592404599.
- Harper, Hill (2010). The Conversation: How (Black) Men and Women Can Build Loving, Trusting Relationships. Gotham. ISBN 978-1592405787.
- Harper, Hill (2011). The Wealth Cure: Putting Money in Its Place. Gotham. ISBN 978-1592406500.
- Harper, Hill (2011). The Wiley Boys. Harper Hill. ISBN 978-0974721873.
- Harper, Hill (2013). Letters to an Incarcerated Brother: Encouragement, Hope, and Healing for Inmates and Their Loved Ones. Gotham. ISBN 978-1592407248.
- "8 Things You Didn't Know About Actor Hill Harper" HuffPost Retrieved July 3, 2016
- "Hill Harper: Biography, Latest News & Videos". TV Guide. Retrieved June 30, 2007.
- Huntley, Kristine (January 25, 2006). "Hill Harper". CSI Files. Retrieved May 10, 2007.
- Lynn (May 4, 2007). "Hill Harper is Much More Than Meets the Eye". EveryJoe.com. Retrieved May 10, 2007.
- "Wearing Purple" book Retrieved August 29, 2018
- "Hill Harper bio". Manifest Your Destiny Foundation. Retrieved November 15, 2010. Archived July 4, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
- Miller, Kiley (December 15, 2007). "Actor returns to Iowa for Obama". The Hawk Eye. Retrieved November 30, 2011.
- Dani, Sarika (October 24, 2008). "Actor and Obama pal Hill Harper: 'He gets it right'". MSNBC. Retrieved June 22, 2010.
- Berman, Jillian (July 20, 2015). "What this CSI star and Barack Obama have in common". MarketWatch. Archived from the original on February 19, 2019. Retrieved April 20, 2020.
- "Hill Harper has received 7 honorary doctorate degrees." Manifest Your Destiny Foundation's web site Retrieved April 19, 2016
- Scott, A. O. (December 15, 2000). "Overcoming Bitterness On the Way to Redemption". The New York Times. Retrieved November 30, 2011.
- Foy, Scott (June 9, 2010). "Watch a Preview of the Stonehenge Apocalypse!". DreadCentral. Retrieved June 10, 2010.
- Ng, Philiana (February 22, 2013). "CSI: NY Star Hill Harper Joins Covert Affairs as Series Regular". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved February 22, 2013.
- ToasT Opens in Public Theatre Archived September 4, 2017, at the Wayback Machine BroadwayBlack.com Retrieved July 24, 2016
- Our Lady of 121st Street, Directed by Tony Winner Phylicia Rashad, Begins Off-Broadway Playbill. Retrieved May 2, 2018
- Hill Harper, The Voice of Mark BreatheBible.com Retrieved September 18, 2017
- "Legal Wars" from Wonderly Podnews.net Retrieved October 12, 2018
- "Obama for America National Finance Committee". George Washington University. Retrieved June 1, 2008.
- "Support Our 10,000 Bookbag Giveaway on 8.8.09". The Life Center – Urban Change. Retrieved November 30, 2011.
- Pendleton, Tonya (August 12, 2009). "Ginuwine, Hill Harper Lead Back-to-School Effort" Archived April 26, 2012, at the Wayback Machine. BlackAmericaWeb.com. Retrieved November 30, 2011.
- "Hill Harper Named as Lawyers' Committee's National Spokesperson" Archived April 23, 2016, at the Wayback Machine Retrieved February 22, 2016
- "Hill Harper · Attorneys · Napoli Shkolnik". Napoli Shkolnik PLLC. Retrieved October 19, 2018.
- "Hill Harper Launches Men's and Women's Skin Care Line". Ebony. March 8, 2017. Retrieved April 28, 2017.
- "How Hill Harper's H2L & JUA Men and Women Skin Care Line May Improve Organ Health". TheBlackMedia.org. March 3, 2017. Retrieved April 28, 2017.
- on YouTube Retrieved April 28, 2017
- "Actor Hill Harper Is INDUCTED into the African American Fraternity ALPHA PHI ALPHA"[permanent dead link]. Media Take Out. Retrieved November 30, 2011.
- 2018 AUDELCO Nominations Retrieved May 12, 2019
- "Sexiest Men Alive List 2004"People Retrieved July 4, 2016
- "Sexiest Men Alive List 2014 : Sexy at Every Age"People Retrieved July 4, 2016
- Rhone, Nedra (August 22, 2011). "Actor Hill Harper cures his health and America's wealth". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Archived from the original on September 10, 2011. Retrieved August 23, 2011.
- "Hill Harper Reveals Adoption at the Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Summit 2017". blackenterprise.com. Retrieved May 21, 2017.
- on YouTube Retrieved June 16, 2017
- Hill Harper Reveals Son Is Named After Pierce Brosnan on Access Hollywood Live Retrieved April 5, 2018
- "Slaves of Hollywood" Retrieved February 20, 2017
- "Max and Josh Film Short" Retrieved February 11, 2017
- "Tupac's Highly-Anticipated Biopic Receives Official Release Date". November 22, 2016.
- The Sun Is Also A Star movie trailer Retrieved May 2, 2019
- "Shades of Guilt" Retrieved February 20, 2017
- "Unsung Hollywood: Hill Harper" Retrieved November 10, 2017
- "'Homeland' adds actors from 'The Flash,' 'Limitless'". Retrieved August 13, 2016.
- "HLN Launches New Original Series 'How It Really Happened with Hill Harper' on January 27". Retrieved January 13, 2017.
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