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Sam Robards
Sam Robards 8th grade photo.jpg
Robards in his 8th grade yearbook photo, 1975
Samuel Prideaux Robards

(1961-12-16) December 16, 1961 (age 60)
Years active1980–present
(m. 1986; div. 1994)

Sidsel Jensen
(m. 1997)
Parent(s)Jason Robards
Lauren Bacall
RelativesStephen Humphrey Bogart (half-brother)

Samuel Prideaux Robards (born December 16, 1961)[1] is an American actor, best known for his role as Henry Swinton in the film A.I. Artificial Intelligence.

Early life and education

Robards was born in New York City, the son of actor Jason Robards, Jr. (1922–2000) and actress Lauren Bacall (1924–2014). He is the only child from their marriage, though he has seven half-siblings; five through his father (three elder, two younger), and through his mother's marriage to Humphrey Bogart, half-siblings Stephen Humphrey and Leslie Bogart. Robards was seven when his parents divorced, which Bacall later blamed on the elder Robards' alcoholism.[2] Robards recalled he was devastated by the divorce, and said he was raised "basically alone." Afterwards, he resided with his mother in New York.[3] Several years after the divorce, Sam moved to Europe with his mother and for a time lived in London, where he attended the American School in London, later returning to New York City where he attended Collegiate School.[4]

Robards attended Sarah Lawrence College, but was expelled after his freshman year due to poor grades and bad behavior.[3] In the fall of 1980, he attended the National Theater Institute at the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center in Waterford, Connecticut.


Robards began his acting career in 1980 in an off-Broadway production of Album, and made his feature-film debut in director Paul Mazursky's 1982 film Tempest. In 1985, Robards starred alongside Kevin Costner and future wife Suzy Amis in Fandango. Robards acted opposite his father in the 1988 film Bright Lights, Big City, which was their only collaboration before his death in 2000. Also in 1988, he was cast in the lead role of Kevin Keegan in the CBS drama TV 101 which was scheduled opposite Top 10 shows Roseanne and Matlock; the series was cancelled amidst a controversial abortion story line.

In 1990, he played the role of Chris Elliott's friend, Larry, on the Fox sitcom Get a Life, but left after the first season. In 1994, Robards starred in two films: Robert Altman's film Prêt-à-Porter, where he was a part of an ensemble that included his mother; and Alan Rudolph's biographical film of Dorothy Parker, Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle, where he portrayed the first editor of The New Yorker, Harold Ross.

His film résumé also includes Casualties of War, Beautiful Girls, American Beauty, A.I. Artificial Intelligence, Life as a House, The Other Side of the Tracks, and The Art of Getting By.

Robards's television credits include a recurring role on and appearances on Spin City, The West Wing, Law & Order, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, Sex and the City, The Outer Limits, and Body of Proof. He had recurring roles on the series Gossip Girl (ended in 2012) and Treme (ended in 2013), and a regular role on Twisted (cancelled in 2014).

In the theatre, Robards was nominated for Broadway's 2002 Tony Award as Best Actor (Featured Role – Play) for Arthur Miller's The Man Who Had All the Luck. In July 2008, Robards took over the role of Richard Hannay in the New York City theatrical run of The 39 Steps.[5]

Personal life

In 1986, he married actress Suzy Amis, his co-star in Fandango. They had a son, Jasper, before their divorce in 1994.[6] In 1997, Robards married Danish model Sidsel Jensen. They have two sons, Calvin and Sebastian.[7][8]



Year Title Role Notes
1982 Tempest Teddy
1985 Fandango Kenneth Waggener
1985 Not Quite Paradise Mike
1988 Bright Lights, Big City Rich Vanier
1988 Bird Moscowitz
1989 Casualties of War Chaplain Kirk
1993 The Ballad of Little Jo Jasper Hill
1994 Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle Harold Ross
1994 Prêt-à-Porter Regina's Assistant
1996 Beautiful Girls Steve Rossmore
1997 Dinner and Driving Frank
1998 Love from Ground Zero Henry Voice
1999 American Beauty Jim Berkley
2000 Bounce Todd Exner
2001 A.I. Artificial Intelligence Henry Swinton
2001 Life as a House David Dokos
2004 Catch That Kid Tom
2004 Surviving Eden Gary Gold
2004 Marmalade Roger
2007 Awake Clayton Beresford Sr.
2008 The Other Side of the Tracks David
2008 Che: Part One Tad Szulc
2009 Perestroika Sasha
2009 The Rebound Frank
2009 Company Retreat Ron Gable
2011 The Art of Getting By Jack Sargent
2014 Grand Street Gary
2016 The Late Bloomer Dr. Lawson
2016 Broken Links Jack
2017 Where Is Kyra? Carl


Year Title Role Notes
1983 Prisoner Without a Name, Cell Without a Number Daniel Timerman Television film
1985 Spenser: For Hire Chip Holmby Episode: "The Choice"
1985 Into Thin Air Stephen Walker Television film
1988 Pancho Barnes Gene McKendry
1988–1989 TV 101 Kevin Keegan 17 episodes
1990–1991 Get a Life Larry Potter 24 episodes
1993, 2009 Law & Order Davis Webb / Daniel Hendricks 2 episodes
1995 The Outer Limits Ben Kohler Episode: "Living Hell"
1995 Donor Unknown Dr. David Bausch Television film
1996 The Man Who Captured Eichmann David
1997 The Trial of Adolf Eichmann Avraham Aviel
1998 Maximum Bob Sheriff Gary Hammond 7 episodes
1998–1999 Spin City Arthur 4 episodes
1999 Black and Blue Mike Riordan Television film
2000 Sex and the City Tom Reymi Episode: "Running with Scissors"
2000 Hamlet Fortinbras Television film
2001 The Warden Axel
2001 On Golden Pond Bill Ray
2002 Obsessed David Stillman
2003 My Life with Men Jess Zebrowski
2004 The Blackwater Lightship Paul
2004 Clubhouse Bennet Episode: "Chin Music"
2004 Law & Order: Criminal Intent Paul Whitlock Episode: "Magnificat"
2004–2005 The West Wing Greg Brock 8 episodes
2006 CSI: Miami Mitchell Collett Episode: "Dead Air"
2007–2012 Gossip Girl Howie 'The Captain' Archibald 16 episodes
2010 Vamped Out Audition Actor #1 Episode: "A New Day"
2011 Body of Proof Bradford Paige Episode: "Pilot"
2011 Blue Bloods Roger Carson Episode: "My Funny Valentine"
2011 The Good Wife Jarvis Bowes Episode: "Killer Song"
2012–2013 Treme Tim Feeny 11 episodes
2013–2014 Twisted Kyle Masterson 19 episodes
2015 Limitless Miles Amos Episode: "Badge! Gun!"
2019 Madam Secretary Major Brad Jenkins Episode: "Valor"
2021 Y: The Last Man Dean Brown 2 episodes


  1. ^ "Sam Robards". Retrieved 2016-05-26.
  2. ^ Bacall, Lauren. (2006). By Myself and Then Some. p. 377. HarperCollins, New York City. ISBN 978-0-06-112791-5.
  3. ^ a b Hammer, Josh (October 18, 1982). "Having Survived the Tempest of Life with a Famous Mom and Dad, Actor Sam Sets Sail on His Own". People. Retrieved February 25, 2019.
  4. ^ The Dutchman (the Collegiate School yearbook), 1975 edition, p. 35 (8th grade photos)
  5. ^ Kenneth Jones (4 June 2008). "Sam Robards Is the Next Pursued Man of Broadway's 39 Steps". Playbill. Archived from the original on 7 June 2008. Retrieved 2008-07-12.
  6. ^ Kolson, Ann (1993-04-04). "Actress Suzy Amis Is Great, Critics Say, But Nobody Knows It - Yet". Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved 2016-05-26.
  7. ^ "Sam Robards". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved 2016-05-27.
  8. ^ Green, Adam (2014-08-13). "Call Me Betty: Vogue's Theater Critic Remembers Family Friend Lauren Bacall". Vogue. Retrieved 2016-05-27.