Michael Shannon is an American actor best known for his starring role as Agent Nelson Van Alden on the television drama series Boardwalk Empire.
Shannon's film work includes the role of Kim Fowley in the rock-biopic The Runaways, opposite Kristen Stewart and Dakota Fanning, and Doc Cross Williams in comic book adaptation Jonah Hex.
In addition, he has had roles in more than 30 other films, including Werner Herzog's My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done and Bad Lieutenant, Sydney Lumet's Before the Devil Knows Your Dead, World Trade Center, Bug, Lucky You, Bad Boys II, 8 Mile, Kangaroo Jack, Vanilla Sky, Pearl Harbor, Cecil B. DeMented, The Missing Person and The Greatest.
He earned an Academy Award nomination in 2009 starring in a supporting role opposite Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet and Kathy Bates in Sam Mendes' Revolutionary Road.
For all his roles on screen, Shannon, a native of Lexington, Kentucky, has maintained a connection to theatre.
His theatre credits include Thornton Wilder's Our Town (Barrow Street Theatre), Lady (Rattelstick Theatre), The Metal Children (Vineyard Theater), The Little Flower of East Orange (Public Theater), The Pillowman (Steppenwolf Theater), Bug (Barrow Street Theatre, Red Orchid Theatre and Gate Theatre), Man from Nebraska (Steppenwolf Theatre), Mr. Kolpert (Red Orchid Theatre), Killer Joe (Soho Playhouse, Next Lab and Vaudeville Theatre), The Idiot (Looking Glass Theatre), Killer (Red Orchid Theatre) and Woyzeck (Gate Theatre).
He was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role in Revolutionary Road.