Ian Harding positioned himself as the object of every young woman's dream when he stepped into the role of a dashing and romantic English teacher on the hit mystery drama series "Pretty Little Liars"...
|Born in Germany and raised in northern Virginia|
|Landed minor role in romantic comedy "Love and Other Drugs"|
|Played controversial role of a high school English teacher romantically involved with one of his students (Lucy Hale) on ABC Family's "Pretty Little Liars"|
|Feature film debut, "Adventureland" opposite Kristen Stewart and Ryan Reynolds|
He was born on Sept. 16, 1986 in Heidelberg, Germany to a military family. The youngest child, Harding moved to the U.S. when he was still a baby and was raised in Northern Virginia. The future star excelled in sports as a young man, playing soccer and basketball. Harding developed a passion for acting when he joined the drama club in high school, reportedly because it was the only co-ed extracurricular activity. A standout student throughout his educational career, Harding delivered the commencement speech at his high school graduation. He continued to steal the spotlight when he enrolled at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, PA, where he received his BFA degree in acting in 2009. That same year, he made his feature film debut in the little-seen horror anthology "Deadtime Stories 2" and the 1980s-set dramedy "Adventureland." In the latter, Harding played a minor role as a wealthy prep student opposite Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart. His other early film credit included a minor role in the romantic drama "Love and Other Drugs" (2010) as a Pfizer trainee opposite Jake Gyllenhaal.
It did not take long until Hollywood took notice of the up-and-coming actor. In 2010, Harding landed his breakthrough TV role when he was cast on the ABC Family drama "Pretty Little Liars." Based on the popular young adult novels by Sara Shepard, "Liars" followed four young women whose lives change after the mysterious death of their clique's leader and the cryptic messages from an anonymous source named "A." The series turned leads Lucy Hale, Shay Mitchell, Ashley Benson, and Troian Bellisario into overnight teen stars, but also revealed a strong supporting cast. Harding played a handsome and clean-cut English teacher at the girl's high school that carries out a secret affair with one of his students (Hale). As the series progressed, the secret was eventually exposed, but that was just the beginning of their complicated and strained relationship. Despite the controversial plotline, the show's fans were enamored with Harding and honored him with several Teen Choice Awards, including Choice Summer TV Star and TV Actor Drama.
By Candy Cuenco
|Georgetown Preparatory School|
|Carnegie Mellon University|
From classic movie palaces to the state-of-the-art IMAX screens.