Although born in Belize, actor Arlen Escarpeta moved to the United States at an early age, following his father's death. When his mother moved him to Los Angeles, Escarpeta began studying drama in middle school and then in high school. His first film role came in the 2000 crime thriller "The Playaz Court". For the early part of his career, though, Escarpeta worked primarily on television, securing guest spots on the legal series "Boston Public", as well as police dramas "The Shield" and "Boomtown". Escarpeta then played Sam in the TV series "American Dreams", which ran from 2002 to 2005. In the show, which is set in the turbulent 1960s, Sam grows up in the face of racism and the Civil Rights Movement. Escarpeta kept appearing in television shows, but he also started developing a number of film credentials. He appeared in the lauded drama "American Gun", a film about firearms in schools featuring Forest Whitaker, and the 2006 sports drama "We Are Marshall", starring Matthew McConaughey. In 2009, Escarpeta gained wider recognition due to the remake of the slasher film "Friday the 13th", in which he plays one of the teens who encounter Jason Voorhees at Crystal Lake. Escarpeta had a major role, as a clerk who is kidnapped by a fraternity brother, in the 2010 independent drama "Brotherhood". Another prominent part came in the 2011 horror film "Final Destination 5", the first of the series to be filmed in 3D.