Blair Erwin Underwood (born August 25, 1964) is an American television, film, and stage actor. He is perhaps best known as headstrong attorney Jonathan Rollins from the NBC legal drama L.A. Law, a role he portrayed for seven years. He has gained critical acclaim throughout his career, receiving numerous Golden Globe Award nominations, three NAACP Image Awards and 1 Grammy Award. In recent years, he has appeared on The New Adventures of Old Christine, Dirty Sexy Money and In Treatment and was in NBC’s The Event.
Underwood’s feature film debut was the 1985 movie Krush Groove. His 1985 appearance on The Cosby Show landed him a short stint on the ABC soap opera One Life to Live as Bobby Blue, which eventually led to his performance on the TV series L.A. Law, where he appeared from 1987 to 1994. In 1996 Underwood was featured in the July issue of Playgirl.
Underwood broke into film with roles in Just Cause (1995), Set It Off (1996) and Deep Impact (1998). He also had a supporting role as a geneticist in Gattaca. In 2000, he played the lead role in the short-lived television series City of Angels. In 2003, he guest starred in four episodes on the HBO series Sex and the City playing Cynthia Nixon’s love interest. In 2004, he played the role of Roger De Souza opposite Heather Locklear in NBC’s LAX. He gained acclaim as the sexy grade school teacher in the CBS sitcom The New Adventures of Old Christine opposite Julia Louis-Dreyfus for two years. In 2007, he guest starred in an episode of the NBC series Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. His latest role is as the recurring character Alex in the HBO series In Treatment.
Underwood has received three NAACP Image Awards, for his film work in Rules of Engagement, and his television work in L.A. Law, City of Angels, Murder in Mississippi and Mama Flora’s Family.
Underwood was voted one of People’s “50 Most Beautiful People” in 2000, and one of TV Guide’s “Most Influential Faces of the 90s”.
In 2007, Underwood co-authored the novel Casanegra: A Tennyson Hardwick Novel with husband-and-wife team Steven Barnes and Tananarive Due.
In 2010–2011, Underwood portrayed United States President Elias Martinez in the NBC drama series The Event, which premiered in Fall 2010.
Underwood portrayed the role of “Saint Mark” in, “The Truth & Life Dramatized audio New Testament Bible,” a 22-hour, celebrity-voiced, fully dramatized audio New Testament, based on the RSV-CE translation.
He is currently playing the lead role of Stanley in the Broadway revival of A Streetcar Named Desire.