Early life, family, educational background
American director and actor Chris Payne Gilbert was born on March 27, 1972 in Springfield, Massachusetts, USA. He spent most of his childhood in the Berkshires in Williamstown, Massachusetts, where he attended Mount Greylock Regional High School. After graduating in 1990, he moved to Loudonville, New York where he attended Siena College and played football for their Division I team, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English, majoring in Theater. He attended the Professional Actor Training Program at Ohio University in Athens and then began working as an actor in New York.
Who is Lesley Ann Brandt?
Lesley Ann Brandt was born on December 2, 1981 in Cape Town, South Africa, of German, Spanish, Dutch and East Indian descent. She enjoys hockey, yoga and baseball, and played competitive hockey while living in South Africa. She speaks fluent Afrikaans and has said she loved living in post-apartheid Cape Town. She even has a tattoo of the African continent with a dot on Cape Town on the top left side of her side. She immigrated to Auckland, New Zealand in 1999 with her parents and younger brother, Brian Brandt. She started working in retail and then went on to work as an information technology recruitment consultant. She did some modeling and was cast in several New Zealand television commercials. In 2008, she trained in the Meisner technique and studied acting.
She has appeared in numerous New Zealand television series – her first major one role was in “Diplomatic Immunity.” She guest starred in the sci-fi series set in the fictional town of Waimoana in the 2020s, ‘This Is Not My Life’, and the hospital soap opera, ‘Shortland Street’. Her first international role was in the series “Spartacus: Blood and Sand” as the slave girl Naevia. She replaced Lina Esco in the role of Maze (Mazikeen) in 2015, in the Fox television series ‘Lucifer’. Lina was removed from the show after the first table was read, and Lesley-Ann has been on the show since January 2016, which aired on Fox for three seasons before being picked up by Netflix after Fox canceled it. Maze is a fan favorite character along with Dr. Linda Martin, played by Rachel Harris, and the devil, Lucifer Morningstar, played by Tom Ellis.
The fans even started trending #SaveLucifer on social media when Fox canceled the show. Lesley-Ann turned inward when she landed her role as Maze – she told MEAWW that her move from South Africa to New Zealand helped her portray Maze, who wants to go home to Hell but is trapped on Earth : ‘I felt that when I emigrated from South Africa to New Zealand, I didn’t like the country then… And Maze is going through much the same thing as me.’ She went on to say that she was young at 17 and found it challenging to leave behind her friends, country, culture and everything she knew.
Chris has appeared in several regional and off-Broadway theater productions, including ‘Walking off the Roof’ at Signature Theater Co, ‘Experimental Actions’, ‘Freesailing’ at Williamstown Theater Festival, and ‘Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde’. at the Minetta Lane Theater.
In Los Angeles, he starred in Larry Moss’s production of “Beggars in House of Plenty”, produced by Ginger Perkins and originally written by John Patrick Stanley, and in “It’s Just Sex” at the Two Roads Theatre, Reid Scott’s production of “The Elephant Man” and “All My Sons” at the Geffen Playhouse. He is a founding member of the Obie Award-winning experimental theater company Mad Dog. Mad Dog’s work includes productions at the Belgrade International Theater Festival in Serbia, and MASS MOCA in New York, and the Williamstown Theater Festival.
From 1999 to 2002 he played Gordon/Gorgeous Young Hunk in ‘Sex and the City’ and in 2000 he played Billy Appleby in ‘Charmed’.
In 2002, he played Bill in the “Friends” episode “The One with Rachel’s Phone Number,” as Peter Berglund in “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation” and Carson Cassidy in “CSI: Miami.” In 2006, he appeared in “Gilmore Girls” as Nick, and as Dr. Henry Kroft in 2007 on “CSI: New York.” He also played Robert Brunner in “Dexter” in 2010, Agent Parker in “Criminal Minds” in 2012, David Platt in “Suits” in 2015, and John Decker in “Lucifer” in 2016. From 2006 to 2009, he played series regular Todd . Skyes in the TBS sitcom, “10 Items or Less.”
Chris appeared in “Saving Manhattan” in 1998 as Jamie DeStephano, Mark in 1999 in “Story of a Bad Boy”, in “An Irish Vampire in Hollywood” as Vanquo in 2007, and as Darryl Tripp in 2010’s “Refuge”, which became directed and written by Tony Award winner Mark Medoff.
On September 5, 2015, he married Lesley-Ann Brandt after dating for three years. They met in 2012 after auditioning together at the Nancy Banks Acting Studio. When she remembers how they met, Lesley-Ann says it was a hot day in Los Angeles, so she had a beer and lay down on the living room floor. Chris came in and later told her he had thought, “Who is this crazy girl drinking before our rehearsal?” They spent two hours talking and laughing. They kissed at their next rehearsal, and even though the kiss was scripted, she said it still surprised her. They began dating soon after and got engaged on June 26, 2014, when Chris surprised Lesley-Ann with a beach proposal and an impromptu engagement party.
Planning the perfect wedding proved to be a challenge for the couple. Chris grew up in Massachusetts and lived in Vermont, which influenced him to want the ceremony in a rural setting. Lesley-Ann, on the other hand, grew up in Cape Town before moving to New Zealand, which led her to want the service on a beach. In an interview, Lesley-Ann said, “Regardless of where we wanted to have our wedding, we knew some of our guests would have to travel.” Chris’ family lives in Bennington, Vermont, very close to the Hubbell Homestead in Colgate Park, where Chris and Lesley-Ann found a perfect venue – so they arranged for a late summer wedding in New England. Their ceremony was planned to feature vintage glassware, delectable food and local seasonal flowers, but at Lesley-Ann’s request, they added South African proteas to the main table.
Shortly before the ceremony, Lesley-Ann received a note and package from Chris. The gift was melted down gold from two rings Chris had received from his mother. A pendant was made from the gold with the Afrikaans word ‘appeltjie’ engraved, which means ‘little apple’ and was Lesley-Ann’s nickname from her late grandfather. Chris’ gift was incredibly meaningful as she was close to her grandfather and wished he was there on her wedding day.
They had a dessert bar instead of a wedding cake because Lesley-Ann’s grandmother baked beautiful wedding cakes, but had passed away a few years before the wedding and she wasn’t comfortable with someone else baking.
Their first dance as a married couple was to Donny Hathaway’s song, “A Song For You.” Towards the end of the song, both their fathers and mothers joined them on the dance floor instead of separate mother-son and father-daughter dances. On July 18, 2017, they welcomed son, Kingston Payne Brandt-Gilbert. He shares a birthday with former South African president, Nelson Mandela.
Chris has dark blond hair and green eyes. He is 1.83 m tall.
Wealth and salary
His net worth is estimated to be $7 million as of early 2020. His main sources of income are director, actor and writer.