Hayden Christensen

Place of Birth: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Date of Birth: April 19, 1981

Ethnicity: Danish, Swedish, one quarter Italian

Hayden Christensen is a Canadian actor and producer. He is known for playing Anakin Skywalker in the Star Wars franchise, beginning with Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones; and for his roles in the films The Virgin Suicides, Life as a House, Shattered Glass, Factory Girl, Awake, Virgin Territory, Jumper, New York, I Love You, Takers, Vanishing on 7th Street, Outcast, American Heist, 90 Minutes in Heaven, First Kill, and Little Italy, and on television’s Higher Ground, Goosebumps, and Are You Afraid of the Dark?

Hayden is the son of Ali, a speechwriter, and David Christensen, a computer programmer and communications executive. His father has Danish ancestry. His mother has Swedish and Italian, including Sicilian, ancestry, with family in the U.S. His brother, Tove Christensen, is also an actor and producer, and his sisters Hejsa and Kaylen have also acted. Hayden has a daughter with his former partner, actress Rachel Bilson.

Hayden’s maternal grandfather is named Kenneth E. Nelson (the son of Sven Nelson and Nicoline “Nina”). Kenneth was born in New Jersey, to Swedish immigrants.

Hayden’s maternal grandmother is Rose H. Rao (re-marriage name Rose Schwartz; the daughter of Enrico Henry Rao and Concetta Greco). Rose was born in Pennsylvania. Enrico was Italian, the son of Joseph Rao and Rose Conti, who was born in Messina, Sicilia. Concetta was born in Pennsylvania, to Italian parents.

Source: Hayden’s maternal grandmother, Rose H. Rao, on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://familysearch.org


Curious about ethnicity

35 Responses

  1. ethnicguyidk says:

    Looks like Clix

  2. Erik1714 says:


    Hayden’s maternal grandfather is/was Kenneth
    >(the son of Sven Nelson and Nicoline “Nina”). Kenneth was born in New Jersey to Swedish emigrants.

  3. jackson9 says:

    Hayden’s Italian ancestry comes from Sicily and Abruzzo for those that are wondering. To start Hayden’s maternal grandmothers father Henry Rao (1896) born in Italy was the son of Joseph Rao (1862-1945) and Rose Conti (1872-1941). Rose Conti was born in Messina, Sicilia, Italy, and died in Brooklyn, King, NY. Rose Conti’s mother Francesca Spadaro was also from Messina, Sicilia, however Rose’ father Giambattista Conte (1837-1937), was born in Abruzzo, Italy along with his parents as well.
    Here is Giambattista Conte’s mother Maria (Asci) Conte’s obituary showing her and their side of the family were from the region of Abruzzo Italy…

  4. vilgotaan says:

    Looks typical Danish for me.

  5. andrew says:

    it’s possible that his father has English ancestry too

    • Fatmonkey says:

      Hayden does have English ancestry on his father’s part.


      His typically Scandinavian complexion and features match neither his Italian nor his English genetics, though. And, interestingly, even if his Italian and Swedish ancestry are mentioned somewhat often, his being part English is practically nowhere to be read about. I managed to find the above-mentioned evidence about his full ancestry on, like, the fourth page of the Google Search, not before.

      • follers says:

        That’s just one of those online bios that copy each other. This one probably copied the Wikipedia biography back when it said, without evidence, that he has English ancestry.

        • Fatmonkey says:

          Most Canadian family trees being unresearcheable by Internet, odds are we’ll never know for 100% sure what Hayden’s full lineage looks like. I just took their story for granted.

          There is likely a reason as to why his ancestry has been described as part English instead of, say, part French-Canadian.

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