Peter Sarsgaard

America Ferrera & Esquire Host a "Save the Children" Benefit - Arrivals

Sarsgaard in 2009, photo by PrPhotos

Birth Name: John Peter Sarsgard

Place of Birth: Scott Air Force Base, St. Clair County, Illinois, U.S.

Date of Birth: March 7, 1971

Ethnicity: Danish (one eighth), Norwegian (one eighth), English, German, Irish, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, Austrian

Peter Sarsgaard is an American actor. His roles include the films Dead Man Walking (1995), The Man in the Iron Mask, Another Day in Paradise, Desert Blue (1998), Boys Don’t Cry, The Center of the World, K-19: The Widowmaker, Shattered Glass, Garden State, Kinsey, Flightplan, Jarhead, Elegy (2008), An Education, Knight and Day, Green Lantern, Night Moves (2013), Lovelace, Blue Jasmine, Black Mass, The Magnificent Seven, Jackie (2016), The Lost Daughter, The Batman (2022), and Memory (2023); the series The Killing, The Looming Tower, and Dopesick; as well as stage peformances.

Peter is the son of Judy Lea and John Dale Sarsgard, an engineer, who worked for the U.S. Air Force, as well as Monsanto and IBM. He has Danish, from a great-grandfather, Norwegian, from a great-grandmother, English, German, Irish, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, and Austrian ancestry. He was raised Catholic. Peter moved frequently during his childhood, and attended a Jesuit prep school in Fairfield, Connecticut. He is married to actress and director Maggie Gyllenhaal, with whom he has two children.

Peter’s paternal grandfather was Dale Alfred Sarsgard (the son of John Peterson Sarsgard and Julia Nadine Olson). Dale was born in Iowa. John was born in Illinois, to Danish parents, Peter P. Sarsgard, born in Guderup, Nordborg, and Anna Maria Helena Jorgensen, born in Flensborg. Julia was born in Iowa, to Norwegian parents, Abel Kjaerland Olson and Gurine Jonsdt Chelsvig Kambe, from Oien.

Peter’s paternal grandmother was Betty Bulloch (the daughter of Francis Marion Bulloch and Jane/Janie Riggs Newman). Betty was born in Atlanta, Georgia, to a father from Georgia and a mother from Alabama. Her ancestry included English, as well as some German, Austrian, and Scots-Irish/Northern Irish. Francis was the son of Jackson G. Bulloch and Sarah Rebecca Randall. Jane was the daughter of Benjamin Merritt Newman and Mary Elizabeth Williams.

Peter’s maternal grandfather was Phillip Sparks Reinhardt (the son of William Phillip Reinhardt and Mary Almira Sparks). Phillip was born in Memphis, Tennessee. William was born in Tennesse, and was of German descent, the son of William S. Reinhardt and Annie Agnes Wehrum. Mary was born in Tennessee, and had English ancestry, the daughter of John Dee Sparks and Annie Cora Hill.

Peter’s maternal grandmother was Evelyn Elizabeth Cook (the daughter of William Joseph Cook and Anna Clara Cullen). Evelyn was born in Memphis, Tennessee, to a father from Arkansas and a mother from Mississippi, and had English and Irish ancestry. William was the son of William Anderson Cook and Margaret Louise Hatch. Anna was the daughter of George Washington Cullen and Margaret McGovern.

Sources: Genealogies of Peter Sarsgaard –

Peter’s paternal grandfather, Dale Alfred Sarsgard, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

2 Responses

  1. celebfan says:

    He’s one of the more interesting actors out there.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.