Benjamin McKenzie Schenkkan was born on September 12, 1978 in Austin, Texas. He is known for his television roles on long-running series such as The O.C. on Fox, NBC/TNT's Southland, and Fox's Gotham.
McKenzie attended St. Andrew's Episcopal School and the Stephen F. Austin High School in Austin, Texas, before going on to major in economics and foreign affairs at the University of Virginia. His big break came after landing the role of Ryand Atwood in Fox's hit series The O.C. He starred in 92 episodes from 2003 through 2007, achieving instant fame. In 2005, he made his feature film debut in Junebug, earning wide acclaim in the industry including honors from the Sundance Film Festival. He followed this up in 2007 with 88 Minutes.
After The O.C., McKenzie was cast in his first starring film role as Joe Bonham with 2009's Johnny Got His Gun. His next big role was as Officer Ben Sherman in the hit series Southland, which aired for one season on NBC and a further four seasons on TNT. McKenzie starred in a total of 43 episodes. During this time, he also made his debut in animation, voicing the role of Bruce Wayne/Batman in Batman: Year One as well as a guest role in Scooby Doo! Mystery Incorporated in 2011.
In 2014, McKenzie would once again return to the world of Batman to star in the leading role of Jim Gordon in the prequel television series Gotham on Fox, charting the character's journey from young detective to commissioner of the Gotham City Police Department. The DC Comics series would conclude in 2019 with McKenzie starring in a total of 100 episodes and even directing and writing various episodes himself.
With Second Stage Theater, McKenzie made his Broadway debut in Bess Wohl's Grand Horizons, starring as Ben at the Hayes Theater from December 23, 2019 through March 1, 2020.