Born in the coastal city of Sibenik, Yugoslavia (which is now Croatia) in September 1972, Goran Visnjic has made quite a name for himself in American television and films. He is perhaps best known for his role as Dr. Luka Kovac on ‘ER.’
Growing up, Visnjic appeared in many plays and made his screen debut at the age of 16 in ‘Braca po materi’ in 1988. The film was quite controversial, and he played a young Croatian extremist in it. Later, as Yugoslavia began to disintegrate, Visnjic spent a year with the Yugoslav People’s Army (JNA) and then the Croatian Army. He eventually left the army to study at the Academy of Dramatic Arts in Zagreb.
It is notable to mention that Visnjic was the youngest actor to ever be chosen to play the doomed prince in ‘Hamlet’ at the Dubrovnik Summer Theatre Festival in Croatia. He went on to portray Hamlet for 6 years, winning several awards during the time. After that, he landed several small key roles in American films such as ‘The Peacemaker,’ ‘Practical Magic,’ and ‘Committed.’ It was his role in ‘Welcome to Sarajevo’ that got him his part in ‘ER.’
Visnjic is married to Ivana Vrdoljak, a Croatian sculptor and daughter of filmmaker Antun Vrdoljak. They live in Los Angeles with their adopted son, Tin. Visnjic also has a daughter, Lana, from another relationship. The actor and his wife are adamant supporters of both American and European animal rights movements including PETA and the International Fund for Animal Welfare. Visnjic also supports Stand up to Cancer.