Roday was born in San Antonio, Texas, as James David Rodriguez. He attended Taft High School in San Antonio. His father, Jaime "Jim" Rodriguez, is of Mexican descent, and his mother, Irene Rodriguez, is of English, Irish, and Scottish ancestry. Roday's father is a retired Air Force Master Sergeant and used to be the regional catering manager of Taco Cabana.
At New York University's Experimental Theatre Wing, Roday studied theatre and earned a bachelor's degree in fine arts. At the age of 22, he selected the professional name James Roday as there was already another "James Rodriguez" registered in the Screen Actors Guild.
Roday started his acting career starring in various theatrical productions, including Three Sisters, A Respectable Wedding and Severity's Mistress. He took on leading roles in Sexual Perversity in Chicago and Extinction which he produced with his theatre company Red Dog Squadron. He also directed the play Greedy and wrote and directed the one-act play Sustenance. His most recent foray onto the stage was in December 2016, when he starred in the New York production of White Rabbit Red Rabbit by Iranian playwright Nassim Soleimanpour.
His big screen debut was in the 1999 movie Coming Soon alongside Ryan Reynolds and fellow debutant Ashton Kutcher. Other early film credits include the 2003 film Rolling Kansas and the 2005 film adaptation of The Dukes Of Hazzard. Behind the scenes, he and writing partners Todd Harthan and James DeMonaco wrote the screenplay for the 2006 film Skinwalkers. The team also worked on a script for the film adaptation of the video game Driver. Roday directed his first feature film, Gravy, in 2013, written by him and Todd Harthan.
Roday's television credits include starring roles on NBC's Miss Match in 2003 as "Nick Paine" and 2001's First Years as "Edgar 'Egg' Ross". His big break came on July 7, 2006, with the series premiere of USA Network's original series Psych. Airing following the season premiere of USA's other comedic success, Monk, it was the highest-rated scripted basic cable TV show premiere of 2006. Psych ran for 8 seasons until 2014.
After Psych ended, Roday starred in various pilots and independent films, most notably Pushing Dead by independent filmmaker Tom E. Brown which accumulated a slew of awards at film festivals all over the country. At the same time, he began focusing more and more on his work behind the camera as a director, writer and producer. He has since directed episodes for Battle Creek, Rush Hour, Rosewood and Blood Drive. He also developed, wrote and directed the pilots Shoot The Moon for USA and Quest For Truth for E!.
Most recently, Roday starred and executive produced, Psych: The Movie. The TV movie, which Roday also co-wrote with Psych's series creator Steve Franks, aired in December 2017.
Roday is the co-artistic director of the Red Dog Squadron, a Los Angeles theater company he co-founded with Brad Raider. In 2012, Roday, on behalf of Red Dog Squadron, and Black Dahlia Theatre artistic director Matt Shakman purchased the El Centro Theatre in Los Angeles, which is still undergoing renovations and will reopen under its original name "Circle Theatre".
Roday dated his Psych co-star Maggie Lawson from 2006 to 2014.
|A Million Little Things: Season 1|
|"Pilot":||"Band of Dads":||"Save the Date":||"Friday Night Dinner":||"The Game of Your Life":||"Unexpected":||"I Dare You":||"Fight or Flight":||"Perspective":|
|"Christmas Wishlist":||"Secrets and Lies":||"The Day Before...":||"Twelve Seconds":||"Someday":||"The Rock":||"The Rosary":||"Goodbye":|
- ↑ James Roday To Star In ‘A Million Little Things’ ABC Drama Pilot, by Nellie Andreeva, Deadline (February 28, 2018)
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