Danny Masterson

Danny Masterson
Danny Masterson (cropped).jpg
Masterson in June 2015
Daniel Peter Masterson

(1976-03-13) March 13, 1976 (age 45)
Long Island, New York, U.S.
OccupationActor, comedian, disc jockey, businessman
Years active1988–2018
(m. 2011)
RelativesChristopher Masterson (brother)
Jordan Masterson (maternal half-brother)
Alanna Masterson (maternal half-sister)

Daniel Peter Masterson (born March 13, 1976)[1] is an American actor, comedian, and disc jockey.[2] Masterson played the roles of Steven Hyde in That '70s Show (1998–2006) and Jameson "Rooster" Bennett in The Ranch (2016–2018). On June 17, 2020, he was arrested and charged in connection with three rape allegations.[3][4]

Early life and family

Masterson was born on Long Island, New York, the son of Carol, a manager, and Peter Masterson, an insurance agent.[5] He grew up in Garden City and East Williston, New York.[6] He has a brother, actor Christopher Masterson, who played Francis on Malcolm in the Middle. Their maternal half siblings Jordan Masterson and Alanna Masterson are also actors. Daniel Masterson also has a paternal half-brother, Will Masterson.[citation needed]


Early years

A child model from age four, who was featured in magazine articles as well as television commercials beginning at age five, Masterson starred in musicals as a child at the age of eight, and began acting as well. His singing voice "disappeared" by the time he was a teenager. By the time he was sixteen, he had appeared in over one-hundred commercials,[7] including ones for Swift Premium,[citation needed] Kellogg's Frosted Flakes,[citation needed] Hardee's,[8] Hostess, Tang,[9] and Clearasil.[10]

Acting career

In the early 1990s, Masterson had a role in Beethoven's 2nd, and starred as Justin in Cybill. After starring in the third and fourth seasons of Cybill, Masterson decided he wanted to move on from Cybill and audition for a show originally titled Teenage Wasteland, which later was changed to That '70s Show.[11] The original casting director for That '70s Show, Debby Romano, resisted Masterson's audition because he was slightly older than the rest of the cast, but ultimately allowed him to audition. She stated that, "he came in and he was just so funny," and that he redefined where the role was going and made the role of Steven Hyde the, "tough, funny guy."[citation needed]

Masterson starred in all eight seasons of That '70s Show. His role on That '70s Show launched Masterson's career, allowing him to pursue other endeavours between tapings. After the show concluded Masterson acted in several movies and made guest appearances on television shows including Punk'd and MADtv. Along with Kutcher and Valderrama, he co-hosted the Fox TV special Woodstock 1999. He had a role in the 2008 comedy Yes Man. Masterson stars with his real-life wife, Bijou Phillips, in the 2009 drama The Bridge to Nowhere.

In 2011, Masterson guest starred as James Roland in USA Network's White Collar (episode "Where There's A Will"). He portrayed Jerry Rubin in the 2010 movie, The Chicago 8.[12]

In 2012, the comedy series Men At Work premiered on TBS, co-starring Masterson and Michael Cassidy, James Lesure and Adam Busch.[13] In 2012, Masterson appeared in the film Alter Egos, directed by Jordan Galland.[14]

Masterson starred alongside Sam Elliott, Ashton Kutcher, and Elisha Cuthbert in the Netflix comedy series The Ranch from 2016–2020. His character was written out of the series in the middle of filming the third 20 episode season.[15]


Masterson began DJing at Los Angeles night clubs in 1997 as a hobby, under the name DJ Donkey Punch, but it soon became a side business. He currently goes by the name DJ Mom Jeans.[16] Masterson is a self-described "rock and hip hop fanatic,"[11] and is also a fan of indie, electro, and funk music, all of which he primarily DJs with.[8][16]

Business ventures

For a time, Masterson owned a lounge and bar in Park City, Utah, called Downstairs.[17][18]

He appeared as part of a poker team, the Unabombers, in the 2005 GSN series The James Woods Gang vs. The Unabombers.[19] He has hosted celebrity poker events, such as the Phat Farm Stuff Casino Weekend Poker Tournament, in which he won the tournament.[20]

Personal life

Masterson is a Scientologist.[21][22] He started dating Bijou Phillips in 2004,[23] they became engaged in 2009,[24] and married on October 18, 2011.[25] Their daughter, Fianna Francis Masterson, was born on February 14, 2014.[26][27][28]

Sexual assault allegations and criminal trial

In March 2017, four women filed sexual assault allegations against Masterson, prompting a Los Angeles Police Department investigation.[2] Masterson, through his agent, has denied the allegations. In response to the accusations, Netflix fired Masterson from its comedy series The Ranch on December 5, 2017, saying in a statement, "Yesterday was his last day on the show, and production will resume in early 2018 without him." Masterson stated that he is "obviously very disappointed in Netflix's decision to write my character off of The Ranch."[29] A fifth woman who dated Masterson made similar rape accusations in December 2017.[30] He was dropped as a client by United Talent Agency.[31][32][33]

A planned 2019 episode of Leah Remini's show Aftermath, focusing on the Masterson rape allegations, was delayed due to what one of Masterson's accusers characterized as pressure from the Church of Scientology.[34] The episode eventually aired on August 27, 2019.[35]

Cedric Bixler-Zavala, singer for the bands The Mars Volta and At the Drive-In, alleged that Masterson sexually assaulted his wife Chrissie Carnell Bixler, and stated At the Drive-In's song "Incurably Innocent" (from the 2017 album In•ter a•li•a) is about the incident.[36][37][38]

In August 2019, four women filed a lawsuit against Masterson and the Church of Scientology for stalking and harassment, stemming from their rape allegations. One plaintiff claimed her dog died from (unexplained) traumatic injuries to its trachea and esophagus, also alleging that church members chased her as she drove her car, filmed her without permission, harassed her online and posted ads to social media sites soliciting sex in her name. Another plaintiff stated that she and her neighbors observed a man snapping pictures from her driveway and later that night someone broke a window in her 13-year-old daughter's bedroom.[39][40][33] Such stalking and harassment claims are indicative of a Scientology policy titled Fair Game, which the Church claims was cancelled by L. Ron Hubbard in 1968, yet the plaintiffs' lawyers claim it continues still against any detractors and ex–church members, through 'outsourcing' to private investigators and off duty police officers.[41][42] Masterson has since responded to one of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit, claiming: "I'm not going to fight my ex-girlfriend in the media like she's been baiting me to do for more than two years. I will beat her in court—and look forward to it because the public will finally be able to learn the truth and see how I've been railroaded by this woman... and once her lawsuit is thrown out, I intend to sue her and the others who jumped on the bandwagon for the damage they caused me and my family." He did not address the stalking or harassment claims.[39][33]

On January 22, 2020, Bixler-Zavala reported that a second of his family pets had to be put down due to being fed rat poison wrapped inside a rolled-up piece of raw meat, alleging this was done by Scientologists in response to his repeated public statements alleging Masterson raped his wife (who was one of the four women who filed suit against Masterson). Masterson has yet to directly respond to any of Bixler-Zavala's claims or his prior rape allegations made by Chrissie Carnell Bixler with the closest acknowledgment being Masterson's wife Bijou Phillips making an Instagram post mocking Carnell Bixler's court papers against Masterson.[43][44][45][46]

On June 17, 2020, Masterson was charged with raping a 23-year-old woman in 2001, a 28-year-old woman in early 2003, and a 23-year-old woman in late 2003. The three counts come after a three-year investigation beginning in 2017. If convicted, Masterson faces up to 45 years in prison.[47][48]

On January 21, 2021, Masterson pleaded not guilty.[49] A four-day preliminary hearing began on May 18, 2021.[50] On May 21, 2021, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Charlaine F. Olmedo ordered that Masterson be bound over for trial on three counts of rape by force or fear and that he surrender his passport at his next arraignment, which was set for June 7, 2021.[51][52]



Year Title Role Notes
1993 Beethoven's 2nd Seth [53]
1995 Bye Bye Love Mikey [53]
1997 Face/Off Karl [53]
Trojan War Seth
Star Kid Kevin [53]
1998 Wild Horses Danny
Too Pure Tipper
The Faculty "Fucked-up" kid [53]
1999 Dirt Merchant Dirt Merchant
2000 Dracula 2000 Nightshade
2001 Alex in Wonder Patrick
2002 Hip, Edgy, Sexy, Cool
Comic Book Villains Conan
Hold On
2005 Pancho's Pizza
2006 Puff, Puff, Pass Larry
2007 Smiley Face Steve
You Are Here Derek
2008 Yes Man Rooney
The Brooklyn Heist Fitz
2009 Wake Shane
Made for Each Other Morris "The Executioner" Rodriguez
The Bridge to Nowhere Kevin
2012 The Chicago 8 Jerry Rubin
California Solo Paul
Alter Egos Jimmy
The Polterguys Tim Burr
2015 In Passing Neighbor Short film
2016 Hot Bot Agent Koontz [54]
Urge Neal [55]
TBD Killing Winston Jones Ethan Jones [56]Post-production


Year Title Role Notes
1988 Jake and the Fatman Butch Episode: "After You're Gone"
1993 Joe's Life Leo Gennaro 11 episodes
1994 Roseanne Jimmy Phillips 2 episodes[53]
1994–1997 NYPD Blue John 2 episodes
1995 Extreme Skeeter 7 episodes
1996 American Gothic Ray Episode: "Rebirth"
Seduced by Madness Seth Television film
Tracey Takes On... King the Dog Episode: "Family"
Party of Five Matt 3 episodes
Her Last Chance Ryan Television film
1996–1998 Cybill Justin Thorpe 16 episodes
1997 Sliders Renfield Episode: "Stoker"
1998–2006 That '70s Show Steven Hyde Main cast; 200 episodes
Nominated – Teen Choice Award for TV Choice Sidekick (2000)
Nominated – Teen Choice Award for Best Performance in a TV Series by a Young Ensemble
(shared with Topher Grace, Laura Prepon, Mila Kunis, Wilmer Valderrama and Ashton Kutcher) (1999)
2001 Strange Frequency Randy Television film
Grounded for Life Vince Episode: "Baby You Can't Drive My Car"
How to Make a Monster Jeremy Uncredited; Television film
2002–2004 MADtv Various 2 episodes
2003 King of the Hill Cory Voice; Episode: "Megalo Dale"
Robot Chicken Various Voice; 2 episodes
Stephen King's Dead Zone Dr. Alex Conners Episode: "Vanguard"
2005 Entourage Himself Episode: "Aquamansion"
2006 Kim Possible Quinn Voice; Episode: "And the Mole-Rat Will Be CGI"
2011 Raising Hope Lucy's Boyfriend Episode: "Don't Vote for This Episode"
White Collar James Roland Episode: "Where There's a Will"
2012–2014 Men at Work Milo Foster Main cast; 30 episodes
2012 Supah Ninjas Limelight/ Lemuel Lightner Episode: "Limelight"
2013 Haven Anderson Harris Episode: "Shot in the Dark"
2014 Royal Pains David Van Dyke Episode: "Ganging Up"
2016–2018 The Ranch Jameson "Rooster" Bennett Series regular; 50 episodes
2016 @midnight Himself Episode: "394"
WWE Raw Himself October, 3, guest with Ashton Kutcher
2017 Easy Annie's Boyfriend Episode: "Baby Steps"

Music videos

Year Title Artist Role Notes
1999 "That '70s Song (In the Street)" Cheap Trick Hyde Along with Cast of That '70s Show
2011 "The Way I Fiesta" (ft. Clayton Vice) Eduardo Fresco DJ


Year Title Type Notes
2008 The Brooklyn Heist Film Producer; Jury Award for Best Florida Comedy (shared with Dave Steck, Brett Halsey, Michael Cecchi, Julian Kheel)
2014 Men at Work Television Producer; 10 episodes[57]
2016–2018 The Ranch Television Co-Executive Producer[58]


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  2. ^ a b Stone, Natalie (March 3, 2017). "That '70s Show's Danny Masterson Is Being Investigated by LAPD Over Sexual Assault Claims". People. New York City: Meredith Corporation. Archived from the original on November 9, 2017. Retrieved March 4, 2017.
  3. ^ Winton, Richard (June 17, 2020). "Actor Danny Masterson charged in three rape cases". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved June 17, 2020.
  4. ^ "'That '70s Show' actor Danny Masterson charged with forcibly raping 3 women at his Hollywood Hills home". KTLA. June 17, 2020. Retrieved June 17, 2020.
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