Gale Harold was a virtual unknown when he was tapped to play Brian Kinney, a successful advertising executive with a blatant disregard for social conventions, in the Showtime adaptation of the popular British drama "Queer as Folk" (2000-). The lanky, dark-haired actor was born and raised in Georgia and attended American University in Washington, DC before heading west to San Francisco and art school. While working as a manager of a motorcycle shop, he was spotted by a producer who convinced him to try his hand at acting. Harold formed an association with the Los Angeles Theatre Center where he made his debut in "Me and My Friend" and later appeared in a variety of classic plays. After going through the grueling audition process for "Queer as Folk," he impressed the series' producers with his natural smoldering qualities and innate charisma. While viewers and critics were at first divided or negatively inclined to his performance as Brian, as time wore on, he grew into the role, adding layers of depth to the seemingly shallow hedonist. Harold used his 2001 hiatus from the series to make his NYC stage debut playing a homophobe confronting his AIDS-stricken relative in the Off-Broadway play "Uncle Bob"