Born on Sept. 7, 1976 to singer-songwriter Bill Hudson and comic legend Goldie Hawn, Hudson was due in August, but his mother carried him a full 10 months. Not surprisingly, he weighed in at a hefty 11 pounds. He and his actress sister Kate Hudson maintained that despite their celebrity parents and stepparents - including future stepmom Cindy Williams of "Laverne and Shirley" (ABC, 1976-1983) fame and future stepdad, Kurt Russell - they grew up as normal kids, complete with chores and schoolwork. Not surprisingly, considering his lineage, Hudson showed some early interest in acting and would shoot short films with friends, but his first passion and career goal was to play hockey. It was not until after high school, that he decided to pursue acting and directing, at which point he studied film at the University of Colorado.
Despite what many would be inclined to believe, Hudson's family tree was hardly an all-access pass to the top. After graduating college, he moved back to L.A. Like any aspiring actor, he spent several years taking acting classes, going on auditions, and working as a film production assistant - on the set of Russell's "Executive Decision" (1996) - while writing and shooting his own films on the side. He landed supporting roles in a few features - namely his mother's comedy, "The Out-of-Towners" (1999), in which he played the son of Steve Martin and Hawn - but it was primary roles in several festival-screened independents like "Smokers" (2000) and "Going Greek" (2001) that saw Hudson growing onscreen as an artist.
In 2002 he got his first steady acting gig on the final season of "Dawson's Creek," playing a bartender/aspiring writer and Joey's (Katie Holmes) on-again/off-again boyfriend. The role of the hunky rebel paved the way to being cast as the lead in the series "My Guide to Becoming a Rock Star" (2002). This midseason replacement about an aspiring garage band rocker - for which Hudson, who inherited his real-life absentee father's musical talent, did his own singing - balanced the harsh realities of life as a struggling musician with fantasies of stardom. Art imitated life on the series in some respects, as real-life punk rock hero Michael Des Barres played Jace's father, an accomplished and now over-the-hill heavy metal musician. The intriguing layers of artifice and reality made for a novel choice in the WB lineup but, unfortunately, the show was cancelled after a brief run. All was not lost, however. That busy year helped land the handsome newcomer on People magazine's "50 Most Beautiful People" list in 2002.
Hudson snagged a few small film roles before returning to television in 2004, starring as the young heir of a ski resort on another short-lived, mid-season replacement, "The Mountain" (WB, 2004). The promising actor had yet to get a firm toehold in television but the 2007 premiere of "The Rules of Engagement," co-starring David Spade and Patrick Warburton, seemed to finally offer Hudson a chance to build up a solid audience and showcase those famous Hawn/Hudson comedic chops.
In 2013, Hudson was cast in the recurring role of Jeff Fordham for the second season on the ABC drama series Nashville. Hudson later was promoted to series regular for third season.
In 2015, Hudson was cast as a series regular on the horror comedy anthology series Scream Queens playing Wes, the father of a college sorority pledge member. Oliver juggled both his role as Jeff on Nashville and his role as Wes on Scream Queens, since he had a one-year series regular deal with Nashville before it was renewed for a fourth season.
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