A South African born New Yorker to a Greek father and a Scottish-Irish and English-Lithuanian mother, he speaks Afrikaans and Greek fluently although American English is his first language. Stelio's eclectic choices, gravitas & three decades of award winning individual performances have seen him become a steadily in demand product of highly acclaimed independent & international theatrically released films.
A SAG Awards Nominee (Ugly Betty), Teddy Award Nominee (Berlin Film Festival for Eisenstein In Guanajuato) & American Movie Award winner (Once We Were Slaves), he can presently be seen starring opposite Matt Dillon & Jim Caviezel as Portuguese coffee plantation Mayor Alvarez in the Hawaiian period drama Running for Grace on Netflix. Running For Grace recently won numerous congressional awards for diversity, presented by presidential nominee & Hawaiian congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard. Also starring opposite Michael Beach, Raymond J. Barry, & George Blagden as a rogue federal agent in the romantic comedy No Postage Necessary on Amazon, the first film in history to be available for purchase through cryptocurrency. Further, as a South African drug & arms dealer opposite Alex Russell & Willa Holland in the neo-noir Blood in the Water on Amazon Prime. Also starring as a radio programmer opposite François Arnaud & love interest to Reiko Aylesworth in Vertical Entertainment's Times Square thriller Rapid Eye Movement on iTunes & Amazon. He will next be seen starring opposite Frank Langella & Bobby Cannavale in the comedy Lapham Rising based on the best-selling novel of the same name. He also portrays an international journalist opposite Jim Caviezel & Claudia Karvan in the soon to be released Middle-Eastern political thriller Infidel by critically acclaimed director, Cyrus Nowrasteh.
Further film credits include roles as an altruistic scientist opposite Isaach De Bankolé & Juliet Landau in the South African-Dutch-Equatorial Guinean drama Where the Road Runs Out, winner of the Black Reel Award for Outstanding World Cinema. His performance as Hunter Kimbrough in Peter Greenaway's Golden Bear nominated biographical romantic comedy-drama and international co production Eisenstein in Guanajuato was noted as memorable by Film Journal's David Noh, as he & the lead cast were nominated for a Teddy Award at Berlin film festival. Was recognized globally by critics for his role as a ruthless policeman in the South African film A Million Colours. Praised for his recurring portrayal as Joe 'The Boss' Masseria in AMC's The Making of the Mob with Previously TV's Sarah Bunting stating 'Stelio is reminiscent of James Gandolfini, I liked a certain gravitas-emblance to the Fini that I saw in Stelio'. His portrayal was also hailed by The Examiner's Diane Zoller Ciatto. Entertainment Tonight's Nischelle Turner applauded his understatedly powerful turn as Howard Boston opposite Brian White in TV One's Media. Received outstanding reviews as a tormented hit-man with a conscience in Pronoia & as a rebellious Jewish prisoner in Once We Were Slaves; winning Best Actor at the historic American Movie Awards & the SOFIE Awards. His ability to transition from rough around the edges, blue collar criminals to highly articulate, ruthless, white collar professionals to charmingly, quirky, vulnerable & broken characters resulted in Screen Africa magazine labelling Stelio 'The Chameleon'.
Additionally a staple of well received recurring & guest star roles including in NBC's My Own Worst Enemy: Conspiracy Theory, in Mark Duplass & Jay Duplass' comedic series Togetherness for HBO, portraying pioneer David Sarnoff in the Nat-Geo mini-series American Genius, twice for J.J. Abrams' in Undercovers, and Person of Interest. Also starring in NCIS, Breakout Kings, Without a Trace, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, The Suite Life on Deck, Arrested Development, All My Children, Guiding Light & as Dino in Tyler Perry's The Haves and the Have Nots for Own Network.
After minor speaking roles opposite Russell Crowe in Ron Howard's A Beautiful Mind & David Chase's The Sopranos as Gaetano; his breakthrough lead role came in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit directed by Oscar winner Juan José Campanella. Starring opposite Mariska Hargitay, Chris Meloni, & Bradley Cooper as the chilling yet engaging fundamentalist Milan Zergin. Also, a coveted recurring role on Ugly Betty, becoming South Africa's first male SAG Award Nominee (Ensemble Comedy Performance). Followed by a supporting role in the studio film My Super Ex-Girlfriend opposite Eddie Izzard, Luke Wilson, & Uma Thurman directed by Ivan Reitman for Twentieth Century Fox and an ensemble lead in Sony's Starship Troopers 3: Marauder produced by David Lancaster. His two decades of New York stage credits include favorable reviews from the NY Times. A student of Robert X. Modica, Deborah Kampmeier, William Alderson, Don Bloomfield, & Diane Venora, his training is rooted in theater & improvisation but influenced by the eras of French New Wave & Italian Neo-Realism. Was acknowledged by Al Pacino, F. Murray Abraham & several NY theater critics for his lead performance in Mortal Coils, directed by the Actor's Studio Ed Setrakian at the Mint Theater.
A popular voice over artist, he voices the character of Ajax in Call of Duty: Black Ops 4. Was inducted into the Alpha Psi Omega honors society for his achievement in American collegiate theater. Served on the actor's panel of the 2014 San Diego film festival with Josh Duhamel, Tom Berenger & Dennis Haysbert, hosted by Variety & film critic Jeffrey Lyons. Is a board member of the River Street Theater Company; alongside Robert Carnegie, Jeff Goldblum, David Mamet, Jon Voight & president, William Alderson.
Frequently volunteers his time simultaneously performing & producing Sarah Tuft's 110 Stories to raise money for several charities. His fellow casts have included Edie Falco, James Gandolfini, Cynthia Nixon, Robert Forster, John Hawkes, Samuel L. Jackson, Melissa Leo, Jeremy Piven, Mira Sorvino, Susan Sarandon, Tamara Tunie, Kathleen Turner, John Turturro, & Diane Venora.