Smallville Actor Reported Missing In California Mountains, Search Underway

Actor Julian Sands, known for playing Jor-El on Smallville, is missing in the San Gabriel mountains.

By Zack Zagranis | Published

Julian Sands Jor-El Smallville

Smallville actor Julian Sands went missing recently somewhere in the Mt. Baldy region of California. As Bounding Into Comics reports, the actor, best known for the Warlock films and his role as Jor-El on the television show Smallville, went hiking on January 13 and hasn’t been seen since.

Sands’ family reported him missing at 7:30 pm on January 13, and search and rescue crews immediately set out to find the Smallville star. Unfortunately, severe weather and the threat of avalanches left the searchers no choice but to suspend their efforts. The search has since been picked back up using drones, but other methods are limited due to the horrific weather on Mt. Baldy.

The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department frequently warns hikers about traversing the San Gabriel Mountain area where Mt. Baldy is located due to galeforce winds and treacherous ice. The region where Sands went hiking is fraught with perils other than hazardous weather conditions as well. The Smallville actor could be battling hypothermia and predatory wildlife in addition to avalanches.

The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department attempted to reach Sands by pinging his cellphone but to no avail. It’s been 11 days since the Smallville actor disappeared, but the search and rescue effort continues tirelessly. Some of the areas already searched are being combed over again in an attempt to locate another hiker who went missing Sunday.

75-year-old Jin Chung of Los Angeles was also hiking Mt. Baldy when his disappearance occurred. Chung arrived at the mountain Sunday morning with two friends, and the three of them split up to go hiking. The two friends returned, but Chung was not so fortunate.

Julian Sands began his acting career with supporting roles on British television before moving on to feature films. The 65-year-old actor is best known for his horror and sci-fi roles, such as the titular Warlock in 1989’s Warlock and 1993’s Warlock Armageddon, as well as parts in Arachnophobia and Stargate SG-1. DC fans, however, remember him fondly as Superman’s father, Jor-El, on the ninth and tenth seasons of the hit CW show Smallville.

As Jor-El, Sands joined the distinguished company of acting titans Marlon Brando, who portrayed the Kryptonian in 1978’s Superman: The Movie, and Russel Crow, who played the House of El patriarch in Zack Snyder’s take on Superman, 2013’s Man of Steel. Julian was more than capable of holding his own, imbuing the Smallville role with a quiet dignity only he could provide.

With DC’s penchant for stories involving the multiverse and their talent for bringing together cast and characters from past versions of its properties for huge crossover events, it’s a real possibility that if Sands is found, Smallville fans may get to see him play Jor-El again in some capacity.

For now, though, everyone’s thoughts are solely on finding Sands and getting him home safe and sound. While the situation becomes grimmer the longer Sands is exposed to the elements, his family and friends, as well as the Smallville actor’s legion of loyal fans, haven’t given up hope that Julian could still be found alive and well.