A recipient of over a dozen awards, including the 2013 UBCP/ACTRA John Juliani Award for Outstanding Achievement, Ben has amassed over 100 film and TV acting credits, including lead roles in feature films that have played at prestigious festivals such as TIFF, Sundance, and Berlin.
As a writer/director/producer, Ben has helmed 2 award-winning, theatrically released feature films: Down River (9 wins and 12 nominations, including Most Popular Canadian Film at VIFF 2013 and Best Feature at the 2014 Soho International Film Festival, NYC) and Moving Malcolm (4 wins and 1 nomination, including Best Feature Film at the 2003 Washington D.C. Film Festival). He has also written and/or directed and produced numerous short films and web series episodes, has directed Robson Arms for CTV, and has developed several original television series for Canadian networks.
For theatre, Ben has appeared in many plays including This, by Melissa James Gibson, Dinner with Friends, by Donald Margulies, and Italian American Reconciliation by John Patrick Shanley. Early in his career, Ben was nominated for a Jessie Richardson award for his portrayal of “Bobby” in David Mamet’s American Buffalo. He has also directed numerous plays, including the Canadian Premieres of Tommy Smith’s White Hot and Christopher Shinn’s Dying City, as well as Either We Talk Or We Don’t Talk, created in collaboration with actors from Haven Studio. In 2020, Ben wrote and directed the one-man show Casey and the Octopus for the inspiring and dynamic 19-year-old cancer survivor Casey Wright.
Next up for Ben is his television series, Trigger Me, which he created and directed and features many Haven Studio actors in lead roles. HBO’s Westworld director/executive producer Richard J. Lewis has come on board as executive producer.
Ben started his teaching career in 1995, under the tutelage of his mentor Ivana Chubbuck (author, The Power of the Actor). He has also studied with and been greatly influenced by Larry Moss (author, The Intent to Live), Patsy Rodenburg (author, The Second Circle), and Canada’s Mel Tuck.
Having taught acting in Vancouver, Los Angeles and across Canada, Ben established Haven Studio in Vancouver’s Mount Pleasant neighbourhood in 2002. He and his team at Haven Studio continue to offer extremely in-demand classes to both top-notch veteran actors and ambitious up-and-coming performers.
2020 – UBCP/ACTRA AWARD – Nomination for Best Actor – Glory Days
2017 – UBCP/ACTRA AWARD – Nomination for Best Actor – Ganjy
2013 – UBCP/ACTRA AWARD – Winner of the John Juliani Award of Excellence
2012 – LEO AWARD – Winner of Best Performance by a Guest Star in a Dramatic Series – Flashpoint
2012 – LEO AWARD – Nominated for Best Lead Actor in a Feature Film – Sisters & Brothers
2010 – LEO AWARD – Nominated for Best Lead Actor in A Feature Film – Fathers & Sons
2007 – LEO AWARD – Winner of Best Supporting Actor in a Feature Film – Mount Pleasant
2007 – VANCOUVER FILM CRITICS CIRCLE – Nominated for Best Supporting Actor in a Feature Film – Mount Pleasant
2005 – LEO AWARD – Winner of Best Performance by a Guest Star in a Dramatic Series – The Collector
2003 – VANCOUVER FILM CRITICS CIRCLE – Winner of Best Supporting Actor – Looking for Leonard
2002 – CANADIAN COMEDY AWARDS – Nominated for Best Male Performance – Last Wedding
2002 – LEO AWARD – Nominated for Best Male Lead Performance in a Feature Length Drama – Last Wedding
2002 – LEO AWARD – Nominated for Best Performance by a Guest Star in a Dramatic Series – Mysterious Ways
2001 – FILM CAN AWARD – Winner of Best Actor – Last Wedding
2001 – VANCOUVER FILM CRITICS CIRCLE – Winner of Best Canadian Actor – Last Wedding
2001 – TORONTO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL – Opening Selection – Last Wedding
2001 – TORONTO FILM CRITICS ASSOCIATION – Winner of Best Canadian Film – Last Wedding
1999 – LEO AWARD – Nominated for Best Male Lead Performance in a Feature Length Drama – Dirty
1993 – JESSE AWARD – Nominated for Best Supporting Actor – American Buffalo
1991 – YUK YUK’S MEDIA/CELEBRITY CHALLENGE – Winner
1990 & 1991 – YUK YUK’S SEARCH FOR CANADA’S FUNNIEST NEW COMEDIAN – Finalist
1982 – BC WINTER GAMES – Gold Medallist – Boxing
VIFF 2010: Benjamin Ratner is in show business for all the right reasons
A show-business lifer, Benjamin Ratner puts his many talents on display at the Vancouver International Film Festival
“[Moving Malcolm] Hilarious, with deft moments of genuine humanity.”
“[Sisters and Brothers]…the Louise/Jerry tale is by far the strongest … Ratner touchingly captures the schizophrenic’s constant Sisyphean struggle up into self-awareness and back down into utter turmoil.”
“[Sisters and Brothers] Perhaps the most novel, and the most rewarding, is the plot line revolving around mental illness. Ratner plays a man suffering through schizophrenia while his sister, played with a huge heart and endless nuance by Gabrielle Miller, tries to keep him on an even keel. This is the thread with the most at stake, and the greatest degree of difficulty, because it gets to the marrow of blood relations.”
“[Sisters and Brothers] Corner Gas’s Miller and Benjamin Ratner are completely convincing as siblings dealing with mental illness…”
“[Sisters and Brothers] By far the best tale stars Gabrielle Miller of Corner Gas fame and Benjamin Ratner, a talented and sadly under-recognized B.C. talent. Louise (Miller) is absolutely devoted to her big brother Jerry (Ratner), who has descended into schizophrenia since he reached adulthood… this story is funny, touching and heartfelt. A whole film could be made about the relationship between Louise and Jerry—it’s that good.”
“[Sisters and Brothers] … guilt-ridden sister Louise (a stellar Gabrielle Miller, late of Corner Gas) tries her best to take care of her brother Jerry (Benjamin Ratner), who has schizophrenia and is erratic, even on his meds. The chemistry between this pair in particular, and the use of improvisation overall, makes theirs the most believable relationship.”