Olyphant was born in Honolulu. His parents moved when he was two years old, with him to Modesto, a town in the rural area of San Francisco. His father worked in a winery. At the age of six he began swimming and was a finalist at the 1986 USA Swimming Short Course National Championships over 200 meters long swimming. He attended Modesto in the Fred C. Beyer High School .
Olyphant swam for the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, where he studied art. He occupied the option achieve acting at UC Irvine to the required scores for its conclusion. Olyphant then decided in New York City to study acting and graduated with a master.
Olyphant lives with his wife Alexis Knief and their three children in Westwood, Los Angeles. The couple has been married since 1991 .
His feature film debut in 1996 in Olyphant The First Wives Club in a small role opposite Goldie Hawn and Diane Keaton. In A Life Less Ordinary, he stood next to Ewan McGregor and Cameron Diaz in front of the camera and then received the role of the cynical film student Mickey in the horror film Scream second
He received the 1998 HBO TV movie The Sound of War a role on the film version of the events at the Battle of the Hürtgenwald 1944th He then played a lover of Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker) in the U.S. television series Sex and the City. As a drug dealer Todd Gaines in the film by director Doug Liman Go it can be seen alongside Katie Holmes, Scott Wolf and Sarah Polley, while John August had his debut as a screenwriter. It was followed by roles in Advice from a Caterpillar (1999) No Vacancy (1999), The Broken Hearts Club – A Romantic Comedy (2000) and Gone in 60 seconds.
From March 2004, Olyphant played the lead role of Sheriff Seth Bullock in HBO series Deadwood. This is considered his breakthrough as an established performer. were preceded by roles in the films Rock Star and Dream Catcher. In addition to the series Deadwood, he played in the movie The Girl Next Door a porn film producer, said the actor Emile Hirsch and Elisha Cuthbert are seen.
In January 2007, Olyphant had a cameo in the comedy Catch and Release, in which he played the lover of Jennifer Garner. He beat out several actors, the role would have as well, such as Matthew Fox. Olyphant thus the first starred with Jennifer Garner, with which he studied acting in New York. His next role he had as a terrorist in the fourth part of the Die Hard series. Then he played the role of Agent 47 in the computer game adaptation Hitman – Hitman, for this role shaved bald Olyphant.
In the comedy Bill, he plays alongside Jessica Alba and Aaron Eckhart a TV presenter. In the acting of the Iraq war film Stop-Loss, he embodies a Lieutenant Colonel. Through his work on the side of Glenn Close in the FX series Damages – the power was his role in the TV series Samantha Who? Billy Zane on new loans. In 2009 he was with Steve Zahn and Milla Jovovich in the thriller A Perfect Getaway as Iraq veteran before the camera.
In the movie The Crazies – Crazies, who came released in 2010, Timothy Olyphant plays the main role of the town sheriff. Since spring 2010 he plays in the series Justified the main role of the U.S. Marshals Raylan Givens.