Dragan Bakema was born on May 12 1980 in Appelscha and raised in Leeuwarden and Oosterwolde. At fifteen, he started taking acting classes at the ICO in Assen, and in the same year he headed for Groningen where he has taken acting class at the Vooropleiding Theater for four years. He played his first lead role at nineteen, in the movie Drift by Michiel van Jaarsveld. He graduated from the Arnhemse toneelacademie in 2005. That same year, he moved to new York to take classes at the famous Lee Strassberg Academy.
After he graduated, Dragan appeared in a large amount of Theatre productions, among which was To Damascus at Internationaal Theater Amsterdam, directed by Piere Audi and Platonov directed by Alize Zandwijk and Richard III directed by Andreas Kriegenberg at the RO theatre.
Furthermore, Dragan can be seen in a variety of shorter and longer films, among which are Joy by Marijke de Jong, awarded three Golden Calf awards, and Brownian Movement by Nanouk Leopold, awarded two Golden Calf awards. He also appeared in Een ingewikkeld verhaal eenvoudig verteld by Jaap van Heusden, Shocking Blue by Mark de Cloe and Hoe Overleef ik…Mezelf? By Nicole van Kilsdonk. He was awarded the Best Talent Award for his role in the television film Loverboy by Lodewijk Crijns.
Besides his work as an actor, Dragan is also an active scenarist and producer for Popov Film, founded by himself (‘Popov’ alluding to his mother’s maiden name). Together with Sander Burger and Maria Kraakman he wrote the screenplay for Olivier etc., and their second screenplay, Hunting en Zn. Here too, he cooperated with maria Kraakman, whom he has been in a relationship with since 2003. Both Dragan and Maria he has been nominated for the Golden Calf award for best actor and actress.