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Brian Dennehy

Brian Manion Dennehy was an American actor of film, stage, and television. A winner of one Golden Globe, two Tony Awards and a recipient of six Primetime Emmy Award nominations. Brian Dennehy always maintained a strong presence film, theater, and television for three decades. He won twice the Tony Award for Best Actor: honored for playing James Tyrone in Eugene O'Neill's "Long Day's Journey Into Night," and for playing Willy Loman in "Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman." The latter production was also filmed for Showtime by director Kirk Browning, with Dennehy executive-producing. The television version subsequently earned Dennehy a Golden Globe Award, a Screen Actors Guild Award, and an Emmy Award nomination. He revived the role of Willy Loman in London's West End in 2005 for which he received the coveted Olivier Award for Best Actor.

Dennehy was well-known to audiences worldwide for his performances in such popular films as Michael Ritchie's "Semi-Tough," Colin Higgins' "Foul Play," Blake Edwards' "10," Ted Kotcheff's "First Blood," Ron Howard's "Cocoon," Robert Mandel's "F/X," Alan J. Pakula's "Presumed Innocent," Peter Segal's "Tommy Boy" and Baz Luhrmann's "William Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet." His other notable screen credits include "Gorky Park," "Never Cry Wolf," "Finders Keepers," "Silverado," "Twice in a Lifetime," "Best Seller," "The Belly of an Architect" (for which he received Best Actor honors at the Chicago Film Festival), Spike Lee's "She Hate Me" and Robert Moresco's "10th & Wolf." He voiced the role of Babe Ruth in "Everyone's Hero."

Dennehy starred in a wide range of television projects, receiving Emmy Award nominations for his performances in the miniseries "The Burden of Proof," "Murder in the Heartland," "To Catch a Killer" (in which he played John Wayne Gacy) and Stephen Gyllenhaal's telefilm "Killing in a Small Town." His characterization of police investigator Jack Reed anchored a successful series of telefilms that he starred in for NBC throughout the 1990s, several of which he executive-produced, co-wrote, and directed. He also directed and starred in the telefilms "Shadow of a Doubt" (which he co-wrote and co-produced) and "Indefensible."

Dennehy was associated for two decades with Chicago's Goodman Theatre (on whose Board he served), where he has starred in numerous leading roles. His other notable stage work includes the Broadway production of "Translations"; "Hughie," at Trinity Repertory; Peter Brook's production of "The Cherry Orchard" at the Brooklyn Academy of Music; "Trumbo," which he starred in off-Broadway and then went on tour; Wisdom Bridge Theatre's production of "Rat in the Skull"; "Says I, Says He" at The Mark Taper Forum in L.A. and The Phoenix Theatre in N.Y.; and Bob Balaban's production of "The Exonerated," which he starred in Off-Broadway and toured with. He also starred in the Court TV film version of the latter production, directed by Bob Balaban.

Known For


Cast Credits

Penny Dreadful: City of Angels (2020)
Guest starring as Jerome Townsend
Hap and Leonard (2016)
Starring as Sheriff Valentine Otis (5 episodes)
Public Morals (2015)
Guest starring as Joe Patton (8 episodes)
Cocked (2015)
Starring as Wade Paxson
  • Episode 1x01: Pilot (Jan 15, 2015)
The Blacklist (2013)
Guest starring as Dominic Wilkinson (9 episodes)
The Big C (2010)
Guest starring as Dad
Rizzoli & Isles (2010)
Guest starring as Det. Kenny Lahey
Mystery Files (2010)
Starring as Narrator (25 episodes)
The Good Wife (2009)
Guest starring as Bucky Stabler (2 episodes)
Masters of Science Fiction (2007)
Guest starring as Bedzyk
30 Rock (2006)
Guest starring as Mickey J
  • Episode 2x14: Sandwich Day (May 1, 2008) [Special Guest Star]
Category 6: Day of Destruction (2004)
Starring as Andy Goodman (2 episodes)
  • Episode 1x02: Part 2 (Nov 17, 2004)
  • Episode 1x01: Part 1 (Nov 14, 2004)
The 4400 (2004)
Guest starring as Mitch Baldwin
  • Episode 3x08: Blink (Jul 23, 2006)
The Fighting Fitzgeralds (2001)
Starring as Mr Fitzgerald (10 episodes)
Arrest & Trial (2000)
Starring as Host (195 episodes)
The West Wing (1999)
Guest starring as Senator Rafe Framingham
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (1999)
Guest starring as Judson Tierney
  • Episode 8x10: Scheherezade (Jan 2, 2007) [Special Guest Star]
Nostromo (1997)
Starring as Joshua C. Holroyd
A Season in Purgatory (1996)
Starring as Gerald Bradley (2 episodes)
Birdland (1994)
Starring as Dr. Brian McKenzie (7 episodes)
The Burden of Proof (1992)
Starring as Dixon Hartnell
Miami Vice (1984)
Guest starring as Rev. Billy Bob Proverb
Hunter (1984)
Guest starring as Dr. Bolin
  • Episode 1x01: Pilot (Sep 18, 1984)
Cagney & Lacey (1982)
Guest starring as Michael Magruder
Dynasty (1981)
Guest starring as Jake Dunham (5 episodes)
A Rumor of War (1980)
Starring as Sgt. Ned Coleman (2 episodes)
Big Shamus, Little Shamus (1979)
Starring as Arnie Sutter (6 episodes)
Dallas (1978)
Guest starring as Luther Frick
M*A*S*H (1972)
Guest starring as M.P. Ernie Connors
Tony Awards (1957)
Guest starring as Winner
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