Brian Dennehy

Brian Dennehy was born in Bridgeport, Conn., on July 9, 1938. A Marines veteran, he studied history at Columbia University in New York (thanks to a football scholarship) and drama at Yale.

After a successful start in theater (to which he still devotes much of his career), Dennehy made his film debut in 1977 in Looking for Mr. Goodbar, followed by Semi-Tough. His villainous role in 1982's First Blood (the first in a long line of mean lawmen) made him a familiar face to '80s film fans, as did his portrayals as an alien visitor in Cocoon and corrupt sheriff in Silverado (both 1985). He won Best Actor at the 1987 Chicago Film Festival for The Belly of an Architect, plus Tony and Golden Globe awards for Broadway and TV incarnations, respectively, of "Death of a Salesman."

Also a producer and director, his later work has included She Hate Me (2004) and on TV, "Just Shoot Me" and "The West Wing."