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Also Known As: Mark Thomas Valley Died:
Born: December 24, 1964 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Ogdensburg, New York, USA Profession: actor, soldier

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

After serving abroad as an officer in the U.S. Army, actor Mark Valley fell into acting by chance when he was spotted in Germany and asked to work as an extra in John Schlesinger's thriller, "The Innocent" (1995). Though initially a non-speaking part, Valley impressed the filmmakers enough to earn some dialogue, which soon led him to pursue an acting career. Once out of the army, he made his way to New York City, where he found his first prominent role playing Jack Devereaux on "Days of Our Lives" (NBC, 1965- ). From there, he landed several guest starring roles on popular drama series while appearing in occasional feature films. Valley did manage to score a few television series on which he played the central character, only to find himself out of work once the series was canceled after its initial season. He finally hit his stride in 2004 when he joined the cast of "Boston Legal" (ABC, 2004-08) as a dogged and earnest attorney who served as the chief foil and agitator to James Spader's morally-slippery Alan Shore. After leaving the popular legal drama, he starred on the cult hit "Fringe" (Fox, 2008-2013) before striking out on his own as the lead on "Human Target" (Fox, 2010-2011), both of which...

After serving abroad as an officer in the U.S. Army, actor Mark Valley fell into acting by chance when he was spotted in Germany and asked to work as an extra in John Schlesinger's thriller, "The Innocent" (1995). Though initially a non-speaking part, Valley impressed the filmmakers enough to earn some dialogue, which soon led him to pursue an acting career. Once out of the army, he made his way to New York City, where he found his first prominent role playing Jack Devereaux on "Days of Our Lives" (NBC, 1965- ). From there, he landed several guest starring roles on popular drama series while appearing in occasional feature films. Valley did manage to score a few television series on which he played the central character, only to find himself out of work once the series was canceled after its initial season. He finally hit his stride in 2004 when he joined the cast of "Boston Legal" (ABC, 2004-08) as a dogged and earnest attorney who served as the chief foil and agitator to James Spader's morally-slippery Alan Shore. After leaving the popular legal drama, he starred on the cult hit "Fringe" (Fox, 2008-2013) before striking out on his own as the lead on "Human Target" (Fox, 2010-2011), both of which proved that Valley had finally come into his own as a prominent presence on the small screen

Born on Dec. 24, 1964 in Ogdensburg, NY, Valley grew up in an academic home of sorts, headed by his father, Michael, a school principal, and his mother, Martha, who ran a nursery school. Though he acted while attending high school in Ogdensburg, Valley put his ambitions aside when he attended the United States Military Academy at West Point, NY, where he earned his Bachelor's degree in Mathematics in 1987. He was stationed in Germany for most of his five-year stretch in the Army, eventually rising to the rank of lieutenant, though he did see some action as a transport driver during Operation Desert Storm in 1991. Upon his return to Germany from Iraq, Valley was convinced to try his hand at acting full stride, which led to being cast as an extra in John Schlesinger's thriller, "The Innocent" (1995), which was filmed in 1993. Though he initially was given no lines, his talent shone through enough for Valley to earn some dialogue and an onscreen credit.

Once finished with the military, Valley moved to New York City in order to pursue a fulltime acting career. In 1993, he made his television debut with an episode of the daytime soap, "As the World Turns" (CBS, 1956-2010). Following a co-starring role in "Vanishing Son IV" (1994), a syndicated martial arts action movie made for television, he became the fourth actor to portray Jack Devereaux on "Days of Our Lives" (NBC, 1965- ). Though he had the unenviable task of replacing his popular predecessor, Matthew Ashford, Valley was able to make the character his own and win over skeptical fans, many of whom were disappointed when he left the show after his three-year contract ended in 1997. Once finished with the soap opera, Valley had a small role as a resident in the original cable movie, "Breast Men" (HBO, 1997), which he followed by playing Robert Kennedy in the miniseries "George Wallace" (TNT, 1997). On the big screen, he was the leader of an FBI tactical squad in "The Siege" (1998); played Rupert Everett's doctor lover in "The Next Best Thing" (2000); and had the title role of a gunfighter in the Western, "Jericho" (2001).

Though he had appeared in a few movies over the years, Valley remained more vital on the small screen with both guest appearances and starring roles. He had a recurring guest spot as Marin Hinkle's love interest on the drama, "Once and Again" (ABC 1999-2002), which he followed with episodes of "Gideon's Crossing" (ABC, 2000) and "The Lone Gunman" (Fox, 2001). After a turn as Maura Tierney's loutish ex-husband on "ER" (NBC, 1994-2009), Valley landed his first regular primetime gig on the well-reviewed, but short-lived serial, "Pasadena" (Fox, 2001). On the show, he played Robert Greeley, the arrogant scion of a wealthy, newspaper-owning family with a host of skeletons in the closet. Valley also received strong critical praise for his turn as the lead in his next series, "Keen Eddie" (2003-2004), a comedic crime drama in which he played a sharp-tongued, no-nonsense New York detective who becomes a private investigator in London after botching a drug bust. Despite a loyal cult following, the show lasted only a single season, but was popular enough to merit a DVD release.

After a couple of episodes on the cult sci-fi hit, "The 4400" (USA Network, 2004-07), Valley traded in the rough-edged characters he previously played to take on the role of the more refined, morally centered attorney Brad Chase on David E. Kelley's wonky lawyer drama, "Boston Legal" (ABC, 2004-08). For three seasons, Valley's Chase provided a rich foil and counterpoint to James Spader's morally slippery Alan Shore. While on the show, he made a brief return to the big screen, voicing the Cyclops in "Shrek the Third" (2007) and having a brief appearance as a stage manager in the World War II drama, "Nanking" (2007). After "Boston Legal," Valley had a regular role on the sci-fi drama, "Fringe" (Fox, 2008-2013), playing an FBI agent and former lover of Olivia Dunham (Anna Torv), a special agent assigned to investigate unexplained phenomena. Though only on "Fringe" for season one, Valley came away with a new set of fans, not to mention a real-life romance with co-star Anna Torv, whom he married in December 2008. Valley was the star of his next series, "Human Target" (Fox, 2010-2011), in which he played Christopher Chance, a private contractor and security expert who protects his clients by completely integrating himself into their lives. But that show proved to be ratings-challenged and was canceled after its second season. After a small role as a C-130 pilot in the acclaimed feature drama "Zero Dark Thirty" (2012), Valley was part of the third season retooling of "Body of Proof" (ABC, 2011- ), a medical drama about a former neurosurgeon (Dana Delany) who becomes a medical examiner following a devastating accident.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Zero Dark Thirty (2012)
2.
 Shrek the Third (2007)
3.
 Nanking (2007)
4.
 Jericho (2001) Jericho
5.
 Next Best Thing, The (2000) Cardiologist
6.
 Running Mates (2000) Dick Tracy
7.
 Siege, The (1998) Mike Johanssen
8.
 Breast Men (1997) Fair-Haired Resident
9.
10.
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Raised in upstate New York; began acting in high school but stopped when accepted to West Point
:
Stationed in Berlin, Germany after graduating from West Point; eventually achieved rank of lieutenant
1991:
Served as a transport driver in the Gulf War
:
Returned to Berlin; spotted by an agent who helped him land acting roles while still serving in the U.S. Army
:
After discharge, worked on stage and in German television
1993:
First feature film, the John Schlesinger directed "The Innocent" (released theatrically in 1995)
1993:
Moved to NYC to pursue an acting career
1993:
Made U.S. television debut on NBC daytime serial "Another World"
1994:
Acted in syndicated TV movie "Vanishing Son IV"
1994:
Played the charming and cunning Jack Devereaux on NBC daytime drama "Days of Our Lives"
1997:
Portrayed Robert F. Kennedy in TNT biopic "George Wallace"
1998:
Cast as an FBI technician in "The Siege"
2000:
Briefly appeared as the cardiologist boyfriend of Rupert Everett's character in "The Next Best Thing"
2000:
Landed recurring role on "ER" (NBC) as the former husband of Maura Tierney's Abby Lockhart
2000:
Joined cast of "Once and Again" (ABC) in a recurring role as a suitor to Marin Hinkle's Judy Brooks
2001:
Penned one-man show "Walls, Wars and Whiskey" about his experiences in the military
2003:
Starred as Detective Eddie Arlette on short-lived Fox comedy "Keen Eddie"
2004:
Cast in "The Practice" spin-off "Boston Legal" (ABC) as attorney Brad Chase
2008:
Played recurring role on short-lived CBS series "Swingtown"
2008:
Appeared on J. J. Abrams produced series "Fringe" (Fox) as FBI agent John Scott
2010:
Cast as an ex-assassin who becomes a security specialist on Fox drama "Human Target"
2012:
Played a C-130 pilot in Kathryn Bigelow directed "Zero Dark Thirty," based on the hunt for Osama bin Laden
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Etage School of the Arts: -
HB Studio: New York , New York -
United States Military Academy: West Point , New York - 1987

Notes

He is an accomplished sky diver, having been a parachutist in the Army.

On how he came to work as an actor, Valley told Soap Opera Weekly, December 7, 1994: "I really wanted to leave the Army, but I didn't know what I was going to do. Somebody saw me buying jeans in a department store and said, 'Hey, I'm starting up an agency of Americans, and there are some films coming to town; I wonder if you're interested.' I said, 'What the hell is this? Well, it will be an interesting experience for a day.' I went and worked one day as an extra, and I got called back and got three weeks of work and a credit."

"No one forced me to go to West Point. I looked at it as an intense challenge where I would gain some experience and profoundly improve myself. ...

"Even though every base had a theater, I was always in combat arms, which meant that I was out in the field every month. Besides, getting involved with [an Army] theater program would have been like joining a military tactics program at Juilliard. That's not why I was there." --Mark Valley quoted in Soap Opera Digest, January 31, 1995.

Companions close complete companion listing

companion:
Katherine Kendall. Actor. Met c. 1991; together from c, 1993.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Michael Valley. School principal, former math teacher.
mother:
Martha Valley. Nursery school operator, former nurse.
sister:
Lynn Valley. Younger.
sister:
Marnie Valley. Younger.
sister:
Jennifer Valley. Younger.
daughter:
Sherri Ann Valley. Born in 1988.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

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