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James Woods

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Recent DVDs

The Boost ... James Woods (Best Seller) and Sean Young (Fatal Instinct) star in the dramatic... more info $18.95was $29.95 Buy Now

Best Seller ... Owing his publisher a yet-to-be written and long overdue novel, author (and... more info $14.96was $19.95 Buy Now

Cat’s Eye ... Three tales, with a feline as the catalyst. Drew Barrymore, James Woods, Alan... more info $10.95was $14.97 Buy Now

Entourage: The Complete... The Emmy-winning hit comedy series created by Doug Ellin, and based (at least in... more info $207.95was $289.98 Buy Now

The Specialist ... Stallone, Stone. Two of Hollywood's biggest stars combine fiery action with... more info $7.95was $19.98 Buy Now

Ghosts of Mississippi ... Repackaged. more info $9.95was $14.98 Buy Now

Also Known As: James Howard Woods Died:
Born: April 18, 1947 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Vernal, Utah, USA Profession: actor, voice actor, producer

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

The poster child for "intense actor," James Woods made an indelible impression on moviegoers with his no-holds-barred performances as fast-talking, hard-nosed, often violent men. Possessing a keen intellect and formidable IQ, Woods initially studied political science before turning to theater fulltime in 1969. He turned in impressive performances on the stages of Broadway, followed by small roles in film and on television before gaining notoriety alongside Meryl Streep in the miniseries "Holocaust" (NBC, 1978). His uncompromising performance as an unrepentant killer in "The Onion Field" (1979) only solidified his growing reputation as one of the most incendiary young actors on the scene. Throughout the 1980s, Woods turned in one riveting performance after the other in projects that included "Videodrome" (1983), "Once Upon a Time in America" (1984), "Salvador" (1986), and "True Believer" (1989). He continued into the next decade with films such as "Citizen Cohn" (HBO, 1992), "Casino" (1995), "Ghosts of Mississippi" (1996), and "Another Day in Paradise" (1998). On television, Woods briefly starred in his own legal drama series, "Shark" (CBS, 2006-08), and made recurring appearances as an animated...

The poster child for "intense actor," James Woods made an indelible impression on moviegoers with his no-holds-barred performances as fast-talking, hard-nosed, often violent men. Possessing a keen intellect and formidable IQ, Woods initially studied political science before turning to theater fulltime in 1969. He turned in impressive performances on the stages of Broadway, followed by small roles in film and on television before gaining notoriety alongside Meryl Streep in the miniseries "Holocaust" (NBC, 1978). His uncompromising performance as an unrepentant killer in "The Onion Field" (1979) only solidified his growing reputation as one of the most incendiary young actors on the scene. Throughout the 1980s, Woods turned in one riveting performance after the other in projects that included "Videodrome" (1983), "Once Upon a Time in America" (1984), "Salvador" (1986), and "True Believer" (1989). He continued into the next decade with films such as "Citizen Cohn" (HBO, 1992), "Casino" (1995), "Ghosts of Mississippi" (1996), and "Another Day in Paradise" (1998). On television, Woods briefly starred in his own legal drama series, "Shark" (CBS, 2006-08), and made recurring appearances as an animated version of his over-the-top self in the cartoon sitcom "Family Guy" (Fox, 1999- ). Over the years, Woods had built a career that encompassed film, television and video games, as well as established him firmly at the upper-echelon of great contemporary American actors.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Bling (2016)
2.
 White House Down (2013)
3.
 Officer Down (2013)
4.
 Jobs (2013)
5.
 Mary & Martha (2013)
6.
 Straw Dogs (2011)
7.
 Too Big to Fail (2011)
8.
9.
10.
 Surf's Up (2007)
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Moved frequently as a child due to father's military career
:
Family settled in Warwick, Rhode Island
:
Acted in numerous plays at Harvard, MIT, and with the Theater Company of Boston before moving to New York City
1970:
Made Broadway debut in "Borstal Boy"
1971:
Made TV-movie debut in "All the Way Home"; aired as part of NBC's "Hallmark Hall of Fame"
1972:
Landed feature film debut in Elia Kazan's "The Visitors"
1973:
Cast in small role as a pal of Barbra Streisand's in "The Way We Were"
1975:
Made first screen collaboration with Melanie Griffith in "Night Moves," directed by Arthur Penn
1977:
Acted in the ensemble of the comedy-drama "The Choirboys"
1978:
Made TV miniseries debut in "Holocaust" (NBC)
1979:
Landed breakthrough role as unrepentant villain in "The Onion Field"
1982:
Starred in David Cronenberg's "Videodrome"
1984:
Offered a fine villainous turn in "Against All Odds" as rival with Jeff Bridges for Rachel Ward
1986:
Won critical and audience attention for Oliver Stone's "Salvador"
1986:
Played James Garner's younger schizophenic brother in "Promise," a CBS "Hallmark Hall of Fame" special
1987:
Portrayed Vietnam POW James Stockdale in NBC biography "In Love and War"
1988:
Produced first film "Cop"; also starred
1989:
Played Alcoholics Anonymous founder Bill Wilson in ABC "Hallmark Hall of Fame" presentation "My Name Is Bill W."
1989:
Essayed real-life lawyer Eddie Dodd in "True Believer"
1992:
Played romantic lead opposite Dolly Parton in "Straight Talk"
1992:
Starred as Roy Cohn in HBO biopic "Citizen Cohn"
1995:
Portrayed H.R. Haldeman in Stone's "Nixon"
1995:
Co-starred in Showtime special "Curse of the Starving Class," adapted from Sam Shepard's play
1995:
Starred in the acclaimed HBO movie "Indictment: The McMartin Trial"
1996:
Turned in a remarkably nuanced portrait of a jailed murderer in the overlooked "Killer: A Journal of Murder"
1996:
Received a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination portraying Byron de la Beckwith, the killer of Civil Rights activist Medgar Evans, in the earnest "Ghosts of Mississippi"
1997:
Voiced the character of Hades in Disney's animated feature "Hercules" and the subsequent ABC spin-off series
1998:
Honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (October 15)
1998:
Starred as a vampire hunter in "John Carpenter's Vampires"
1998:
Reteamed with Melanie Griffith as a drug dealing, thieving couple in "Another Day in Paradise"; also produced
1999:
Portrayed the disarmingly insightful and manipulative Colonel Moore in summer military thriller "The General's Daughter"
1999:
Reteamed with Oliver Stone for the football-themed "Any Given Sunday"
2000:
Played father of five girls in Sofia Coppola's feature directorial debut "The Virgin Suicides"
2000:
Portrayed Dennis Barrie, who as director of the Cincinnati Contemporary Arts Center booked an exhibit of images by the controversial photographer Robert Maplethorpe in "Dirty Pictures" (Showtime)
2000:
Contributed voice to animated series "Clerks: The Cartoon" (ABC)
2001:
Lent voice to animated sci-fi adventure feature "Final Fantasy: The Movie"
2001:
Replaced an ailing Marlon Brando in a cameo role as a priest performing an exorcism in "Scary Movie 2"
2003:
Starred as the Republican bulldog and former New York City mayor Rudolph Giuliani in "Rudy: The Rudy Giuliani Story" (USA Network)
2005:
Portrayed the father of a teen (Evan Rachel Wood) who accuses her English teacher of sexual harassment in "Pretty Persuasion"
2006:
Earned an Emmy nomination for Best Guest Actor in a Drama Series for "ER"
2006:
Played an infamous defense lawyer who becomes a prosecutor on CBS legal drama "Shark"
2007:
Voiced surf promoter Reggie Belafonte in animated feature "Surf's Up"
2011:
Portrayed Richard S. Fuld, Jr., Chairman and CEO of Lehman Brothers in HBO's "Too Big to Fail"
2011:
Nominated for the 2011 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Miniseries Or A Movie
2011:
Co-starred in Rod Lurie's remake of "Straw Dogs"
2012:
Played a mysterious hospital's chief of staff in A&E miniseries "Coma," based on 1978 film
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Pilgrim High School: Warwick , Rhode Island -
Massachusetts Institute of Technology: Cambridge , Massachusetts -

Notes

"Jimmy is a great actor. I can't say I loved working with him, because he was such an asshole, but I love him. I've said this so many times, but working with Jimmy is like being pregnant. In the beginning, you're so happy and excited that you can't believe you have this endeavor ahead of you. And then in the middle, you're thinking, I might have made the biggest mistake of my life. And by the end, you just want it to be over with." --Melanie Griffith quoted in Los Angeles, February 1999

"I've heard her say that a hundred times and it makes me laugh every time. I tell her, 'You always leave out the best part, which is that as soon as you're done giving birth, 10 minutes later you can't wait to do it again.' She says, 'I know, I just leave that part out to aggravate the shit out of you.'" --James Woods response to Griffith's comments, quoted in Los Angeles, February 1999

"What's the difference between 'Sleepless in Seattle' and 'Straight Talk'? It's a roll of the dice." --Woods in Movieline, November 1994

"I cannot imagine why a man would want to go to a prostitute. Why would I want to be intimate with somebody who doesn't care whether you live or die? They'd rather you be dead so they could steal your wallet." --Woods in Movieline, November 1994

"I think the ideal situation is to have a good, creative director and a production entity which makes the work situation as much ours as possible. For me, what is most productive from a director is that he understand what the story is." --Woods in American Film, May 1990

"Reading for a part is very important, actually. There's this sort of agency mentality: If you're a big star, they should offer you a lot of money, and then you deign to read the script. Except--and this is sort of a big secret around town--no matter how big a star is, when you want a part and you ain't getting offered it, you find a way to sort of make yourself available." --Woods in American Film, May 1990

"If I say I'm the best actor for the part, I mean it and I'm not kidding."-Woods

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Kathryn Morrison-Pahoa. Costume designer. Married in 1980; divorced in 1983; created costumes for "Salvador" (1986).
companion:
Sean Young. Actor. Had brief relationship during and after filming of "The Boost" (1988).
wife:
Sarah Owen. Horse trainer. Born c. 1963; married on June 2, 1989 in Beverly Hills, California; legally separated on November 30, 1989; divorced in 1990; on TV show "Hard Copy" November 14, 1991, she alleged that Woods held a loaded shotgun to her head and also beat her; Woods has denied the allegations.
companion:
Julie Tesh. Former wife of "Entertainment Tonight" host John Tesh.
companion:
Heather Graham. Actor. Met while filming "Diggstown" (1992).
companion:
Nicollette Sheridan. Actor. Dated in 1995-96.
companion:
Missy Crider. Actor. Born c. 1974; met in 1991; became engaged April 1997; separated; reunited and renewed engagement in early 2000; separated again in spring 2000; reunited by late summer 2000; no longer together.
companion:
Hilary Rowland. Web designer. Canadian.
VIEW COMPLETE COMPANION LISTING

Family close complete family listing

father:
Gail Peyton Woods. US Army intelligence officer. Died in 1960 following routine surgery.
mother:
Martha Dixon. Teacher. Operated a preschool following her husband's death.
brother:
Michael Woods. Video store owner. Born in 1957; ran for mayor of Warwick, Rhode Island in 2000.

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