Served in U.S. Army just after the Korean War
Started acting at age 35 while working as a used car salesman in his native Cleveland, OH
Performed in community theater
Moved to NYC where he began working with the Negro Ensemble Company
Broadway debut, "The First Breeze of Summer"
First notable film credit, "Greased Lightning"
Made in TV debut in NBC biographical miniseries "King"
Appeared in Broadway production of "Master Harold...and the Boys"
Landed first substantial TV role in "The Member of the Wedding," a presentation of "NBC Live Theater"
Starred opposite Ruby Dee in "My Man Bovanne," a segment of "Ossie and Ruby" directed by Ossie Davis
Landed first recurring role in a TV series, playing the Dutchman on highly regarded ABC sitcom "The 'Slap' Maxwell Story"
Appeared as a regular on "Homeroom," a short-lived ABC sitcom
Co-starred with James Garner in "Decoration Day" (NBC), a "Hallmark Hall of Fame" presentation
Appeared as a regular on acclaimed NBC drama series "I'll Fly Away"
Landed pivotal role of Moses the clock man in the Coen brothers' "The Hudsucker Proxy"
Returned to series TV as regular on CBS sitcom "The Gregory Hines Show"
Landed regular role on NBC sic-fi drama "The Others"
Appeared regularly on short-lived "The Michael Richards Show" (NBC)
Played recurring role of Chaplain Matthew Turner on "JAG" (CBS)
Landed recurring role on ABC comedy series "The Drew Carey Show"
Cast opposite Ben Stiller in adventure comedy "Night at the Museum"
Appeared in direct-to-video family feature "The Search for Santa Paws"
Acted in feature film reboot of "The Muppets"
Played Master Tinkerer in fantasy adventure "Oz the Great and Powerful" opposite James Franco in title role