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Ron Eldard

Ron Eldard

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Also Known As: Died:
Born: February 20, 1965 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: New York City, New York, USA Profession: actor, boxer, deli worker

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

An amiable, engaging performer of stage, film and TV, Ron Eldard received critical acclaim in his feature debut opposite Annabella Sciorra as the immature bridegroom in "True Love" (1989), Nancy Savoca's low-budget, slice-of-life sleeper about an Italian wedding in the Bronx. (His Off-Broadway debut had come in an almost identical role as Tony in "Tony 'n' Tina's Wedding".) The attention, however, spooked him, and he passed on the first round of film offers coming his way, electing instead to remain in Queens and concentrate on theater while deciding what he wanted from life. After starring as Servy in the 1991 Off-Broadway production of "Servy-n-Bernice 4Ever", the former Golden Gloves contender decided to stick his toe in TV waters, and his rugged athletic looks and ability gave him credibility as a former baseball player who resorts to crime to support his family in the 1992 ABC movie "Jumpin' Joe". Eldard went on to play policemen in two short-lived sitcoms: in ABC's "Arresting Behavior" (1992), he was cast as the precinct playboy teamed with a veteran while in Fox's clever and classy "Bakersfield, P.D." (1993), he was a detective whose entire knowledge of policing came from TV. Never turning his...

An amiable, engaging performer of stage, film and TV, Ron Eldard received critical acclaim in his feature debut opposite Annabella Sciorra as the immature bridegroom in "True Love" (1989), Nancy Savoca's low-budget, slice-of-life sleeper about an Italian wedding in the Bronx. (His Off-Broadway debut had come in an almost identical role as Tony in "Tony 'n' Tina's Wedding".) The attention, however, spooked him, and he passed on the first round of film offers coming his way, electing instead to remain in Queens and concentrate on theater while deciding what he wanted from life. After starring as Servy in the 1991 Off-Broadway production of "Servy-n-Bernice 4Ever", the former Golden Gloves contender decided to stick his toe in TV waters, and his rugged athletic looks and ability gave him credibility as a former baseball player who resorts to crime to support his family in the 1992 ABC movie "Jumpin' Joe". Eldard went on to play policemen in two short-lived sitcoms: in ABC's "Arresting Behavior" (1992), he was cast as the precinct playboy teamed with a veteran while in Fox's clever and classy "Bakersfield, P.D." (1993), he was a detective whose entire knowledge of policing came from TV.

Never turning his back on the theater, Eldard acted in two 1993 Off-Broadway productions, "Aven'U Boys" and "The Years", performed his one-man show "Standing Eight Count" for the Naked Angels Repertory and finally made it to Broadway as Terry Malloy (the role which earned Marlon Brando an Oscar) in the unsuccessful 1995 stage adaptation of Elia Kazan's "On the Waterfront". (Eldard's first Broadway experience had turned sour when playwright Neil Simon fired him on the spot after watching him work during an understudy run-through of "Biloxi Blues" in 1986.) During the 1995-96 TV season, the actor increased his exposure significantly with his art-imitating-life recurring role as Shep, a paramedic who romanced Nurse Hathaway (played by Eldard's off-camera girlfriend Julianna Margulies) on the hit NBC medical drama "ER". When producers offered him a regular part on the series, however, he declined, believing there wasn't much more he could do with the character. Instead, he returned to the world of sitcoms in 1996 co-starring as Rob Schneider's beer-swigging roomie in NBC aptly-titled "Men Behaving Badly", but exited at the start of the show's second season in 1997 reportedly because he was unhappy that the scripts lacked the edge of the similarly named British series which had inspired it.

Despite his dimpled smile and playful, choirboy looks, Eldard has enjoyed a diverse career, often playing against type. 1996 saw him portray an abusive stepfather in Anjelica Huston's powerful film version of "Bastard Out of Carolina" (Showtime), a cold-hearted, drug-dealing killer traumatized by a childhood incident in Barry Levinson's "Sleepers" and a murderous grad student in the little-seen black comedy "The Last Supper". As he told US in April 1997: "I can play really terrible human beings, and I seem to have a quality that people can, if not necessarily forgive me those sins, at least cut me some slack." The actor reunited with frequent "ER" director Mimi Leder on "Deep Impact" before turning in a hauntingly effective performance as a World War II soldier receiving battlefield promotions in HBO's "When Trumpets Fade" and stepping into the shoes of yet another murderer for "Delivered" (all 1998). Back on the NYC boards in 1999, he was sensational as a cocky guy's guy in Neil LaBute's "bash", smoothly recalling the terrible lengths to which he stooped to retain his middle management position in a tour de force 25-minute monologue. He then succeeded Kevin Anderson as Biff in the award-winning Broadway revival of "Death of a Salesman". Eldard rounded out that year as a believable hockey player on screen, despite having to take a crash course in skating, in "Mystery Alaska", scripted by TV phenom David E. Kelley.

Eldard was among the impressive, mostly masculine cast of young actors "Black Hawk Down" (2001) director Ridley Scott's harrowing account of the Army Rangers disastrous 1993 incursion into war-torn Somalia. He next joined off-screen love Margulies in the cast of the spooky-soggy thriller "Ghost Ship" (2002), playing part of a salvage team that discovers a mysterious ocean liner. Eldard was better served by his next film "House of Sand and Fog" (2003), in which he plays a county police officer who falls for Jennifer Connelly and, by making a series of disastrous decisions, sets in motion the tragic end to her battle of wills with Ben Kinglsey over ownership of her family home.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Poker Night (2013)
2.
 Jobs (2013)
3.
 Super 8 (2011)
4.
 Roadie (2011)
5.
6.
 Already Dead (2008)
7.
 Diggers (2006)
8.
 Freedomland (2006) Cast
9.
 House of Sand and Fog (2003) Deputy Sheriff Lester Burdon
10.
 Ghost Ship (2002) Dodge
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Raised in Queens, NY
1986:
Understudied Matthew Broderick in the Broadway production of "Biloxi Blues"; unceremoniously fired by playwright Neil Simon during an understudies rehearsal just days before he was to take over part
1988:
Represented Gleason's Gym as a light heavyweight in the Golden Gloves Competition at Madison Square Garden
1988:
Off-Broadway debut, starring as the groom Anthony Angelo Nunzia in "Tony 'n' Tina's Wedding"
1989:
Feature acting debut playing the bridegroom in Nancy Savoca's "True Love"
1991:
Appeared in the questionably funny fantasy-comedy "Drop Dead Fred"
1991:
Starred off-Broadway as Servy in "Servy-n-Bernice 4Ever"
1992:
TV-movie debut, "Jumpin' Joe" (ABC)
1992:
TV series debut on the short-lived ABC sitcom "Arresting Behavior"
1992:
Landed a small part in "Scent of a Woman" as the policeman who stops the car driven by a blind man (Al Pacino)
1993:
Co-starred on the Fox sitcom "Bakersfield, P.D."
1995:
Portrayed Terry Malloy in failed Broadway adaptation of "On the Waterfront"
1995:
Played recurring role of Shep, a swashbuckling (but tortured) paramedic on NBC's "ER"
1996:
Delivered an effective turn as the abusive stepfather of a young girl in the Showtime movie "Bastard Out of Carolina," Anjelica Huston's directorial debut
1996:
Co-starred on the first season of NBC's "Men Behaving Badly"
1998:
Portrayed an astronaut in Mimi Leder's "Deep Impact"
1998:
Starred as Private David Manning in HBO's engrossing World War II film "When Trumpets Fade"
1999:
Acted in the off-Broadway production "Bash"; reprised role in L.A. and in the 2000 Showtime adaptation
1999:
Succeeded Kevin Anderson as Biff in the award-winning Broadway revival of "Death of a Salesman"; recreated role in the 2000 Showtime production
1999:
Portrayed a hockey player in "Mystery Alaska"; scripted by TV phenom David E. Kelley
2001:
Cast as an officer taken hostage during a skirmish with local fighters in the fact-based drama "Black Hawk Down"
2002:
Co-starred with offscreen companion Julianna Margulies in "Ghost Ship"
2003:
Co-starred with Jennifer Connelly in "House of Sand and Fog"
2005:
Played a blind cop on the ABC drama "Blind Justice"
2006:
Debuted in the role of Father Flynn in the Tony Award winning Broadway production of "Doubt"
2006:
Cast in Joe Roth's "Freedomland"
2008:
Co-starred in the Lifetime mystery movie "The Tenth Circle"
2011:
Co-starred in the J. J. Abrams directed and Steven Spielberg produced film "Super 8"
2011:
Played a former Blue Oyster Cult roadie who returns home to take care of his ailing mother (Lois Smith) in "Roadie"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

State University of New York, Purchase: Purchase , New York -
HB Studios: New York , New York -
The School of Performing Arts: New York , New York -

Notes

His relationship with Julianna Margulies was definitely a factor in his passing on an offer to be a regular on "ER": "Everything was together. We'd spend 12 to 15 intense hours a day there, and then see each other afterward, that's not the healthiest situation for a couple. I don't know how Ricky and Lucy did it without having a gunfight. Besides, her trailer is bigger, and I can't have that."---Ron Eldard quoted in ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY, December 13, 1996.

About being recognized: "It's great for someone to like what you did. That's a good thing. The people who shout at you in the street are also the people paying your rent. Otherwise I'm doing this alone in my basement."---Eldard to Greg Emmanuel in TIMEOUT NEW YORK, June 25-July 2, 1998.

On getting fired from "Biloxi Blues" by Neil Simon: "I thought I was doing a good job, but obvioulsy Mr. Simon didn't agree. I was crushed. I thought my career was over. I couldn't tell my family or my friends. I just went back to being a deli guy."---Eldard to Michael Riedel in the NEW YORK POST, July 6, 1999.

Companions close complete companion listing

companion:
Julianna Margulies. Actor. Met in acting class in 1991; acted opposite one another in "ER" and in "Ghost Ship" (2001).

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