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Clark Gregg

Clark Gregg

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Also Known As: Robert Clark Gregg Died:
Born: April 2, 1962 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Boston, Massachusetts, USA Profession: actor, screenwriter, director

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

A genuine triple threat, actor-writer-director Clark Gregg gained respect on the stage and earned credibility in dozens of supporting roles in film and television for two decades prior to becoming part of one of the biggest movie franchises in history. A frequent collaborator with playwright-filmmaker David Mamet, Greggâ¿¿s early film appearances included such Mamet efforts as "Things Change" (1988) and "The Spanish Prisoner" (1997). He later garnered substantial praise for his turn as a pre-operative transsexual opposite Adrian Grenier in "The Adventures of Sebastian Cole" (1998). Gregg made his debut as a feature-film screenwriter with the paranormal mystery "What Lies Beneath" (2000), turned in more respectable supporting work in films like "One Hour Photo" (2002) and appeared with regularity on such hit shows as "The West Wing" (NBC, 1999-2006). After writing and directing an adaptation of Chuck Palahniukâ¿¿s novel "Choke" (2008), Gregg made his first appearance as secret agent Phil Coulson in the superhero spectacular, "Iron Man" (2008). More Coulson cameos followed, eventually leading to an expanded role in the summer blockbuster "The Avengers" (2012), which teamed a number of Marvel Comicsâ¿¿...

A genuine triple threat, actor-writer-director Clark Gregg gained respect on the stage and earned credibility in dozens of supporting roles in film and television for two decades prior to becoming part of one of the biggest movie franchises in history. A frequent collaborator with playwright-filmmaker David Mamet, Greggâ¿¿s early film appearances included such Mamet efforts as "Things Change" (1988) and "The Spanish Prisoner" (1997). He later garnered substantial praise for his turn as a pre-operative transsexual opposite Adrian Grenier in "The Adventures of Sebastian Cole" (1998). Gregg made his debut as a feature-film screenwriter with the paranormal mystery "What Lies Beneath" (2000), turned in more respectable supporting work in films like "One Hour Photo" (2002) and appeared with regularity on such hit shows as "The West Wing" (NBC, 1999-2006). After writing and directing an adaptation of Chuck Palahniukâ¿¿s novel "Choke" (2008), Gregg made his first appearance as secret agent Phil Coulson in the superhero spectacular, "Iron Man" (2008). More Coulson cameos followed, eventually leading to an expanded role in the summer blockbuster "The Avengers" (2012), which teamed a number of Marvel Comicsâ¿¿ most iconic heroes on screen for the first time. While not boasting the marquee recognition enjoyed by many of his costars, Gregg remained one of the more versatile and employable talents in Hollywood.

Born in Boston, MA on April 2, 1962, Gregg studied drama at New York University, where he was befriended and mentored by noted playwright, David Mamet. With Mametâ¿¿s help, he and actor William H. Macy helped to co-found NYC's Atlantic Theater Company, where Gregg served as artistic director for a number of years. Over the course of one momentous year, he made his off-Broadway debut under the direction of Macy in Howard Korderâ¿¿s play, "A Boyâ¿¿s Life" in 1988, made his feature film debut in writer-director Mametâ¿¿s mob fable "Things Change" (1988), and worked under Macyâ¿¿s direction again in the made-for-cable movie, "Lip Service" (HBO, 1988). After making his Broadway debut in Aaron Sorkin's "A Few Good Men" (1990), and appearing on network TV for the first time in a 1991 episode of "Law & Order" (NBC, 1990-2010), he enjoyed a feature lead as a plumber mistaken for a podiatrist in writer-director Bashar Shbib's "Lana in Love" (1992), followed by another substantial role in the filmmakerâ¿¿s comedy "Ride Me" (1994).

Throughout the ⿿90s, Gregg divided his time between performances on the stage and screen. Working on efforts in both New York and Los Angeles, he directed productions of Kevin Heelan⿿s "Distant Fires" and Mamet⿿s "Edmond," in addition to garnering praise for his performance in an off-Broadway mounting of Jez Butterworth⿿s "Mojo." Gregg added further to his steadily growing film résumé with solid turns in such notable films as "Clear and Present Danger" (1994), "The Usual Suspects" (1995), Mamet's "The Spanish Prisoner" (1997) and Paul Thomas Anderson's "Magnolia" (1999). Rounding out the decade, he made an indelible impression as the maternal, pre-operative transsexual step-father, Hank-Henrietta, in the indie coming-of-age drama "The Adventure of Sebastian Cole" (1999). As a writer, Gregg picked up his first screenplay credit for his work on the Robert Zemeckis-directed supernatural-thriller, "What Lies Beneath" (2000), starring Harrison Ford and Michelle Pfeiffer as a couple whose lakeside home hides a terrifying secret.

Gregg's ongoing collaboration with Mamet continued with a role in the writer-directorâ¿¿s culture clash comedy "State and Main" (2000) and work in an off-Broadway revival of "Sexual Perversity in Chicago," also penned by Mamet. With the new millennium off to a promising start, Gregg later married "Dirty Dancing" actress Jennifer Grey in 2001. Continuing his string of supporting roles in wildly diverse projects, he played a robotics expert in director Steven Spielbergâ¿¿s homage to Stanley Kubrick, "A.I. Artificial Intelligence" (2001) then appeared alongside Mel Gibson in the Vietnam War drama, "We Were Soldiers" (2002), which Gibson also directed. In "Lovely & Amazing" (2002), the critically acclaimed ensemble comedy with Catherine Keener and Jake Gyllenhaal, Gregg played the husband of Michelle (Keener), a self-centered, struggling artist dealing with an unhappy marriage. That same year, he appeared in the dark psychological drama, "One Hour Photo" (2002), a well-regarded thriller starring an against-type creepy Robin Williams and directed by Mark Romanek.

Though Gregg's focus remained largely on the stage and film, he was also seen regularly on television with numerous guest spots on such popular shows as "Sex & the City" (HBO, 1998-2004), "The Shield" (FX, 2001-08) and Sorkinâ¿¿s "The West Wing" (NBC, 1999-2006) â¿¿ the latter of which provided Gregg with a recurring role as FBI Special Agent Michael Casper. He essayed real-life CNN news exec Eason Jordan in the award-winning docudrama "Live from Baghdad" (HBO, 2002) then segued back to feature film, joining writer-director Mamet once again for the political thriller "Spartan" (2003),0 starring Val Kilmer. Gregg surfaced as a sycophantic corporate shark in the lauded comedy-drama "In Good Company" (2004), starring Dennis Quaid, Topher Grace and Scarlett Johansson and, amongst his many other projects, turned up in the family eco-adventure "Hoot" (2006), based on the young adult novel by Carl Hiaasen.

Greggâ¿¿s return to screenwriting also marked his debut as a feature film director on the black comedy, "Choke" (2008). Based on the novel by Chuck Palahniuk, it starred Sam Rockwell as a recovering sex addict struggling to care for his Alzheimerâ¿¿s-afflicted mother (Angelica Huston). Gregg also appeared in the film, as did his father-in-law, actor Joel Grey. That same year, he entered what would become known as the Marvel Cinematic Universe for the first time when he picked up a small role as S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Phil Coulson in the hugely successful comic book adaptation, "Iron Man" (2008) and its sequel, both of which starred Robert Downey, Jr. as billionaire inventor Tony Stark, the man inside the metal suit. He closed out the decade with such roles as Joseph Gordon-Levittâ¿¿s boss in the indie romantic-comedy surprise hit "(500) Days of Summer" (2009), in addition to playing Julia Louis-Dreyfusâ¿¿ irresponsible ex-husband on all five seasons of the hit sitcom "The New Adventures of Old Christine" (CBS, 2006-2010).

After appearing as an uncaring penguin expert in the Jim Carrey family comedy "Mr. Popperâ¿¿s Penguins" (2011), Gregg further expanded his Agent Coulson role in another epic superhero adventure, "Thor" (2011), featuring newcomer Chris Hemsworth as the titular God of Thunder. Having become a staple supporting character in the MCU, Gregg also voiced the character for the animated series "Ultimate Spider-Man" (Disney XD, 2012- ). Of course, it all led up to the hugely anticipated summer blockbuster, "The Avengers" (2012), in which Coulson struggled to help S.H.I.E.L.D Director Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) maintain order amidst a volatile team of superheroes consisting of Iron Man (Downey, Jr.), Thor (Hemsworth), Captain America (Chris Evans) and the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo). Although events in the movie placed Gregg's future in the Marvel Universe in jeopardy, he was able to revive his Coulson character in the subsequent TV series "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." (ABC, 2013- ), which found him working with a team that lacks super powers but still stands as a formidable force of good.

Outside of Marvel productions, Gregg worked with Whedon yet again on the director's Shakespeare adaptation "Much Ado About Nothing" (2012). He also penned, helmed and starred in the indie comedy "Trust Me" (2013), where he portrayed a former child actor working as a struggling talent agent. The same year, Gregg turned up in a small part in the comedic feature "The To Do List," starring Aubrey Plaza, but remained primarily focused on Agent Coulson's small-screen adventures.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

1.
  Trust Me (2013)
2.
  Choke (2008)

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Light Years (2014)
2.
 Trust Me (2013)
3.
 Labor Day (2013)
5.
 Very Good Girls (2013)
6.
 To Do List, The (2013)
7.
 Avengers, The (2012)
8.
9.
 Thor (2011)
10.
 Iron Man 2 (2010)
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1984:
Co-founded the Atlantic Theater Company in NYC
1987:
Made off-Broadway acting debut in "Fun"
1988:
Feature acting debut in David Mamet's "Things Change"
1988:
Appeared in the Lincoln Center production of Howard Korder's "A Boy's Life," directed by William H. Macy
1988:
Once again directed by Macy in the HBO production "Lip Service"
1989:
Cast in a supporting role in Roland Joffe's "Fat Man and Little Boy"
1990:
Made Broadway debut in Aaron Sorkin's "A Few Good Men"
1991:
TV debut, an episode of "Law & Order" (NBC)
1991:
Directed NYC premiere of Kevin Heelan's "Distant Fires" at Atlantic Theater Company; also helmed the 1993 Los Angeles premiere
1992:
First film with Bashar Shbib, "Lana in Love"
1994:
Appeared in Charles Shyer's "I Love Trouble"
1995:
Played Dr. Walters in Bryan Singer's "The Usual Suspects"
1995:
Portrayed fight trainer Kevin Rooney in the HBO film "Tyson"
1995:
Re-teamed with Macy for the HBO film "Above Suspicion"
1996:
Staged the Atlantic Theater Company revival of Mamet's "Edmond"
1997:
Re-teamed with Mamet for "The Spanish Prisoner"
1997:
Cast in the Atlantic Theater presentation of Jez Butterworth's comedy "Mojo"
1999:
Won praise for his turn as a transsexual in "The Adventures of Sebastian Cole"
1999:
Appeared in Paul Thomas Anderson's "Magnolia"
2000:
Featured in the off-Broadway revival of Mamet's "Sexual Perversity in Chicago"
2000:
Screenwriting debut, "What Lies Beneath"; directed by Robert Zemeckis and starring Harrison Ford and Michelle Pfeiffer
2000:
Re-teamed with Mamet for the ensemble feature "State and Main"
2001:
Cast in a recurring role on "The West Wing" (NBC) as FBI Special Agent Michael Casper
2002:
Landed featured role in "We Were Soldiers"
2002:
Cast in the HBO movie "Live From Baghdad"
2003:
Acted opposite Anthony Hopkins in "The Human Stain"
2004:
Co-starred opposite Topher Grace and Scarlett Johansson in the comedy "In Good Company"
2006:
Starred in the remake of the 1979 thriller "When a Stranger Calls"
2006:
Cast as Julia Louis-Dreyfus' ex-husband on the CBS sitcom "The New Adventures of Old Christine"
2007:
Played Meg Ryan's husband in Jonathan Kasdan's directorial debut "In the Land of Women"
2008:
Appeared in the Marvel Comics film adaptation of "Iron Man" as Agent Phil Coulson
2008:
Directed the film adaptation of "Choke," based on Chuck Palahniuk's novel and starring Sam Rockwell
2010:
Returned as Agent Coulson in Jon Favreau's "Iron Man 2"
2011:
Made a cameo as Agent Coulson in "Thor," directed by Kenneth Branagh
2012:
Reprised Agent Coulson role in the Marvel superhero ensemble feature "The Avengers"
2013:
Wrote, directed and starred in "Trust Me"
2013:
Returned as Agent Coulson on the TV series "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D."
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Ohio Wesleyan University: Delaware , Ohio -
New York University: New York , New York - 1986

Notes

"I knew he was the right person, but I was kind of shocked when he appeared and he had, like, the world's broadest shoulders and the narrowest waist and a super-hairy chest.

"He is a very masculine person. So when we first started putting dresses on him, I think he got a little depressed. I was a little stunned, too. We kind of got better at it." --Tod Williams, the director of "The Adventures of Sebastian Cole", on casting Gregg as a transsexual, quoted in Los Angeles Times, August 6, 1999.

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Jennifer Grey. Actor. Dating from late summer 2000; married on July 21, 2001.

Family close complete family listing

daughter:
Stella Gregg. Born on December 4, 2001.

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