skip navigation
James Keach

James Keach

Up
Down

| VIEW ALL

TCM Messageboards
Post your comments here
ADD YOUR COMMENT>

share:

TCM Archive Materials VIEW ALL ARCHIVES (0)

Recent DVDs

 
 

Blind Dating DVD Love comes into view for a blind man in the insightful romantic comedy "Blind... more info $9.98was $9.98 Buy Now

Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman: The Movies... These two feature-length films are a fan's delight, returning to the West of Dr.... more info $9.98was $9.98 Buy Now

Wildcats DVD You've never seen a coach like this before. Goldie Hawn is at her comedic best... more info $12.98was $12.98 Buy Now

The Long Riders DVD In this 1980s classic, Jesse James and his band of outlaws wreak havoc in the... more info $14.98was $14.98 Buy Now

The Razor's Edge DVD A labor of love for Bill Murray, "The Razor's Edge" (1984) updates the 1946 film... more info $14.99was $14.99 Buy Now

The Stars Fell On Henrietta... Texas 1935. It’s a time of boomtowns or bust for oil wildcatters and, time and... more info $19.99was $19.99 Buy Now



Also Known As: Died:
Born: December 7, 1947 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Flushing, New York, USA Profession: actor, director, screenwriter, producer, children's book author, boxer, fishing boat worker, factory worker, lumberyard worker

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Leaner, and often cast as meaner, than his older brother Stacy Keach, James Keach has moved from playing usually supporting, often adversarial or villainous, roles to producing and directing for TV and the big screen. Tall, with a "blue collar" air, he sported a mustache for most of his twenty year acting career (1971-91). Keach began on stage in various roles at the prestigious New York Shakespeare Festival before segueing to the small screen as Orville in an acclaimed PBS biography of the Wright Brothers in 1972. He made his feature debut in a small role in "Sunburst" (1975) and went on to appear in supporting roles in "Death Play" (1976), Alan J. Pakula's "Comes a Horseman" (1978) and Jon Troell's remake of "Hurricane" (1979).It took Walter Hill's "The Long Riders" (1980) to help establish Keach. With his brother Stacy, he co-executive produced, co-wrote and co-starred in this revisionist Western. The film's hook had real-life brothers portraying legendary outlaws: David, Keith and Robert Carradine were the Youngers; Randy and Dennis Quaid were the Millers; Nicholas and Christopher Guest were the Fords; and the Keach brothers played Frank and Jesse James. With an effective Ry Cooder score and...

Leaner, and often cast as meaner, than his older brother Stacy Keach, James Keach has moved from playing usually supporting, often adversarial or villainous, roles to producing and directing for TV and the big screen. Tall, with a "blue collar" air, he sported a mustache for most of his twenty year acting career (1971-91). Keach began on stage in various roles at the prestigious New York Shakespeare Festival before segueing to the small screen as Orville in an acclaimed PBS biography of the Wright Brothers in 1972. He made his feature debut in a small role in "Sunburst" (1975) and went on to appear in supporting roles in "Death Play" (1976), Alan J. Pakula's "Comes a Horseman" (1978) and Jon Troell's remake of "Hurricane" (1979).

It took Walter Hill's "The Long Riders" (1980) to help establish Keach. With his brother Stacy, he co-executive produced, co-wrote and co-starred in this revisionist Western. The film's hook had real-life brothers portraying legendary outlaws: David, Keith and Robert Carradine were the Youngers; Randy and Dennis Quaid were the Millers; Nicholas and Christopher Guest were the Fords; and the Keach brothers played Frank and Jesse James. With an effective Ry Cooder score and stunning visuals, "The Long Riders" received excellent reviews and is considered a minor classic. The film, however, did not jump-start Keach's career. He went on to supporting roles as a motorcycle cop in Harold Ramis' "National Lampoon's Vacation" (1983), Catherine Hicks' husband in John Byrum's misguided remake of "The Razor's Edge" (1984) and gave a snortingly amusing turn as a Gestapo-like traffic officer in "Moving Violations" (1985).

Keach began moving behind the camera. He devised the story for and, with Brian Grazer, produced "Armed and Dangerous" (1986), a low-brow comedy vehicle for John Candy and Eugene Levy. Keach had slightly better luck with his directorial debut, "False Identity" (1990), an uneven murder mystery that starred Genevieve Bujold and Stacy Keach. His sophomore effort, "The Stars Fell on Henrietta" (1995), was a box office disappointment but earned some critical praise. The film detailed the effects of a wildcat oilman (Robert Duvall) on the lives of a young couple (Frances Fisher and Aidan Quinn) in Depression-era Texas.

Keach has had better success in the director's chair on TV. He forged a relationship with the USA network, helming telefilms like the actioner "The Forgotten" (1989) and the mystery "Praying Mantis" (1993). During the filming of the mystery "Sunstroke" (USA, 1992), Keach fell in live with his leading lady, Jane Seymour. They married in 1993 and he has since directed her in episodes of the CBS series "Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman" and the TV biopic "A Passion for Justice: The Hazel Brannon Smith Story" (ABC, 1994).

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

2.
3.
  Submerged (2001) Director
4.
  Blackout (2001) Director
5.
  murder in the mirror (2000) Director
6.
  Camouflage (2000) Director
9.
10.
  Absolute Truth, The (1997) Director

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Walk the Line (2005)
3.
 New Swiss Family Robinson, The (1999) Jack Robinson
4.
 Murder in High Places (1991) Levering
5.
 Dance Goes On (1991) James Smith
7.
 Options (1989) Ed Sloan
8.
 Experts (1989) Captain Yuri Kuznets
9.
 Evil Town (1987) Chris Fuller
10.
 Man Who Broke 1,000 Chains, The (1987) Vincent Burns
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1970:
New York stage debut, various productions, New York Shakespeare Festival
1972:
TV debut as Orville Wright in the acclaimed PBS biography "Orville & Wilbur"
1973:
Broadway debut, "Felice" in "The Outcry"
1975:
Feature debut in a small role in "Sunburst"
1976:
Had supporting roles in "Death Play" and "Cannonball"
1980:
Co-starred (as Jesse James), executive produced and co-wrote (with brother Stacy and others), "The Long Riders"
1983:
Played a motorcycle cop in Harold Ramis' "National Lampoon's Vacation"
1986:
Produced "A Winner Never Quits" for TV and "Armed and Dangerous" for the big screen
1986:
Played Goldie Hawn's ex-husband in "Wildcats"
1989:
Helmed the USA movie, "The Forgotten" starring his brother Stacy
1989:
Directed the ABC series "The Young Riders," which he also produced
1990:
Feature directing debut, "False Identity"
1992:
Met future wife Jane Seymour, while directing her in the USA movie, "Sunstroke"
1992:
Directed several episodes of the popular CBS series, "Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman" starring his wife, actress, Jane Seymour
1995:
Directed second feature "The Stars Fell on Henrietta"
1997:
Directed wife in the CBS made-for-TV movie, "The Absolute Truth"
1999:
Produced and directed the CBS TV-movie, "Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman: The Movie" starring his wife
2001:
Directed Leslie Nielsen in the independent feature "Camouflage"
2002:
Helmed "Disease of the Wind," a documentary shot in partnership with the American Red Cross
2005:
Produced the Johnny Cash biopic "Walk the Line," also had a memorable cameo as the Folsom Prison warden
2007:
Directed and co-produced "Blind Dating" with wife Jane Seymour who also starred
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Northwestern University: Evanston , Illinois -
School of Drama, Yale University: New Haven , Connecticut -
School of the Arts, New York University: New York , New York -

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Holly Keach. Divorced.
wife:
Mimi Maynard. Actor. Divorced.
wife:
Jane Seymour. Actor. Married May 15, 1993; born February 15, 1951.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Walter Stacy Keach Sr. Actor, producer,.
brother:
Stacy Keach. Actor, director. Born 1941.
son:
Kalen Keach. Mother, Holly Keach.
son:
Kristoffer Steven Keach. Twin, born November 1995; mother Jane Seymour.
son:
John Stacy Keach. Twin, born November 1995; mother Jane Seymour.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

Bibliography close complete biography

"This One 'N That One in Splat!: The Tal of a Colorful Cat" Putnam Publishing Group (Juvenile)
"This One 'N That One in Yum!: A Tale of Two Cookies" Putnam Publishing Group (Juvenile)
"Eat" Putnam Publishing Group (Juvenile)
"Me and Me" Putnam Publishing Group (Juvenile)
"Play" Putnam Publishing Group (Juvenile)
"Talk" Putnam Publishing Group (Juvenile)
"Boing! No Bouncing on the Bed" Putnam Publishing Group (Juvenile)
VIEW COMPLETE BIBLIOGRAPHY

Please support TCMDB by adding to this information.

Click here to contribute