Donald Sutherland


Actor
Donald Sutherland

About

Also Known As
Donald Mcnichol Sutherland
Birth Place
St John, New Brunswick, CA
Born
July 17, 1935

Biography

Perhaps one of the most prolific and widely recognized actors of his generation, Donald Sutherland made a career playing some of the most unusual and memorable characters in cinema history. Though best known for playing odd, off-beat roles, like a hippie tank commander in "Kelly's Heroes" (1970), an anti-authoritarian surgeon in "M*A*S*H" (1970), a novice private investigator in "Klute" ...

Photos & Videos

Kelly's Heroes - Movie Poster Art
Klute - Movie Posters
Alex in Wonderland - Movie Poster

Family & Companions

Lois Hardwick
Wife
Actor. Married in 1959; divorced in 1966; Canadian; met at University of Toronto.
Shirley Douglas
Wife
Actor. Married in 1966; divorced in 1971; Canadian; mother of Kiefer and Rachel Sutherland; daughter of former Canadian NDP leader, Tommy Douglas; met while filming "Castle of the Living Dead"; she was arrested for trying to buy hand grenades from the CIA with a personal check, but case ultimately thrown out of court.
Jane Fonda
Companion
Actor. Met while filming "Klute"; had three-year relationship; performed together in "Free the Army" anti-war revue that toured military bases (1973).
Joan Juliet Buck
Companion
Fashion editor. Thinly veiled their relationship in her novel "The Only Place to Be".

Notes

Active with the Canadian Centre for Arms Control and Disarmament, an Ottawa-based research organization

He received an honorary PhD from Saint Mary's University and honorary LLDs from McGill University and the University of Toronto

Biography

Perhaps one of the most prolific and widely recognized actors of his generation, Donald Sutherland made a career playing some of the most unusual and memorable characters in cinema history. Though best known for playing odd, off-beat roles, like a hippie tank commander in "Kelly's Heroes" (1970), an anti-authoritarian surgeon in "M*A*S*H" (1970), a novice private investigator in "Klute" (1971) and a stoner college professor in "Animal House" (1978), Sutherland cut a wide swath of characters throughout his career, mainly in order to avoid being typecast as eccentric weirdos. Critical acclaim for several of his performances - especially "Ordinary People" (1980) and "JFK" (1991) - was abundant, but he rarely received any awards, a surprising revelation given the breadth and quality of his work. Nonetheless, Sutherland maintained a steady career despite a long lull in the mid-1980s, even expanding his horizons into series television with "Commander in Chief" (ABC, 2005-06) and "Dirty Sexy Money" (ABC, 2007-09), two projects that, although short-lived, earned him further critical raves. A key supporting role in "The Hunger Games" trilogy as the charmingly duplicitous President Snow brought him a new popular audience late in his career. Boasting a filmography that spanned more than five decades, Sutherland established himself as one of the most prolific, inventive and respected actors ever to grace the screen.

Born on July 17, 1935 in St. John, New Brunswick, Canada, Sutherland was raised in neighboring Bridgewater, Nova Scotia. His father, Frederick, was a salesman and head of the local bus, gas and electric company, and his mother, Dorothy, was a mathematics teacher. When he was 14, Sutherland was heard on CKBW as the youngest news reader and disc jockey in Canada. After high school, he studied engineering at the University of Toronto, but he quickly made the switch to an English major and began acting in school productions, making his stage debut in "The Male Animal" in 1952. He graduated UT in 1956, then moved to England where he attended the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts. He went immediately to work in provincial repertory companies, landing roles in several stage productions in London, including "August for the People." Sutherland was performing in a West End production of "Spoon River Anthology" when he was offered his first film, the dual role of a soldier and a witch (who end up fighting each other at the end) in "Castle of the Living Dead" (1964).

A couple of years after his film debut, Sutherland had moved to the United States where he continued taking strides to advance his career. He made his first American screen appearance in "The Dirty Dozen" (1967), playing a one of 12 soldiers in military prison during World War II, who are sent on a dangerous mission that gives them the chance to regain their honor. After bit parts in "Sebastian" (1968) and "Oedipus the King" (1968), Sutherland landed meatier supporting roles in "Joanna" (1968) and "Interlude" (1968). Then, without really meaning to, Sutherland suddenly made a name for himself in Robert Altman's Korean War satire "M*A*S*H" (1970), playing misfit surgeon Hawkeye Pearce, whose love of nurses and moonshine martinis were the only things keeping him and fellow surgeon Trapper John McIntyre (Elliott Gould) sane amidst the chaos of war. Because of the antiwar fervor of the late-1960s, early-1970s, "M*A*S*H" was one of the year's biggest hits, both critically and financially, turning an unknown Sutherland into an overnight star.

Hot on the heels of "M*A*S*H," Sutherland was seen in yet another war-themed comedy, "Kelly's Heroes" (1970), playing one of his most notorious and ultimately beloved characters, Oddball, a Bohemian tank commander who joins forces with a ragtag group of Army soldiers (led by Telly Savalas and Clint Eastwood) on a mission 30 miles behind Nazi lines to steal a large cache of gold. He achieved his first substantial critical acclaim for an excellent performance as a rural private detective who follows the sordid life of a prostitute (Jane Fonda) while on the trail of a killer in "Klute" (1971). Throughout the decade, Sutherland, despite his best efforts, was in danger of being typecast as a stoned-out goofball or an off-the-wall freak, thanks in large part to his rather unconventional looks. Luckily, he had both the sense and the talent to transcend the problem. In "Johnny Got His Gun" (1971), Sutherland was Jesus Christ, while in "Steelyard Blues" (1973), he was a demolition driver released from prison after serving time for larceny, and who gathers a band of misfits together to restore an old World War II plane in which to fly away to live in a nonconformist world.

Despite having made his name with "M*A*S*H" and "Klute" - both critical successes - Sutherland managed to make his share of duds, like "Lady Ice" (1973) and "S*P*Y*S" (1974), a ridiculously dull espionage comedy that reunited him with Elliot Gould. He was rather one-note as an ambitious and wealthy Hollywood powerbroker in the otherwise worthy adaptation of John Schlesinger's entertainment satire, "The Day of the Locust" (1975), before returning to the comfortable confines of World War II action in "The Eagle Had Landed" (1976), playing an English-hating Irishman who helps arrange a Nazi plot to kidnap Winston Churchill on British soil. After being cast as an everyman Casanova in "Il Casanova di Federico Fellini" (1976) and appearing briefly in the often uproarious spoof "Kentucky Fried Movie" (1977), Sutherland scored another landmark role, playing a pot smoking college professor who takes the girlfriend (Karen Allen) away from an irresponsible, but irrepressible fraternity leader (Tim Matheson) in "National Lampoon's Animal House" (1978). Sutherland was once again memorable in "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" (1978), bringing forth a palpable paranoia as a Department of Health employee contending with an alien invasion of soul-possessing spores.

Sutherland forever obliterated being typecast with his subtle portrayal of an emotionally conflicted father in "Ordinary People" (1980), director Robert Redford's extraordinary Oscar-winning look at a so-called perfect family. Though ultimately overlooked by the Academy Awards, Sutherland was exceptional as a family man dealing with the death of a child and the love for his wife (Mary Tyler Moore). Unfortunately, his critical success with "Ordinary People" failed to translate into other meaty roles; instead leading to the miserable satire "Gas" (1981) and the rather uninspired caper comedy "Crackers" (1984). Meanwhile, an ill-received stage performance as Humbert Humbert in Edward Albee's "Lolita" in 1981 helped keep him off the stage for a good 18 years - critics savaged the play, forcing the production to be canceled after only 12 performances. Sutherland, on the other hand, was spared from most of the critical drubbing the play received. After a 15 year absence, he returned to the small screen to play Ethan Hawley, a grocery store clerk who dreams of buying back his store from corrupt local bankers, in "John Steinbeck's The Winter of Our Discontent" (CBS, 1983), one of the few highlights for Sutherland in the 1980s.

While he remained prolific throughout the decade, Sutherland was mired in career doldrums that made his earlier successes more out of focus with time. Unexceptional features like the uneven murder mystery "Ordeal by Innocence" (1984), the flat-out dull period epic "Revolution" (1985), and the ineptly unfunny espionage comedy "The Trouble With Spies" (1987) only helped give rise to the notion that Sutherland's career was in trouble. He returned to more dramatic fare with "A Dry White Season" (1989), playing a South African schoolteacher ignorant of the horrors of apartheid and who turns radically against the system when his gardener's son is viciously murdered. Once the 1990s rolled around, however, Sutherland suddenly found himself in better films. He had a small, but integral role in "JFK" (1991), playing the mysterious Mr. X, a former black ops officer who feeds vital background information to New Orleans district attorney, Jim Garrison (Kevin Costner), the only person to bring a trial in the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Despite being onscreen for only 15 minutes, Sutherland's compelling performance made an indelible impression and remained one of the most remembered sequences in Oliver Stone's exceptional film.

After a series of high-profile, but ultimately forgettable roles in "Backdraft" (1991), "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" (1992) and "Outbreak" (1995), Sutherland received rare award recognition for his performance in "Citizen X" (HB0, 1995), an exceptional thriller about an eight-year investigation by an obsessed Russian detective (Stephen Rea) into the serial killings of 52 women and children. Sutherland received an Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or Special for his portrayal of Colonel Fetisov, the investigator's supportive boss who helps him fight the bureaucracy of the Soviet state. Building off that success, he was superb as the law school professor and mentor of a novice lawyer (Matthew McConaughey) in "A Time to Kill" (1996), then gave an understated and overlooked performance as famed track coach Bill Bowerman in "Without Limits" (1998), an engaging look at the ill-fated track star, Steve Prefontaine (Billy Crudup). Sutherland rounded out the millennium with more underwhelming projects, including the mediocre features "Fallen" (1998) and "Virus" (1999), and the above average made-for-television movie, "Behind the Mask" (CBS, 1999), in which he played a doctor who forms a father-son relationship with a mentally-challenged man (Matthew Fox).

Alongside charismatic turns as a sex-minded, over-the-hill astronaut in Clint Eastwood's amusing "Space Cowboys" (2000), and as William H. Macy's hit man father in "Panic" (2000), Sutherland occasionally slummed his way through routine big screen thrillers, including the easily dismissed Wesley Snipes action thriller, "The Art of War" (2000). He continued finding compelling roles on television, however, namely as a small time hood looking to make a big score in "The Big Heist" (2001), and as Clark Clifford, political advisor to Lyndon Johnson, in John Frankenheimer's acclaimed "Path to War" (HBO, 2002). In 2003, Sutherland enjoyed a renaissance on the big screen, delivering a charming performance as the mentor to a professional thief (Mark Wahlberg) in the hit remake "The Italian Job" (2003), and as Nicole Kidman's doting Southern dad in "Cold Mountain" (2003). In "Stephen King's Salem's Lot" (TNT, 2004), he played a sinister old man who deals in antiques and has taken residence in a haunted mansion on a hill. Though not as frightening as the original made-for-television version, this new rendition nonetheless delivered plenty of chills. Sutherland continued the horror trend with yet another version of "Frankenstein" (Hallmark, 2004), though this particular version remained faithful to Mary Shelley's original novel.

Taking a different turn on the small screen, he appeared as a regular in his first scripted series, "Commander In Chief" (ABC, 2005-06), a political drama about a female vice president (Geena Davis) who assumes the presidency after the death of her predecessor. Sutherland played the right-wing Speaker of the House and next in line for the job, who tries to convince the vice president to step aside so he can grab hold the reigns of power. He then earned his second Emmy award nomination in a supporting role in the miniseries, "Human Trafficking" (Lifetime, 2005), starring Robert Carlyle and Mira Sorvino, before playing the Bennett family patriarch in the lively adaptation of Jane Austen's "Pride and Prejudice" (2005). While Sutherland maintained a steady supporting presence on the big screen, his fate on "Commander in Chief" suddenly became uncertain in early 2006. Though critically acclaimed, the show steadily lost its audience over the course of its first and only season because of faulty scheduling and a revolving door of showrunners who continually changed the series' tone and direction.

By May 2006, when ABC pulled the series from the lineup for the all-important sweeps, Sutherland expressed deep disappointment with the show's inevitable cancellation and the diminishing of his character into a cartoonish villain through clever editing. Despite a nomination for Best Supporting Actor at the 2006 Golden Globe Awards, Sutherland was not seen playing Speaker of the House the next fall. Meanwhile, Sutherland had a small and rather clandestine role as a mysterious colonel who keeps a watchful eye on an international arms dealer (Nicolas Cage) on the verge of a breakdown in the under-appreciated "Lord of War" (2005). After appearing as part of the ensemble cast in "American Gun" (2005), a series of interwoven stories commenting on the proliferation of guns in America and their impact on society, Sutherland played the patriarch of an early-19th century family terrorized by an evil spirit in "An American Haunting" (2006).

After a co-starring role in "Reign Over Me" (2007), a compelling drama about two former college roommates (Don Cheadle and Adam Sandler) coping with life after 9/11, Sutherland played a billionaire with a mega-yacht who is convinced by a good-natured surf bum (Matthew McConaughey) to join him on a treasure hunt for several chests of gold in "Fool's Gold" (2008). Back on television, he was delightful as the patriarch of a wealthy, but dysfunctional Manhattan family whose secrets are protected by an idealistic young lawyer (Peter Krause) in "Dirty Sexy Money" (ABC, 2007-09). Sutherland earned plenty of critical kudos and a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for Television. Sutherland went from ultra-modern New York to 12th century England when he portrayed the doomed Bartholomew, Earl of Shiring, in the miniseries adaptation of Ken Follett's epic novel "The Pillars of the Earth" (Starz, 2010). The following year, he lent big screen support to "The Mechanic" (2011), a remake of the Charles Bronson thriller starring Jason Statham, and the Roman centurion adventure tale "The Eagle" (2011), starring Channing Tatum. Sutherland once again played the villain, this time portraying President Coriolanus Snow in "The Hunger Games" (2012), the autocratic leader of a futuristic America where adolescents are forced into a life-or-death competition as entertainment for the masses.

Filmography

 

Cast (Feature Film)

Ad Astra (2019)
Measure of a Man (2018)
The Leisure Seeker (2017)
Milton's Secret (2016)
Forsaken (2016)
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 (2015)
The Calling (2014)
The Best Offer (2014)
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 (2014)
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013)
Assassin's Bullet (2012)
The Hunger Games (2012)
The Dawn Rider (2012)
Jock of the Bushveld (2011)
Voice
The Eagle (2011)
The Mechanic (2011)
Horrible Bosses (2011)
Astro Boy (2009)
Voice
Fool's Gold (2008)
Le Dernier Continent (2008)
Narrator
Jolene (2008)
Reign Over Me (2007)
Trumbo (2007)
Fierce People (2007)
Vocals
Puffball (2007)
Land of the Blind (2006)
Ask the Dust (2006)
An American Haunting (2005)
American Gun (2005)
Pride & Prejudice (2005)
Lord of War (2005)
The Setting Sun (2004)
The Italian Job (2003)
Path To War (2002)
Big Shot's Funeral (2002)
Fellini: I'm A Born Liar (2002)
Himself
Fellini (2001)
Himself
Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within (2001)
Voice
The Art of War (2000)
Douglas Thomas
Space Cowboys (2000)
Panic (2000)
Behind the Mask (1999)
The Hunley (1999)
Virus (1999)
Instinct (1999)
Without Limits (1998)
Fallen (1998)
Lieutenant Stanton
Natural Enemy (1997)
Shadow Conspiracy (1997)
The Assignment (1997)
Jack Shaw--Henry Fields
Great Expectations (1997)
Narrator
A Time to Kill (1996)
Citizen X (1995)
Outbreak (1995)
General Mcclintock
Disclosure (1994)
Bob Garvin
The Lifeforce Experiment (1994)
The Puppet Masters (1994)
Younger & Younger (1993)
Six Degrees Of Separation (1993)
Red Hot (1993)
Benefit of the Doubt (1993)
The Mighty River (1993)
Narrator
Shadow of the Wolf (1993)
Henderson
Quicksand: No Escape (1992)
Doc
Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992)
Railway Station Man (1992)
JFK (Director's Cut) (1991)
JFK (1991)
Schrei aus Stein (1991)
Ivan
Backdraft (1991)
Eminent Domain (1990)
Jozef Burski
Dr. Bethune (1990)
Dr Norman Bethune
Buster's Bedroom (1990)
A Dry White Season (1989)
Lock Up (1989)
Lost Angels (1989)
Apprentice to Murder (1988)
The Trouble With Spies (1987)
The Rosary Murders (1987)
Father Bob Koesler
The Wolf At The Door (1986)
Ordeal By Innocence (1985)
Dr Arthur Calgary
Revolution (1985)
Heaven Help Us (1985)
Crackers (1984)
Weslake
John Steinbeck's "The Winter of Our Discontent" (1983)
Threshold (1983)
Dr Thomas Vrain
Max Dugan Returns (1983)
Brian Costello
A War Story (1982)
Narration
Eye Of The Needle (1981)
Faber
Gas (1981)
Nothing Personal (1980)
Ordinary People (1980)
Murder by Decree (1979)
Bear Island (1979)
The Great Train Robbery (1979)
A Man, a Woman and a Bank (1979)
North China Commune (1979)
Narration
Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)
National Lampoon's Animal House (1978)
1900 (1977)
The Kentucky Fried Movie (1977)
Il Casanova di Federico Fellini (1977)
Les Liens de sang (1977)
Disappearance (1977)
The Eagle Has Landed (1976)
Liam Devlin
The Day of the Locust (1975)
Alien Thunder (1975)
The Shadow Catcher (1975)
Voice Of Edward S Curtis
S-P-Y-S (1974)
Bruland
Lady Ice (1973)
Don't Look Now (1973)
John Baxter
Steelyard Blues (1973)
Veldini
FTA (1972)
Klute (1971)
John Klute
Little Murders (1971)
Rev. [Henry] Dupas
Johnny Got His Gun (1971)
Christ
Start the Revolution Without Me (1970)
Charles Coupé/Pierre Di Sisi
Act of the Heart (1970)
Father Michael Ferrier
M*A*S*H (1970)
Hawkeye Pierce
Alex in Wonderland (1970)
Alex
Kelly's Heroes (1970)
Oddball
The Split (1968)
Dave Negli
Oedipus the King (1968)
Chorus leader
Joanna (1968)
Lord Peter Sanderson
Interlude (1968)
Lawrence
Sebastian (1968)
American
The Dirty Dozen (1967)
Vernon Pinkley
Promise Her Anything (1966)
Baby's father
The Bedford Incident (1965)
Hospitalman Nerney
Die! Die! My Darling! (1965)
Joseph
Dr. Terror's House of Horrors (1965)
Bob Carroll
Castle of the Living Dead (1964)

Writer (Feature Film)

FTA (1972)
Writer

Producer (Feature Film)

Steelyard Blues (1973)
Executive Producer
FTA (1972)
Producer

Misc. Crew (Feature Film)

Fellini: I'm A Born Liar (2002)
Other
Fellini (2001)
Other

Cast (Special)

TCM Interviews: Donald Sutherland (2013)
Himself
Live From the American Cinematheque (2003)
Presenter
Making the Movie: The Italian Job (2003)
The 74th Annual Academy Awards (2002)
Voice
AFI's 100 Years... 100 Thrills (2001)
Queen Victoria's Empire (2001)
Narrator
History vs. Hollywood (2001)
Madame Bovary (2000)
Narrator
Crime and Punishment (2000)
Narrator
The Grapes of Wrath (2000)
Narrator
Clint Eastwood: Out of the Shadows (2000)
Pride and Prejudice (2000)
Malcolm X (2000)
Narration
The Kennedy Center Honors: A Celebration of the Performing Arts (2000)
Performer
1984 (2000)
Narrator
Napoleon's Lost Fleet (1999)
Narrator
Lord of the Flies (1999)
Narrator
Dracula (1999)
Narrator
Heart of Darkness (1999)
Narrator
The AFI's 100 Years... 100 Stars (1999)
Red Badge of Courage (1999)
Narrator
All Quiet on the Western Front (1999)
Narrator
Alone on the Ice (1999)
Narrator
The Naked and the Dead (1998)
Narrator
Mind Control (1998)
Narration
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1998)
Narrator
Bhutan, the Last Shangri-La (1998)
Narrator
The Great Gatsby (1997)
Narrator
Walden (1997)
Narrator
Galileo (1997)
Narrator
Don Quixote (1997)
Narrator
Plato's Republic (1996)
Narrator
The Prince (1996)
Narrator
Native Son (1996)
Narrator
The Scarlet Letter (1996)
Narrator
The Odyssey (1996)
Narrator
Freud's Interpretation of Dreams (1996)
Narrator
Gulliver's Travels (1996)
Narrator
Catch-22 (1996)
Narrator
Moby Dick (1996)
Narrator
47th Annual Emmy Awards (1995)
Presenter
The Art of War (1994)
Narrator
Alice in Wonderland (1994)
Narrator
The 66th Annual Academy Awards Presentation (1994)
Presenter
War of the Worlds (1994)
Narrator
Huck Finn (1994)
Narrator
Beyond Genesis -- The Orgin of Species (1993)
Narrator
Le Morte D'Arthur: The Legend of Arthur (1993)
Narrator
Frankenstein -- The Making of a Monster (1993)
Narrator
49th Annual Golden Globe Awards (1992)
Performer
The 61st Annual Academy Awards Presentation (1989)
Performer
Paul Gauguin: The Savage Dream (1989)
Voice Of Paul Gauguin
The American Film Institute Salute to Frank Capra (1982)
Performer
The Diahann Carroll Show (1971)

Cast (TV Mini-Series)

Treasure Island (2012)
Salem's Lot (2004)
Frankenstein (2004)
The Big Heist (2001)
Uprising (2001)
Free Money (1998)
Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All (1994)
Captain William Marsden
The Poky Little Puppy's First Christmas (1992)
Narration

Life Events

1949

Became Canada's youngest radio announcer and disc jockey at age 14

1952

Made his stage debut in "The Male Animal" at the Hart House Theatre in Toronto

1958

Moved to England to study at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art

1960

Began acting in British TV and repertory theater

1963

Made his London stage debut in "August for the People"

1964

Had his first significant film role in "Il Castello dei Morti Vivi/Castle of the Living Dead"

1966

Made U.S. TV debut on the ABC series "Court Martial"

1967

Had his breakthrough supporting role in "The Dirty Dozen" with Lee Marvin and Charles Bronson

1968

Received strong notices as a flamboyant wealthy young man in "Joanna"

1970

Portrayed a prototypical hippie in the WWII comedy-drama "Kelly's Heroes"

1970

Soared to stardom as the original Hawkeye Pierce in Robert Altman's "M*A*S*H"

1971

Played Jesus Christ in Dalton Trumbo's "Johnny Got His Gun"

1971

Reteamed with Elliott Gould (from "M*A*S*H") for Alan Arkin's "Little Murders"

1971

Delivered an outstanding performance as detective opposite then-girlfriend Jane Fonda in "Klute"

1972

Made his feature debut as co-producer and co-writer for the anti-Vietnam war film "F.T.A."; featured a series of anti-war skits and songs (with Fonda) performed outside army bases

1973

Executive produced "Steelyard Blues" (also starred with Fonda)

1973

Starred opposite Julie Christie in Nicolas Roeg's "Don't Look Now"

1974

Re-teamed with Gould in "S.P.Y.S."

1975

Evoked pity as the hick in love with an aspiring, selfish would-be starlet (Karen Black) in John Schlesinger's "The Day of the Locust"

1976

Played a bestial fascist in Bernardo Bertolucci's "1990"

1976

Delivered a romantic turn as the title role of "Fellini's Casanova"

1978

Delivered arguably his best performance since "Klute" as a science-minded public health inspector confronting unspeakable horrors in Phillip Kaufman's remake of "Invasion of the Body Snatchers"

1979

Teamed with Sean Connery for the stylish "The Great Train Robbery"

1980

Played a character seeing the falseness of his life as he struggled to overcome the death of his son in the Academy Award-winning "Ordinary People", co-starring Mary Tyler Moore and Timothy Hutton; film marked Robert Redford's directorial debut

1981

Broadway debut as Humbert Humbert in Edward Albee's stage adaptation of "Lolita"

1981

Founded McNichol Pictures Inc.; also served as President

1981

Played a German agent in the thriller "Eye of the Needle"

1983

Appeared in "Max Dugan Returns" along with son Kiefer in his film debut (also debut of Matthew Broderick)

1983

Returned to TV after a 15-year absence in the CBS movie "John Steinbeck's 'The Winter of Our Discontent'"

1987

Portrayed middle-aged Paul Gauguin in "Wolf at the Door"; also provided voice of Gauguin in PBS' "Paul Gauguin: The Savage Dream" (1989)

1989

Was cast as a teacher in the South African apartheid drama "A Dry White Season"

1991

Cast as a mad firebug in Ron Howard's "Backdraft"

1991

Played a mysterious Washington intelligence officer in Oliver Stone's "JFK"

1992

Mentored Kristy Swanson in the feature "Buffy the Vampire Slayer"

1993

Offered a captivating performance as a snobbish but charming upscale New Yorker living through the eyes of other people in "Six Degrees of Separation"; film based on a 1990 play by John Guare

1994

Narrator for The Learning Channel's "Great Books" series

1994

Portrayed a corporate honcho in Barry Levinson's adaptation of Michael Crichton's "Disclosure"

1995

Came aboard "Outbreak" late to play the icy General McClintock

1995

Offered an award winning performance as Colonel Fetisov in the HBO movie "Citizen X"

1996

Second film with son Kiefer, as the alcoholic mentor of Jake Brigance (Matthew McConaughey) in "A Time to Kill"

1997

Cast as a coldly manipulative CIA agent in "The Assignment"

1998

Played University of Oregon track coach Bill Bowerman in Robert Towne's "Without Limits," about track sensation Steve Prefontaine

1998

Stalked the hidden enemy in the supernatural thriller "Fallen"

2000

Acted on stage in "Enigma Variations"

2001

Starred as a painter in the off-Broadway play "Ten Unknowns" by Jon Robin Baitz

2001

Had lead role as an Irish thief who plans to rob an airport terminal in the A&E original "The Big Heist"

2003

Was cast in Anthony Minghella's war epic "Cold Mountain"

2003

Had memorable role in F. Gary Gray's remake of the "Italian Job"

2005

Was cast as the patriarch in Joe Wright's adaptation of the Jane Austen classic "Pride and Prejudice"

2005

Played Speaker of the House Nathan Templeton on Rod Lurie's ABC drama "Commander in Chief"; earned a Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting Actor

2005

Co-starred with Mira Sorvino in the Lifetime movie "Human Trafficking"; earned Golden Globe and Emmy nominations for Best Actor in a TV movie

2006

Co-starred with Colin Farrell in the Robert Towne-directed adaptation of "Ask the Dust"

2006

Played a Virginia firearms-shop owner in Aric Avelino's film debut "American Gun"

2007

Played an aging aristocratic billionaire in Griffin Dunne's "Fierce People"

2007

Was cast as Patrick 'Tripp' Darling III on ABC's "Dirty Sexy Money"; earned a Golden Globe (2008) nomination for Best Supporting Actor in a Series

2008

Played multi-millionaire Nigel Honeycut in "Fool's Gold"

2009

Lent his voice to the animated feature "Astro Boy"

2011

Received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame

2012

Was cast as series antagonist President Snow in the feature film adaptation of "The Hunger Games" (2012), appeared subsequently in "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" (2013), "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1" (2014), and "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2" (2015).

2013

Starred as Michel Dorn on crime drama "Crossing Lines"

2016

Had a recurring role on crime drama "Ice"

2017

Co-starred in India-set romantic comedy "Basmati Blues"

2018

Co-starred with Judy Greer in dramedy "Measure of a Man"

Photo Collections

Kelly's Heroes - Movie Poster Art
Here is the original art from the Kelly's Heroes (1970) movie poster, drawn by noted illustrator Jack Davis.
Klute - Movie Posters
Klute - Movie Posters
Alex in Wonderland - Movie Poster
Alex in Wonderland - Movie Poster
Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978) - Lobby Card Set
Here is a set of Lobby Cards from Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978). Lobby Cards were 11" x 14" posters that came in sets of 8. As the name implies, they were most often displayed in movie theater lobbies, to advertise current or coming attractions.

Videos

Movie Clip

Split, The (1968) - I'll Blow Your Face Off After staging real-world encounters with Ernest Borgnine, Jack Klugman, Donald Sutherland and Warren Oates (as Klinger, Kifka, Negli and Gough) planner Gladys (Julie Harris) explains why heist-man McClain (Jim Brown) has brought them together, in The Split, 1968, also starring Gene Hackman.
M*A*S*H (1970) - And Then There Was Korea Immediately after the opening, a graphic citing General MacArthur and the introduction of Donald Sutherland as Hawkeye, encountering a testy sergeant (Jerry Jones) then meeting his fellow new surgeon Duke (Tom Skerritt), from director Robert Altman’s M*A*S*H, 1970.
M*A*S*H (1970) - He Was Drafted New head nurse Major Houlihan (Sally Kellerman), who has allied herself with the martinet Major Burns, confronts unorthodox surgeon Hawkeye (Donald Sutherland) in the mess tent, Rene Auberjonois commenting, in director Robert Altman’s counter-culture Korean War comedy M*A*S*H, 1970.
M*A*S*H (1970) - Scratch My Nose Radar (Gary Burghoff) conducts new Korean War surgeons Hawkeye (Donald Sutherland) and Duke (Tom Skerritt) to their tent, meeting colleague Frank Burns (Robert Duvall) and local Ho-Jon (Kim Atwood), before director Robert Altman’s first operating room scene, in M*A*S*H, 1970.
M*A*S*H (1970) - It Worked For Hitler And Eva Braun Trapper (Elliott Gould) and Hawkeye (Donald Sutherland) et al discuss dentist Waldowski (John Schuck), who’s contemplating suicide because he thinks he’s a latent homosexual, improvising a counter-measure in which Father Mulcahy (Rene Auberjonois) is reluctant to assist, in M*A*S*H, 1970.
M*A*S*H (1970) - Open, Suicide Is Painless The opening from Robert Altman, including the rarely-heard lyric from the song, which became the TV title theme, which made writer Mike Altman (the director’s son) rich, and a brief introduction of Colonel Blake (Roger Bowen) and Radar (Gary Burghoff), from M*A*S*H, 1970,
Great Train Robbery, The (1979) - Nice Pull! Agar (Donald Sutherland) is introduced snatching a purse on production designer Al Burgess and Art Director Maurice Carter's detailed recreation of London's Strand, then acosted by Pierce (Sean Connery) in The Great Train Robbery, 1979.
Great Train Robbery, The (1979) - Monsieur Jones Thoroughly cultivated banker Henry (Malcolm Terris) is conducted by Agar (Donald Sutherland) to the boudoir of Miriam (Lesley-Anne Down), acting French at a London club, never realizing they’re both in league with his new pal Pierce (Sean Connery) and after his key, in The Great Train Robbery, 1979.
Great Train Robbery (1979) - Opening, In The Year 1855 Elaborate opening sequence narrated by star Sean Connery from director Michael Crichton's The Great Train Robbery, 1979, based on Crichton's own novel, also the last feature completed by famed cinematographer Geoffrey Unsworth.
Great Train Robbery, The (1979) - 75 Seconds Pierce (Sean Connery), acting as timer and lookout, supports Agar (Donald Sutherland) who meets unexpected problems in his split-second attempt to copy keys from a rail station in The Great Train Robbery, 1979.
Steelyard Blues (1973) - You Ain't Even Dangerous Opening in jail, Melvin Stewart the inmate harassing top-billed Donald Sutherland, whom we learn has been a demolition derby driver, among other things, from Steelyard Blues, also starring Jane Fonda, an early effort from the prolific TV director and professor Alan Myerson.
Steelyard Blues (1973) - Where There Ain't No Jails Veldini (Donald Sutherland), just out of jail, with his crew (Jane Fonda as girlfriend Iris, John Savage his younger brother, Peter Boyle his often-institutionalized pal “Eagle”) visiting mechanic-thief Duval (Garry Goodrow), who’s proposing they rehabilitate a “flying boat” plane, in Steelyard Blues, 1973.

Trailer

Split, The - (Original Trailer) Jim Brown heads an all-star cast in The Split (1968), about a heist planned during an L.A. Rams game.
Die! Die! My Darling! - (Original Trailer) A religious fanatic (Tallulah Bankhead) imprisons her late son's fiancee in Die! Die! My Darling! (1965).
Dirty Dozen, The - (Original Trailer) A renegade officer trains a group of misfits for a crucial mission behind enemy lines in The Dirty Dozen (1967) starring Lee Marvin, Ernest Borgnine, and Jim Brown.
Alex in Wonderland - (Original Trailer) A young director (Donald Sutherland) can't decide on his next project, so he calls in Fellini in Paul Mazursky's Alex in Wonderland (1970).
M-A-S-H - (Original Trailer) The staff of a Korean War field hospital use humor to keep their sanity during wartime in Robert Altman's breakthrough movie M-A-S-H (1970).
Ordinary People -- (Original Trailer) After a young man drowns, his family fights to recover from the trauma in Ordinary People (1980), directed by Robert Redford and starring Donald Sutherland, Mary Tyler Moore and Timothy Hutton.
Start the Revolution Without Me - (Original Trailer) Orson Welles introduces the trailer for the Gene Wilder - Donald Sutherland historical farce Start the Revolution Without Me (1970).
Kelly's Heroes - (Original Trailer) An American platoon tries to recover buried treasure behind enemy lines in Kelly's Heroes (1970) starring Clint Eastwood, Don Rickles, and Telly Savalas.
Bedford Incident, The - (Original Trailer) A U.S. destroyer has a nuclear showdown with a Russian submarine in The Bedford Incident (1965) starring Sidney Poitier.

Family

Frederick Sutherland
Father
Salesman. Ran the local bus, gas and electricity company; deceased.
Dorothy Sutherland
Mother
Deceased.
Kiefer Sutherland
Son
Actor. Born on December 21, 1966; twin brother of Rachel; mother, Shirley Douglas; named after Warren Kiefer, writer of Sutherland's first film "Castle of the Living Dead"; reportedly estranged from father.
Rachel Sutherland
Daughter
Born on December 21, 1966; twin sister of Kiefer.
Roeg Sutherland
Son
Born in 1974; mother, Francine Racette; named after director Nicolas Roeg.
Rossif Sutherland
Son
Born in 1978; mother, Francine Racette; named after director Frederick Rossif ("To Die in Madrid").
Angus Redford Sutherland
Son
Born c. 1980; mother, Francine Racette; middle name after Robert Redford.

Companions

Lois Hardwick
Wife
Actor. Married in 1959; divorced in 1966; Canadian; met at University of Toronto.
Shirley Douglas
Wife
Actor. Married in 1966; divorced in 1971; Canadian; mother of Kiefer and Rachel Sutherland; daughter of former Canadian NDP leader, Tommy Douglas; met while filming "Castle of the Living Dead"; she was arrested for trying to buy hand grenades from the CIA with a personal check, but case ultimately thrown out of court.
Jane Fonda
Companion
Actor. Met while filming "Klute"; had three-year relationship; performed together in "Free the Army" anti-war revue that toured military bases (1973).
Joan Juliet Buck
Companion
Fashion editor. Thinly veiled their relationship in her novel "The Only Place to Be".
Francine Racette
Wife
Actor. Met in 1972 while filming "Alien Thunder"; mother of Roeg, Rossif and Angus.

Bibliography

Notes

Active with the Canadian Centre for Arms Control and Disarmament, an Ottawa-based research organization

He received an honorary PhD from Saint Mary's University and honorary LLDs from McGill University and the University of Toronto

Named Officer, Order of Canada