Actor and technical advisor Dale Dye took a circuitous route to a film and TV career--20 years in the Marine Corps. He enlisted as a teenager in 1964, and spent from 1967 to 1970 in Vietnam, where he was wounded in action three times, fought in the Tet Offensive and helped evacuate Saigon and Phnom Penh. Dye served with the British Royal Marine Commandos in Norway and Denmark, and saw duty in Beirut in 1982. After mustering out, he was briefly executive editor of SOLDIER OF FORTUNE magazine.
Frustrated by what he felt were inaccurate military portrayals in Hollywood, Dye landed his first job as a technical advisor (and bit player) in the 1986 sci-fi movie "Invaders from Mars." Forming Warriors, Inc., he set himself up as the film industry's resident drill sergeant and expert on military matters (and went on to land bit parts and more substantial supporting roles as officers, often in the films on which he advised). In 1986, Dye began his longest and perhaps most fruitful screen collaboration with writer-director Oliver Stone. The Oscar-winning "Platoon" (1986) and 1989's "Born on the Fourth of July" both impressed many with realistic depictions of combat in Vietnam. Dye also consulted on Stone's conspiracy-laden "JFK" (1991) and the hyper-violent "Natural Born Killers" (1994).
Dye further earned acclaim for overseeing the realistic military images in such efforts as the underrated "The Beast" (1988), set in Afghanistan, John Frankenheimer's Vietnam drama "The Fourth War" (1990) and Robert Zemickis' Oscar-winning "Forrest Gump" (1994). As an actor, he depicted a captain in Brian De Palma's "Casualties of War" and a fireman in Steven Spielberg's "Always" (both 1989). He co-starred, produced and provided the story for "Fire Birds" (1990), a drama in which the US Army and the Drug Enforcement Agency team up to fight smugglers. Frequently, Dye has portrayed military figures in such films as both "Under Siege" (1992) and its sequel "Under Siege 2: Dark Territory" (1994), "Blue Sky" (filmed in 1992; released in 1994) and "Outbreak" (1995). More recently, Dye was the advisor on the military content of such diverse films as Paul Verhoeven's futuristic "Starship Troopers" (1997), Joe Dante's "Small Soldiers" and Steven Spielberg's "Saving Private Ryan" (both 1998). The latter was especially acclaimed for its reenactment of the storming of Omaha Beach.
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Enlisted in Marine Corps at age 19 (January)
Served in Vietnam
Served in Beirut
Left Marines, served as editor of SOLDIER OF FORTUNE for one year
Film debut (as actor and technical advisor), "Invaders from Mars"
Formed Warriors, Incorporated, a technical advising company (date approximate)
Initial collaboration with Oliver Stone, "Platoon"; served as technical advisor and played small role
TV debut (acting only) in series "Supercarrier" (ABC)
Reunited with Stone as both technical advisor and actor in "Born on the Fourth of July"
First collaboration with Steven Spielberg, acted in "Always"
Debut as producer, also provided story and co-starred in "Fire Birds"
Reteamed with Oliver Stone for "JFK"
Had featured role in "Under Seige"
Was military technical advisor on Michael Mann's "The Last of the Mohicans"
Fourth collaboration with Stone, "Heaven and Earth"
Served as technical advisor on Robert Zemeckis' Oscar-winner "Forrest Gump", starring Tom Hanks
Reteamed with Oliver Stone for a fifth time on "Natural Born Killers"
Reprised role in sequel "Under Siege 2: Dark Territory"
Acted as military technical advisor on "Starship Troopers"
Served as technical advisor on Steven Spielberg's WWII-era drama "Saving Private Ryan", starring Tom Hanks; also had small role
Served as techinical advisor and appeared in the WWII-era HBO miniseries "Band of Brothers"