Family & Companions
Native American actor who gained fame as Kicking Bird, friend and mentor to Kevin Costner, in "Dances with Wolves" (1990). A full-blooded Oneida, Greene was born on the Six Nations Reserve in Ontario, Canada. Prior to his "Dances with Wolves" success, he appeared with Al Pacino in the Revolutionary War misfire, "Revolution" (1985), co-starred with Robby Benson in "Running Brave" (1983), and played a Vietnam vet in the comedy adventure, "Powwow Highway" (1988).
After "Dancing" Greene began making frequent appearances on TV, generally playing quietly dignified characters on shows like "L.A. Law," "Northern Exposure" and "Murder, She Wrote." He also proved effective in less traditional fare such as "Where the Spirit Lives" (1990) for PBS' "American Playhouse" and the HBO film "The Last of His Tribe" (1992), in which he played the last survivor of the Yahi nation. He turned in a superb, laconic performance as a reservation cop who teaches rookie F.B.I. man Val Kilmer a thing or two in Michael Apted's sober environmental thriller, "Thunderheart" (1992). Greene also remained active in the Toronto theater community, where he has appeared in over a dozen productions.
The actor continued to rack up an impressive roster of film and TV credits--typically playing unconventional Native American characters or cops, most notably in such films as Richard Donner's freewheling feature version of the TV classic Western "Maverick" (1994) opposite Mel Gibson and Jodie Foster; director Rob Reiner's comedic misfire "North" (1994), Bruce Willis' action sequel "Die Hard With a Vengeance" (1995), the well-regarded family film "The Education of Little Tree" (1997), "Grey Owl" (1999) the story of the life and work of the Canadian fur trapper (Pierce Brosnan) turned conservationist who claimed to be a Native American; director Frank Darabount's adaptation of author Stephen King's supernatural prison drama "The Green Mile" (1999), and Disney's dopey sled dog comedy "Snow Dogs" (2002). On television, Greene had a recurring role on the series "Cover Me: Based on the True Life of an FBI Family" (2000-2001), was a regualr on the CBS's short-lived supernatural series "Wolf Lake" (2001), and was featured in the miniseries "Shattered City: The Halifax Explosion" (2003) and as Conquering Bear the Steven Spielberg-produced epic "Into the West" (TNT, 2005). Back on the big screen, Greene had a memorably warm, romantic turn as Calvin Manygoats, a truckdriver who becomes smitten with a woman who, unbeknownst to him, is a preoperative transexual traveling cross country with the troubled teen hustler she fathered in her early life as a man in "Transamerica" (2005).
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Made TV debut in an episode of the Canadian drama, "The Great Detective"
Earliest feature film credits include "Running Brave"
Had a small role in "Revolution," starring Al Pacino and Donald Sutherland
Breakthrough role as Kicking Bird in Kevin Costner's "Dances with Wolves"; earned an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor
Co-starred in "Thunderheart," with Val Kilmer
Had a recurring role in CBS' "Northern Exposure" as Leonard
Began appearing as Mr. Crabby Tree in the children's series, "The Adventures of Dudley the Dragon"
Had a recurring role on the Canadian series, "The Red Green Show," as Edgar K. B. Montrose
Appeared in Richard Donner's Western, "Maverick"
Played Detective Joe Lambert in "Die Hard with a Vengeance"
Cast as Arlen Bitterbuck, a Native American on death row, in the Oscar-nominated, "The Green Mile"
Starred in the short-run CBS series, "Wolf Lake"
Cast as Peter Yellowbear in "Snow Dogs," starring Cuba Gooding Jr.
Played the potential love interest of a pre-operative transsexual woman (Felicity Huffman) in "TransAmerica"
Co-starred in Steven Spielberg's TNT miniseries, "Into the West"
Appeared as Shylock in the Stratford Shakespeare Festival production of "The Merchant of Venice"
Cast in "The Twilight Saga: New Moon" as Harry Clearwater, Charlie Swan's old friend