|Born||Francis Jameson Parker Jr.
November 18, 1947
Baltimore, Maryland, United States
(1976–1992) (divorced) 3 children
(1971–?) (divorced) 1 daughter
Francis Jameson Parker Jr. (born November 18, 1947) is an American actor, best known for his role of A.J. Simon on the 1980s television series Simon & Simon.
Early life and education
At Beloit College he acted in student theater productions, and while living in Washington, D.C., he landed a job with a production of The Great White Hope at the Arena Stage and then acted in theatrical productions of Caligula and Indians. After completing his degree at Beloit in 1971, he performed in dinner theater and summer stock in the Washington, D.C., area.
In 1972, he moved to New York City, where he secured several television commercials and appeared in off-Broadway plays. He was cast as Dale Robinson in the daytime drama Somerset and created the role of Brad Vernon on One Life to Live.
Parker made his motion picture debut in The Bell Jar (1979) and starred in A Small Circle of Friends (1980), in which he played one of three radical college students during the 1960s. The United Artists film received a limited theatrical release and grossed under $1 million. Another film from early in his acting career was the controversial White Dog (1982).
In addition, he played the leads in several CBS television movies: Women at West Point (1979), Anatomy of a Seduction (1979), The Gathering II (1979), The Promise of Love (1980), Callie and Son (1981), and A Caribbean Mystery (1983).
In 1985, Beloit awarded him its Distinguished Service Citation.
Parker guest-starred on the ABC series Family and Hart to Hart, and Walker, Texas Ranger. He appeared in the television movies Who is Julia? (1986), Dead Before Dawn (1993), and Violation of Trust (1991). He appeared on the sitcom Major Dad. With his Simon & Simon co-star Gerald McRaney he appeared in the theatrical movie American Justice, which Parker co-produced. After completing this movie, he returned to Beloit College to star in a live summer stock theatrical production as Brick in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.
Parker has written four books:
- An Accidental Cowboy (2003) recounts his life after Simon & Simon
- To Absent Friends: A Collection of Stories of the Dogs We Miss (compiler)
- American Riff
- The Horseman at Midnight
Parker has often said that he was not the typical "Hollywood type", and that he is very much a homebody.
In the fall of 1992, Parker was shot by a neighbor near his home. He made a full recovery, and the neighbor was convicted of attempted murder and sentenced to nine years in prison.
- New York Times: "Anne Davis Betrothed to Francis Parker 2d," June 4, 1969, accessed March 4, 2012
- TV Guide: "Jameson Parker: Biography", accessed March 4, 2012
- Beloit College: "F. Jameson Parker II', accessed March 4, 2012
- New York Times: Vincent Canby, "Film: Small Circle of 3 College Friends," March 12, 1980, accessed March 4, 2012
- "50 Top-Grossing Films". (Week ending March 19, 1980). Variety, March 22, 1980
- New York Times: Janet Maslin, "TV: Movie Tells Story Of West Point Women," February 27, 1979, accessed March 4, 2012
- New York Times: John J. O'Connor, "TV: Film of an Affair, Anatomy of a Seduction," May 8, 1979, accessed March 4, 2012
- New York Times: Nina Darnton, "Film: American Justice," September 19, 1986, accessed March 4, 2012
- ESPN Outdoors: James A. Swan, "A True Hero's Journey," October 2, 2003, accessed March 4, 2012
- Los Angeles Times: Thom Mrozek, "Actor Testifies Against His Alleged Attacker Courts," September 4, 1993, accessed March 4, 2012