John Bennett Perry
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|John Bennett Perry|
Perry singing at a private event, June 21, 2008
January 4, 1941 |
Williamstown, Massachusetts, U.S.
Life and career
Perry was born in Williamstown, Massachusetts, the son of Maria Schaefer-Bennett and Alton L. Perry. He attended college at St. Lawrence University, where he was a member of Phi Sigma Kappa fraternity. He married twice. His first wife was Suzanne Langford, a former press secretary to Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, with whom he fathered Matthew Perry. Perry and Langford divorced before Matthew's first birthday. He has a daughter, Mia Perry, born 1986, with his second and current wife, Debbie.
His stage credit includes the 1967 musical Now Is The Time For All Good Men.
Perry is well known for playing the clean-shaven "sailor" in the Old Spice commercials of the 1970s and 1980s. He has appeared in numerous films and television programs, including Independence Day, George of the Jungle, The West Wing, L.A. Law, Days of our Lives, Little House on the Prairie, 240-Robert, Falcon Crest, Murder, She Wrote and Magnum, P.I.. He also portrayed General Douglas MacArthur in Farewell to the King.
In the 1978-79 TV season, he and Stephanie Edwards co-hosted EveryDay, a syndicated daytime talk/variety series that also featured Murray Langston, Tom Chapin and Anne Bloom. He and Edwards were both nominated for a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Host or Hostess in a Talk, Service or Variety Series.
He appeared alongside his son (portraying his father) in the 1997 movie Fools Rush In, and in the episode "My Unicorn" of the sitcom Scrubs. He also appeared in an episode of Friends, "The One with Rachel's New Dress", playing the father of Rachel Green's boyfriend Joshua.
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- Phi Sigma Kappa, ed. (1986). Hills and a Star (8 ed.). Indianapolis, Indiana: Phi Sigma Kappa Fraternity. pp. 76–78.