Ray Liotta

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Ray Liotta
RayLiottaTIFFSept2012.jpg
Born (1954-12-18) December 18, 1954 (age 59)
Newark, New Jersey, US
Alma mater University of Miami
Occupation Actor
Years active 1978–present
Spouse(s) Michelle Grace
(1997–2004; divorced)
Children 1

Raymond Allen "Ray" Liotta (born December 18, 1954) is an American actor, best known for his portrayal of Henry Hill in the crime-drama Goodfellas (1990) and for his role as Shoeless Joe Jackson in Field of Dreams (1989). He has won an Emmy Award and been nominated for Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild awards.

Early life[edit]

Liotta was born in Newark, New Jersey, and was adopted at the age of six months by Mary Liotta, an appointed township clerk, and Alfred Liotta, an auto parts store owner, personnel director, and the president of a local Democratic club.[1] Both of his parents unsuccessfully ran for local office.[2] Liotta's adoptive parents were of Italian and Scottish/Irish ancestry; his biological parents were not of Italian descent. After research and talks with his biological mother, Liotta discovered he is of part Scottish ancestry.[3][4][5][6]

In 1973,[citation needed] Liotta graduated from Union High School in Union, New Jersey and was inducted into the school's Hall of Fame in 1992.[citation needed] Liotta studied acting at the University of Miami, where he performed at the university's Jerry Herman Ring Theatre.[citation needed]

Career[edit]

One of Liotta's earliest roles was as Joey Perrini on the soap opera Another World; he appeared on the show from 1978 to 1981. He infamously made his film debut in a sexual assault scene with Pia Zadora and a garden hose in the 1983 cult classic The Lonely Lady. In 1987, he earned his first Golden Globe nomination[7] for his portrayal of volatile ex-con Ray Sinclair in Jonathan Demme's film Something Wild (1986). In 1989, he costarred alongside Kevin Costner in the fantasy/drama film Field of Dreams—Liotta portrayed Shoeless Joe Jackson, the ghost of the famed baseball player. In 1990, Liotta portrayed real-life mobster Henry Hill in Martin Scorsese's film Goodfellas. In 1992, he costarred as a psychopathic cop alongside Kurt Russell and Madeleine Stowe in the thriller Unlawful Entry. He also appeared in a leading role in the sci-fi/action film No Escape. Liotta would earn more critical praise for his turn in James Mangold's film Cop Land, starring alongside Sylvester Stallone, Robert De Niro, and Harvey Keitel. In 1998, he received critical praise for his performance in the crime film Phoenix, in which he plays decent policeman Harry Collins who is also a compulsive gambler.

In addition to his film roles, Liotta portrayed singer Frank Sinatra in the 1998 TV movie The Rat Pack (for which he received a Screen Actors Guild Award nomination), he provided the voice of Tommy Vercetti for the 2002 video game Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, and appeared in the television drama ER in 2004, playing Charlie Metcalf in the episode "Time of Death". The ER role earned Liotta an Emmy for "Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series" (Liotta would later spoof himself and his Emmy win in Bee Movie). Liotta starred in the 2006 CBS television series Smith, which was pulled from the schedule after only three episodes had aired, and, in 2012, Liotta appeared as himself in a purely vocal role for the "What a Croc!" episode of the Disney Channel comedy series Phineas & Ferb.

Liotta played the father of drug dealer George Jung in the 2001 Johnny Depp film Blow and, in the following year, appeared as Det. Lt. Henry Oak in the Joe Carnahan-directed film Narc, a role that led to an Independent Spirit Award nomination and a Phoenix Film Critics Society Awards nomination for Best Supporting Male—many critics considered the role to be Liotta's career best.[citation needed] He then reunited with director James Mangold in 2003, alongside John Cusack and Alfred Molina, in the dark horror-thriller Identity. In 2005, he narrated Inside the Mafia for the National Geographic Channel. He later appeared in Smokin' Aces—reuniting with Narc director Carnahan—in which he portrayed an FBI agent named Donald Carruthers in one of the lead roles.

Liotta appeared with John Travolta in the movie Wild Hogs, in Battle in Seattle as the city's mayor, and in Hero Wanted as a detective alongside Cuba Gooding Jr.. He was also in Crossing Over, co-starring Harrison Ford. Liotta played Detective Harrison in the 2009 Jody Hill comedy Observe and Report as Seth Rogen's nemesis from the local police. In 2011, he starred in The Son of No One, opposite Channing Tatum and, for the first time in his career, Al Pacino.

In the 2010s, Liotta appeared in Date Night, with Steve Carell, Charlie St. Cloud with Zac Efron, the independent drama Snowmen, and The River Sorrow, which stars Liotta as a detective alongside Christian Slater and Ving Rhames. Liotta starred alongside Brad Pitt and James Gandolfini in the 2012 Andrew Dominik film Killing Them Softly[8] and the 2013 Ariel Vromen film The Iceman features Liotta as the character of Roy DeMeo.[9][10] He had a supporting role in Muppets Most Wanted (2014).

Personal life[edit]

Liotta married actress Michelle Grace in February 1997 after they had met at her ex-husband (Mark Grace)'s professional baseball game. The couple co-starred in The Rat Pack, in which Liotta played Frank Sinatra and Grace played Judith Campbell Exner. Their daughter Karsen was born in December 1998, six years prior to the couple's divorce in 2004.

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

Year Film Role Notes
1983 Lonely Lady, TheThe Lonely Lady Joe Heron
1986 Something Wild Ray Sinclair Boston Society of Film Critics Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated: Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture
Nominated: National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Supporting Actor (3rd place)
Nominated: New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor (3rd place)
1987 Arena Brains The Artist Short film
1988 Dominick and Eugene Eugene "Gino" Luciano
1989 Field of Dreams Shoeless Joe Jackson
1990 Goodfellas Henry Hill
1992 Article 99 Dr. Richard Sturgess
1992 Unlawful Entry Officer Pete Davis Nominated: MTV Movie Award for Best Villain
1994 No Escape Capt. J.T. Robbins
1994 Corrina, Corrina Manny Singer
1995 Operation Dumbo Drop Capt. T.C. Doyle
1996 Unforgettable Dr. David Krane
1997 Turbulence Ryan Weaver
1997 Cop Land Det. Gary "Figgsy" Figgis
1998 Phoenix Harry Collins Also co-producer
1999 Muppets from Space Gate Guard # 1 Cameo
1999 Forever Mine Mark Brice
2000 Pilgrim Jack
2000 Rumor of Angels, AA Rumor of Angels Nathan Neubauer
2001 Hannibal Paul Krendler
2001 Heartbreakers Dean Cummano / Vinny Staggliano
2001 Blow Fred Jung
2002 Narc Det. Lt. Henry Oak Also producer
Nominated: Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Male
Nominated: Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor
2002 John Q Chief Gus Monroe
2002 Ticker FBI Agent Short film
2003 Identity Rhodes
2004 Last Shot, TheThe Last Shot Jack Devine
2004 Control Lee Ray Oliver Direct-to-video
2005 Revolver Dorothy Macha
2005 Slow Burn Ford Cole Co-executive producer
2006 Even Money Tom Carver
2006 Take the Lead Executive producer
2006 Local Color John Talia Sr.
2006 Comeback Season Walter Pearce
2006 Smokin' Aces Donald Carruthers
2007 Wild Hogs Jack
2007 In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale Gallian
2007 Battle in Seattle Mayor Jim Tobin
2007 Bee Movie Himself (voice)
2008 Hero Wanted Det. Terry Subcott
2009 Crossing Over Cole Frankel
2009 Observe and Report Det. Harrison
2009 Powder Blue Jack Doheny
2009 La Linea Mark Shields Also executive producer
2009 Youth in Revolt Lance Wescott
2010 Crazy on the Outside Gray
2010 Date Night Joe Miletto
2010 Snowmen Reggie Kirkfield
2010 Chasing 3000 Adult Mickey
2010 Charlie St. Cloud Florio Ferrente
2011 The Details Peter Mazzoni
2011 Son of No One, TheThe Son of No One Captain Marion Mathers
2011 All Things Fall Apart Dr. Brintall
2011 Street Kings: Motor City Marty Kingston Direct-to-video
2011 River Murders, TheThe River Murders Jack Verdon
2011 Field of Dreams 2: Lockout Roger Goodell Short film
2011 Ticket Out Jim
2011 Entitled, TheThe Entitled Richard Nader
2012 Wanderlust Himself Cameo
2012 Killing Them Softly Markie Trattman
2012 Breathless Sheriff Cooley
2012 The Iceman Roy DeMeo
2012 Place Beyond the Pines, TheThe Place Beyond the Pines Deluca
2012 Yellow Afai
2012 Bad Karma Molloy
2012 Dear Dracula Count Dracula (voice) Direct-to-video
2013 Devil's in the Details, TheThe Devil's in the Details Dr. Robert Michaels
2013 Pawn Man in the Suit
2013 Suddenly Todd Shaw
2014 Better Living Through Chemistry Jack Roberts
2014 Muppets Most Wanted Big Papa
2014 Stretch Completed
2014 The Identical Reece Wade Completed
2014 Revenge of the Green Dragons Michael Bloom Post-production
2014 Kill the Messenger Post-production
2014 Flock of Dudes Uncle Reed Post-production
2014 Sin City: A Dame to Kill For Joey Post-production

Television[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1980 Hardhat and Legs Family TV movie
1980–1981 Another World Joey Perrini #2 8 episodes
1981 Crazy Times Johnny "Wizard" Lazarra TV movie
1983 St. Elsewhere Murray Episode: "Rain"
1983 Casablanca Sacha 5 episodes
1984 Mike Hammer Tony Cable Episode: "Kill Devil"
1985 Our Family Honor Officer Ed Santini 10 episodes
1990 Women and Men: Stories of Seduction Jerry Damon TV movie
1991 Women & Men 2: In Love There Are No Rules Martin Meadows TV movie
1995 Frasier Bob (voice) Episode: "Frasier Grinch"
1998 Rat Pack, TheThe Rat Pack Frank Sinatra TV movie
Nominated: Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Miniseries or Television Movie
2001 Family Guy Zack (voice) Episode: "Brian Does Hollywood"
2001–2002 Just Shoot Me! Himself 2 episodes
2002 Point of Origin John Leonard Orr / Aaron Stiles TV movie
2004 ER Charlie Metcalf Episode: "Time of Death"
Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor – Drama Series
Prism Award for Best Performance in a Drama Series Episode
2006–2007 Smith Bobby Stevens 7 episodes
2008 SpongeBob SquarePants Trevor (voice) Episode: "What Ever Happened to SpongeBob?"
2010 Hannah Montana Forever Principal Luger Episode: "Hannah Montana to the Principal's Office"
2011 The League Ruxin's Boss Episode: "Yobogoya!"
2012 Phineas and Ferb Himself (voice) Episode: "What A Croc!"
2012 NTSF:SD:SUV:: Jason Episode: "Wasilla Hills Cop"
2012 Abominable Christmas Abominable Dad (voice) TV movie
2014 The Money George Archer Pilot

Theatre[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2004 Match Mike Broadway

Video games[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2002 Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Tommy Vercetti (voice) G-Phoria Award for Best Male Voice Performance
Spike Video Game Awards for Best Performance by a Human
2013 Call of Duty: Black Ops II Billy Handsome (voice) Mob of the Dead DLC

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Ray Liotta Biography (1955?-)". Filmreference.com. Retrieved July 7, 2009. 
  2. ^ "Ray Liotta". Movies.yahoo.com. Retrieved July 7, 2009. 
  3. ^ Finke, Nikki (September 16, 1990). "Not Your Typical Wise Guy : Why Ray Liotta had a tough time getting a deal he didn't want to refuse--a leading role in Martin Scorsese's Mafia movie, 'GoodFellas'". Los Angeles Times. 
  4. ^ Joan Tarshis and Richard Mclaren. "SMOKE 09/01 – Ray Liotta is praised as one of the best actors of all times. – One-on-one with Ray Liotta". Smokemag.com. Retrieved July 7, 2009. 
  5. ^ "Ray Liotta Is Glad He Met His Biological Mother – Starpulse Entertainment News Blog "he discovered he isn't Italian and that he has a half-brother."". Starpulse.com. October 6, 2006. Retrieved July 7, 2009. 
  6. ^ Keier, Helen (March 1, 2001). "IGN: Interview with Ray Liotta "I myself am adopted, so I'm not Italian"". IGN. Retrieved ) July 7, 2009. 
  7. ^ "HFPA – Awards Search". 1.hfpa.org. Retrieved July 7, 2009. 
  8. ^ A.O. Scott (29 November 2012). "One Bad Turn Deserves Another". The New York Times. Retrieved 9 June 2013. 
  9. ^ Alex Godfrey (6 June 2013). "Ray Liotta: 'I like Brad. I admire his whole career'". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 9 June 2013. 
  10. ^ "The Iceman". The Guardian (London). 2013. Retrieved 9 June 2013. 

External links[edit]