Corbin Bernsen

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Corbin Bernsen
Corbin Bernsen (25219505510).jpg
Bernsen in 2016
Corbin Dean Bernsen

(1954-09-07) September 7, 1954 (age 68)
EducationUniversity of California, Los Angeles (BFA, MFA)
  • Actor
  • film director
Years active1967–present
Known forLA Law
LA Law: The Movie
Psych: The Musical
Psych: The Movie
Brenda Cooper
(m. 1983⁠–⁠1987)
(m. 1988)

Corbin Dean Bernsen (born September 7, 1954) is an American actor and film director. He appeared as divorce attorney Arnold Becker on the NBC drama series L.A. Law,[1] as Dr. Alan Feinstone in The Dentist, as retired police detective Henry Spencer on the USA Network comedy-drama series Psych, and as Roger Dorn in the films Major League, Major League II, and Major League: Back to the Minors. He also appeared regularly on The Resident, General Hospital, and Cuts, and has had intermittent appearances on The Young and the Restless.

Early life[edit]

Bernsen was born in the North Hollywood neighbourhood of Los Angeles, California, the eldest son of Harry Bernsen Jr., a Hollywood producer, and veteran soap actress Jeanne Cooper, who appeared on The Young and the Restless.[1][2] He graduated from Beverly Hills High School in 1972.[3] Bernsen is also a "double Bruin," having received both a BA in Theatre Arts in 1977 and an MFA in Playwriting in 1979 from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).[4][5]



After a two-year appearance on the soap opera Ryan's Hope,[1] Bernsen was cast as lawyer Arnold Becker on the Steven Bochco television series L.A. Law in 1986.[6] The series became a hit, and the role earned him Emmy and Golden Globe nominations, appearances on magazine covers, and guest-starring roles on Seinfeld and The Larry Sanders Show.[7][8][1][9] He remained on L.A. Law for the entire run of the show, until it ended in 1994.

Bernsen appeared with the British actor Bruce Payne in the films Kounterfeit and Aurora: Operation Intercept.[10][11] He starred as the title character, Dr. Alan Feinstone, in the horror film The Dentist and its sequel.[12][13] Bernsen was also cast as a prima donna third baseman, Roger Dorn, in the sports comedy Major League and appeared in both of the film's sequels. Bernsen portrayed John Durant on General Hospital from September 2004 until the character was murdered in May 2006.

Bernsen played Jack Sherwood on Cuts, appeared twice on Celebrity Mole, and played a lawyer on Boston Legal. He appeared as Q2 on Star Trek: The Next Generation. He also had a recurring role as Captain Owen Sebring on the military drama[7] JAG and played a Republican senator on two episodes of The West Wing. He directed, produced, and appeared in the horror film Dead Air. Bernsen also co-starred in USA's Psych, playing the role of Henry Spencer, the father of the main character, Shawn Spencer (James Roday). In the film Rust, Bernsen plays a former minister who returns to his hometown.

Bernsen at the 39th Emmy Awards in 1987

Bernsen appeared in 25 Hill, a film he produced, directed and wrote, which is centered on the All-American Soap Box Derby, and is planning a baseball movie about zombies, called Three Strikes, You're Dead.[14]

He also appeared as a guest star in Switched at Birth, the ABC Family television series, in season 1, episode 22 (2012), "Venus, Cupid, Folly, and Time."[15] Bernsen currently appears as Kyle Nevin on the television series The Resident.[16]


Bernsen was president and co-owner of Public Media Works, a new media company that develops entertainment for targeted fan bases.[17] He directed and starred in Carpool Guy, the company's first film; it was targeted at soap opera fans and released on DVD in 2005.[18]

Bernsen then went on to form Team Cherokee Productions. According to the book One Red Paperclip, in June 2006, Bernsen traded a role in the film Donna on Demand to Kyle MacDonald for a snow globe of the band KISS. It was this role that MacDonald eventually traded for a two-story farmhouse.[19]

In recent years, Bernsen focused on stories that explore aspects of faith in today's world and how that can contribute to, but also tends to divide our common humanity. His first such film was Rust, released in 2010 by Sony Pictures.[20] Bernsen, along with producing partner Chris Aronoff, formed Home Theater Films, an independent production company that develops, produces, and markets films and television shows.[21] 25 Hill, the company's first title, was released in July 2012.[22] This was followed by 3 Day Test (2012), Beyond the Heavens (2013), and Life with Dog (2017). Their upcoming film Mary 4 Mayor is due out in the fall of 2020.[23]


In October 2015, the Pelican Book Group released Bernsen's debut novel. The book, Rust: the Novel, is an adaptation of Bernsen's 2010 feature film, Rust, in which he played the main character and served as writer and director.[24] Bernsen and his wife, Amanda Pays, have co-authored two books, Change Houses, Not Spouses and Open House: Reinventing Space for Simple Living, a coffee table book featuring remodeling and design ideas they have learned from remodeling their own homes.[25]

Personal life[edit]

Bernsen was married to Brenda Cooper from 1983 to 1987.[26][27][28] Bernsen has been married to British actress Amanda Pays since 1988.[29] They have five sons: Oliver, Angus, Bunsen, Henry and Finley.[30][31] Pays and Bernsen moved to the Hudson Valley in upstate New York in 2019 where he now focuses on film and television projects that can be shot locally.

Bernsen has one of the largest snow globe collections in the world, with 9,000 globes.[32]



Year Title Role Notes
1967 Clambake Roy Uncredited
1974 Three the Hard Way Boy
1976 Eat My Dust! Roy Puire
1987 Dead Aim Webster
1987 Hello Again Jason Chadman
1989 Bert Rigby, You're a Fool Jim Shirley
1989 Major League Roger Dorn
1989 Disorganized Crime Frank Salazar
1991 Shattered Jeb Scott
1992 Frozen Assets Zach Shepard
1993 Fatal Inheritance Woodward Dawes
1993 Ghost Brigade Col. Nehemiah Strayn
1994 The Soft Kill Martin Lewis
1994 Bud Bowl V Coach of Team Bud Light
1994 A Brilliant Disguise Dr. Martin
1994 Trigger Fast Brent Mallick
1994 Final Mission General Morgan Breslaw
1994 Major League II Roger Dorn
1994 Savage Land Quint
1994 The New Age Kevin Bulasky
1994 Radioland Murders Dexter Morris
1995 Someone to Die For Jack Davis
1995 Cover Me Andre Solloway
1995 Aurora: Operation Intercept Flight Engineer Murphy
1995 Tales from the Hood Duke Metger
1995 Temptress Nick
1996 Baja John Stone
1996 The Dentist Dr. Alan Feinstone
1996 The Great White Hype Peter Prince
1997 An American Affair Dist. Atty. Sam Brady/Sen. John Crawford
1997 Menno's Mind Felix Medina
1997 Kounterfeit Marty Hopkins
1997 Spacejacked Barnes
1998 The Fairy King of Ar Rob Preston
1998 Major League: Back to the Minors Roger Dorn
1998 The Dentist 2 Dr. Alan Feinstone
1998 The Misadventures of Margaret Art Turner
1999 Kiss of a Stranger Mason
2000 Borderline Normal Benjiman Walling
2000 Rangers The Senator
2001 Apocalypse IV: Judgment Mitch Kendrick
2001 Fangs Carl Hart
2001 The Tomorrow Man Larry
2001 Final Payback Mayor Richardson
2001 Killer Instinct Jennings Wilhite
2001 Raptor Dr. Hyde
2002 Dead Above Ground Mark Mallory
2003 The Commission Rep. Gerald R. Ford
2004 Nightmare Boulevard Jerry Martin
2005 Raging Sharks Capt. Riley
2005 Kiss Kiss Bang Bang Harlan Dexter Nominated—Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture
2005 Carpool Guy Michael Also director and producer
2006 Submission Max
2006 The Naked Ape Mr. Feldman
2006 Paid William Montague
2006 Last Sunset John Wayne
2008 House of Fallen Rowland
2009 Donna on Demand Ben Corbin Also director
2009 Dead Air Dr. F Also director
2010 Rust James Moore Also director, writer, and producer
2010 25 Hill Roy Gibbs Also director, writer, and producer
2011 Bad Actress Himself
2012 3 Day Test Tom Also director and writer
2014 The Last Straw Mr. G.
2014 Christian Mingle Matt Also director and writer
2017 My Daddy is in Heaven Rick Adams
2018 Alone We Fight Colonel Bradley Armstrong
2018 Eco-Teens Save The World Senator Jeremy Ryburn
2019 The Russian Bride [ru; es][33] Karl Frederick
2019 Faith, Hope & Love Brian Fuller
2019 Sunrise in Heaven Jim
2020 Roe v. Wade Harry Blackmun
2020 First Lady King Max
2020 The Unseen Realm[34] Himself
2021 The Hating Game Bexley


Year Title Role Notes
1979 Flying High Dan Ellison Episode: "It Was Just One of Those Days"
1980 The Waltons Casey Episode: "The Medal"
1984–1985 Ryan's Hope Ken Graham 5 episodes
1986–1994 L.A. Law Arnie Becker 171 episodes
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Television Series Drama (1989–90)
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series (1987–88)
1987 Matlock Himself Episode: "The Network"
1988 Mickey's 60th Birthday Arnie Becker TV special
1989 Breaking Point Pike Television movie
1990 Saturday Night Live Himself Episode: "Corbin Bernsen/The Smithereens"
1990 Star Trek: The Next Generation Other Q (uncredited) Episode: "Deja Q"
1990 Dear John Blake McCarron Episode: "Hole in One"
1991 Out of This World Chad Episode: "Evie Nightinggale"
1991 Line of Fire: The Morris Dees Story Morris Dees Television movie
1991 Dead on the Money Carter Matthews Television movie
1992 Grass Roots Will Lee Television movie
1992 Seinfeld Himself Episode: "The Trip: Part 1"
1992 Ring of the Musketeers [de] Harry Television movie
1992 Love Can Be Murder Nick Peyton Television movie
1993 The Larry Sanders Show Himself Episode: "The Stalker"
1993 Roc Jim Larson Episode: "The Millionaire Brother"
1993 Beyond Suspicion Stan Television movie
1994 Guns of Honor Brent Mallick Television movie
1994 The Nanny Glen Mitchell Episode: "Stock Tip"
1994 The Extraordinary Himself (Host)
1994 I Know My Son Is Alive Dr. Mark Elshant Television movie
1994 Where Are My Children? Tom Scott Television movie
1995 Dangerous Intentions Tim Williamson Television movie
1995 A Whole New Ballgame Brett Sooner 7 episodes
1995 In the Heat of the Night Frank Cole Episode: "By Duty Bound"
1995 Tails You Live, Heads You're Dead Neil Jones/Roy Francis Netter Television movie
1995 Murderous Intent Brice Television movie
1996 Bloodhounds Harrison Coyle Television movie
1996 Murder on the Iditarod Trail Alex Jensen Television movie
1996 Inhumanoid Foster Carver Television movie
1996 Bloodhounds II Harrison Coyle Television movie
1996 Full Circle Harrison Winslow Television movie
1996–1997 The Cape USAF Col. Henry 'Bull' Eckert 17 episodes
1997 Touched by an Angel Eric Weiss Episode: "Angel of Death"
1997 Tidal Wave: No Escape John Wahl Television movie
1998 Loyal Opposition: Terror in the White House Secret Service Agent John Gray Television movie
1998 Riddler's Moon George Television movie
1998 Recipe for Revenge Dr. Chester Winnifield Television movie
1998 Young Hearts Unlimited Brian Television movie
1999 Tracey Takes On... Jack Dayton Episode: "Dating"
1999 7th Heaven Ted Grant Episode: "Sometimes That's Just the Way It Is"
1999 Twice in a Lifetime Roger Stovall/Bill Water Episode: "Death and Taxes"
1999 Nash Bridges Edward Jansen Episode: "Trade Off"
1999 Two of Hearts Bruce Saunders Television movie
1999–2004 JAG Captain Owen Sebring 8 episodes
2000 Battery Park Michael Episode: "Rabbit Punch"
2000 The Outer Limits Virgil Nygard Episode: "Abaddon"
2000 Son of the Beach Big Red Johnson Episode: "Miso Honei"
2000 Beggars and Choosers Sandy Peretz Episode: "Killer Sushi"
2000 Yes, Dear Gary Walden Episode: "Jimmy Gets a Job"
2000 Baywatch Barry Poe Episode: "Ties That Bind"
2001 The West Wing Henry Shallick 2 episodes
2001 V.I.P. Zack Henley Episode: "Val in Carnation"
2001 Jack & Jill Paul Barrett 2 episodes
2001 Citizen Baines Nicholas Tassler Episode: "Three Days in November"
2002 The Weakest Link Himself Episode: "L.A. Law Edition"
2002 Gentle Ben Fog Benson Television movie
2002 L.A. Law: The Movie Arnie Becker Television movie
2002 Atomic Twister Sheriff C. B. Bishop Television movie
2002 I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus David Carver Television movie
2002 The Santa Trap Chief Tom Spivak Television movie
2003 Gentle Ben 2 Fog Benson Television movie
2003 Love Comes Softly Ben Graham Television movie
2003 Miss Match Stu 'Dr. Love' Scott Episode: "Divorce Happens"
2003 L.A. Dragnet Richard Atkins Episode: "All That Glitters"
2003 Celebrity Mole: Hawaii Himself 3 episodes
2003 Just Shoot Me! Himself Episode: "For the Last Time, I Do"
2004 Third Watch Carter Savage Episode: "Rat Bastard"
2004 NYPD Blue Bob Cavanaugh Episode: "I Love My Wives, But Oh You Kid"
2004 Celebrity Mole: Yucatan Himself 2 episodes
2004 Call Me: The Rise and Fall of Heidi Fleiss Steve Television movie
2004 They Are Among Us Norbert Television movie
2004–2017 The Young and the Restless Father Todd Williams 22 episodes
2004–2006 General Hospital John Durant 5 episodes
2005 Palmetto Pointe Old Ballplayer Episode: "All That You Can't Leave Behind"
2005 Law & Order: Criminal Intent William Hendry Episode: "Prisoner"
2005 Ordinary Miracles David Woodbury Television movie
2005–2006 Cuts Jack Sherwood 12 episodes
2006 Wheel of Fortune Himself Episode: "Soap Stars 4"
2006 Boston Legal Eli Granger Episode: "...There's Fire!"
2006–2014 Psych Henry Spencer 111 episodes
2007 Masters of Horror Ira Episode: "Right to Die"
2008 How Much Is Enough? Host 40 episodes
2008 Depth Charge Captain Richards Television movie
2008 Vipers Burton Television movie
2008 Confessions of a Go-Go Girl Nick Harvey Television movie
2008 For the Love of Grace Captain Washington Television movie
2009 The New Adventures of Old Christine Howard Episode: "For Love or Money"
2010 Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! Himself Episode: "Comedy"
2011 Castle Lance Hastings Episode: "One Life to Lose"
2011 Criminal Minds Jerry Grandin Episode: "Today I Do"
2012 Switched at Birth James Wilkes Jr. Episode: "Venus, Cupid, Folly and Time"
2013 The Glades Michael Longworth 3 episodes
2013 Hawaii Five-0 Henry Upton Episode: Kupouli 'la (Broken)
2014 Motive Dr. Matthews Episode: "Deception"
2014 Scorpion Bob Connelly Episode: "Shorthanded"
2014 The League Bruce Episode: "Man Land"
2014 Anger Management Roger Episode: "Charlie & The 100th Episode"
2015 Grace and Frankie Dr. Paul Mason Episode: "The Fall"
2015 NCIS: New Orleans Navy Admiral Adam Huntley Episode: "The Abyss"
2015 It Had to Be You Nolan Powell Television movie
2017 Powerless Vanderveer Wayne Sr. Episode: "Sinking Day"
2017 American Gods Vulcan Episode: "A Murder of Gods"
2017 Psych: The Movie Henry Spencer Television movie
2018 Hap and Leonard Chief Cantuck 4 episodes
2018 Billions Bill McGann 2 episodes
2018 The Kominsky Method Himself Episode: "Chapter 3: A Prostate Enlarges"
2018–2021 Magnum P.I. Francis "Icepick" Hofstetler 4 episodes
2019–2020 The Resident Kyle Nevin 9 episodes
2019 The Punisher Anderson Schultz 4 episodes
2019 Fresh Off the Boat Mervin Episode: "Help Unwanted?"
2020 Tommy Milton Leakey 4 episodes
2020 Psych 2: Lassie Come Home Henry Spencer Television movie
2021 Psych 3: This Is Gus Henry Spencer Television movie
TBA The White House Plumbers Not yet released Richard Kleindienst Upcoming miniseries
TBA The Curse Not yet released Upcoming series
Television series that have not yet been released Denotes television series that have not yet been released


  1. ^ a b c d Biography Archived April 10, 2013, at the Wayback Machine from a USA Network website for Psych
  2. ^ "Harry Bernsen Jr. dies at 82". Variety. June 4, 2008. Retrieved May 22, 2020.
  3. ^ Herbert, Steven (April 30, 1992). "Extended Family: For Beverly Hills High's Alumni Assn., Graduates Are Gone But Never Forgotten". Los Angeles Times. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
  4. ^ "MSN Bio". September 7, 1954. Archived from the original on January 15, 2008. Retrieved March 11, 2013.
  5. ^ "Notable Alumni Actors". UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television. Archived from the original on October 6, 2014. Retrieved September 29, 2014.
  6. ^ O'Connor, John J. (September 15, 1986). "TV REVIEW; 'L.A. Law' Series To Begin On NBC". The New York Times. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
  7. ^ a b "Corbin Bernsen". Golden Globes. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
  8. ^ "L.A. Law". Television Academy. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
  9. ^ Davis, Francis (December 1992). "Recognition Humor". The Atlantic. Retrieved May 22, 2020.
  10. ^ "Kounterfeit (1996) – Overview". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
  11. ^ "Aurora: Operation Intercept (1994) – Overview". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
  12. ^ "The Dentist". TV Guide. Retrieved July 31, 2018.
  13. ^ "The Dentist II". TV Guide. Retrieved July 31, 2018.
  14. ^ Gingold, Michael (October 27, 2009). "Corbin Bernsen planning zombie baseball movie". Fangoria. Archived from the original on October 30, 2009.
  15. ^ "Switched at Birth". TV Guide. Retrieved July 31, 2018.
  16. ^ "Conrad and Nic's 'Sexy Thanksgiving' Gets Rudely Interrupted in This The Resident Sneak Peek". TV Guide. November 22, 2019. Retrieved February 4, 2020.
  17. ^ "Public Media Works Summary". OTC Bulletin Board. Archived from the original on October 29, 2005.
  18. ^ Stacy, Tom (March 30, 2005). "Everybody Into the Pool". Soap Opera Digest. Archived from the original on September 27, 2007.
  19. ^ Podcast featuring in its second-half an interview with Bernsen (in MP3 format) by a "new marketing" podcaster
  20. ^ "EXCLUSIVE: Corbin Bernsen Discusses Rust". MovieWeb. October 7, 2010. Retrieved July 31, 2018.
  21. ^ Rowland, Marijke. "'L.A. Law' actor Corbin Bernsen picks Turlock for his next film". The Modesto Bee. Retrieved May 22, 2020.
  22. ^ "25 Hill – The Movie". Retrieved July 31, 2018.
  23. ^ Busch, Anita (September 1, 2016). "Corbin Bernsen Sheds Light On Faith-Based Films, Pacts With Pat Robertson's Regent University On Movie". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
  24. ^ "Emmy Award Nominee, Corbin Bernsen to release debut novel based on his film". Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved November 5, 2015.
  25. ^ "Open House book about affordable stylish house renovations by Amanda Pays and Corbin Bernsen". Remodelista. July 9, 2018. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
  26. ^ "Corbin Bernsen". NNDB. Archived from the original on July 29, 2016. Retrieved August 4, 2017.
  27. ^ Kilday, Gregg (June 4, 1987). "Networking Class Hero". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on August 4, 2017. Retrieved May 22, 2020.
  28. ^ Young, Jacob; Lois Armstrong (December 5, 1985). "Corbin and Amanda Make Their Love Merger Legal". People. Vol. 30, no. 23. Archived from the original on August 4, 2017. Retrieved May 22, 2020.
  29. ^ Ryan, Ruth (May 16, 2004). "Corbin Bernsen, wife list renovated home". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved June 22, 2012.
  30. ^ Gostin, Nicki (October 21, 2010). "Corbin Bernsen Talks Religion, Fatherhood". Archived from the original on November 1, 2012. Retrieved June 22, 2012.
  31. ^ Hiltbrand, David (July 18, 2008). "Bernsen is loving every role, as Mom advised". The Arizona Republic. Phoenix. Retrieved June 22, 2012.
  32. ^ Bernsen cited this number in an interview on Marie by Marie Osmond on January 21, 2013.
  33. ^ N'Duka, Amanda (February 22, 2017). "Corbin Bernsen To Star In Indie Thriller 'The Russian Bride'". Deadline Hollywood. Archived from the original on March 14, 2017.
  34. ^ "The Unseen Realm". IMDb.

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