October 11, 1926 |
Rocky Mount, North Carolina, United States
|Other names||Earl Hyman|
|Occupation||Stage, film and television actor|
Earle Hyman (born October 11, 1926) is an American stage, television, and film actor. Hyman is known for his recurring role on ThunderCats as the voice of Panthro and later on The Cosby Show as Cliff's father, Russell Huxtable.
Hyman was born in Rocky Mount, North Carolina, of African and Native American ancestry. Hyman's parents, Zachariah Hyman (Tuscarora) and Maria Lilly Plummer (Haliwa-Saponi/Nottoway), moved their family to Brooklyn, New York, where Hyman primarily grew up. Earle Hyman became interested in acting after seeing a production of Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen's Ghosts. “The first play I ever saw was a present from my parents on my 13th birthday — Nazimova in ‘Ghosts’ at Brighton Beach on the subway circuit — and I just freaked out.”
He made his Broadway stage debut as a teenager in 1943 in Run, Little Chillun, and later joined the American Negro Theater. The following year, Hyman began a two-year run playing the role of Rudolf on Broadway in Anna Lucasta, starring Hilda Simms in the title role. He was a member of the American Shakespeare Theatre beginning with its first season in 1955, and played the role of Othello in the 1957 season.
In December 1958 he came to London to play the leading role in the play Moon on a Rainbow Shawl by Errol John, at the Royal Court. In 1959 he again appeared in the West End, this time in the first London production of A Raisin In the Sun alongside Kim Hamilton. The show ran at the Adelphi Theatre and was directed again by Lloyd Richards.
A life member of The Actors Studio, Hyman has appeared throughout his career in productions in both the United States and Norway (he is fluent in Norwegian) where he also owns a home on Norway's west coast and an apartment in Oslo. In 1965, won a Theatre World Award and in 1988, he was awarded the St Olav's medal for his work in Norwegian theater.
In addition to his stage work, Hyman has appeared in various television and film roles including adaptions of Macbeth (1968), Julius Caesar (1979), and Coriolanus (1979), and voiced Panthro on the animated television series ThunderCats (1985-1990). He played two roles (at different times) on television's The Edge of Night. One of his most well known roles, that of Russell Huxtable in The Cosby Show, earned him an Emmy Award nomination in 1986 where he played the father of lead character Cliff Huxtable, played by actor Bill Cosby, despite only being 11 years senior to Cosby. He is the first cousin once removed of singer Phyllis Hyman. Their common ancestors are his parental grandparents Ishmael and Cassandra (Cross) Hyman.
|1945||The Lost Weekend||Smoking Man||Uncredited|
|1954||The Bamboo Prison||Doc Jackson, medic|
|1966||Afrikaneren||Raymond||Alternative title: The African|
|1975||The Super Cops||Police Detective||Uncredited|
|1975||The Possession of Joel Delaney||Charles||Credited Earl Hyman|
|1982||Fighting Back||Police Chief Freeman||Alternative title: Death Vengeance|
|1985||Thundercats - HO: The Movie||Panthro||Voice|
|1988||Light Years||Maxum (Voice)||Alternative title: Gandahar|
|1957||Hallmark Hall of Fame||Adam||1 episode|
|The United States Steel Hour||Jim||1 episode|
|1963||Espionage||Premier Djatuma||1 episode|
|East Side/West Side||Mr. Marsden||1 episode|
|1964||The Nurses||Buratta||1 episode|
|The Defenders||District Attorney||1 episode|
|1965||Seaway||Tom Nkomo||1 episode|
|1980||The Ivory Ape||Inspector St. George||Television movie|
|1982||Long Day's Journey Into Night||James Tyrone||Television movie|
|1984||The Edge of Night||Bailiff||Unknown episodes|
|1984-1992||The Cosby Show||Russell Huxtable||40 episodes|
|1985||ThunderCats||Panthro/Redeye (Voice)||130 episodes|
|The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus||King Awgwa (Voice)||Television movie|
|1987||A Different World||Russell Huxtable||Episode: :Sometimes You Get the Bear, Sometimes the Bear Gets You"|
|1989||A Man Called Hawk||Jefferson Adams||Episode: "Passing the Bar"|
|1994||Seier'n er vår||Sammy||Unknown episodes|
|1995||All My Children||Mr. Patterson||Unknown episodes|
|1996||Hijacked: Flight 285||Wayne Edwards||Television movie|
|1997||Cosby||Rev. Mitchell||1 episode|
|2000||The Moving of Sophia Myles||Bishop Heath||Television movie|
|2001||Twice in a Lifetime||Charley Freeman||1 episode|
Awards and nominations
|Year||Award||Result||Category||Film, series or play|
|1956||Theatre World Award||Won||
|1980||Tony Award||Nominated||Best Featured Actor in a Play||The Lady From Dubuque|
|1983||CableACE Award||Won||Actor in a Dramatic Presentation||Long Day's Journey Into Night|
|1986||Emmy Award||Nominated||Outstanding Guest Performer in a Comedy Series||The Cosby Show (For episode "Happy Anniversary")|
- "From Ibsen to Pinter and back again Earle Hyman’s long journey with the masters"
- Winer, Laurie (1991-03-24). "From Cosby's Father to Colonel Pickering, By Way of Norway". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-11-09.
- Buckley, Michael (2005-10-23). "Stage and Screen Star Earle Hyman". playbill.com. Retrieved 2008-11-09.
- Cooper, Roberta Krensky (1986), The American Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford 1955-1985, Folger Books, p. 43, ISBN 0-918016-88-6
- Stephens, Frances (1959). ""Moon on a Rainbow Shawl"". Theatre World Annual (London). A Pictorial Review of West End Productions with a record of Plays and Players. London: Barrie & Rockliff. p. 89.
- Garfield, David (1980). "Appendix: Life Members of The Actors Studio as of January 1980". A Player's Place: The Story of The Actors Studio. New York: MacMillan Publishing Co., Inc. p. 278. ISBN 0-02-542650-8.
- Earle Hyman at the Internet Movie Database
- Earle Hyman at the Internet Broadway Database
- Audio Interview (2008)