John Francis Dunsworth
April 12, 1946
Bridgewater, Nova Scotia, Canada
|Died||October 16, 2017 (aged 71)|
Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
Elizabeth Bates (m. 1974)
|Children||4, including Sarah and Molly|
John Francis Dunsworth (April 12, 1946 – October 16, 2017) was a Canadian actor, best known for playing the alcoholic trailer park supervisor Jim Lahey on the comedy series Trailer Park Boys, despite not drinking for the part. He is also known for playing the mysterious reporter Dave Teagues on the supernatural drama series Haven, and for playing Officer McNabb in Shattered City: The Halifax Explosion, a CBC film about the 1917 Halifax Explosion. He had extensive experience in regional theater.
Life and career
In 1988, Dunsworth starred in a video documentary short entitled, John Dunsworth: The Candidate, which was written and directed by Neal Livingston. The film follows an underdog provincial candidate for the New Democratic Party in the riding of Halifax Bedford Basin as he campaigns, based on Dunsworth's candidacy in the 1988 Nova Scotia general election.
|Progressive Conservative||Joel Matheson||6462||45.1|
|New Democratic Party||John Dunsworth||2746||19.3|
Dunsworth studied acting at the University of Guelph, but dropped out in his fourth year. He went on to act in numerous CBC radio dramas, and had starring roles in many stage productions at the Neptune Theatre in Halifax. In 1970, Dunsworth leased an abandoned building on Halifax's waterfront, and converted it into a playhouse. Dubbing it the Pier One Theatre, it became the city's first and most successful alternative theater production house. In the late 1980s, Dalhousie University hired Dunsworth to produce the university's Welcome Show for new students at the Rebecca Cohn Auditorium, in which he also occasionally had an unseen voice-over role. In 1987, Dunsworth founded Filmworks Casting where he worked as Halifax's most renowned casting director. Dunsworth met director Mike Clattenburg in the mid-1990s when he tried out for a bit part in Clattenburg's film short, "One Last Shot". Dunsworth's small role gradually transformed into a leading part that earned him a Best Performance award from the Atlantic Film Festival. From there, he further developed the character into what would eventually become Jim Lahey in Trailer Park Boys.
Dunsworth, John Paul Tremblay, and Robb Wells can be seen in the 2002 movie Virginia's Run starring Gabriel Byrne and Joanne Whalley. Dunsworth plays a local cop while Tremblay and Wells play active and verbal townsmen similar to their Trailer Park Boys characters. Actors are credited as cop for John Dunsworth, J.P. for John Paul Tremblay (credits as J.P. Tremblay), and Robb Wells as Rob. The movie was filmed in Nova Scotia, Canada. Dunsworth starred in Haven, the television series adaptation of the Stephen King novel The Colorado Kid.
Unlike the character he played on Trailer Park Boys, Dunsworth rarely drank alcohol; the 'alcohol' he drank in the show was usually iced tea. He admitted suffering from a gambling problem in the past. As a result of his recovery, he had been instrumental in trying to remove video lottery terminals from bars in Nova Scotia.
Dunsworth once appeared on stage with Guns N' Roses in Halifax, as Axl Rose is a fan of Trailer Park Boys and Dunsworth's character in particular. He was a boating enthusiast and frequently spent time on his yacht, Emerald Princess. He enjoyed building granite sculptures and structures with local stone and cement.
Dunsworth died of an undisclosed illness on October 16, 2017 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, at the age of 71. In a statement, Dunsworth's daughter Sarah described the illness as "short and unexpected" and stated that her father was an "amazing husband, father and grandfather".
- So Long to Run (1978)
- Buried on Sunday (1992)
- Pit Pony (TV-1997)
- One Last Shot (1998)
- Three Days (TV-2001)
- The Shipping News (2001)
- A Glimpse Of Hell (film) 2001
- The Christmas Shoes (TV-2002)
- Shattered City: The Halifax Explosion (TV-2003)
- Reversible Errors (TV-2004)
- The Trailer Park Boys Christmas Special (TV-2004)
- Ambulance Girl (TV-2005)
- The Hunt for the BTK Killer (TV-2005)
- A Bug and a Bag of Weed (2006)
- Trailer Park Boys: The Movie (2006)
- Stuck (2007)
- Trailer Park Boys: Countdown to Liquor Day (2009)
- Cloudburst (2011)
- Take This Waltz (2011)
- Trailer Park Boys 3: Don't Legalize It (2014)
- Swearnet: The Movie (2014)
- Santa Quest (2014)
- Lizzie Borden Took An Ax (2014)
- Lexx: The Dark Zone (mini-series, 1997)
- Lexx: The Series (1999–2002)
- Trailer Park Boys (2001–2007; 2014–2018)
- Trudeau (mini-series, 2002)
- Trudeau II: Maverick in the Making (mini-series, 2005)
- Jesse Stone: Stone Cold (TV movie) (2005)
- Haven (2010–15)
- The Gospel According to the Blues (2010)
- The Drunk and On Drugs Happy Fun Time Hour (2011)
- Titanic: The Aftermath (2012)
- Forgive Me (2013)
- Trailer Park Boys: The Animated Series (2019) (posthumous release)
- Dunsworth is credited in Dolores Claiborne as a part of the crew but did not appear in the film.
- Knox, Casten (September 2005), John Dunsworth: From Angry Young Man to Renaissance Man, archived from the original on June 24, 2007, retrieved December 9, 2008
- Johnston, Ian (May 27, 1990), "John Dunsworth: The Candidate", The Daily News
- "Province of Nova Scotia Election Returns 1988" (PDF). Retrieved 17 October 2017.
- "1988 Nova Scotia General Election Results. p. 83" (PDF).
- Lahey, Liam (2003), Tight Pants and Self Righteousness, archived from the original on 2007-10-09, retrieved December 9, 2008
- Perkyns, R. (1985), "Two Decades of Neptune Theatre", Theatre Research in Canada, vol. 6 no. 2
- Barsanti, Sam. "R.I.P. John Dunsworth, Trailer Park Boys and Haven actor".
- "Full Tales from Beyond the Pale LIVE Lineup Announced - Dread Central". www.dreadcentral.com.
- "A Series of Sinister Soundbites - Dread Central". www.dreadcentral.com.
- "The Boys are back and on drugs". The Globe and Mail, July 12, 2010.
- Trask, Nicole (September–October 2006), "Fight Club", Halifax Magazine, archived from the original on August 12, 2008
- "Hobo with a Shotgun (Official Movie Site) - Starring Rutger Hauer, Gregory Smith, Molly Dunsworth, Brian Downey and Nick Bateman - Now on DVD, Blu-ray™, VOD, XBOX 360, Playstation™, Amazon and Vudu - Trailers, Pictures & More". www.hobowithashotgun.com.
- "Hobo with a Shotgun". 12 May 2011 – via www.imdb.com.
- Capancioni, Marc (September 2008), "Liquored-up Mr. Lahey role initially gave actor bad case of the shivers", The Sault Star
- CBC Arts (April 18, 2005), "'Trailer Park Boys' to tackle VLT addiction", CBC News, retrieved December 9, 2008
- Hooked for Life. The Globe and Mail. March 23, 2009.
- on YouTube
- on YouTube
- "John Dunsworth Service Details". Ronald A. Walker Funeral Homes. Retrieved October 18, 2017.
- CBC News (October 16, 2017), "'John Dunsworth, beloved actor best known as Mr. Lahey, has died'", CBC News, retrieved October 16, 2017
- Remembering John Dunsworth – NorthernStars
- "John Dunsworth". IMDb.