Michael Cudlitz

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Michael Cudlitz
Michale Cudlitz at the 2014 San Diego Comic Con International
Cudlitz at the 2014 San Diego Comic Con
Born Michael R Cudlitz
(1964-12-29) December 29, 1964 (age 50)
Long Island, New York, U.S.
Alma mater California Institute of Arts
Occupation Actor
Years active 1989–present
Spouse(s) Rachel Cudlitz
Children 2

Michael Cudlitz (born December 29, 1964) is an American actor, known for portraying John Cooper on the TNT drama series Southland, Sergeant Denver "Bull" Randleman on the HBO miniseries Band of Brothers, and Sergeant Abraham Ford on the AMC horror series The Walking Dead.

Early life[edit]

Cudlitz was born in Long Island, New York and grew up in Lakewood Township, New Jersey.[1]

Cudlitz is a 1982 graduate of Lakewood High School.

Cudlitz has a BFA from the California Institute of the Arts, where he graduated in 1990.[2]


After graduating from CalArts, Cudlitz worked for many years as a character actor, in small parts in both film and television.[3]

Cudlitz at the Paley Center in 2011

From the time he was a student at CalArts until he landed the role in Band of Brothers, Cudlitz supported himself by working in TV and film production in the art department of various shows.[4] He said he did this work for between 8 to 10 years. Cudlitz had a long-term position as part of Local 44 working on Beverly Hills, 90210, where he had a key position coordinating the construction of sets.[5]

His first acting role was in the 1989 film Crystal Ball, playing Scottie. Other roles included playing Tony Miller on Beverly Hills, 90210, and Tad Overton on Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story. He has also played various roles in CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, the second seasons of 24 and Lost, and Prison Break. He also guest starred on Over There and had a regular role on the FOX series Standoff. He also had a small, but highly memorable and well received, role in the 1997 dark comedy Grosse Pointe Blank as the former big man on campus, and later drug addicted and highly frustrated Bob Destepello.

A breakout role for Cudlitz was his portrayal of Sgt. Denver "Bull" Randleman in the World War II miniseries, Band of Brothers.[6][7]

Cudlitz starred on the critically acclaimed[8][9] drama Southland as patrol officer John Cooper, a 20-year veteran and training officer.[10] The show started its run as an NBC show, but was canceled after seven episodes.[11] It was picked up by TNT, who aired the remaining episodes of its first season, bringing it back for a total of five seasons.[12][13] The character struggled with chronic back pain, addiction to pain medication, and ethical issues relating to his partners.[14] Prior to the start of shooting for the show, Cudlitz had a large mole removed from his right upper lip, which had previously been a signature feature of his appearance. The show was cancelled in 2013.[15] Cudlitz won the Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series for his role in 2013.[16]

In 2009, Cudlitz appeared in the science fiction film Surrogates as Colonel Brendon. In 2013, Cudlitz played opposite Melanie Griffith in the movie, Dark Tourist.[17]

Since February 2014, he has appeared in AMC TV show The Walking Dead as Sergeant Abraham Ford, a character from the comic series of the same name. His first appearance was in the tenth episode of Season 4, an episode entitled "Inmates".[18] The role quickly became a fan favorite with Cudlitz becoming a series regular.[19][20]

Voice work[edit]

Cudlitz supplied the voice of Sgt. Glenn "Hawk" Hawkins in the video game Call of Duty 2: Big Red One. He voiced Corporal Griffen in the video game Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare and its sequel, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.


Personal life[edit]

Cudlitz is married to his wife, Rachel Cudlitz.[22] They met while students at California Institute of Arts. They have twin sons.[1]



Year Title Role
1992 A River Runs Through It Chub
1993 Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story Tad Overton
1993 The Liars' Club Jimbo
1996 Savage Spillane
1996 Follow the Bitch Ty
1996 D3: The Mighty Ducks Cole
1997 Grosse Pointe Blank Bob Destepello
1998 The Negotiator Palermo
1999 Forces of Nature Bartender
1999 Live Virgin Bob
2000 A Question of Faith James
2000 Lured Innocence Harry Kravitz
2003 Welcome to the Neighborhood George
2006 Running Scared Sal 'Gummy Bear' Franzone
2008 Sex Drive Rick
2008 Tenure Tim
2009 Surrogates Colonel Brendan
2009 Stolen Jonas
2011 Satin Kip Tanner
2011 Inside Out Detective Calgrove
2012 Rogue River Sheriff Boyd; also Associate producer
2013 Dark Tourist Jim; also Producer
2013 Pawn Shop Chronicles Ben
2013 Cesar Chavez Sheriff Smith

Television (miniseries, TV movies, shorts)[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1989 Crystal Ball Scottie Short
1996 Last Exit to Earth Hardester TV movie
1998 Thirst Andy TV movie
1999 Small Change Gary Short
2001 Band of Brothers Sgt. Denver "Bull" Randleman Miniseries; 9 episodes
2002 Live from Baghdad Tom Murphy TV movie
2004 Homeland Security Agent Tango 12 TV movie
2008 Danny Fricke Praeger TV movie
2011 Silent Witness Sam Robb TV movie

Television (episodic)[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1990 Hull High Schwartz 2 episodes: "Episode #1.2," "Episode #1.6"
1991 21 Jump Street Dennis Richards 1 episode: "Bad Day at Blackburn"
1991 L.A. Law Passerby 1 episode: "Do the Spike Thing"
1992 Step by Step Ed 1 episode: "Home Alone"
1991–1992 Growing Pains Chuck 2 episodes: "There Must Be a Pony," "The Call of the Wild"
1992 Life Goes On Ernie 1 episode: "The Wall"
1992–1993 Beverly Hills, 90210 Tony Miller 11 episodes
1993 Against the Grain Bud Hardeman 2 episodes: "Pilot," "The Buck Stops... There"
1994 Lifestories: Families in Crisis Walton 1 episode: "A Body to Die For: The Aaron Henry Story"
1994 Picket Fences White Teenager #1 1 episode: "Elective Conduct"
1994 The Marshal Gary Lowell 1 episode: "Kissing Cousins"
1996 ER Injured Fireman 1 episode: "The Healers"
1996 Pacific Blue Brett Andrews 1 episode: "The Enemy Within"
1996 Renegade Patch / Beau 2 episodes: "High Rollers," "The Dollhouse"
1997 Leaving L.A. Joey Reno 1 episode: "The Black Widower"
1997 Party of Five Shuyler 1 episode: "4.2: Past Imperfect"
1998 Touched by an Angel Landau 1 episode: "God and Country"
1998 NYPD Blue Joshua 1 episode: "Prostrate Before the Law"
1999 Home Improvement Kyle 1 episode: "Whitewater"
1999 Buffy the Vampire Slayer Bob 1 episode: "The Zeppo"
1999 Chicago Hope 1 episode: "And Baby Makes 10"
1999 Good vs Evil The Wiz 1 episode: "Men Are from Mars, Women Are Evil"
1999 Snoops Michael Keppler 1 episode: "Constitution"
1999 Love & Money Joe 2 episodes: "Everybody Doesn't Love Eamon," "Puff the Magic Sister"
2001 Walker, Texas Ranger State Trooper 1 episode: "Unsafe Spped"
2001 Six Feet Under Dennis, Crossroads Leader 1 episode: "Crossroads"
2001 The Mind of the Married Man Contractor 2 episodes: "Just Thinking of You," "When We Were Nice"
2001 Philly Joe 1 episode: "Live and Leg Die"
2002 The Practice Russell Hampton 1 episode: "The Test"
2002 Family Law Darren Carson 1 episode: "Big Brother"
2002 Push, Nevada 1 episode: "Jim's Domain"
2002 Fastlane Det. Ray Cornwright 1 episode: "Girls Own Juice"
2002 MDs Elkin 1 episode: "R.I.P."
2002–2003 24 Rick Phillips 3 episodes: "Day 2: 2:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m.," "Day 2: 3:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m.," "Day 2: 4:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m."
2004; 2007 JAG 2 episodes: "Force Recon" as Sergeant Tesla, "Take It Like a Man" as Cpl. Hal Strange
2004 Nip/Tuck Brody 1 episode: "Joel Gideon"
2005 Las Vegas Brian Carlton Venturi - the Kidnapper 1 episode: "When You Got to Go, You Got to Go"
2005 Medical Investigation Lt. Troy Adams 1 episode: "Mousetrap"
2005 CSI: Miami 'Mac' MacKern 1 episode: "Nothing to Lose"
2004; 2005 Without a Trace 2 episodes: "The Line" as Mark Casey, "John Michaels" as Freddy Katan
2005 Line of Fire Jury Member 1 episode: "This Land Is Your Land"
2005 Over There Colonel Ryan 1 episode: "The Prisoner"
2005 The Dead Zone Herb Smith 1 episode: "Babble On"
2005 Prison Break Corrections Officer Robert 'Bob' Hudson 2 episodes: "Riots, Drills and the Devil: Part 1," "Riots, Drills and the Devil: Part 2"
2005 Wanted Dep. Reed 1 episode: "Lips Are Lips"
2005 Sleeper Cell LAPD Detective Walt Moss 1 episode: "Intramural"
2006 Close to Home Dan Johnson 1 episode: "Escape"
2006 CSI: NY Vern Dox 1 episode: "Super Men"
2004; 2006 Dr. Vegas Glen 2 episodes: "Lust for Life," "For Love or Money"
2006–2007 Standoff Frank Rogers 18 episodes
2007 Bones Lucky 1 episode: "Death in the Saddle"
2007 Criminal Minds Francis Goehring 1 episode: "Identity"
2005; 2008 Lost Big Mike Walton 2 episodes: "Collision," "The Beginning of the End"
2008 The Cleaner JWB 1 episode: "Pilot"
2007–2008 Life Mark Rawls 3 episodes: "Pilot: Merit Badge," "Fill It Up," "Did You Feel That?"
2001; 2009 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation 2 episodes: "And Then There Were None" as Officer William Spencer, "The Grave Shift" as Josh Barston
2009 Knight Rider Lead Gunman 1 episode: "Exit Light, Enter Knight"
2009 Eleventh Hour Ben Finney 1 episode: "Minamata"
2009 Saving Grace Donald Gilmore 1 episode: "The Heart of a Cop"
2009–2013 Southland John Cooper 43 episodes. Winner - Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
2014–present The Walking Dead Sgt. Abraham Ford 20 episodes
2015–present Ballers Dan Balasmo 2 episodes: "Head-On," "Gaslighting"

Video games[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2005 Call of Duty 2 Sgt. Glenn "Hawk" Hawkins Voice
2005 Call of Duty 2: Big Red One Sgt. Glenn "Hawk" Hawkins / Pvt. Braeburn Voice
2007 Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare U.S. Marine / Corporal Griffen Voice
2009 Red Faction Guerrilla Saul Marius Voice
2009 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Additional Voice Talent Voice
2011 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 Corporal Griffin Voice

Art department[edit]


  1. ^ a b Hegedus, Eric (28 February 2010). "Shooting from the lip". New York Post. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  2. ^ "Alumni - School of Theater: Programs in Performance". California Institute of the Arts. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  3. ^ Kronke, David (15 June 2009). "Guest stars face trial by fire: First impressions key for specialized actors". Variety. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  4. ^ Rudolph, Ileane (1 February 2011). "Southland's Michael Cudlitz Gets Tangled Up in Blue". TV Guide. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  5. ^ Jaffe, Matthew (31 March 2010). "Southland's Michael Cudlitz Keeps it Real". TV.com. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  6. ^ James, Caryn (7 September 2001). "TV Weekend; An Intricate Tapestry Of a Heroic Age". The New York Times. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  7. ^ Owen, Ross (11 August 2010). "Michael Cudlitz AKA Denver 'BULL' Randleman - Recorded August 4th 2010". Black Sky Radio. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  8. ^ Hale, Mike (26 February 2013). "In Pursuit, on Wheels and on Foot". The New York Times. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  9. ^ Lowry, Brian (17 April 2013). "TV Review: A (Final?) Salute to ‘Southland’". Variety. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  10. ^ Hale, Mike (1 March 2010). "Patrolling for Felons and Kudos on Sun-Blinded Streets". The New York Times. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  11. ^ Ausiello, Michael (9 October 2009). "'Southland' star on show's axing: 'I'm pissed off'". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  12. ^ Chozick, Amy (16 March 2012). "‘Southland’ With Michael Cudlitz and Regina King on TNT / Mortal Cops Cling to Life on the Air". The New York Times. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  13. ^ Trachta, Ali (1 June 2011). "Southland at The Paley Center: Is This the Most Realistic Cop Show Out There?". LA Weekly. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  14. ^ Roisin, Fariha (26 June 2013). "Michael Cudlitz on Saying Goodbye to 'Southland' and Playing One of TV's Most Enduringly Complicated Characters". Indiewire. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  15. ^ Weisman, Jon (10 May 2013). "TNT Cancels ‘Southland’". Variety. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  16. ^ Maglio, Tony (26 June 2013). "Emmys: ‘Southland’s’ Michael Cudlitz Wants to Bring Back a Character Who Will ‘F— You Up’". The Wrap. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  17. ^ Rapold, Nicolas (29 August 2013). "It’s Vacation Time, Grief Stalker: ‘Dark Tourist’ Stars Michael Cudlitz". The New York Times. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  18. ^ Halterman, Jim (18 February 2014). "Michael Cudlitz Teases Walking Dead Character, All-Important Mission Ahead". TV Fanatic. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  19. ^ Goldberg, Lesley (9 November 2014). "'Walking Dead's' Michael Cudlitz: Abraham Is "Very Damaged at This Point"". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  20. ^ Ross, Dalton (9 November 2014). "'The Walking Dead' star Michael Cudlitz explains Abraham's shocking flashbacks". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  21. ^ "Michael Cudlitz - Presentation of Prism Award and acceptance speech". Entertainment Industries Council. 25 April 2013. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 
  22. ^ "Rachael Cudlitz". XoJane. Retrieved 14 September 2015. 

External links[edit]