Peter Friedman

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Peter Friedman
Friedman in 2010.
Born (1949-04-24) April 24, 1949 (age 74)
New York City, U.S.
Alma materHofstra University
Years active1972–present
(m. 1990; div. 2002)

Peter Friedman (born April 24, 1949) is an American stage, film, and television actor. He made his Broadway debut in the Eugene O'Neill play The Great God Brown in 1972. His other Broadway credits include roles in The Rules of the Game (1974), Piaf (1981), The Heidi Chronicles (1989), and Twelve Angry Men (2004). He earned a Tony Award for Best Actor in a Musical nomination for his role as Tateh in Ragtime (1998).

Friedman gained prominence for his role as Frank Vernon in the HBO drama series Succession (2018–2023) for which he won a Screen Actors Guild Award. His other television credits include The Affair (2015), The Path (2016–2018), and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (2023). He is also known for his film roles in Safe (1995), The Savages (2007), I'm Not There (2007), Synecdoche, New York (2008), Side Effects (2013), and She Said (2022).

Early life and education[edit]

Born in New York City on April 24, 1949. Friedman graduated from Hofstra University.[1] Friedman is Jewish.[2]


1980–1994: Broadway debut and early roles[edit]

Friedman has appeared in thirteen Broadway productions, starting in 1972 with The Great God Brown. He appeared in a Broadway revival of The Visit in 1973, as the Carpenter.[3] He appeared in Piaf in 1981 on Broadway,[4] and A Soldier's Play Off-Broadway, also in 1981.[5] He played the role of Humphrey Taylor in the Off-Broadway production of The Common Pursuit, from October 1986 to August 1987,[6] receiving a nomination for the Drama Desk Award, Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play.[7] In his review for The New York Times, Frank Rich commented "The always impressive Mr. Friedman, as the embittered Wagnerian...allow us to empathize with characters who might otherwise be merely obnoxious or colorless."[8]

He appeared in both the Off-Broadway and Broadway productions of The Heidi Chronicles in 1988 and 1989 in the role of Scoop Rosenbaum.[9] He received a nomination for the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actor in a Play for The Heidi Chronicles.[7] He appeared Off-Broadway in the Manhattan Theatre Club production of the Donald Margulies play The Loman Family Picnic, from October 1993 to January 1994.[10] The Best Plays of 1993-1994 commented "...Friedman inverting his usual dynamism to play the beleaguered father..."[11]

Early in his career he performed in several episodes of The Muppet Show in its first and third seasons, and spent a brief time on Sesame Street.[12] On television, Friedman starred as George Silver in Brooklyn Bridge (1991–1993)[13] and has made numerous guest appearances in such series as Miami Vice, NYPD Blue, Without a Trace, and Ghost Whisperer. Friedman's many feature film credits include Prince of the City (1981),[14] Daniel (1983), The Seventh Sign (1988), Single White Female (1992), and Blink (1993).

1995–2015: Character actor[edit]

In 1995 Friedman earned a prominent role in the Todd Haynes drama film Safe starring Julianne Moore. The All Movie Guide reviewer wrote, "Avid filmgoers and adherents to the indie film movement that swept through America in the early to mid-'90s will invariably remember Peter Friedman as the sneaky, underhanded, New Age-espousing "self-help guru" who supposedly attempts to offer ailing Julianne Moore a hand up -- but only succeeds in draining her wallet -- in Todd Haynes' harrowing drama Safe (1995). In truth, that role represented just one of many memorable cinematic contributions for the prolific, highly versatile character actor, whose resumé reads like a best-of list of both independent film and Hollywood product."[1] He also acted in I'm Not Rappaport (1996),[15] I Shot Andy Warhol (1996),[16] Paycheck (2003),[17] Freedomland (2006),[18] The Savages (2007),[19] I'm Not There (2007),[20] and Breaking Upwards (2009).[21][12]

He played the role of Jewish immigrant "Tateh" in the musical Ragtime in the pre-Broadway tryout (1996) and on Broadway (1998).[22][23] He was nominated for the 1998 Tony Award for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical and the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actor in a Musical for his role in Ragtime.[7] He acted in the miniseries Perfect Murder, Perfect Town: JonBenét and the City of Boulder.[24] He appeared in a Law & Order episode titled "Attorney Client" as defense lawyer Harold Jensen, broadcast on May 8, 2002.[25] He appeared on Broadway in the Roundabout Theatre Company production of Twelve Angry Men from October 2004 to March 2005.[26] For his role as "Frank" in Body Awareness, which ran Off-Broadway in 2008, Friedman received a nomination for the Drama Desk Award, Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play.[7]

From October to November 2009, Friedman played James, the husband of the teacher of a community acting class in Annie Baker's play Circle Mirror Transformation in the Peter J. Sharp Theater at Playwrights Horizons. The show also featured Heidi Schreck, Reed Birney, Diedre O'Connell, and Tracee Chimo and was directed by Sam Gold. The cast received a 2010 Drama Desk Award for Best Ensemble Performance. Friedman appeared in the Williamstown Theatre Festival production of Amy Herzog's After the Revolution in July and August 2010 as "Ben", and reprised his role in the Off-Broadway production at Playwrights Horizons from October to November 2010.[27] The New York Times reviewer wrote: "Mr. Friedman burrows deeply into Ben's anguish at being cut off by the daughter he raised to carry on the family tradition, the wound smarting all the more because he knows his own mistakes have caused the fissure."[28]

He played the role of "Doug" in the Off-Broadway play The Great God Pan from December 2012 to January 2013, and received a nomination for the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play.[29] The New York Times reviewer commented: "The recollections of his parents, small roles incisively portrayed by the reliable Becky Ann Baker and Peter Friedman..."[30] From August 2013 to September 2013 he played the role of "Meckel" in the Off-Broadway production (and New York premiere) of Lauren Yee's The Hatmaker's Wife.[31] Ben Brantley, in his review for The New York Times wrote: "Mr. Friedman brings unblushing good will and vivacity to assignments that include walking around with a clothespin on his nose..."[32] He appeared Off-Broadway in the musical Fly By Night as "Mr McClam" from May to June 2014.[33]

2016–present: Succession and acclaim[edit]

Friedman took roles in The Affair and Damages. He portrayed Hank Armstrong in the Hulu series The Path from 2016 to 2018 and he acted as Jim in the HBO series High Maintenance also from 2016 to 2018. In 2017 he portrayed Polonius in the Public Theatre's production of Hamlet starring Oscar Isaac and Keegan-Michael Key. That same year he appeared Off-Broadway in the world premiere of The Treasurer at Playwrights Horizons[34] as The Son, for which he was nominated for a 2018 Lucille Lortel Award for Best Actor.

From 2018 to 2023, he played Frank Vernon, long-time confidant of Logan Roy and vice-chairman of Waystar Royco in the series Succession.[35][36] He won the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series along with the cast in 2022. In 2022 he played Lanny Davis in the #MeToo Movement drama She Said (2022) for which he received favorable notices with Jocelyn Noveck of The Associated Press describing him as "excellent".[37] On March 27, 2023, Friedman reprised his role of "Tateh" in a sold-out 25th Anniversary performance of Ragtime at the Minskoff Theater to benefit the Entertainment Community Fund. In 2023 he took a recurring role as George in the final season of the Amazon Prime Video comedy series The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.

In 2023 he portrayed a therapist in the Max Wolf Friedlich play Job. Friedman acted opposite Sydney Lemmon at the Soho Playhouse in New York City. Sara Holden of Vulture praised Friedman writing, "Friedman is especially delightful to watch because he just seems so damn effortless... has a natural ease and appeal, a sense that he’s never pushing too hard".[38] Juan A. Ramirez of The New York Times wrote of Friedman's performance, "[He] imbues Loyd’s counterarguments with a genuine passion".[39] Freidman returned to the play in 2024 with the production transferring to the Connelly Theater in the East Village.[40]

Personal life[edit]

In 1990, Friedman married Joan Allen. Though they divorced in 2002, they chose to live close to one another in order to share time with their daughter, Sadie (born February 1994).[41]



Year Title Role Notes
1980 Christmas Evil Mr. Grosch
1981 Prince of the City D.A. Goldman
1983 Daniel Ben Cohen
1988 The Seventh Sign Father Lucci
1992 Single White Female Graham Knox
1993 Blink Dr. Ryan Pierce
1995 Safe Peter Dunning
1996 I Shot Andy Warhol Alan Burke
1996 I'm Not Rappaport Young Nat's Father
2001 Someone like You Stephen
2003 Paycheck Attorney General Brown
2004 King of the Corner Arthur Wexler
2006 Freedomland Lt. Gold
2007 The Savages Larry
2007 Spinning into Butter Jay Salter
2007 I'm Not There Morris Bernstein / Barker
2008 Synecdoche, New York Emergency Room Doctor
2009 The Messenger Mr. Cohen
2009 Breaking Upwards Alan
2010 Love & Other Drugs California Man
2011 Coming Up Roses Charles
2013 Side Effects Banks Partner #1
2022 She Said Lanny Davis


Year Title Role Notes
1975 Great Performances Marquis Miglioriti Episode: "The Rules of the Game"
1976 Sesame Street Additional role Voice; 2 episodes
1976–1978 The Muppet Show Additional roles Voice; 9 episodes
1983 Rage of Angels Larry Television film
1985 Finnegan Begin Again John Jewell Television film
1985 Miami Vice Morgan Episode: "Nobody Lives Forever"
1988 Hothouse David 2 episodes
1991 The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd Harry Episode: "Here's a Little Touch of Harry in the Night"
1991–1993 Brooklyn Bridge George Silver 33 episodes
1994–2009 Law & Order Various roles 3 episodes
1995 The Heidi Chronicles Scoop Rosenbaum Television film
1997 In the Presence of Mine Enemies Kohn Television film
2000 Perfect Murder, Perfect Town Peter Hofstrom Miniseries
2002 Baby Bob Peter Episode: "The Tell-Tale Art"
2002 Two Against Time Robert Portman Television film
2003 NYPD Blue Dr. Auken Episode: "Your Bus, Ted"
2003 Without a Trace Damon Episode: "Prodigy"
2006 Heist Rabbi Episode: "Strife"
2006 Ghost Whisperer Steve Burris Episode: "A Grave Matter"
2007 Damages District Attorney Episode: "Because I Know Patty"
2012 Made in Jersey Judge Henry Sohn Episode: "Pilot"
2012 666 Park Avenue Samuel Steinberg Episode: "Diabolic"
2013 Person of Interest Lawrence Szilard Episode: "God Mode"
2014 Submissions Only Stuart Schulman Episode: "Petite Sweet Ending in N"
2015 The Affair Robert 3 episodes
2016–2018 The Path Hank Armstrong 23 episodes
2016–2018 High Maintenance Jim 2 episodes
2018–2023 Succession Frank Vernon 39 episodes
2023 The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel George 6 episodes


Year Title Role Venue
1972 The Great God Brown Committeeman Lyceum Theatre, Broadway
1972 Don Juan Commander / Don Carlos
1973 The Visit Carpenter Ethel Barrymore Theatre, Broadway
1973 Chemin De Fer Auguste
1973 Holiday Seton Cram
1974 Love for Love Ben Helen Hayes Theatre, Broadway
1974 The Rules of the Game Marquis Migliorriti
1981 Piaf Papa Leplée Plymouth Theatre, Broadway
1986 Execution of Justice Douglas Schmidt Virginia Theatre, Broadway
1986 The Common Pursuit Humphry Taylor Promenade Theatre, Off-Broadway
1989 The Heidi Chronicles Scoop Rosenbaum Plymouth Theatre, Broadway
1989 The Tenth Man Arthur Brooks Vivian Beaumont Theater, Broadway
1998 Ragtime Tateh Ford Center for the Performing Arts, Broadway
2004 Twelve Angry Men Juror Ten American Airlines Theatre, Broadway
2014 The Open House Dad Signature Theatre, Off-Broadway
2014 Fly by Night Mr. McClam Playwrights Horizons, Off-Broadway
2017 Hamlet Polonius The Public Theatre, Off-Broadway
2018 The Beast in the Jungle Old John Marcher Vineyard Theatre, Off-Broadway
2023 Job Loyd The Soho Playhouse, Off-Broadway

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Project Result Ref.
1987 Drama Desk Award Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play The Common Pursuit Nominated
1989 Outstanding Actor in a Play The Heidi Chronicles Nominated
1998 Outstanding Actor in a Musical Ragtime Nominated
2009 Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play Body Awareness Nominated
2013 Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play The Great God Pan Nominated
2014 Outstanding Ensemble Performance The Open House Won
2015 Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical Fly by Night Nominated
1998 Tony Award Best Lead Actor in a Musical Ragtime Nominated [42]
2022 Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Ensemble in a Drama Series Succession Won [43]
2024 Won [44]


  1. ^ a b "Friedman Biography" The New York Times, accessed January 16, 2014
  2. ^ "Peter Friedman Distinguishes Max Posner's Moving "The Treasurer"". HuffPost. 26 September 2017.
  3. ^ The Visit, accessed January 15, 2014
  4. ^ "Piaf, 1981", accessed January 17, 2014
  5. ^ " A Soldier's Play Listing, 1981" Archived 2005-01-06 at the Wayback Machine, accessed January 17, 2014
  6. ^ The Common Pursuit, accessed January 16, 2014
  7. ^ a b c d Friedman, see Awards", accessed January 15, 2014
  8. ^ Rich, Frank. "Stage: Simon Gray Play, 'The Common Pursuit'", The New York Times, October 20, 1986, p. C17
  9. ^ The Heidi Chronicles, accessed January 15, 2014
  10. ^ " The Loman Family Picnic Listing" Archived 2015-04-05 at the Wayback Machine, accessed January 18, 2014
  11. ^ Guernsey, Otis L.The Loman Family Picnic The Best Plays of 1993-1994, Hal Leonard Corporation, 1994 ISBN 0879101830, p. 73
  12. ^ a b "Friedman filmography" The New York Times, accessed January 15, 2014
  13. ^ O'Connor, John J. "TV WEEKEND; Family Life in '56 Brooklyn" The New York Times, September 20, 1991
  14. ^ " Prince of the City Cast" The New York Times, accessed January 17, 2014
  15. ^ " I'm Not Rappaport Cast" The New York Times, accessed January 17, 2014
  16. ^ " I Shot Andy Warhol Cast" The New York Times, accessed January 17, 2014
  17. ^ " 'Paycheck' Listing", accessed January 16, 2014
  18. ^ " 'Freedomland' Listing", accessed January 16, 2014
  19. ^ " 'The Savages' Listing", accessed January 16, 2014
  20. ^ " 'I'm Not There' Listing", accessed January 16, 2014
  21. ^ " 'Breaking Upwards' Listing", accessed January 16, 2014
  22. ^ Hodges, Andrea. "Casting Finalized for 'Ragtime' Leads", July 12, 1996
  23. ^ Viagas, Robert and Lefkowitz, David. " 'Ragtime' Opens on Broadway, Jan. 18", January 18, 1998
  24. ^ " 'Perfect Murder, Perfect Town' Cast" The New York Times, accessed January 16, 2014
  25. ^ Gans, Andrew. " Ragtime's Peter Friedman Plus Graff & Carey on May 8 'Law & Order' ", May 8, 2002
  26. ^ Hernandez, Ernio. "Sequestered Further: Twelve Angry Men Extends on Broadway Anew to March 27", November 29, 2004
  27. ^ Jones, Kenneth. " 'After the Revolution', Amy Herzog's Intergenerational Family Portrait, Unveiled Oct. 21" Archived 2014-02-01 at the Wayback Machine, October 21, 2010
  28. ^ Isherwood, Charles. "Theater Review. 'After the Revolution' " The New York Times, November 10, 2010
  29. ^ Hetrick, Adam and Gans, Andrew. "Billy Porter, Andrea Martin, 'Pippin', 'Matilda', 'Vanya and Sonia' Win Drama Desk Awards" Archived 2013-06-05 at the Wayback Machine, May 19, 2013
  30. ^ Isherwood, Charles. " 'The Great God Pan,' by Amy Herzog, at Playwrights Horizons" The New York Times, December 18, 2012
  31. ^ Purcell, Carey. " 'The Hatmaker's Wife', Featuring David Margulies, Peter Friedman and Marcia Jean Kurtz, Begins Performances Aug. 27", August 27, 2013
  32. ^ Brantley, Ben. " 'The Hatmaker's Wife,' a Comedy by Lauren Yee" The New York Times, September 6, 2013
  33. ^ "Fly By Night: A New Musical". Playwrights Horizons. Retrieved June 6, 2020.
  34. ^ "Theater Review: The Special Value of the Treasurer". 26 September 2017.
  35. ^ Holloway, Daniel (8 February 2017). "Will Ferrell-Adam McKay Political Drama 'Succession' Ordered by HBO". Variety. Retrieved February 9, 2017.
  36. ^ Succession at IMDb Edit this at Wikidata
  37. ^ "Review: 'She Said' chronicles the scoop that fed a movement". Associated Press. Retrieved September 24, 2023.
  38. ^ "Job Pays Off and Clocks Out". Vulture. Retrieved September 24, 2023.
  39. ^ "'Job' Review: A Stress Test That Feels Like It's Life or Death". The New York Times. Retrieved September 24, 2023.
  40. ^ "Job - Connelly Theater". Time Out. Retrieved February 12, 2024.
  41. ^ Hegberg, Carol (11 April 2005). "With three new movies Rochelle native Joan Allen is making her mark". The Daily Chronicle. Retrieved 10 August 2007.[permanent dead link]
  42. ^ "52nd Tony Awards". Tony Awards. Retrieved February 12, 2024.
  43. ^ "The 28th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards". Screen Actors Guild Awards. Retrieved February 12, 2024.
  44. ^ "Nominations Announced for the 30th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards®" (Press release). Screen Actors Guild. January 10, 2024. Retrieved January 10, 2024.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Performer of Two-Headed Monster (right head)
Succeeded by