Forster in April 2009
July 13, 1941 |
Rochester, New York, U.S.
Robert Wallace Forster, Jr. (born July 13, 1941) is an American actor. He is best known for his roles as news cameraman John Cassellis in Haskell Wexler's Medium Cool (1969), Lebanese terrorist Abdul Rafai in the action-thriller The Delta Force (1986) and bail bondsman Max Cherry in Quentin Tarantino's Jackie Brown (1997), the last of which saw him nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.
Forster's varied filmography further includes titles such as Reflections in a Golden Eye (1967), Alligator (1980), Psycho (1998), Me, Myself & Irene (2000), Mulholland Drive (2001), Like Mike (2002), Firewall (2006), Lucky Number Slevin (2006) and The Descendants (2011), plus Olympus Has Fallen (2013) and its sequel London Has Fallen (2016).
He has also had recurring roles in television series such as Huff (2004–05), Heroes (2007–08), Alcatraz (2012) and Last Man Standing (2012–15). He received a Saturn Award for his performance in the 2013 "Granite State" episode of Breaking Bad.
Forster was born in Rochester, New York, the son of Grace Dorothy (née Montanarella) and Robert Wallace Forster, Sr., who worked as an elephant trainer for the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus and later as an executive for a baking supply company. His mother was Italian American, while his father was of English and Irish descent. The couple divorced in 1949.
As a tribute to his father, Forster hung one of his father's Barnum & Bailey Circus posters in the office of his character in Jackie Brown. He completed his Bachelor of Arts in history in 1964 at the University of Rochester, where he starred in student dramatic performances such as Bye Bye Birdie and, after initially intending to study law, instead decided to become an actor.
After acclaimed supporting performances in two major Hollywood films, one as Private Williams in John Huston's Reflections in a Golden Eye (1967), another as part-Indian Army scout Nick Tana in Robert Mulligan's The Stalking Moon (1968), Forster starred in the critically acclaimed 1969 film Medium Cool. After starring roles in the TV shows Banyon (1972) and Nakia (1974), he played mostly supporting roles in action and horror films including Disney's The Black Hole (1979). Forster had lead roles in cult B-movies in the 1980s like Alligator (1980), Vigilante (1983), The Delta Force (1986), and The Banker (1989).
Forster was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in 1997 for Jackie Brown, which he credits with reviving his career. He has since had consistent work in the film industry, appearing in Like Mike, Mulholland Drive, Me, Myself, & Irene, Lucky Number Slevin, and Firewall, to name a few. He recently appeared in the made-for-television movie The Hunt for the BTK Killer, as the detective intent on capturing serial killer Dennis Rader. Forster also played the father of Van on the short-lived Fox series Fastlane.
Forster recorded a public service announcement for Deejay Ra's Hip-Hop Literacy campaign, encouraging reading of books by Elmore Leonard (he starred in the movie adaption of Leonard's book Rum Punch, filmed as Jackie Brown). Forster appeared in the hit NBC show Heroes as Arthur Petrelli, the father of Nathan and Peter Petrelli, as well as the Emmy award-winning AMC crime drama Breaking Bad as Walter White's new identity specialist. Forster is also a motivational speaker.
|1967||Reflections in a Golden Eye||Private L.G. Williams|
|1968||The Stalking Moon||Nick Tana|
|1969||Medium Cool||John Cassellis|
|1970||Cover Me Babe||Tony Hall|
|1973||The Don Is Dead||Frank|
|1979||The Lady in Red||Turk||Uncredited|
|1979||The Black Hole||Captain Dan Holland|
|1981||Goliath Awaits||Jeff Selrik||Television film|
|1981||Heartbreak High||Coach Alan Arnoldi|
|1983||Walking The Edge||Jason Walk|
|1986||Hollywood Harry||Harry Petry||Also producer and director|
|1986||The Delta Force||Abdul Rafai|
|1990||Checkered Flag||Jack Cotton|
|1991||29th Street||Srgt. Tartaglia|
|1993||Maniac Cop III: Badge of Silence||Dr. Powell|
|1996||Original Gangstas||Detective Slatten|
|1997||American Perfekt||Jake Nyman|
|1997||Night Vision||Teak Taylor|
|1997||Jackie Brown||Max Cherry||Kansas City Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Awards Circuit Community Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor
|1998||Rear Window||Detective Charlie Moore||Television film|
|1998||Outside Ozona||Odell Parks|
|1999||It's the Rage||Tyler|
|1999||Kiss Toledo Goodbye||Sal Fortuna|
|2000||Me, Myself & Irene||Colonel Parington|
|2000||Diamond Men||Eddie Miller||Hamptons International Film Festival: Special Recognition|
|2001||Mulholland Dr.||Detective Harry McKnight|
|2001||Human Nature||Nathan's father|
|2001||Finder's Fee||Officer Campbell|
|2002||Like Mike||Coach Wagner|
|2002||Strange Hearts||Jack Waters|
|2002||Murder in Greenwich||Steve Carroll||Television film|
|2003||Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle||Roger Wixon|
|2003||Grand Theft Parsons||Stanley Parsons|
|2005||The Hunt for the BTK Killer||Detective Jason Magida|
|2006||Lucky Number Slevin||Murphy|
|2007||Rise: Blood Hunter||Lloyd|
|2008||Jack and Jill vs. the World||Norman||Uncredited|
|2009||Thick as Thieves||Lt. Samuel Weber|
|2009||Ghosts of Girlfriends Past||Srgt. Volkom|
|2011||Girl Walks into a Bar||Dodge|
|2011||The Descendants||Scott Thorson||Nominated—Georgia Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Cast
Nominated—Gotham Award for Best Ensemble Cast
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
|2013||Olympus Has Fallen||US Army Chief of Staff General Edward Clegg|
|2016||London Has Fallen||Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Edward Clegg|
|2016||The American Side||Sterling Whitmore|
|2017||The Case for Christ||Walter Strobel|
|1967||N.Y.P.D.||Tony||Episode: "To Catch a Hero"|
|1968||Judd, for the Defense||Ray Elliott||Episode: "In a Puff of Smoke"|
|1971–1973||Banyon||Miles Banyon||9 episodes|
|1974||Nakia||Deputy Nakia Parker||14 episodes|
|1975–1977||Police Story||Bob Vandon||5 episodes|
|1976||Gibbsville||N/A||Episode: "All the Young Girls"|
|1985||Magnum, P.I.||Tyler Peabody McKinney||2 episodes|
|1986||Tales from the Darkside||Gary Gooley||Episode: "The Milkman Cometh"|
|1986||Murder, She Wrote||Gilbert Gaston||Episode: "The Perfect Foil"|
|1987||Hotel||Steve Cameron||Episode: "Unfinished Business"|
|1987||Once a Hero||Gumshoe||3 episodes|
|1987–1988||William Tell||Aymong||3 episodes|
|1991||Jake and the Fatman||Ed Delaney||2 episodes|
|1995||Walker, Texas Ranger||Ricky Rickettes||Episode: "The Big Bingo Bamboozle"|
|1995||Murder, She Wrote||Frank Roussel||Episode: "Big Easy Murder"|
|1997||Walker, Texas Ranger||Lane Tillman||Episode: "Texas vs. Cahill"|
|2002–2003||Fastlane||Raymond Ray||2 episodes|
|2003–2004||Karen Sisco||Marshall Cisco||10 episodes|
|2004||The Grid||Jay Aldrich||2 episodes|
|2004||Clubhouse||Burt Austin||Episode: "Spectator Interference"|
|2004–2005||Huff||Ben Huffstodt||3 episodes|
|2006||Numb3rs||Agent Thomas Lawson||Episode: "Protest"|
|2007||Army Wives||General Grayson||Episode: "Truth and Consequences"|
|2007||Desperate Housewives||Nick Delfino||Episode: "Now I Know, Don't Be Scared"|
|2007–2008||Heroes||Arthur Petrelli||10 episodes
Nominated—Saturn Award for Best Guest Starring Role on Television
|2008||The Simpsons||Lucky Jim||Voice
Episode: "Sex, Pies and Idiot Scrapes"
|2008||Would Be Kings||N/A||2 episodes|
|2011||CSI: NY||Joe Vincent||Episode: "Indelible"|
|2012||Alcatraz||Ray Archer||4 episodes|
|2012||Transformers: Prime||General Bryce||Voice
|2012–2015||Last Man Standing||Bud Baxter||9 episodes|
|2013||NTSF:SD:SUV::||Booth Whitman||Episode: "Unfrozen Agent Man"|
|2013||Breaking Bad||Ed||Episode: "Granite State"
Saturn Award for Best Guest Starring Role on Television
|2014–2015||Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles||Jack J. Kurtzman||Voice
|2015||Childrens Hospital||Donald||Episode: "The 27 Club"|
|2015||Backstrom||Blue Backstrom||2 episodes|
- Robert Forster profile, filmreference.com; accessed December 18, 2016.
- Robert Forster Biography – Yahoo! Movies; accessed December 18, 2016.
- Robert Forster – How To Succeed in Flops; About Robert Forster, nytimes.com; accessed December 18, 2016.
- Global General Gathering of Triple Nine Society Denver, Colorado (September 4-7, 2009), ggg999.org; accessed December 18, 2016.
- "Trailer and Poster for Survivor, Starring Pierce Brosnan and Milla Jovovich". ComingSoon. April 2, 2015. Retrieved April 2, 2015.
- Rosser, Michael (November 3, 2014). "London Has Fallen begins filming". Screen Daily. Retrieved November 3, 2014.
- "The American Side (2016)". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
- Voisin, Scott, "Character Kings: Hollywood's Familiar Faces Discuss the Art & Business of Acting." BearManor Media, 2009. ISBN 978-1-59393-342-5.