W. Earl Brown

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W. Earl Brown
Born William Earl Brown
(1963-09-07) September 7, 1963 (age 52)
Golden Pond, Kentucky, U.S.
Alma mater DePaul University Theatre School
  • Actor
  • writer
  • producer
  • musician
Years active 1991–present
Spouse(s) Carrie Paschall (m. 1989)
Children 1

William Earl Brown (born September 7, 1963) is an American actor, writer, producer, and musician. He is perhaps best known for his role as Dan Dority on the HBO series Deadwood. He also played Kenny in the 1996 film Scream and Warren in the 1998 film There's Something About Mary. More recently, he voiced and filmed performance capture for the character Bill in Naughty Dog's 2013 survival horror action video game The Last of Us, and appeared in the series American Crime (2015).

Life and career[edit]

Brown was born in Golden Pond, Kentucky. After graduating from Murray State University in 1986, Brown moved to Chicago where he received his MFA from DePaul University Theatre School in 1989.[1][2] After performing in numerous plays, including his breakout performance in Steppenwolf Theatre Company's outreach staging of Arthur Miller's A View from the Bridge, Brown began work in television and film. He appeared in such Chicago productions as Backdraft, The Babe, Excessive Force, Rookie of the Year and others.[3]

In 1993, Brown moved to Los Angeles. He auditioned for, and was cast in Wes Craven's New Nightmare. He also has a minor role in Craven's Vampire in Brooklyn, and a bigger one as Gail's cameraman in Craven's Scream. Two years later, Brown played the role of Warren in the comedy film There's Something About Mary. Other past films credits include Being John Malkovich, Vanilla Sky, Dancing at the Blue Iguana, The Alamo, and The Big White. In 2009, Brown wrote and produced the Samuel Goldwyn Co./Sony release Bloodworth. Among Brown's more recent film credits are the Oscar-nominated films The Master and The Sessions and 2013's The Lone Ranger and Brother's Keeper, and 2014's Wild.

On television, Brown is best known for his portrayal of Dan Dority in HBO's Deadwood. During the show's second season, he was invited to join the show's writing staff by its creator, David Milch. In 2007, Brown earned a WGA nomination for writing on a drama series and a SAG nomination for best drama ensemble acting. Over the years, his numerous guest star roles on television include: Bates Motel, Rectify, Luck, American Horror Story, Justified, Six Feet Under, NYPD Blue, X-Files, The Mentalist, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, Ellen, Seinfeld, True Detective,[4] and others. Among the many TV movies he has been involved with was the starring role in VH1's Meatloaf: To Hell and Back.

In addition to his television and film work, Brown performed the motion capture and voiceover work for Naughty Dog's acclaimed video game, The Last of Us. He also writes and records with the Los Angeles band Sacred Cowboys, who performed around the Southwest U.S. steadily from 2005 to 2009, including having been on the bill for Stagecoach 2009, Southern California's premiere country music festival.



Year Title Role Notes
1991 Backdraft Paramedic
1992 The Babe Herb Pennock
1993 Rookie of the Year Frick (Bullpen Catcher)
1993 Excessive Force Vinnie DiMarco
1994 Wes Craven's New Nightmare Morgue Attendant
1995 Without Evidence Grace
1995 Vampire in Brooklyn Thrasher
1996 Scream Kenny
1997 Kiss the Girls Locksmith
1998 Deep Impact McCloud
1998 There's Something About Mary Warren Jensen
1999 Being John Malkovich J.M. Inc. Customer
2000 Dancing at the Blue Iguana Bobby
2000 Lost Souls William Kelson
2001 Vanilla Sky Barman
2001 Sugar & Spice Hank "Terminator" Rogers
2003 Pauly Shore Is Dead Bucky From Kentucky
2003 Dunsmore Ronny Roy Pritcher
2004 Killer Diller Holister
2004 The Last Shot Willie Gratzo
2004 The Alamo David Burnet
2005 The Big White Jimbo
2005 Kids in America Boss McGinn
2010 Bloodworth Brady Bloodworth Also writer and producer
2010 The Last Rites of Ransom Pride Matthew
2012 The Sessions Rod
2012 The Master Fighting Businessman
2013 A Single Shot Puffy
2013 The Lone Ranger Mustached Ranger
2013 Beneath the Harvest Sky Roger
2013 Knights of Badassdom Randy
2013 Brother's Keeper Turner Monroe
2014 Wild Frank
2014 Draft Day Ralph Mowry
2015 Chasing Ghosts Roger Simons
2015 Black Mass Johnny Martorano
2016 Spaceman Dick Dennis In post-production


Year Title Role Notes
1992 Angel Street Patrolman Unknown episode
1993 The Untouchables Jack Zuta 2 episodes
1993 The Woman Who Loved Elvis Pete Television film
1993 Bakersfield P.D. Hood Episode: "The Ex-Partner"
1994 Seinfeld Al Episode: "The Stand-In"
1994 Murder, She Wrote Guard Episode: "Murder of the Month Club"
1994 Lily in Winter Sheriff Boyd Television film
1995 Ellen Customer #3 Episode: "Gladiators"
1995 The Single Guy The Cabbie Episode: "Neighbors"
1995 Nowhere Man Roy Episode: "It's Not Such a Wonderful Life"
1996 Project ALF Ernie Television film
1996 A Season in Purgatory Fatty Malloy Television film
1996 Caroline in the City Floyd Gerber Episode: "Caroline and the Therapist"
1996 The Cherokee Kid Calloway Television film
1997 Diagnosis: Murder Dusty Wilton Episode: "Murder, Country Style"
1997 Smart Guy Sonny Episode: "The Dating Game"
1997 Bella Mafia Fredrico Luciano Television film
1998 Profiler Raymond Boudreaux Episode: "The Sum of Her Parts"
1999 Martial Law Larry Gambozza Episode: "Big Trouble"
2000 Chicago Hope Harry Cram Episode: "Cold Hearts"
2000 NYPD Blue Bruce Rhodes Episode: "Welcome to New York"
2000 Meat Loaf: To Hell and Back Meat Loaf Television film
2000 Angel Menlo Episode: "The Shroud of Rahmon"
2001 CSI Roger Peet Episode: "Justice Is Served"
2001 Charmed Shadow / Warlock Episode: "Pre-Witched"
2001 Dead Last Victor Korsky Episode: "The Problem with Corruption"
2001 Wolf Lake Bruce Cates Episode: "Excitable Boy"
2002 Philly Billy Temple Episode: "Brotherly Love"
2002 The X Files Robert M. Fassl Episode: "Underneath"
2002 Six Feet Under Pete Episode: "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year"
2002 Push, Nevada Shadrach 5 episodes
2003 NYPD Blue Terry Parkhurst Episode: "22 Skidoo"
2004 Cold Case Victor Lake Episode: "Maternal Instincts"
2005 CSI: Miami Jesse Kramer Episode: "Whacked"
2004–06 Deadwood Dan Dority 36 episodes; also wrote one episode
2006 Standoff Doug Frohmer Episode: "Man of Steele"
2007 Numbers Abner Stone Episode: "Nine Wives"
2007 Psych Dwayne Tancana Episode: "Bounty Hunters!"
2007 The Minister of Divine Buzz Unsold pilot
2008 The Mentalist Rulon Farnes Episode: "Redwood"
2009 Hawthorne Mr. Deegan Episode: "Trust Me"
2009 CSI Slick Episode: "Appendicitement"
2010 Justified Cal Wallace Episode: "Blowback"
2010 Miami Medical Jesse Episode: "Medicine Man"
2011 American Horror Story Phil Critter Episode: "Smoldering Children"
2011 Burn Notice Zechariah Episode: "Besieged"
2011 Breakout Kings Cliff Krauss Episode: "Paid in Full"
2012 Luck Mulligan 2 episodes
2012 Blue Eyed Butcher Thomas Dean Television film
2012 Perception Frank Prentice Episode: "Faces"
2012 Major Crimes Jim Martino Episode: "Before and After"
2013 The Sixth Gun Gen. Oliander Hume Unsold pilot
2013 Bates Motel Keith Summers Episode: "First You Dream, Then You Die"
2013 Rectify The Stranger Episode: "Drip, Drip"
2013 Rogue Charlie 5 episodes
2013 Longmire R.J. Watts Episode: "The Road to Hell"
2014 Ground Floor Digger Tomkins Episode: "Dynamic Duo"
2014 Grey's Anatomy Herb Cramer Episode: "Throwing It All Away"
2014 Chicago Fire Dave Bloom 3 episodes
2015 American Crime Tom Carlin 10 episodes
2015 True Detective Det. Teague Dixon 5 episodes
2015 Documentary Now! Mitch Dragando Episode: "Gentle and Soft: The Story of the Blue Jean Committee, Part 1"
2015 Wicked City Capt. Dan Wilkinson Episode: "Pilot"
2016 Preacher Hugo Root Upcoming series

Video games[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2013 The Last of Us Bill Voice and motion capture


  1. ^ "Department of Theatre". Murray State University. Retrieved December 25, 2013. 
  2. ^ "From DePaul to "Deadwood": The Scene Stealing Characters of W. Earl Brown". DePaul Advancement News. May 30, 2013. Retrieved December 25, 2013. 
  3. ^ Sean O'Neal (January 6, 2011). "W. Earl Brown". The A.V. Club. Retrieved December 25, 2013. 
  4. ^ Fitz-Gerald, Sean (June 6, 2015). "Here's a Description of the True Detective 2 Premiere". Vulture. Retrieved June 12, 2015. 

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