John Heard (John Matthew Heard)

John Heard

In the 1970s, John Heard appeared on the stage, television and film. He appeared off-Broadway in 1974 in Mark Medoff’s play The Wager and at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center in 1977 in a series of new plays. In 1979 he played Arthur Dimmesdale in a television production of The Scarlet Letter. Heard won Obie Awards for his performances in Othello and Split in 1979–80. He was the male lead in the 1979 film Head Over Heels (which was renamed re-released as Chilly Scenes of Winter in 1982). In 1981, he had the starring role of Alex Cutter in the film Cutter’s Way. He played the lover of Nastassja Kinski, one of the main characters, in the remake of Cat People (1982). He co-starred as photographer George Cooper in C.H.U.D. (Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dwellers, 1984) alongside future Home Alone co-star Daniel Stern and in The Trip to Bountiful (1985). In Heaven Help Us (aka, Catholic Boys, 1985), Heard played as a monk named Brother Timothy in the comedy-drama film. In After Hours (also 1985), Heard was bartender Tom Schorr. John Heard was seen in the film The Milagro Beanfield War and had a significant role playing Paul, Tom Hanks’s adult corporate competitor and jilted boyfriend of Elizabeth Perkins, in Big (both 1988). He co-starred with Bette Midler in Beaches (also 1988), and starred in Deceived(1991), with Goldie Hawn, playing Jack Saunders, and starred in Gladiator (1992), with Cuba Gooding, Jr.

John Heard starred in the philosophical film Mindwalk, in which three characters from different socialitical and poetical backgrounds express their opinions on the human experience, and around the same time, he was in Awakenings (both 1990) alongside Robert De Niro and Robin Williams. He played Daugherty in the film Radio Flyer (1992) and FBI agent Gavin Vereek in The Pelican Brief (1993). He starred with Samuel L. Jackson in 1997’s One Eight Seven and was featured in the 2000 miniseries Perfect Murder, Perfect Town. He played real-life Ku Klux Klan leader D.C. Stephenson in the TV-miniseries Cross of Fire (1989) and played the part of David Manning in the ABC miniseries Out on a Limb, shown in 1994. The latter mini-series is an adaptation of Shirley MacLaine’s memoir of her journey toward acceptance of spiritual and extraterrestrial realities. He has had roles on The Sopranos as the troubled corrupt detective Vin Makazian for which he received an Emmy nomination as outstanding guest actor and later Battlestar Galactica as Commander Barry Garner. He had recurring roles on CSI: Miami (as Kenwall Duquesne, father of Calleigh Duquesne) and Prison Break (as Frank Tancredi, governor of Illinois and father of Sara Tancredi). Among other film and television roles in the 2000s and 2010s, he played the mayor of Chicago on two episodes of the Fox series The Chicago Code. On July 22, 2017, it was reported that John Heard was found dead in a hotel in Palo Alto, California where he was reportedly recovering after undergoing back surgery. The Santa Clara Medical Examiner’s office confirmed his death.

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  • March, 07, 1945
  • USA
  • Washington D.C.


  • July, 21, 2017
  • USA
  • Palo Alto, California

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