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Gary Basaraba

Gary Basaraba

Best known to television audiences from his role as Richard Santoro on Steven Bochco's Brooklyn South, Gary Basaraba was born in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Growing up in Vancouver, British Columbia, he always knew he wanted to become an actor. Since Vancouver in the 1970s didn't offer many opportunities for an aspiring young actor, after high school graduation, Basaraba worked in a steel mill for a few years until he was able to find a way to attend Yale University School of Drama in the U.S.

Accepted as a special student without the usual requisite undergraduate degree, Basaraba attended Yale for three years where he played rugby -- the only Yale Drama School student ever to do so - and toured Africa, the Caribbean and the United States.

After graduating from Yale, Basaraba moved to New York City where he met the legendary French director Louis Malle, who gave him his first professional acting role in Alamo Bay. Originally Malle read Basaraba and Holly Hunter for the couple, but when he decided to cast the roles older, Malle changed a character and created a role for Basaraba. The actor went on to work with a number of prestigious feature-film directors including Martin Scorsese in The Last Temptation of Christ, Karel Reisz in Sweet Dreams, Alan Rudolph in Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle and Boomtown director Jon Avnet in Fried Green Tomatoes.

Boomtown also returns Basaraba to NBC where he made his television debut in an early guest appearance on Miami Vice. His other television credits include guest appearances on NBC's Law & Order, NYPD Blue, Judging Amy and an acclaimed episode of Homicide: Life on the Street, titled A Doll's Eyes, with Marcia Gay Harden. His longform television credits include In the Line of Duty: Manhunt in the Dakotas and Guilty Hearts, with Treat Williams and Harden.

Basaraba resides in New York and Los Angeles.

Note: This profile was written in or before 2003.

Gary Basaraba Facts

BirthdayMarch 16, 1959 (64)
BirthplaceEdmonton, Alberta, Canada
Height6' 3" (1m91)  How tall is Gary Basaraba compared to you?

Selected Filmography

The Smurfs
The Smurfs 2
The Smurfs Christmas Carol
Fried Green Tomatoes
Fried Green Tomatoes / Coal Miner's Daughter Double Feature
Coal Miner's Daughter / Smokey and the Bandit / The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas / Fried Green Tomatoes Four Feature Films
The War
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