Home   >   Movie Stars   >   C   >   Keith Carradine
Keith Carradine

Keith Carradine

Born in San Mateo, California, Keith is the son of the late John Carradine, a veteran actor and the father of two other acting sons, David and Robert. He began showing musical skills at 14 while playing guitar in a bluegrass band made up of high school friends from Ojai Valley School. It was there that he also got his first taste of acting in school dramas. He went on to Colorado State University in Fort Collins, where he appeared in one campus play before dropping out of school.

In March 1969, Carradine got the break that launched his career. Brother David, thirteen years Carradine's senior, was auditioning in L.A. for the Broadway musical Hair, and Keith went along to provide musical accompaniment. Jerry Ragni and James Rado, the authors/stars, found Keith more suited for the part and asked him to come back and audition. Keith got the job and spent nearly a year in the show on Broadway, eventually moving into the lead role of Claude.

Soon after returning to Los Angeles in 1970, Carradine landed the role of a young gunslinger in A Gunfight, opposite Kirk Douglas and Johnny Cash. He followed this with a role in Robert Altman's McCabe and Mrs. Miller with Warren Beatty and Julie Christie, and then went on to star in the Altman classics Thieves Like Us (1973) and Nashville (1975). During the filming of Thieves Like Us, Altman became aware of Carradine's singing and songwriting talents, and incorporated several of his compositions into the Nashville soundtrack. His song I'm Easy, which he performed in the film, won an Academy Award and a Golden Globe Award for Best Song in a Motion Picture in 1975. His single recording (on Asylum Records) of the song made the top ten on the national charts. He also released two LP albums on Asylum, I'm Easy and Lost and Found.

In the ensuing years, Carradine starred in a number of notable films, including a quartet directed by close friend and fellow Altman protégé Alan Rudolph: Welcome to L.A., Choose Me, Trouble in Mind and The Moderns. Another of Carradine's talents was unveiled when he painted several canvases for The Moderns, including one that became the film's poster.

In 1982, Carradine appeared on Broadway with Jessica Tandy and Hume Cronyn in Foxfire, and received an Outer Critics Circle Award for his performance as the couple's prodigal son and country music star. His earlier stage work included productions of Tobacco Road with his father John, and Detective Story with Charlton Heston.

Carradine created the role of Will Rogers on Broadway in The Will Rogers Follies, the smash hit musical that opened at the Palace Theatre on May 1, 1991. He was nominated for a Tony Award as Best Lead Actor in a Musical, and the show went on to win six Tonys (including Best Musical), as well as a Grammy Award for Best Musical Show album. After a year of performances on Broadway, Carradine led the national touring company of The Will Rogers Follies across America, performing in 28 cities over twelve months.

Carradine's notable film credits include George Miller's Andre; Ridley Scott's The Duellists; Louis Malle's Pretty Baby; Walter Hill's The Longriders; A Thousand Acres, with Michelle Pfeiffer, Jessica Lange, Jason Robards, and Jennifer Jason Leigh; 2 Days in the Valley; Southern Comfort; and Cahoots. His major television roles include the mini-series Dead Man's Walk, In The Best of Families, A Rumor of War, Chiefs, and Murder Ordained, and the television movies A Winner Never Quits, My Father, My Son, Stones for Ibarra, and Eye on the Sparrow.

Carradine was seen in Baby, a Turner Network Television (TNT) original film produced by Glenn Close and David Manson, and directed by Robert Allan Ackerman. He also starred in two original movies for Showtime: Sirens, which also starred Dana Delaney and Brian Dennehy, and Enslavement: The True Life Story of Fanny Kemble with Jane Seymour.

Carradine has three children: son Cade, daughter Sorel, and daughter (and actress) Martha Plimpton.

Note: This profile was written in or before 2002.

Keith Carradine Facts

Birth NameKeith Ian Carradine
BirthdayAugust 8, 1949 (74)
BirthplaceSan Mateo, California, USA
Height6' 1" (1m85)  How tall is Keith Carradine compared to you?

Selected Filmography

Elvis and Anabelle (2006) user recommendation
Monte Walsh (2003)
The Outsider (2002)
Last Stand at Saber River (1997)
Dead Man's Walk (1996)
Andre (1994)
Lonesome Dove Collection (1989)
The Ice Pirates (1984)
Pretty Baby (1978)
Nashville (1975)
Emperor of the North (1973)
More ...