Vernal, Utah, United States
Claim to Fame
Casino (1995), Any Given Sunday (1999)
Actor/Actress, Producer, Director
Has Detailed Data (New)
Profile Bio Text
James Woods has played a long list of ruthless creeps and cold-blooded bastards, including the cop-killer in The Onion Field, the entrepreneur who offered torture on cable TV in David Cronenberg`s Videodrome, a particularly slimy gangster in Once Upon a Time in America, a professional killer in Best Seller, Sharon Stone`s pimp-boyfriend in Martin Scorsese`s Casino, the notorious H. R. Haldeman in Nixon, a serial killer and child rapist in Killer, the assassin of Medgar Evers in Ghosts of Mississippi, and a coke-snorting anti-Semite in Pretty Persuasion.
He has also played a few memorable good guys -- the burnt-out reporter in Salvador, the maverick lawyer in True Believer. On TV, he played a Jewish artist in Buchenwald opposite Meryl Streep in the mini-series Holocaust, prisoner of war James Stockdale in In Love and War with Jane Alexander, and the co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous in My Name is Bill W with James Garner. He is currently starring as a tough lawyer on the CBS drama Shark with Jeri Ryan.
His father worked in Army intelligence, necessitating frequent moves, and Woods spent his childhood in Utah, Illinois, Virginia, Guam, and Rhode Island. He was 12 when his father died. His mother, who had never worked before, provided for the family by starting a daycare center that proved popular and profitable. One of the children she cared for was Jim Langevin, who now represents Rhode Island in Congress.
Woods says his IQ is 180, and he was smart enough to get into M.I.T., where he studied political science for a career at the State Department. His plans were derailed after he joined the drama club and appeared in several school plays. He dropped out to become an actor, and worked in fringe theater for a few years. His big break was a mid-sized part in a Broadway play, which he landed by adopting a fake British accent after he overheard the director say he wanted an English actor for the part. He won a Theater World Award for his 1972 performance in the play Moonchildren, a comedy with Christopher Guest. After a few small movie roles, he first caught critics` attention in Elia Kazan`s 1972 Vietnam morality tale The Visitors. He has taken only two acting lessons in his life, and he says "The Method" is shit.
His romantic life has provided a great deal of fodder for the paparazzi press. After his first marriage ended in a messy divorce, he fell for horse trainer Sarah Owen, who is 16 years younger than he. In 1987, she accused him of verbal and physical abuse, including pointing a gun at her and ordering her to strip, lie on the floor, and say, "I am a whore, I am a baby killer." Two years later they were married, for barely four months. During their messy divorce, she told the tabloids Woods was addicted to pornography, had forced her to have an abortion, and that she had caught him masturbating outside her mother`s bedroom. He has since referred to her as "The AntiChrist".
In a story that received widespread media attention, Woods dated Sean Young in 1988, then sued her for harassment the next year, alleging she had sent him pictures of dead babies and animals, that either she or a friend of hers had destroyed his garden, left a mutilated doll on his doorstep, and generally acted like Glenn Close in Fatal Attraction. Young denied everything, but the lawsuit sealed her reputation as a nutcase. An aspect of the matter that drew less attention, however, is that the case was settled out-of-court, by Woods` payment of a quarter-million dollars to Young.
Woods has a famous fondness for young actresses, which Hollywood offers in abundance. He dated Heather Graham in 1992, when she was 22 to his 44. He announced his engagement to 23-year-old actress Missy Crider in 1997, but their wedding was later called off. He was romantically linked to Days of Our Lives actress Alexis Thorpe in 2001 when she was 19, and in 2006 he dated 19-year-old actress Ashley Madison, whom he had known since she was 5 -- she is the daughter of an old friend. He publicly dropped Madison after complaining that she had come to his brother`s funeral wearing an inappropriately short mini-skirt. "The world`s a better place," he has said, "if I`m a single man."
In an story Woods told often after September 11, he says that a month before that disastrous day he flew on an American airliner and overheard four "Arab-looking" men talking in adjacent seats. Deciding it was "blatantly obvious" they were planning to hijack the plane, he says he warned a flight attendant and one of the plane`s pilots, but he put this traumatic incident out of his mind after the four men did not in fact try to hijack the plane. Woods says he reported the incident to the FBI after 9/11, and says he was "told unofficially, not by the FBI, but by someone else in a -- actually a higher level of government, believe it or not, just through a coincidence, through a mutual friend, that all four of th
Couple Profile Source
Pilgrim High School, Warwick, Rhode Island, United States
Massachusetts Institute Of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States (Dropped Out)
Full Name at Birth
James Howard Woods
Page Display = 2 (Legacy)
James Howard Woods (born April 18, 1947) is an American actor and producer. He is often known for villainous roles, and appeared in a variety of films, including The Onion Field (1979), Once Upon a Time in America (1984), Salvador (1986), Casino (1995), Nixon (1995), Ghosts of Mississippi (1996), Hercules (1997) and White House Down (2013). On television, he is known for acting in Shark (2006–2008).
Actor, Producer, Director
Talent Agency (e.g. Modelling)
The Gersh Agency, Inc., Celebrity Talent International
2002: TV commercial (voice) for Blockbuster Video, 2005: TV commercials for HollywoodPoker.net, (1980's) TV commercial for Miller Beer - Himself (United Kingdom)