Jan. 28th, 1943
Chicago, Illinois, USA
John Beck's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles2000 - Militia
2000 - The Alternate
1991 - Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country
1976 - Sky Riders
1976 - The Big Bus
1975 - Rollerball
1973 - Sleeper
1973 - Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid
1971 - Lawman
1968 - Three in the Attic
Guest TV Roles
Frank Castle (Voiced)
John Beck (born January 28, 1943 in Chicago, Illinois) is an American actor. He grew up in Joliet, Illinois. Renowned as a gritty actor with plenty of presence on set, he is ultimately best-known worldwide for playing the role of Mark Graison in Dallas during the mid-1980s, but is also well known for several other roles in which he specialised in playing hard-ball businessmen.
Early career (1964–1976) Beck grew up in Chicago, where he lived on his father's ranch. His childhood ambition was to become a veterinarian. However, following his performance in a school play aged 16, which he had been asked to take part in as a means of overcoming profound shyness, his tutors encouraged him to try to get into drama school instead. He moved to California in 1962 at age 19, and initially made his living by appearing in TV commercials. In 1963/ 1964 he attended Joliet Junior College and was in an acting class. A year later, he made his first television appearance as an actor in his own right in a 1965 episode of I Dream of Jeannie (entitled 'Russian Roulette') at the age of 21, and was soon highly commended as one of the United States' strongest support actors. His numerous credits as a support actor over the years include guest slots in such series as the Perry Mason TVMs of 1985 to 1993, Diagnosis: Murder, Baywatch (Beck was a good friend of Baywatch star David Hasselhoff during the 1980s), Tales from the Crypt, Bonanza, Gunsmoke, Mod Squad, Mission: Impossible, Hawaii Five-O, and Matlock, among numerous others. So busy was his schedule in his early career that many of the characters he played were either killed off or written out prematurely as he no longer had time to play them.
Already a household name in the United States by this point, Beck first came to the attention of international audiences in 1973 when he played an underground leader named "Erno" who leads a revolt against a fascist government in the Woody Allen sci-fi comedy Sleeper. That same year he appeared as a character named "Poe" in the Sam Peckinpah western Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid, and in 1975 he appeared opposite James Caan as "Moonpie" in the original Rollerball.
- Met wife Tina, a former British model, in Mexico when they were both working on the movie _Lawman (1971)_ (qv). They married in 1971 and have four children -- one son named Tara James and three daughters named Tatiana, Talia and Natasha.
- Beck's dream TV role on _"Dallas" (1978)_ (qv) proved to be just that -- a dream. He played Pamela Ewing's husband on the popular western soap during the series' notorious 1985-86 season, which was explained away at the beginning of the next season as entirely a figment of Pam's imagination.
- In the 1990s he started voice acting for the first time in his career when he provided the voice of the Punisher in three episodes of "Spider-Man: The Animated Series".
- His big breakthrough was in the movie _The Other Side of Midnight (1977)_ (qv) in which he played the male lead. The film was a huge box office flop, largely due to 20th Century Fox's decision to throw full weight behind the first Star Wars film.
- A one-time champion roller skater, he performed many of his own stunts in the film _Rollerball (1975)_ (qv). He was also a proficient boxer and won several amateur titles in his life, most notably the heavyweight 'Golden Gloves' of Chicago.
- His tutors encouraged him to try acting as a means to overcome his profound shyness. He was encouraged after performing in a high school play at age 16. Moving to California in 1962 at age 19, he initially made his living by appearing in TV commercials.
- Born in Chicago and grew up in Evanston and Joliet, Illinois. He lived on his father's farm/ranch and while young was interested in becoming a vet.
- Made his first TV appearance as an actor in a 1965 episode of "I Dream of Jeannie" (entitled "Russian Roulette").
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