Home     Episode Guide     Casebook     Case by Case    Cast     Characters     Crew    
Galleries     Awards     Articles    News Wire     Polls     Links     Ecards      Forum
Law & Order         Law & Order: Special Victims Unit          Law & Order: Criminal Intent
Law & Order -- Bios
Click here for Recurring Characters
Benjamin Bratt
(Det. Reynaldo Curtis; 1995-99)
A&E bio: Born in San Francisco, California, on December 16, 1963, Benjamin Bratt is the third of five children. He is the grandson of Broadway actor George Bratt and the son of a Peruvian Quechua Indian mother from Lima, who moved to the United States at age 14. His father, a sheet-metal worker, and his mother divorced in 1968. In 1969, Bratt's mother, a Native American activist, participated in the takeover of Alcatraz Island. She brought along the five-year-old Benjamin and his brother and sisters. For over a year, they went to Alcatraz two or three times a week, Bratt has said. Bratt grew up in San Francisco, where he attended Lowell High School.
Bratt showed no interest in acting until college. In 1986, he graduated with honors from the University of California, Santa Barbara. He then attended the American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco, but did not complete the master's program; instead he began his professional acting career at the Utah Shakespearean Festival. His first two pilots, Juarez and Lovers, Partners & Spies, did not sell, but in 1998 he starred in the short-lived Knightwatch on ABC as an ex-gang leader who becomes the leader of an anti-crime patrol. In 1990, Bratt joined another drama with a short life, NBC's Nasty Boys, which was produced by Dick Wolf, who also created and produced Law & Order.
Bratt's debut film roles came in 1990. First he was cast in Bright Angel and then in Chains of Gold, starring Joey Lawrence and John Travolta, in which he played a vicious drug dealer. Bratt also had supporting roles in One Good Cop (1991), Bound by Honor (1993), and Demolition Man (1993).
Bratt gained Hollywood's attention with two 1994 releases: In The River Wild he portrayed a Native American ranger, and in Clear and Present Danger he was the field officer for American soldiers sent by the CIA to infiltrate the Colombian countryside. Soon after, he was cast as the lead in the ABC miniseries James A. Michener's Texas (1995). That year was also Bratt's first as the conservative detective Rey Curtis on Law & Order.
From 1990 until 1996, Bratt dated documentary filmmaker Monika. After actress Jennifer Esposito made a guest appearance on Law & Order in 1996, she and Bratt began a relationship that ended eight months later. Since 1997, Bratt has been with Julia Roberts, with whom he lives. "It's nice to be so happy. I'm just so happy," Roberts says of the relationship, "Happy, and lucky. I'm in a great place." Roberts made a guest appearance on Law & Order in 1999 in the episode "Empire."
In 1997, Bratt starred in and helped produce Follow Me Home, a low-budget film directed by his brother, Peter Bratt, and featuring Alfre Woodard and Salma Hayek. In 1999, Bratt decided to leave Law & Order. "I've felt like it was time to get back home to my family," Bratt said. "How do you walk away from the best job in the world and a group of people that you've grown to love? It's not easy, and it was an extremely difficult decision that I had to make." On May 26, 1999, Bratt's final episode was aired. He was named one of People's "50 Most Beautiful" in the May 10, 1999, issue.
Influenced by his mother's politics and the way he was raised, Bratt's own politics are left of center, and he has been active in Native American issues, including involvement in the American Indian Friendship House in Oakland, California.
Police Story: Gladiator School (TV-1988), Nasty Boys (TV-1989), One Good Cop (1991), Bright Angel (1991), Chains of Gold (TV-1991), Bound by Honor (1993), Demolition Man (1993), Shadowhunter (TV-1993), Clear and Present Danger (1994), The River Wild (1994), Texas (TV-1994), Woman Undone (TV-1996), Follow Me Home (1997), The Next Best Thing (2000), The Last Producer (2000), Red Planet (2000), Miss Congeniality (2000), Traffic (2000), The Acting Class (2000), Pinero (2001), After the Storm (2001), Abandon (2002)
TV Series: Knightwatch (1988), Nasty Boys (1990)
Richard Brooks
(ADA Paul Robinette; 1990-93)
A&E bio: Born in Cleveland, Ohio, Richard Brooks attended the Interlochen Arts Academy in Interlochen, Michigan, before moving to New York City to study acting at the Circle in the Square Theatre School in 1980. He began his professional work on the stage, appearing in Equus and Twelfth Night, and creating a role for the premiere of August Wilson's Fences. He made his first TV movie, With Intent To Kill, in 1984 and shortly after made his feature film debut in Teen Wolf, alongside Michael J. Fox. Other notable film roles came to Brooks, including the part of a sergeant in 84 Charlie MoPic and the portrayal of Babe Brother in Charles Burnett's To Sleep With Anger (1990).
In 1990, Brooks made his debut as a series regular on NBC's Law & Order, playing Assistant District Attorney Paul Robinette. The depth and integrity Brooks brought to his small but affecting role as the reflective Robinette was further emphasized in contrast to Michael Moriarty's more aggressive character, Executive ADA Ben Stone. In 1993, Law & Order producers let Brooks go, because they wanted a female presence on the show, just one week after he had turned down a role in Spike Lee's Crooklyn. Since then, he has played a variety of roles, including a drug-lord in 1996's The Crow: City of Angels and a small part in the ABC movie The Wedding. In 1998 he directed as well as starred in the film Johnny B. Good. In 1999, he returned to television in the USA network comedy series GvsE.
With Intent to Kill (TV-1984), Teen Wolf (1985), Badge of the Assassin (TV-1985), Resting Place (TV-1986), Good to Go (1986), A Special Friendship (TV-1987), The Hidden (1987), Saxo (1987), Shakedown (1988), Off Limits (1988), Terror on Highway 91 (TV-1989), 84C MoPic (1989), Shocker (1989), The Neon Empire (TV-1989), To Sleep with Anger (1990), Listen Up: The Lives of Quincy Jones (1990), Memphis (TV-1991), Chameleon (1995), The Substitute (1996), The Crow: City of Angels (1996), Code Name: Wolverine (TV-1996), Black Rose of Harlem (1996), The Wedding (TV-1998), Johnny B. Good (1998), Acid Rain (1998), In Too Deep (1999)
TV Series: GvsE (1999)
George Dzundza
(Sgt. Max Greevey; 1990-91)
A&E bio: Born on July 19, 1945, in Rosenheim, Germany, George Dzundza spent the first few years of his life in displaced persons camps in Germany with his Ukrainian father, Polish mother, and one brother. Before immigrating to the United States in 1956, they lived in Amsterdam for some years. Once in the United States Dzundza's parents divorced, and George grew up in New York City's Lower East Side. Dzundza attended St. Johns University in Queens, New York, where he majored in speech and theater. In 1973, he made his stage debut in a New York Shakespeare Festival production of King Lear. He made his TV debut in a guest shot on Starsky and Hutch. In 1978, Dzundza landed a supporting role in the film The Deer Hunter. A few years later, he moved to Los Angeles and starred in the short-lived ABC sitcom Open All Night. Dzundza was awarded the Venice Film Festival Best Actor Award for his work in Streamers in 1983. In 1990, he played Detective Sergeant Max Greevey in the first season of Law & Order. However, he left the show after the first season, before it became the hit drama that it is today. Dzundza then starred in the title role of Babymaker: The Dr. Cecil Jacobson Story, a TV movie about the fertility doctor indicted for inseminating his patients with his own sperm. In 1998, he returned to TV, playing a recurring character in the NBC sitcom Jesse. Dzundza is married with two daughters.
The Happy Hooker (1975), The Defection of Simas Kudirka (TV-1978), The Deer Hunter (1978), Salem's Lot (TV-1979), Skokie (TV-1981), A Long Way Home (TV-1981), Honky Tonk Freeway (1981), The Face of Rage (TV-1983), Streamers (1983), Sleeping Beauty (TV-1983), The Lost Honor of Kathryn Beck (TV-1983), When She Says No (TV-1984), Best Defense (1984), The Execution of Raymond Graham (TV-1985), The Rape of Richard Beck (TV-1985), Brotherly Love (TV-1985), No Mercy (1986), One Police Plaza (TV-1986), 2 1/2 Dads (TV-1986), No Way Out (1987), Glory Years (TV-1987), Something Is Out There (TV-1988), Honor Bound (1988), The Beast of War (1988), Terror on Highway 91 (TV-1989), The Ryan White Story (TV-1989), Cross of Fire (TV-1989), Impulse (1990), White Hunter, Black Heart (1990), The Butcher's Wife (1991), What She Doesn't Know (TV-1992), Basic Instinct (1992), Babymaker: The Dr. Cecil Jacobson Story (TV-1994), The Enemy Within (TV-1994), Crimson Tide (1995), Dangerous Minds (1995), The Limbic Region (TV-1996), Superman: The Last Son of Krypton (TV-1996-voice), That Darn Cat (1997), Do Me A Favor (1997), Species II (1998), Batman & Mr. Freeze: SubZero (1998-voice), The Batman/Superman Movie (TV-1998-voice),  Instinct (1999), Above Suspicion (2000), Determination of Death (2001), Hack (TV-2002), City by the Sea (2002)
TV Series: Open All Night (1981), Superman (1996-voice), Road Rovers (1996-voice), Batman: Gotham Knights (1997-voice),  Jesse (1998), Hack (2002)
Dann Florek
(Capt. Donald Cragen; 1990-93)
A&E bio: Dann Florek was born in Detroit, Michigan, on May 1, 1950, and was raised in Flat Rock, Michigan. He attended Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti where he studied math and physics but switched to drama when he discovered his love for it and received a scholarship. Once he graduated, Florek moved to New York City to act on stage. In the 1970s, he moved to San Diego and starred in La Jolla Playhouse productions. Florek left the stage to make his first small-screen appearance in the TV movie Braker. He made his film debut in Sweet Liberty with Alan Alda in 1986, but from there on out Florek mostly stuck to television, appearing in everything from Hunter (1987) to PBS's American Playhouse (1988) to Matlock (1988). From 1988 to 1993, Florek played the recurring character of David Meyer, husband of legal secretary Roxanne, on L.A. Law. From 1990 to 1995, he starred as Captain Cragen in Law & Order. He later reprised his role as Cragen in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. Florek continued making guest spots on TV in Wings, Ellen, and The Practice. In 1998, he played Abraham Lincoln in the short-lived controversial sitcom The Secret Life of Desmond Pfeiffer on UPN. On the big screen, Florek made his mark in the feature film based on the cartoon The Flinstones as Fred's boss, Mr. Slate, in 1994. Later that year he appeared in Getting Even With Dad, starring Macaulay Culkin and Ted Danson, and in 1998 he had a supporting role in the action thriller Hard Rain. Florek is married to artist Karen Florek.
The Country Girl (TV-1982), Eddie Macon's Run (1983), Braker (TV-1985), Alex: The Life of a Child (TV-1986), Sweet Liberty (1986), Angel Heart (1987), Five Corners (1987), Sunset (1988), The Trial of Bernard Goetz (TV-1988), Moon over Parador (1988), An Innocent Man (1989), Flight of the Intruder  (1990), The Flintstones (1994), Getting Even with Dad (1994), A Nightmare Come True (TV-1997), Hard Rain (1998), The Pentagon Wars (TV-1998), From the Earth to the Moon (TV miniseries, 1998), Little Girl Fly Away (1998), Beautiful Joe (2000), L.A. Law: The Movie (TV-2002)
TV Series: L.A. Law (1988), Hardball (1994), Smart Guy (1997), The Secret Diary of Desmond Pfeiffer (1998)
Angie Harmon
(ADA Abbie Carmichael; 1998-2001)
Like many of her fellow models, sultry Angie Harmon made the transition to acting landing the leading role of private detective Ryan McBride on the syndicated series "Baywatch Nights" (1995-97). The only child of models, the Dallas-born (10 August 1972) beauty actually began her career as a newborn, appearing in a hospital-made film "How to Give Your Baby a Bath". As she matured, Harmon continued to work as a local model moving to a national stage at age 15 when she was named the winner of SEVENTEEN magazine's cover model contest. After completing high school, Harmon won the Spectrum Model Search and soon found herself gracing the runways for such noted designers as Calvin Klein, Versace, Donna Karan and Valentino, among others. She also appeared in photo spreads in such noted publications as the French and Italian editions of VOGUE and GLAMOUR as well as American editions of ELLE and COSMOPOLITAN. Harmon moved to L.A. in the mid-1990s to concentrate on an acting career. By coincidence, she met producer-actor David Hasselhoff on a transcontinental flight and impressed him enough to be offered the lead in the detective series spin-off "Baywatch Nights". Harmon quickly segued to ABC's short-lived drama "C-16" (1997-98), playing a rookie FBI agent. Between series, the actress found time to squeeze in her first feature role, a small part as spoiled wealthy woman in John Duigan's "Lawn Dogs" (1997). In 1998, she landed the role of Assistant District Attorney Abbie Carmichael on the award-winning NBC series Law & Order. She has also appeared in episodes of Law & Order: SVU. Harmon is a Dallas Cowboys fan and a nature lover.
Lawn Dogs (1997), The Acting Class (2000), Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker (2000-voice), Good Advice (2001), Video Voyeur: The Susan Wilson Story (TV-2001), Sudden Fear (TV-2002), Agent Cody Banks (2003)
TV Series: Baywatch Nights (1995), C-16: FBI (1997), Batman Beyond (1999-voice)
Jill Hennessy
(ADA Claire Kincaid; 1993-96)
A&E bio: Born in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, on November 25, 1969, to John and Maxine, Jill Hennessy is one of three children, including younger brother John Paul and twin sister Jacqueline (Jacq for short). During her childhood, Jill's family moved some nine times in 12 years all over Canada. When John and Maxine Hennessy split in 1982, the children lived with their father. Jill's grandmother, Eleanor, spent much time with the young Hennessys, driving the 15-year-old Jill to modeling school in Toronto. Hennessy went into modeling for the money, though acting was always her true love.
At 18, instead of taking the 13th preparatory year for college in Canada, Hennessy went to Toronto to act. However, she wasn't propelled into the spotlight immediately. Instead, she played a slew of vampires and prostitutes in TV series such as The Hitchhiker and Friday the 13th, and the 1988 thriller Dead Ringers, with Jeremy Irons, in which she and her twin sister Jacq played twin hookers. Jacq graduated from the University of Waterloo and went on to graduate school for French literature at the University of Manitoba. Jill stuck with acting.
In 1993 she landed the part of Assistant District Attorney Claire Kincaid on the hit show Law & Order. She would keep the role for three years but then leave when her contract was up, deciding to pursue other roles. During her years on the set of Law & Order, Hennessy played a small role in I Shot Andy Warhol. She also spent nights with a guitar in hand on stage with Andy Godsberg and Wally Nichols in the alternative folk band the New Originals. In 1999 she opened Hennessy's Tavern in Northvale, NJ. She speaks German, Italian, French and Spanish, and has a song -- "The Ballad of Jill Hennessy" by Mollycuddle -- named after her.
Hennessy has also appeared as an architect in the comedy A Smile Like Yours in 1997 and with Keenen Ivory Wayans in Most Wanted as an eyewitness to a political assassination. She wrote, directed and starred in The Acting Class (2000). Most recently, she has the starring role in the hit series Crossing Jordan.
Dead Ringers (1988), RoboCop 3 (1993), Trip nach Tunis (1993), The Paper (1994), I Shot Andy Warhol (1996), The Best of Ed's Night Party (1996), A Smile Like Yours (1997), Most Wanted (1997), Weekend Getaway (1998), Row Your Boat (1998), The Florentine (1999), Komodo (1999), Two Ninas (1999), Molly (1999), Dead Broke (1999), Chutney Popcorn (1999), Nuremberg (TV miniseries-2000), Autumn in New York (2000), The Acting Class (2000), Jackie, Ethel, Joan: The Women of Camelot (TV miniseries-2000), Exit Wounds (2001), Love In the Time of Money (2002), Pipe Dream (2002)
TV Series: Crossing Jordan (2001-  )
Steven Hill
(DA Adam Schiff; 1990-2000)
A&E bio: Steven Hill was born Solomon Krakovsky in Seattle, Washington, on February 24, 1922, to Russian immigrants. In the 1950s he moved to New York to pursue an acting career. He made his Broadway debut as Marlon Brando's understudy in the short-lived Ben Hecht drama A Flag is Born in 1946. He first appeared on film in 1950 in A Lady Without Passport. What would become a long career on TV began with The Bridge of San Luis Rey in 1958. He also appeared in The Sacco-Vanzetti Story in 1960. In 1965, Hill started his own production company, and from 1966 to 1967 he starred as the original lead character, Daniel Briggs, of the Mission Impossible TV series. Soon after, Hill decided to give up acting. He sold real estate and lived in a community of religious Jews in Rockland County, New York, where he studied the Bible and the psalms of David. In 1980, he returned to film, and by 1986, he was playing Meryl Streep's father in Heartburn and Christine Lahti's father in Running on Empty in 1988. Since 1990, Hill has been the pragmatic DA Adam Schiff on Law & Order. Hill also played Otto Berman, math wizard and mentor to the title character in Billy Bathgate in 1991. Hill has nine children.
Storm Fear (1956), The Goddess (1958), The Bridge of San Luis Rey (TV-1958), Kiss Her Goodbye (1959), The Sacco-Vanzetti Story (TV miniseries-1960), A Child Is Waiting (1963), A Slender Thread (1965), King (TV miniseries-1978), It's My Turn (1980), Eyewitness (1981), Rich and Famous (1983), Yentl (1983), Teachers (1984), Garbo Talks (1984), Between Two Women (TV-1986), Raw Deal (1986), Legal Eagles (1986), Heartburn (1986), On Valentine's Day (1986), Brighton Beach Memoirs (1986), Courtship (1987), Running on Empty (1988), The Boost (1988), Columbo: Murder, Smoke & Shadows (TV-1989), White Palace (1990), Billy Bathgate (1991), The Firm (1993), Where's the Money, Noreen? (TV-1995)
TV Series: Mission: Impossible (1966-67), One Life to Live (1984-85)
Carey Lowell
(ADA Jamie Ross; 1996-98)
A&E bio: Born in Huntington, New York, on February 11, 1961, Carey Lowell grew up in Libya, Holland, Virginia, and Texas. A geologist's daughter, Lowell was signed by the Ford modeling agency right out of high school. During college—she attended the University of Colorado for a year and then transferred to New York University— Lowell modeled for Ralph Lauren and Calvin Klein, but soon turned to acting. Her first theater experience was with New York's Neighborhood Playhouse. In 1986 she made her film debut in Club Paradise and then Dangerously Close, and in 1987 she appeared in Downtwisted. Lowell met her future husband, Griffin Dunne, while shooting Me and Him, a comedy, in 1988. In 1989 she was cast as the sixteenth "James Bond girl"—Pam Bouvier—the tough, confrontational CIA agent opposite Timothy Dalton in Licence to Kill (1989).
A leading role followed, in William Friedkin's silly horror film The Guardian in 1990. Her next film, a romantic comedy, Road to Ruin, came and went without a trace. She had a small role in Nora Ephron's Sleepless in Seattle in 1993, as Tom Hanks' deceased wife. Lowell then returned to modeling—for Revlon—but continued to win small roles. She appeared in the big-budget Love Affair, starring Warren Beatty and Annette Bening, in 1994, and in Mike Figgis' acclaimed low-budget Leaving Las Vegas in 1995, in which she played a bank teller who clashes with a hung-over Nicolas Cage. Lowell also appeared in the 1995 short drama The Duke of Groove, directed by Dunne. Lowell and Dunne separated shortly thereafter.
Lowell's TV exposure has included the starring role of Dottie (the role originated by Geena Davis in the movie) in the short-lived comedy series A League of Their Own. In 1995, she finished making the movie Fierce Creatures, directed by John Cleese and starring Kevin Kline, Michael Palin, and Jamie Lee Curtis and released in 1997. She was having trouble getting parts and decided to enroll at New York University summer school in 1996 to study documentary filmmaking. But her luck turned around—and on the first day of classes she had to withdraw from school to take the part of Assistant District Attorney Jamie Ross on the award-winning Law & Order. Lowell left Law & Order two years later, at the end of its eighth season, to spend more time with her daughter. Recently, Lowell has been romantically linked with actor Richard Gere.
Club Paradise (1986), Dangerously Close (1986), Ich und Er (1987), Down Twisted (1987), Licence to Kill (1989), The Guardian (1990), Road to Ruin (1991), Sleepless in Seattle (1993), Love Affair (1994), Leaving Las Vegas (1995), Duke of Groove (TV-1995), Fierce Creatures (1997), Boogeymen: The Killer Compilation (2001)
TV Series: A League of Their Own (1993)
Jesse L. Martin
(Det. Ed Green; 1999- )
NBC bio: Born in Rocky Mountain, Virginia (1.18.69), and raised in Buffalo, New York, Jesse L. Martin plays the compulsive and passionate Det. Ed Green on TV’s longest-running drama series.

“The great challenge in playing a character like Eddie Green is that he is really complex,” says Martin. “He’s passionate about his work and his life, but he is not without faults. I’m enjoying exploring this character and his relationship with his partner, Briscoe (Jerry Orbach).”

Martin received critical acclaim for his recurring role on “Ally McBeal” as Ally's boyfriend, Dr. Greg Butters. He also had a memorable guest-starring role as a disenfranchised alien on “The X-Files,” in an episode written and directed by series star David Duchovny.

A New York University graduate and classically trained stage actor, Martin is thrilled to be living and working in New York City where he was an original cast member of the Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning Broadway musical “Rent.” His extensive New York theater credits run the gamut from Shakespeare to musical comedy.

Martin’s additional television credits include a regular role in the series “413 Hope Street” and a guest-starring dual role in “New York Undercover.” He also appeared in the TV movie “Deep in My Heart” (co-starring with Anne Bancroft and Gloria Reuben) and in the ensemble cast of the independent feature film “The Restaurant,” performing alongside Adrien Brody, Elise Neal and singing sensation Lauryn Hill. Recently, he appeared in the cable special “Rocky Horror 25: Anniversary Special,” singing songs from the cult classic film.

“If I wasn’t acting, I would want to be a teacher,” says Martin, which may explain why his role as AIDS counselor Antonio Collin on “413 Hope Street” is among his favorites. As for dream roles, Martin says he would love to play music legend Marvin Gaye.

In his free time, Martin loves watching sports and is a huge basketball fan. He is also currently producing the one-man off-Broadway show “Fully Committed.” He resides in New York City.
Restaurant (1998), Deep In My Heart (TV-1999)
TV Series: 413 Hope St. (1997), Ally McBeal (1997)
S. Epatha Merkerson
(Lt. Anita Van Buren; 1993- )
A&E bio: S. Epatha Merkerson was born on November 28, 1952, in Saginaw, Michigan, and raised in Detroit, where her father worked in a factory and her mother was a post office administrator. She initially majored in dance at Wayne State University in Detroit, but when a shy friend begged Merkerson to accompany her to a drama class, she discovered her true passion. She graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, and in 1978 moved to New York City to pursue an acting career. The fledgling actress first worked on the stage, appearing in several Broadway and off-Broadway productions. Her portrayal of Berniece in August Wilson's The Piano Lesson earned her a Tony Award nomination for best actress and many other accolades, including the Drama Desk Award and the Helen Hayes Award.
Merkerson's first major television role came in 1986, when she played Reba the Mail Lady in the now infamous Pee Wee's Playhouse. She stayed with the show until 1991 and still keeps in touch with its delightfully preposterous host, Paul Reubens. Merkerson also made the move to the big screen during this time, appearing as Doctor Robinson in the Spike Lee joint She's Gotta Have It and as Elsa in the critically acclaimed psycho-thriller Jacob's Ladder (1990) with Tim Robbins.
In 1990 things did not slow down for Merkerson. She appeared in the TV movie Equal Justice, the comedy Loose Cannons with Dan Akroyd and Gene Hackman, the action-adventure film Navy Seals, and as a guest on NBC's Law & Order. On Law & Order, she portrayed a grief-stricken mother in the episode "Mushrooms," in which a botched drug-related crime claims the life of her baby and leaves her son paralyzed. In 1993, the producers of Law & Order offered Merkerson a permanent role, slating her to play the tough but wise Lieutenant Anita Van Buren.
Merkerson's role as Lt. Anita Van Buren has brought the actress many personal and professional challenges during her six-year-and-running stay on Law & Order. The program raises many important, though delicate, issues about an extremely competent black woman working among a white male majority. On several occasions, the show's writers had her character make unlikely mistakes, but Merkerson has always fought to maintain Van Buren's integrity as a highly competent lieutenant. This tension finally culminated on-screen when Merkerson's character filed a discrimination lawsuit against her department. Because 95 percent of the scripts are based on current news stories, many of the plot lines hit uncomfortably close to home; but Merkerson has said that the cast's constant goofing around on the set helps to leaven the weighty subject matter.
Merkerson has supplemented her work on Law & Order with myriad acting jobs, appearing on TV in Hallmark's A Place for Annie with Sissy Spacek and in the NBC series Mann and Machine, created by Law & Order executive producer Dick Wolf. She appeared in ABC's Breaking Free alongside JoBeth Williams, USA's A Mother's Prayer with Linda Hamilton, and An Unexpected Life with Stockard Channing and RuPaul. She has also returned to the stage, winning an Obie Award in 1992 for her work in I'm Not Stupid, as well as the Helen Hayes Award in 1998 for best lead actress in the Studio Theatre production of The Old Settler in Washington, D.C. Her most recent film credit was a smallish part in 1999's Random Hearts, a poorly received Harrison Ford vehicle.
Many of Merkerson's fans wonder what the mysterious "S" in her name stands for, but the actress insists that it is only an affectation. She and her husband, Toussaint L. Jones, split their time between a New York City apartment and a house in Maryland.
She's Gotta Have It (1986), Pee-Wee Herman's Christmas Special (TV-1988), Elysian Fields (TV-1989), Loose Cannons (1990), Navy SEALS (1990), Jacob's Ladder (1990), Moe's World (1990), Equal Justice (TV-1990), Terminator 2 (1991), Summer Stories: The Mall (TV miniseries-1992), It's Nothing Personal (TV-1993), A Place for Annie (TV-1994), A Mother's Prayer (TV-1995), Breaking Through (TV-1996), An Unexpected Life (TV-1998), Random Hearts (1999), A Girl Thing (TV miniseries-2001), The Rising Place (2001)
TV Series: Pee-Wee's Playhouse (1986), Mann & Machine (1992), Here and Now (1992)
Michael Moriarty
(EADA Benjamin Stone; 1990-1994)
A stage, screen and TV actor, Michael Moriarty came to prominence with his sensitive performance as baseball pitcher Henry Wiggen in the acclaimed 1973 drama, "Bang the Drum Slowly". Not all of Moriarty's subsequent work has lived up to that early promise, nor has he proven to be "box office", yet he has remained in demand for stage and TV roles. Additionally, he has branched out as a composer and jazz pianist. Moriarty worked extensively in the theater, beginning almost immediately after his 1963 graduation from Dartmouth, attending London's Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts as a Fulbright Scholar and working with Stella Adler. He earned a Tony Award originating the role of the homosexual Julian Weston in "Find Your Way" (1974). By that time, he had established himself in films on TV, earning an Emmy Award as Jim, the gentleman caller, in Tennessee Williams' "The Glass Menagerie" (ABC, 1973), starring Katharine Hepburn. While most of his other feature film roles have generally been in forgettable films, save "Report to the Commissioner" (1975), Moriarty has excelled on TV, notably as Erik Dorf, the unemployed German who becomes a Nazi to feed his family and evolves into the administrator of the extermination policies, in "Holocaust" (NBC, 1978; he won a Golden Globe for this performance), as Wilbur Wright in "The Winds of Kitty Hawk" (NBC, 1978) and opposite Blythe Danner in "Too Far to Go" (NBC, 1979), based on the John Updike stories that traced the dissolution of a marriage over twenty years. In 1990, Moriarty became a series regular for the first time as Ben Stone, deputy district attorney of "Law & Order" (NBC), but was fired from the series in 1994, a year before the end of his contract. Moriarty claimed his outspoken attack on US Attorney General Janet Reno's attempts to curb violence and, in Moriarty's view, "censor" Hollywood contributed to his departure from the series. He returned to films opposite Denzel Washington in "Courage Under Fire" (1996).
Born 4.5.41, Detroit, Michigan
My Old Man's Place (1972), Hickey & Boggs (1972), A Summer Without Boys (TV-1973), The Last Detail (1973), The Glass Menagerie (TV-1973), Bang the Drum Slowly (1973), Shoot It Black, Shoot It Blue (1974), Report to the Commissioner (1975), The Deadliest Season (TV-1977), Holocaust (miniseries, 1978), Who'll Stop the Rain (1978), The Winds of Kitty Hawk (TV-1978), Too Far to Go (TV-1978), Renacer (1981), Q (1982), Blood Link (1982), The Sound of Murder (1982), Pale Rider (1985), The Stuff (1985), Odd Birds (1985), Troll (1986), It's Alive III (1987), A Return to Salem's Lot (1987), The Hanoi Hilton (1987), Dark Tower (1987), Windmills of the Gods (TV-1988), Frank Nitti: The Enforcer (TV-1988), Tailspin (TV-1989), The Secret of the Ice Cave (1989), Full Fathom Five (1990), Born Too Soon (TV-1993), Baseball (miniseries-1994), Children of the Dust (TV-1995), Cagney & Lacey: True Convictions (TV-1996), Broken Silence (1996), Courage Under Fire (1996) Crime of the Century (TV-1996), Calm at Sunset (TV-1996), Managua (1996), Shiloh (1997), Major Crime (TV-1997), The Arrow (TV-1997), Earthquake in New York (TV-1998), The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg (1998), Galileo (TV-1998), Shiloh 2 (1999), Woman Wanted (1999), The Art of Murder (1999), Becoming Dick (TV-2000), Children of Fortune (TV-2000), House of Luk (2000), Hitler Meets Christ (2000), Children of My Heart (TV-2000), Bad Faith (2000), Out of Line (2001), Mindstorm (2001), Along Came A Spider (2001), James Dean (TV-2001), Living With the Dead (miniseries-2002), Swimming Upstream (2002), Taken (miniseries-2002)
TV Series: Psi Factor (1996), Emily of New Moon (1998)
Chris Noth
(Det. Mike Logan; 1990-95)
A&E bio: Born on November 13, 1957 (1954?), in Madison, Wisconsin, Chris Noth grew up in Connecticut, England, Yugoslavia, and Spain. His father, an insurance salesman, died when he was eight years old, and his mother, Jeanne Parr, worked as a television news reporter for CBS, pioneering the field for women. Noth claims to have been a screw-up in grade school, but his time at the alternative Marlboro College in Vermont, where he began acting, served as an artistic inspiration.
Following his college graduation in 1978, Noth studied acting with Sanford Meisner at the Neighborhood Playhouse in New York City, and after appearing in several stage productions, he made his feature film debut in Smithereens (1982), playing a transvestite prostitute. Upon graduating from the Yale School of Drama, where he acted in over 25 productions, Noth made a crowning performance as the title role in Hamlet, directed by Zoe Caldwell, at the American Shakespeare Festival in 1985.
In the late 1980s, Noth moved increasingly toward roles in film and television. He appeared in the feature Off Beat in 1986 and made his television acting debut in an episode of Hill Street Blues, playing a police officer who bungles his attempt to prevent a suicide. Noth's other credits of this period include supporting roles in the ABC TV movie Killer in the Mirror and HBO's Apology. He also scored a small part as a vacationing yuppie in 1987's Baby Boom. A major lifestyle change greeted Noth in 1988, when he relocated to Indonesia to star in the first English-language film to be shot with a native crew. After making Jakarta, Noth remained in Indonesia, which he now calls his "spiritual home," for a blissful year of traveling.
While playing Sergius in George Bernard Shaw's Arms and the Man back in New York in 1990, Noth was asked to appear in a pilot for a new television series produced by Dick Wolf. He jumped at the opportunity and landed the role of Detective Mike Logan on what would become TV's most critically acclaimed drama series, Law & Order. Noth brought several idiosyncrasies to the role, including giving the world-weary, son of a cop Logan a penchant for wearing plaid ties and a flag pin on his lapel. Noth's Mike Logan proved notably stalwart, weathering five seasons and several cast changes and always maintaining an exciting chemistry with each transitory co-star.
However, by 1995, producer Dick Wolf felt that Logan had exhausted his possibilities on the show and that his relationship with Jerry Orbach's character, the similarly jaded Lennie Briscoe, did not provide enough dramatic contrast, commenting, "You very often get the notion that their lines are interchangeable." Logan was subsequently written off the show. Although fans expressed outrage and regret, Noth welcomed the chance to take his career in another direction. However, he did convince Wolf to produce a TV movie spin-off entitled Exiled (1998), starring Noth and several other Law & Order cast members, to wrap up the story of Mike Logan, which Noth felt had been prematurely extinguished on the show.
Since Law & Order, Noth has appeared in several independent films, including The Broken Giant, (1996) Cold Heart, Texas Funeral, Pigeonholed, and Getting to Know You, which was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at 1999's Sundance Film Festival. He has also appeared on television, playing an ex-convict in an episode of Touched by an Angel, as well as in the miniseries Rough Riders (1997) and Medusa's Child. (1997)
In 1998, Noth landed a recurring television role in the endearingly quirky series Sex and the City. In the show, starring Sarah Jessica Parker, he plays Mr. Big, the emotionally distant and elusive object of protagonist Carrie Bradshaw's obsessive attention. Noth has also signed a development deal with CBS to create and star in a new television series.
The tall, dark, and quietly imposing actor lives by himself in New York City. He dated model Beverly Johnson for several years but is now single.
Smithereens (1982), Killer in the Mirror (TV-1986), Off Beat (1986), Apology (TV-1986), At Mother's Request (TV-1987), I'll Take Manhattan (TV miniseries-1987), Baby Boom (1987), Jakarta (1988), In the Shadows, Someone's Watching (TV-1993), Naked in New York (1994), Where Are My Children? (TV-1994), Nothing Lasts Forever (TV miniseries-1995), Burnzy's Last Call (1995), Abducted: A Father's Love (TV-1996), Born Free: A New Adventure (TV-1996), Rough Riders (TV-1997), The Deli (1997), Cold Around the Heart (1997), Medusa's Child (TV-1997), The Broken Giant (1998), Getting to Know You (1999), The Confession (1999),A Texas Funeral (1999), Pigeonholed (1999), Cast Away (2000), Searching for Paradise (2000), The Acting Class (2000), Double Whammy (2001), The Judge (TV-2001), The Glass House (TV-2001), The Nightclub Years (TV-2001), Sudden Fear (TV-2002), Julius Caesar (TV miniseries-2002)
TV Series: Another World (1985, 1988), Sex and the City (1998)
Jerry Orbach
(Det. Lenny Briscoe; 1992- )
NBC bio: Tony Award winner Jerry Orbach (“Promises, Promises”) has earned a reputation as the quintessential New Yorker through his work in such films as “Prince of the City” and “Crimes and Misdemeanors,” as well as for his roles in Broadway’s “42nd Street” and on NBC’s “Law & Order.” Orbach has been honored with the Crystal Apple Award from the New York City Mayor’s Office of Film, Television and Broadcasting for his contribution to the arts, and was presented with a lifetime achievement award from the Friar’s Club of New York.

In addition to these honors, the 1999-2000 season of “Law & Order” brought additional recognition to Orbach in the form of a third Emmy Award nomination—his first as Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series—for his portrayal of Detective Briscoe. He earned previous Emmy nominations for his work on “Empty Nest” and Neil Simon’s “Broadway Bound.”

The versatile actor’s many motion-picture credits include “Dirty Dancing,” “Someone to Watch Over Me” and “F/X.” He is also well remembered as the voice of Lumiere, the candelabra, in the animated feature “Beauty and the Beast.” He most recently co-starred with Al Pacino in “Chinese Coffee,” which Pacino also produced and directed.

Orbach’s other television credits include starring in the series “The Law and Harry McGraw,” as well as guest appearances on NBC’s “The Golden Girls,” “Hunter,” “Murder, She Wrote,” and “Who’s the Boss?”

After studying acting at the University of Illinois and Northwestern University, Orbach made his first New York stage appearance in Kurt Weill’s “The Threepenny Opera” as Mack the Knife. Later, Orbach created the role of El Gallo in the off-Broadway milestone “The Fantasticks.” He went on to make his Broadway debut in David Merrick’s production of “Carnival,” and received his first Tony Award nomination for the City Center revival of “Guys and Dolls.” Additionally, Orbach won rave reviews for his virtuoso performance in Bruce Jay Friedman’s “Scuba Duba,” received a Tony Award for “Promises, Promises,” and starred in “6 Rms Riv Vu” and “Chicago.” He also toured for nine months in the national company of Neil Simon’s “Chapter Two.”

Orbach can also be seen on the PAX network hosting “Encounters with the Unexplained,” a reality series featuring new insight and information about the world's great mysteries. The Bronx native lives with his wife, Elaine, in New York City. His birthday is October 20.
Cop Hater (1958), Twenty Four Hours in a Woman's Life (TV-1961), Mad Dog Coll (1961), Ensign Pulver (1964), John Goldfarb, Please Come Home (1965), Annie Get Your Gun (TV-1967), The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight (1971), A Fan's Notes (1972), Fore Play (1975), The Sentinel (1977), Underground Aces (1980), Prince of the City (1981), An Invasion of Privacy (TV-1983), Brewster's Millions (1985), F/X (1986), Dream West (TV miniseries-1986), The Imagemaker (1986), Out on a Limb (TV-1987), Love Among Thieves (TV-1987), Dirty Dancing (1987), Someone to Watch Over Me (1987), I Love N.Y. (1988), Perry Mason: The Case of the Musical Murder (TV-1989), The Flamingo Kid (TV-1989), Last Exit to Brooklyn (1989), Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989), In Defense of a Married Man (TV-1990), Kojak: None So Blind (TV-1990), Perry Mason: The Case of the Ruthless Reporter (TV-1991), Coney Island (TV voice-1991), Out for Justice (1991), Toy Soldiers (1991), Delusions (1991), Delirious (1991), Beauty and the Beast (voice-1991), Dead Women in Lingerie (1991), California Casanova (1991), A Gnome Named Gnorm (1992), Broadway Bound (TV-1992), Quiet Killer (TV-1992), Straight Talk (1992), Universal Soldier (1992), Mr. Saturday Night (1992), Mastergate (TV-1992), The Cemetery Club (1993), Disney Sing-Along-Songs: Be Our Guest (voice-1994), Aladdin and the King of Thieves (voice-1996), Beauty and the Beast: Enchanted Christmas (voice-1997), Belle's Magical World (voice-1997), Chinese Coffee (2000), Prince of Central Park (2000), The Acting Class (2000)
TV Series: The Law and Harry McGraw (1987), The Adventures of the Galaxy Rangers (voice-1988), Encounters With the Unexplained (host-2000), House of Mouse (voice-2001)
Elisabeth Rohm
(ADA Serena Southerlyn; 2001- )
NBC bio: Elisabeth Rohm joins the cast of “Law & Order” as the brilliant and aggressively ambitious Assistant District Attorney Serena Southerlyn.
Joining the long-running and Emmy Award-winning series has been a joy for Rohm, who says of her fellow castmates, “They are beyond my expectations in acting, professionalism and kindness.”
While studying writing and European history at Sarah Lawrence College, Rohm quite accidentally discovered acting when she landed a role in the drama department’s production of David Henry Hwang’s “Bondage” (as Madame Butterfly).
Rohm’s first professional break came when she starred opposite Kyle MacLachlan in Dick Wolf’s (executive producer of “Law & Order”) network television pilot, “The Invisible Man.” Soon, she landed a role on the daytime drama “One Life to Live,” followed by a supporting role in NBC’s miniseries, “The ‘60s,” and a starring role in the BBC miniseries, “Eureka Street.”
Most recently, Rohm pulled double duty as she concurrently starred in the cable drama series “Bull” (alongside Stanley Tucci), and played the recurring role of the young and beautiful detective Kate Lockley on “Angel.”
Though born (4.28.73) in Düsseldorf, Germany, Rohm was raised in New York City, and is pleased to be again working for Wolf in her hometown. “Loyalty pays off,” says Rohm, “and coming home is always the best scenario.”
While retaining dual citizenship in the United States and in Germany, Rohm currently resides in Los Angeles and New York City. In her free time, she enjoys traveling and riding her horse.
The Invisible Man (TV-1998), The '60s (TV miniseries-1999), Eureka Street (TV miniseries-1999)
TV Series: One Life to Live (1997-98), Angel (1999-2001), Bull (2000)
Paul Sorvino
(Det. Phil Cerreta; 1991-93)
A&E bio: Paul Sorvino was born on April 13, 1939, in Brooklyn, New York, to Italian immigrants. Listening to the voices of Enrico Caruso and Mario Lanza on his family's phonograph as a child, Sorvino dreamed of being a singer. After graduating from the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in 1962, he found work singing at charity balls, billed as "The Romantic Voice of Val Sorvino." He made his Broadway debut in 1964 in Bajour, then dropped out of showmanship completely to become vice president of an advertising agency. In 1970, he made his film debut in the comedy Where's Poppa? and went on to find a generous amount of TV work, appearing in the sitcom Welcome Mat, the police drama Bert D'Angelo/Superstar, and the gripping TV-movie Dummy. Often playing rough, urban characters, Sorvino won critical acclaim for his work in Nixon (1995), portraying Henry Kissinger; GoodFellas; and the TV version of That Championship Season, which he also directed. In 1991, he joined the cast of NBC's Law & Order as Detective Sergeant Phil Cerreta but left shortly after to pursue opera singing. He has since appeared in several films, including The Firm, Romeo + Juliet, and Bullworth.
Sorvino has three children, Mira, Amanda, and Michael, with his first wife, Lorraine. His daughter, Mira, is a successful actress in her own right, appearing in such films as Summer of Sam and Mighty Aphrodite, for which she won an Academy Award. A severe asthmatic, Sorvino has written books on the subject and founded the Sorvino Asthma Foundation. Singing is his first love, but he also paints and sculpts as hobbies.
Where's Poppa (1970), The Panic in Needle Park (1971), Made for Each Other (1971), Cry Uncle! (1971), Dealing (1972), A Touch of Class (1973), The Day of the Dolphin (1973), King Lear (TV-1974), Tell Me Where It Hurts (TV-1974), It Couldn't Happen to a Nicer Guy (TV-1974), Shoot It Black, Shoot It Blue (1974), The Gambler (1974), Angel and Big Joe (1975), I Will, I Will...for Now (1976), Seventh Avenue (TV miniseries-1977), Oh God! (1977), Bloodbrothers (1978), Slow Dancing in the Big City (1978), The Brink's Job (1978), Dummy (TV-1979), Lost and Found (1979), Cruising (1980), Reds (1981), The Bureau (TV-1981), Melanie (1982), A Question of Honor (TV-1982), I, the Jury (1982), That Championship Season (1982), Chiefs (TV miniseries-1983), Off the Wall (1983), My Mother's Secret Life (TV-1984), With Intent to Kill (TV-1984), Surviving (TV-1985), Chiller (TV-1985), Turk 182! (1985), The Stuff (1985), Betrayed by Innocence (TV-1986), A Fine Mess (1986), Very Close Quarters (1986), Vasectomy (1986), Almost Partners (TV-1987), Dick Tracy (1990), Goodfellas (1990), DMZ (1990), Don't Touch My Daughter (TV-1991), The Rocketeer (1991), The Last Mile (TV-1991), Age Isn't Everything (1992), The Firm (1993), A Perry Mason Mystery: The Case of the Wicked Wives (TV-1993), Parallel Lives (TV-1994), Without Consent (TV-1994), Backstreet Justice (1994), Nixon (1995), The Magic of Christmas (TV-1995), Cover Me (1995), Love Is All There Is (1996), Romeo + Juliet (1996), Escape Clause (TV-1996), Dog Watch (1996), Money Talks (1997), Men with Guns (1997), American Perfekt (1997), Most Wanted (1997), Joe Torre: Curveballs Along the Way (TV-1997), Bulworth (1998), Knock Off (1998), Houdini (TV-1998), That Championship Season (TV-1999), Harlem Aria (1999), Scriptfellas (1999), Dead Broke (1999), Cheaters (TV-2000), The Thin Blue Lie (TV-2000), Longshot (2000), The Amati Girls (TV-2000), Perfume (2001), See Spot Run (2001), Plan B (2001), Streghe verso nord (2001), Rhode Island Blue (2001), Last Call (2001), Irishman: The Legend of Danny Greene (TV-2001), Ciao America (2001), The Cooler (2002), Hey Arnold! The Movie (voice-2002)
TV Series: We'll Get By (1975), The Oldest Rookie (1987), The Big House (1998), Celebrity Dish (2000), That's Life (2000)
Fred Dalton Thompson
(DA Arthur Branch; 2002- )
NBC bio: Fred Thompson, former United States Senator, prosecutor and accomplished film and television actor, recently joined the cast of the Emmy Award-winning drama series “Law & Order” as the newly-elected District Attorney, Arthur Branch.
Of the character’s election to the D.A.’s office, Executive Producer Michael Chernuchin explains, “The election of the new District Attorney is definitely a reaction to 9/11. His political leanings are a little more to the right than former D.A.s on the show. He is a ‘strict constructionist,’ that is, for him, the Constitution is what it says it is and nothing more.”
Fred Thompson’s service in the United States Senate was a continuation of a distinguished career across both the public and private arenas. In his first campaign for public office, Thompson was elected by the people of Tennessee in 1994 to the remaining two years of an unexpired Senate term. When he was returned for a full term in 1996, he received more votes than any previous candidate for any office in Tennessee history. In 1997, Thompson was elected Chairman of the Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs, making him among the most junior senators in history to serve as Chairman of a major Senate Committee.
Prior to his election to the U.S. Senate, Thompson maintained law offices in Nashville and Washington and served as Special Counsel to both the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations. He is also the author of the Watergate memoir, “At That Point in Time.”
Having grown up in Lawrenceburg, Tennessee, Thompson attended Memphis State University, where he earned an undergraduate degree in philosophy and political science. He went on to receive a law degree from Vanderbilt University. Two years later, Thompson was named an Assistant United States Attorney and, at the age of 30, was appointed Minority Counsel to the Senate Watergate Committee, where he served in 1973 and 1974.
In 1977, Thompson took on the case of a Tennessee Parole Board chairman under suspicious circumstances. Thompson’s work helped to expose a cash-for-clemency scheme that ultimately toppled the governor. The scandal became the subject of a best-selling book and later a film, “Marie,” in which Thompson portrayed himself. He went on to appear in 18 motion pictures, including feature roles in “Cape Fear,” “In the Line of Fire,” “Die Hard II,” and “The Hunt for Red October.” He has also guest starred on the television series, “China Beach,” “Wiseguy,” and “Matlock.”
Thompson lives in Nashville, Tennessee, as do his two sons. He has five grandchildren. His birthday is August 19th.
Thompson worked as a truck driver and shoe salesman before becoming an attorney.
His wife Jeri currently works as a political media consultant, and once worked for the Republican National Committee
Marie (1985), No Way Out (1987), Unholy Matrimony (TV-1988), Feds (1988), Fat Man and Little Boy (1989), The Hunt for Red October (1990), Days of Thunder (1990), Die Hard 2 (1990), Flight of the Intruder (1990), Class Action (1991), Necessary Roughness (1991), Curly Sue (1991), Cape Fear (1991), Aces: Iron Eagle III (1992), Bed of Lies (TV-1992), Thunderheart (1992), White Sands (1992), Stay the Night (TV-1992), Day-O (TV-1992), Keep the Change (TV-1992), Barbarians at the Gate (TV-1993), Born Yesterday (1993), In the Line of Fire (1993), Baby's Day Out (1994)
Sam Waterston
(EADA Jack McCoy; 1994- )
A&E bio: Sam Atkinson Waterston was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on November 15, 1940. He grew up in New England, with his three siblings and parents. His father, George Chychele, emigrated from England and was a semanticist and language teacher in North Andover, Massachusetts. Waterston's mother, Alice Atkinson, was a landscape painter. As a child, he acted in school productions and in plays directed by his father, an amateur dramatist. Waterston made his first stage appearance at age seven, as Creon's page in Jean Anouilh's Antigone, directed by his father.
Before he went to college, Waterston attended the Groton School in Groton, Massachusetts, a prestigious preparatory school, where he continued acting. At Yale University he studied French and history but couldn't stay away from the theater. He joined the Yale Dramat, the university's dramatic society, and performed in many productions, including Oedipus Rex and Waiting for Godot. During the production of Waiting for Godot, Waterston said he had an epiphany —that he must become a professional actor.
But Waterston did not pursue his dream right away. During his junior year, he studied abroad at the University of Paris and even tried to give up acting altogether. It was only a few weeks before he gave in and began taking classes at the American Actors Workshop, organized by John Berry —the expatriate American director who taught theory based on the techniques of Stanislavsky and Chekhov.
Waterston graduated Yale in 1962 and spent several months in summer stock at the Clinton (Connecticut) Playhouse, where he again appeared in Waiting for Godot. He then moved to New York City and continued to train professionally. He made his New York debut at the Phoenix Theater late in 1962 in Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mama's Hung You in the Closet and I'm Feelin' So Sad. He went on a national tour with the show, and in August 1963 it moved to Broadway.
In the next decade, Waterston appeared in many plays, including Thistle in My Bed, Colin, The Knack, Maxime Furland's one-act play Fitz, the world premiere of Sam Shepard's La Turista, and Posterity for Sale. On Broadway, Waterston racked up another list of credits, including the hippie son of a crotchety English general in Halfway Up the Tree, the Indian spokesman John Grass in Arthur Kopit's Indians, and the son in a revival of Noel Coward's 1925 comedy Hay Fever. Waterston received especially high critical praise for his role as Thomas Lewis in the chilling courtroom drama The Trial of the Catonsville Nine, which moved to the Lyceum Theatre in June 1971 after several sold-out months off Broadway.
In mid-1972, Waterston took on the roles of Laertes in Hamlet and Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing at the New York Shakespeare Festival. Though his rendition of Laertes faced criticism, it didn't keep him away from Shakespeare. In fact in 1975, he took on the role of Hamlet for the New York Shakespeare Festival. At first his Hamlet was not warmly received either, but by the time the production moved indoors to the Vivian Beaumont Theatre in Lincoln Center, Waterston's portrayal was being lauded. Waterston went on to play an unconventional Prospero in The Tempest and Vincentio in Measure for Measure. He had the most critical success, however, in 1972 for his Benedick in A.J. Antoon's production of Much Ado About Nothing at the Delacorte Theatre in Central Park, which moved to Broadway later that year. For his role, Waterston earned a Drama Desk Award, a New York Drama Critics Circle Award, and an Obie. Waterston went on to play the role in a televised version of the play, after which he played Tom Wingfield in a television production of Tennessee Williams' The Glass Menagerie, starring Katharine Hepburn. For that role Waterston was nominated for an Emmy for best supporting actor. He had already appeared in several television shows, including Dr. Kildare, N.Y.P.D., and Hawk, and the PBS specials The Good Lieutenant and My Mother's House. More notably Waterston portrayed the title character in the BBC's seven-part Oppenheimer in 1981. For his rendition of J. Robert Oppenheimer, the father of the atomic bomb, Waterston was nominated by the British Academy of Film and Television for best actor. He is also well-known for his role as a single father coping with dramatic social change in the 1950s South in the critically well-received series I'll Fly Away (1991–93). Waterston joined another intelligent dramatic series when he replaced Michael Moriarty as the resident executive assistant DA on Law & Order in 1994. He still plays DA Jack McCoy.
On film, Waterston has appeared in Three (1969), Cover Me, Babe (1970), and Who Killed Mary Whats'ername? (1971), as well as James Ivory's Savages (1972). When he played Nick Carraway in The Great Gatsby in 1973, Waterston was one of the only actors in the film to receive positive reviews. Waterston went on to appear in the films Rancho Deluxe (1975), Dandy, the All-American Girl (1976), and Interiors (1978), as well as Sweet William (1982),Capricorn One (1978),Heaven's Gate (1980), and Hopscotch (1980).
Waterston went back to the stage in 1975 to play Torvald Helmer in Ibsen's A Doll's House and Vershinin in the Manhattan Theatre Club's staging of Chekhov's The Three Sisters in 1982. He also appeared in the comedy Lunch Hour as well as in Gardenia and Traveler in the Dark. Conveying a gentle yet determined intensity, Waterston also played Abraham Lincoln in a 1993 revival of Abe Lincoln in Illinois, recreating a role he had earlier played in the TV movie, Gore Vidal's Lincoln (1988). Waterston's long and distinguished stage, film, and television career came to a head when he starred in the enormously successful film The Killing Fields in 1984. He was nominated for an Academy Award for best actor.
Waterston lives in Connecticut with his wife, Lynn Louisa Woodruff, a model whom he married on January 26, 1976. He has four children, Elizabeth, Katherine, James, and Graham. James, who played his son in Oppenheimer, is the child of Waterston's first marriage.
The Plastic Dome of Norma Jean (1965), Fitzwilly (1967), Generation (1969), Three (1969), Cover Me Babe (1970), Who Killed What's' Er Name? (1971), Savages (1972), Mahoney Estate (1972), Much Ado About Nothing (TV-1973), The Glass Menagerie (TV-1973), The Great Gatsby (1974), Reflections of Murder (TV-1974), Rancho Deluxe (1975), Journey Into Fear (1975), Sweet Revenge (1977), Interiors (1978), Capricorn One (1978), Friendly Fire (TV-1979), Eagle's Wing (1979), Hopscotch (1980), Oppenheimer (TV miniseries-1980), Heaven's Gate (1980), Sweet William (1980), Games Mother Never Taught You (TV-1982), Freedom to Speak (TV miniseries-1982), In Defense of Kids (TV-1983), Dempsey (TV-1983), The Boy Who Loved Trolls (TV-1984), The Killing Fields (1984), Finnegan Begin Again (TV-1985), Love Lives On (TV-1985), Warning Sign (1985), Flagrant desir (1985), Hannah and Her Sisters (1986), The Fifth Missile (TV-1986), Just Between Friends (1986), The Room Upstairs (TV-1987), September (1987), Des Teufels Paradies (1987), Terrorist on Trial (TV-1988), Lincoln (TV-1988), Hostile Witness (1988), Welcome Home (1989), Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989), The Nightmare Years (TV-1989), Mindwalk (1990), Lincoln (TV miniseries-1990), The Civil War (TV miniseries-voice-1990), Lantern Hill (TV-1990), A Captive in the Land (1990), The Man in the Moon (1991), Warburg: A Man of Influence (TV miniseries-1991), I'll Fly Awar: Then and Now (TV-1991), A Dog Race in Alaska (1993), The Enemy Within (TV-1994), Assault at West Point (TV-1994), David's Mother (TV-1994), Serial Mom (1994), The Journey of August King (1995), The Proprietor (1996), Shadow Conspiracy (1997), Lewis & Clark: The Journey of the Corps of Discovery (TV-voice-1997), Thomas Jefferson (TV miniseries-voice-1997), Miracle at Midnight (TV-1998), The Unfinished Journey (voice-1999), A House Divided (TV-2000), In Bad Taste (2000), The Matthew Shepard Story (TV-2002), The Commission (2002), Le Divorce (2003)
TV Series: Q.E.D. (1982), I'll Fly Away (1991), Lost Civilizations (host-1995), The Visionaries (host-1995)
Dianne Wiest
(DA Nora Levin; 2000-02)
NBC bio: Two-time Oscar winner Dianne Wiest portrays interim district attorney Nora Lewin, who is assigned to supervise Assistant District Attorneys Jack McCoy (Sam Waterston) and Serena Southerlyn (Elisabeth Rohm).
Wiest is also an Emmy, Golden Globe, and Screen Actors Guild Award winner. Executive producer Dick Wolf says of her, “Having a female actor of this caliber is unprecedented on series television. Dianne has won virtually every major film award and has established herself as one of the finest actors of her generation.”
Born in Kansas City, Missouri, Wiest began her career as a member of the American Shakespeare Company. She went on to earn the Obie, Clarence Derwent and Theatre World Awards for Best Actress for her performance in “The Art of Dining” in 1983. She made her stage directorial debut with “Not About Heroes” at the Williamstown (Massachusetts) Playhouse in 1985.
Wiest made her first television appearance in a PBS Great Performances presentation of Elie Wiesel’s “Zalmen, or the Madness of God.” Other notable television appearances include: a guest appearance on the series “Road to Avonlea,” for which she received an Emmy for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama; the recent movie, “The Simple Life of Noah Dearborn,” starring opposite Sidney Poitier; and the miniseries “The 10th Kingdom.”
Wiest has performed in five of director Woody Allen’s films, winning Best Supporting Actress Oscars for “Hannah and Her Sisters” and “Bullets Over Broadway”; her other Allen films include “The Purple Rose of Cairo,” “September” and “Radio Days.” She has also appeared in many other memorable features, including “Footloose,” “Independence Day,” Joel Schumacher’s “The Lost Boys,” “Bright Lights, Big City,” Ron Howard’s “Parenthood,” Susan Seidelman’s “Cookie,” Tim Burton’s “Edward Scissorhands,” Jodie Foster’s “Little Man Tate,” Mike Nichols’ “The Birdcage,” and Robert Redford’s “The Horse Whisperer.” Wiest will star in the upcoming Merchant-Ivory film “Merci, Docteur Rey” and will be featured in “I Am Sam,” opposite Sean Penn and Michelle Pfeiffer.
Wiest currently resides in New York City. She was born March 28, 1948.
Zalman (TV-1975), Out of Our Father's House (TV-1978), It's My Turn (1980), The Wall (TV-1982), I'm Dancing as Fast as I Can (1982), The Face of Rage (TV-1983), Independence Day (1983), Footloose (1984), Falling in Love (1984), The Purple Rose of Cairo (1985), Hannah and Her Sisters (1986), Radio Days (1987), Bigfoot (TV-1987), The Lost Boys (1987), September (1987), Bright Lights, Big City (1987), Cookie (1989), Parenthood (1989), Edward Scissorhands (1990), Little Man Tate (1991), Cops and Robberson (1994), Bullets Over Broadway (1994), The Scout (1994), Drunks (1995), The Birdcage (1996), The Associate (1996), The Horse Whisperer (1998), Practical Magic (1998), The Simple Life of Noah Dearborn (TV-1999), The 10th Kingdom (TV miniseries-2000), I Am Sam (2001), Not Afraid, Not Afraid (2001), Portofino (2002)

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit -- Bios 
Christopher Meloni
(Det. Elliot Stabler; 1999- )
NBC bio: A native of Washington, D.C., Christopher Meloni continues to choose dynamic roles on television and in film while starring as Det. Elliot Stabler, a dedicated family man.
Meloni attended the University of Colorado in Boulder, where he first became interested in acting. After graduation, he took a construction job in his hometown until a high school acquaintance inspired him to move to New York to study acting. It was there that Meloni apprenticed at the Neighborhood Playhouse, and got his first big break as the lead in the NBC comedy “The Fanelli Boys.”
After a series of memorable tough-guy roles, including the duplicitous inmate Chris Keller (which Meloni continues to portray on “Oz,”) and guest appearances on “NYPD Blue,” and “Homicide: Life on the Street,” Meloni made the move to the right side of the law in portraying Stabler. “Stabler and I are alike in that we’re focused on our job and couldn’t see doing anything else with our lives,” says Meloni. “He’s a rock-solid guy, with a great capacity for compassion, the ironic and the absurd. He can relish the small triumphs when they come and doesn’t allow the horrors of his job to affect him.”
Additionally, Meloni starred in the television series “Leaving L.A.” and in several miniseries, including “In a Child’s Name” and “Mario Puzo’s ‘The Last Don.’” His film credits include “Runaway Bride,” in which he starred opposite Julia Roberts as her sports-enthusiast fiancé, as well as “Twelve Monkeys,” “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas,” “Junior” and “Bound.”
Meloni starred in the film comedy spoof “Wet Hot American Summer.” Starring opposite Janeane Garafolo and David Hyde Pierce, Meloni portrays a temperamental chef working at a summer camp.
An avid traveler, Meloni has explored from Turkey to Bali and is searching for points in between to visit. He also enjoys weightlifting, playing basketball, football, and chess and is a martial-arts enthusiast.
Meloni divides his time between New York and Los Angeles with his wife and their daughter. His birthday is April 2.
When Will I Be Loved? (TV-1990), In A Child's Name (TV-1991), Something to Live For: The Alison Gertz Story (TV-1992), Without A Kiss Goodbye (TV-1993), Clean Slate (1994), Junior (1994), A Dangerous Affair (TV-1995), Twelve Monkeys (1995), Bound (1996), The Last Don (TV miniseries-1997), Every 9 Seconds (TV-1997), The Samll Hours (1997), Target Earth (TV-1998), Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998), The Souler Opposite (1998), Brown's Requiem (1998), Runaway Bride (1999), Shift (TV-1999), Carlo's Wake (1999), Wet Hot American Summer (2001)
TV Series: The Fanelli Boys (1990), The Boys (1993), Misery Loves Company (1995), Leaving L.A. (1997), Oz (1997)
Mariska Hargitay
(Det. Olivia Benson; 1999- )
NBC bio: Mariska Hargitay headlines the crime drama “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” as the unit’s veteran Det. Olivia Benson. In its freshman season, Hargitay earned nominations from the Viewers for Quality Television for Best Actress, from the TV Guide Awards for Favorite Actress in a New Series and from the International Press Academy for Best Performance by an Actress in a Drama Series.
Says Hargitay, “As a woman, it’s gratifying to play a part that’s a multi-layered challenge. Olivia is not only a competent, street-smart cop, she’s an empathetic woman who can respond emotionally to victims of terrible crimes without compromising her professionalism.”
Hargitay gained recognition from her recurring role on “ER” as Dr. Greene’s (Anthony Edwards) sometimes naïve and scattered girlfriend, desk clerk Cynthia Hooper, in the 1997-98 season of the top-rated drama. Hargitay also earned notice as a cast regular in the sitcom “Can’t Hurry Love” starring Nancy McKeon. She was a regular on the popular series “Falcon Crest” and the NBC drama “Prince Street.”
Hargitay starred opposite Ken Olin in the television movie “The Advocate’s Devil” and opposite Valerie Bertinelli and Harry Hamlin in the miniseries thriller “Night Sins.” Her additional television credits include guest-starring roles on “Seinfeld,” “Ellen,” “thirtysomething,” “Wiseguy” and “In the Heat of the Night.”
Hargitay’s film credits include the recent “Lake Placid,” starring Bill Pullman and Bridget Fonda, the critically acclaimed “Leaving Las Vegas,” David Lynch’s “Hotel Room” and Bob Fosse’s “Star ‘80.” On the Los Angeles stage, she has co-starred in “Salad Days,” “Women’s Work” and “Porno.”
Born and raised in Los Angeles, Hargitay is the youngest daughter of screen legend Jayne Mansfield and Mickey Hargitay. She divides her time between New York and Los Angeles. The UCLA graduate speaks Hungarian, French and Italian. Her birthday is January 23.
Ghoulies (1985), Welcome to 18 (1986), Jocks (1987), Mr. Universe (1988), Finish Line (TV-1989), The Perfect Weapon (1991), Blind Side (TV-1993), Bank Robber (1993), Hard Time Romance (1993), Gambler V: Playing for Keeps (TV-1994), Leaving Las Vegas (1995), Night Sins (TV miniseries-1997), The Advocate's Devil (TV-1997), Lake Placid (1999), Perfume (2001)
TV Series: Downtown (1986), Falcon Crest (1988), Tequila and Bonetti (1992), Key West (1993), Can't Hurry Love (1995), ER (1997-98), Prince Street (1997), Cracker (1997)
Richard Belzer
(Det. John Munch; 1999- )
NBC bio: Richard Belzer reprises his acerbic character Det. John Munch on “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” a record fifth time that he has essayed the character on five different dramas after first portraying Munch on NBC’s acclaimed drama series “Homicide: Life on the Street” for seven seasons. When the series ended in 1999, his character transferred from Baltimore to New York to join the crime unit on the new “Law & Order: SVU.”
“This is one conspiracy in which I was a willing participant,” says Belzer, a renowned conspiracy theorist. In fact, Belzer has played Munch on “Law & Order,” “Law & Order: SVU,” “Homicide,” “The X-Files,” and “The Beat.”
The veteran standup comic, actor, talk-show host and author was born in Bridgeport, Connecticut (8.4.44). Due to his “uncontrollable wit,” Belzer was politely asked to leave every school he ever attended. He first worked as a reporter for the Bridgeport Post and several other newspapers around the country. This interest in journalism is traced directly to his days as a paperboy in his hometown. Belzer eventually honed his life experiences into barbed comedic material drawn from other former jobs including teacher, census-taker, jewelry salesman and dock worker.
Belzer began his career in show business with a starring role in “Groove Tube,” the counterculture film that went on to become a cult classic. Since then, his comedic talents have been featured in every entertainment medium from off-Broadway (“The National Lampoon Show” with Bill Murray, Gilda Radner and John Belushi) to radio (“Brink and Belzer” on WNBC) to film (“Fame,” “Author, Author,” “Night Shift” and “Scarface”).
He also appeared as himself in the Andy Kaufman biopic “Man on the Moon.” His other film credits include “Species II,” “Get on the Bus,” “Girl 6,” “A Very Brady Sequel,” “North,” “The Bonfire of the Vanities” and “The Big Picture.” Additionally, Belzer starred in his own HBO comedy special, “Another Lone Nut,” and released a comedy CD of the same title. He hosted the network primetime special, “When Cars Attack,” starred in the six-part Showtime comedy series “The Richard Belzer Show,” hosted the live Lifetime talk show, “Hot Properties,” and Court TV’s “Crime Stories.”
Belzer is also the author of “UFOs, JFK and Elvis: Conspiracies You Don’t Have to Be Crazy to Believe,” and is the co-author of “How to Be A Standup Comic.” He is co-writing and co-producing two feature films in which he will star, “Standup Guy” and “Noose,” and will be hosting a series of conspiracy-theory primetime specials for the Sci-Fi Channel.
Last summer, Belzer was honored by the New York Friars Club and the Toyota Comedy Festival as the recipient of the first roast that was open to the public. Comedians and friends on the dais included Roastmaster Paul Schaffer, Christopher Walken, Danny Aiello, Barry Levinson, Robert Klein, Bill Maher, series co-stars Mariska Hargitay, Christopher Meloni, Ice-T, and Dann Florek, and “Law & Order’s” Jerry Orbach.
Belzer and his wife, actress Harlee McBride, have two daughters, Jessica and Bree. They live in New York City while filming the series and in France during the rest of the year. His birthday is August 4.
The Groove Tube (1974), Fame (1980), Author! Author! (1982), Night Shift (1982), Cafe Flesh (1982), Scarface (1983), Likely Stories: Vol. 3 (Video-1983), Belzer Behind Bars (TV-1983), The Tommy Chong Roast (TV-1986), Comic Relief (TV-1986), Charlie Barnett's Terms of Enrollment (Video-1986), America (1986), Funny, You Don't Look 200 (TV-1987), Flicks (1987), Young Comedians All Star Reunion (TV-1988), The Wrong Guys (1988), Freeway (1988), Fletch Lives (1989), The Big Picture (1989), The Flash (TV-1990), The Bonfire of the Vanities (1990), Off and Running (1991), Missing Pieces (1991), Flash II:The Revenge of the Trickster (Video-1991), Flash III: Deadly Nightshade (Video-1992), Mad Dog and Glory (1993), Dangerous Game (1993), Bandit: Bandit, Bandit (TV-1994), Hart to Hart: Crimes of the Hart (TV-1994), North (1994), The Puppet Masters (1994), It's Just A Ride (TV-1994), The Invaders (TV miniseries-1995), Prince for a Day (TV-1995), Not of This Earth (1995), Girl 6 (1996), A Very Brady Sequel (1996), Get on the Bus (1996), Deadly Pursuits (TV-1996), Elmopalooza (TV-1998), Species II (1998), The Bar Channel (1998), Man on the Moon (1999), Jump (1999), Crime Stories: The Capture and Trial of Adolf Eichmann (TV-1999), The 20th Century: Yesterday's Tomorrows (TV-1999), Homicide: The Movie (TV-2000), Laughing Out Loud: America's Funniest Comedians (Video-2001)
TV Series: Thicke of the Night (1983), Friday Night Videos (1990-93), Homicide: Life on the Streets (1993), Hollywood Squares (1998), Crime Stories (Host-1998)
Stephanie March
(ADA Alexandra Cabot; 2000-2003)
NBC bio: Stephanie March joined the cast of “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” in 2000 directly following her Broadway debut in the highly acclaimed production of “Death of a Salesman.”
On the gritty drama “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” March portrays a prosecuting attorney. “I feel so fortunate to be a part of such a creative and dynamic team, both in front of and behind the cameras,” says March. “My first season has been great.”
Born in Dallas (7.23.74) and raised in San Angelo, Texas, March was a shy child, but knew early on that she loved the arts. While her parents and sister explored other career paths, March followed her dreams and began acting in plays in high school.
March’s academic drive and desire to perform led her to Northwestern University where she continued to act. After graduating, her very first audition led to her first professional acting role as Helena in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” in Chicago, where she continued to pursue her stage career.
An avid reader, March lives in New York, loves to travel and enjoys swimming in her free time.
Death of a Salesman (TV-2000)
(Det. Odafin Tutuola; 2000- )
NBC bio: Multi-talented actor and musician Ice-T portrays the street-smart Det. Odafin “Fin” Tutuola, whose unique sense of humor and investigative skills are matched against those of his partner, Det. John Munch (Richard Belzer).
Born in Newark, New Jersey, Ice-T was orphaned at a young age and eventually became involved in Los Angeles gangs before spending four years in the U.S. Army. His first break occurred in 1984 when the producers of “Breakin’” asked him to rap in the film. He went on to become a Grammy Award-winning performer, whose outspoken hip-hop music has earned him international attention. He formed Rhyme Syndicate Records in 1989, released a string of groundbreaking rap records and was voted Best Male Rapper in Rolling Stone’s 1992 Readers’ Poll. Recently, he released a greatest hits album, “The Greatest Hits: Evidence.”
Ice-T has continued with his feature-film career as well, having appeared in “New Jack City” (opposite Wesley Snipes), “Ricochet” (with Denzel Washington), “Johnny Mnemonic” (with Keanu Reeves), “Tank Girl” and Walter Hill’s “Trespass.” He was also seen in the recent films “3000 Miles to Graceland” (opposite Kevin Costner and Courteney Cox Arquette) and in Abel Ferrara’s “R-Xmas.”
Ice-T is directing the upcoming “Common Sense,” a film based on one of his songs. Additionally, he will be featured in the IFC documentary “Crossover,” which spotlights musicians who have become actors.
“Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” marks the fourth project on which Ice-T has worked with executive producer Dick Wolf, having previously starred in Wolf’s 1997-98 series “Players” (which he helped develop with Wolf), the NBC movie “Exiled: A Law & Order Movie” and several high-profile guest-starring appearances on Wolf’s former series “New York Undercover.”
“Working with Ice is always a pleasure; he is a consummate professional, a great actor, a terrific person and he has a great sense of humor,” says Wolf.
Ice-T has also published a book, “The Ice Opinion” (St. Martin’s Press, 1994), and is extensively involved in several revolutionary Internet-related deals, including MP3.com and AtomicPop. His birthday is February 16.
Breakin' (1984), Breakin' 2: Electric Boogaloo (1984), Rappin' (1985), Listen Up: The Lives of Quincy Jones (1990), New Jack City (1991), Paul Rodriguez: Behind Bars (TV-1991), Ricochet (1991), Trespass (1992), Why Colors? (1992), CB4 (1993), Who's The Man? (1993), Gift (Video-1993), Surviving the Game (1994), The Legend of Dolemite (1994), Tank Girl (1995), Johnny Mnemonic (1995), Mr. Payback: An Interactive Movie (1995), Frankenpenis (Video-1996), Rhyme & Reason (1997), Mean Guns (1997), The Deli (1997), Below Utopia (1997), Crazy Six (1998), Urban Menace (1999), Final Voyage (1999), Jacob Two Two Meets the Hooded Fang (1999), Corrupt (1999), The Wrecking Crew (1999), Stealth Fighter (1999), Sonic Impact (1999), Point Doom (1999), Pimp Up, Ho's Down (1999), Judgment Day (Video-1999), The Heist (1999), The Disciples (TV-1999), The Alternate (1999), Leprechaun in the Hood (TV-2000), Luck of the Draw (2000), Sanity, Aiken's Artifact (Video-2000), Lost Angeles (2000), It's Black Entertainment (TV-2000), Guardian (2000), Gangland (2000), Ablaze (2000), 3000 Miles to Graceland (2000), Deadly Rhapsody (2001), 'R Xmas (2001), Ticker (2001), Crossover (TV-2001), Stranded (2001), Out Kold (2001), On Eagle's Wings (Video-2001), Kept (2001), Crime Partners 2000 (2001), Air Rage (Video-2001), Tracks (2002), The Magic 7 (TV-2003)
TV Series: Players (1997), I Love 1970s (2000), Beyond Tough (Host-2001)
Dann Florek
(Capt. Donald Cragen; 1999- )
NBC bio: As pragmatic Capt. Donald Cragen, Dann Florek reprises the role he originated on the first three seasons of sister series “Law & Order.” Prior to the debut of “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” Florek also got the chance to play Cragen in the “Law & Order” movie “Exiled.”
Raised in Flat Rock, Michigan, Florek entered Eastern Michigan University as a math and physics major but left with a newfound interest in drama. “I really thought I was going to be a math/physics person, but I was in choir, and they offered me a scholarship in drama, says Florek. “I thought, hey, maybe it’ll be more fun than synthetic projective geometry.”
Florek went on to join the prestigious Acting Company at the Juilliard School in New York City. His professional theater work includes “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “Love’s Labours Lost,” “Strange Snow,” and “Death of a Salesman.” Later, he headed west to San Diego, where he participated in many La Jolla Playhouse and Old Globe Theatre productions and eventually worked his way to Los Angeles.
Florek gained attention for his portrayal of direct-marketing whiz Dave Meyer on the Emmy-winning “L.A. Law.” Florek’s additional television credits include guest-starring roles on NBC’s “Wings” and “The Pretender,” as well as “The Practice,” “NYPD Blue,” “Roseanne,” “Ellen,” “Sabrina the Teenage Witch” and “Smart Guy.” He also starred as Abraham Lincoln on the controversial series “The Secret Diary of Desmond Pfeiffer.” Florek also appeared in the telefilms “The Pentagon Wars” and the Emmy-winning “From the Earth to the Moon.”
Florek has appeared in such feature films as Paul Mazursky’s “Moon Over Parador,” Blake Edward’s “Sunset,” Alan Parker’s “Angel Heart,” Alan Alda’s “Sweet Liberty,” “The Flintstones” and “Hard Rain.”
An accomplished guitarist and avid golfer, Florek collects music memorabilia and antique golf clubs. He and his wife, Karen, an artist, divide their time between Los Angeles and New York with their two dogs, Maddie and Little Dog. His birthday is May 1.
Diane Neal
(ADA Casey Novak; 2003- )
Universal bio: Diane Neal joins the cast of Wolf Films/Universal Network Television's top rated drama Law & Order: Special Victims Unit in the role of Assistant District Attorney Casey Novak. Neal will replace departing actress Stephanie March after the fourth episode of season five.

Born in Alexandria, Virginia, Neal moved to Colorado as a child when her father was promoted to federal attorney working out of Denver. The youngest of three girls, Neal graduated from high school early and moved to Hawaii to attend college. Although a pre-med major, Neal soon left school to pursue several interesting modeling opportunities that arose which allowed her to travel the world appearing in commercials for Lexus, Sony, Dove and Miller Lite to name just a few.

Soon her modeling career led her to New York City where she decided to plant roots and began studying acting at the Atlantic Theater Company Acting School.

Neal has since guest starred on several prominent series including CBS Hack, NBC's Ed, as well as roles on the daytime dramas As the World Turns and All My Children. Additionally, she has appeared in several pilots, including: Future Tense for NBC, Lenny and Adam for Comedy Central and American Embassy for FOX.

Neal isn't a stranger to Law & Order: Special Victims Unit -- during the third season she guest starred in the episode Ridicule playing top-notch criminal defense attorney Amelia Chase who was one of three women accused of raping a male stripper.

Her film credits include the Miramax feature Asterix and Obelix: Mission Cleopatra for which she provided the voice of Cleopatra, Second Born, as upcoming 2004 release Dracula: Legacy portraying Elizabeth Blaine opposite Jason London.

While not filming, Neal enjoys playing basketball and softball and at one time was a competitive figure skater. Neal currently resides in New York.
B.D. Wong
[Dr. George Huang; 2001- )
Universal bio: B.D. Wong returns to the cast of Wolf Films/ Universal Network Television's top-rated series Law & Order: Special Victims Unit for his third season as Dr. George Huang, a forensic psychiatrist and expert on the criminal mind.

Born and raised in San Francisco, CA, Wong is the only actor ever to have received all five major New York Theater awards for a single role. For his performance in M. Butterfly, his Broadway debut, he received the Drama Desk Award, the Outer Critics Circle Award, the Theater World Award, the Clarence Derwent Award and the Tony Award.

Wong gained notice as a cast regular on HBO's critically acclaimed series Oz, playing the resilient prison priest Father Ray for the show's five season run. His other television credits include a starring role in ABC's All-American Girl, HBO's telefilm And the Band Played On, as well as guest-starring roles on Welcome to New York, Chicago Hope, The X-Files, Bless This House and Shannon's Deal.

He has also appeared in more than 20 feature films, some of which include Steven Spielberg's Jurassic Park, The Freshman opposite Marlon Brando and Matthew Broderick, Father of the Bride (1 & 2), as well as Seven Years in Tibet, Executive Decision, and most recently The Salton Sea starring Val Kilmer and Vincent D'Onofrio. Wong can also be heard as the voice of Shang in the Disney animated film Mulan and the up-coming sequel Mulan II.

His additional work in the New York theater includes Shanghai Moon at the Drama Department, The Tempest, A Language of Their Own, As Thousands Cheer, and the Broadway musical revival of You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown in a critically acclaimed performance as Linus.

Wong recently published his first book Following Foo: (the electronic adventures of the Chestnut Man) (Harper Entertainment), which chronicles his son Jackson's struggle for life after he was born 11 weeks premature.

Wong currently resides in New York City.
Michelle Hurd
(Det. Monique Jeffries; 1999-2000)
Michelle Hurd appeared in the first 13 episodes as Det. Monique Jeffries. A native New Yorker, she starred in the daytime drama Another World from 1991-94 and again from 1995-97, had a recurring role in Malcolm & Eddie and, most recently starred in the series Leap Years (2001). Her film work includes Justice League of America (TV-1997) and Random Hearts (1999). She also appeared as "Angela Roney" in the Law & Order episode "Entrapment." She was born on December 21 (year unknown).
FILMOGRAPHY: Vanishing Son II (TV-1994), Justice League of America (TV-1997), Wilbur Falls (1998), Personals (1998), Random Hearts (1999), Double Parked (2000)
Dean Winters
(Det. Brian Cassidy; 1999-2000)
Born in New York City on July 20, 1964, Winters was raised in Arizona and then returned to his hometown to attend college. After traveling around the world he returned once more to the Big Apple and worked as a bartender while attending acting school. His break came when Tom Fontana, creator of Oz, offered him a role on the series. He appeared as Det. Brian Cassidy in the first season of Law & Order: SVU. His other series work includes a recurring role in Homicide: Life on the Street and guest roles in NYPD Blue and Sex and the City.
FILMOGRAPHY: The Playroom (TV-1996), Conspiracy Theory (1997), Lifebreath (1997), Firehouse (TV-1997), Snipes (2001), Bullet in the Brain (2001), Hellraiser: Hellseeker (2002), Love Rome (2002)

Law & Order: Criminal Intent -- Bios 
Vincent D'Onofrio
(Det. Robert Goren)
NBC bio: Vincent D’Onofrio (“Men in Black”) headlines the new NBC drama “Law & Order: Criminal Intent ” as the smoothly intuitive New York Det. Robert Goren.
“Bobby Goren takes you through a different story every week,” says D’Onofrio. “Sometimes it’s a ‘who-dunnit’ or sometimes a ‘why-dunnit.’ The fun and interesting thing about our show is that the audience knows things my character doesn’t and, as the story moves along, will realize that I know things that they don’t. The whole story is a game and we all get to play.”
Born in Brooklyn, New York, D’Onofrio grew up in Hawaii, Colorado and Florida. He eventually returned to New York to study acting at the American Stanislavsky Theatre, with Sharon Catten of the Actors Studio. While honing his craft, he appeared in several films at New York University and worked as a bouncer at dance clubs in the city. In 1984, he became a full-fledged member of the American Stanislavsky Theatre, appearing in “The Petrified Forest,” “Of Mice and Men,” “Sexual Perversity in Chicago,” and “The Indian Wants the Bronx.” That same year, he made his Broadway debut in “Open Admissions.” He recently starred off-Broadway in Sam Shepard’s “Tooth of Crime (Second Dance)”.
With a haunting portrayal of an unstable Vietnam War recruit in Stanley Kubrick’s gritty “Full Metal Jacket” in 1987, D’Onofrio gained attention for his intense and compelling talent on the screen. His other early film appearances include “Mystic Pizza” and “Adventures in Babysitting.”
Recently, D’Onofrio executive-produced and portrayed 1960s counterculture icon Abbie Hoffman in the film “Steal This Movie,” opposite Janeane Garofalo, and starred opposite Jennifer Lopez and Vince Vaughn in the science-fiction noir film “The Cell.” He will also be seen in the upcoming “The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys,” as an Irish priest opposite Jodie Foster; “The Salton Sea,” as a methamphetamine dealer opposite Val Kilmer; “Impostor,” with Gary Sinise; “Chelsea Walls,” directed by Ethan Hawke, and “Happy Accidents” co- starring Marisa Tomei.
D’Onofrio’s other film credits also include: Robert Altman’s “The Player”; Joel Schumacher’s “Dying Young”; Tim Burton’s “Ed Wood” (in which he played a young Orson Welles); Nancy Savoca’s “Household Saints”; Kathryn Bigalow’s “Strange Days” (opposite Ralph Fiennes and Angela Bassett); Harold Ramis’ “Stuart Saves His Family”; Barry Sonnenfeld’s “Men in Black” (as an intergalactic villain opposite Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones); “The Velocity of Gary” opposite Salma Hayek; “The Thirteenth Floor” opposite Craig Bierko; “The Whole Wide World” (which he produced and starred in opposite Renee Zellweger), and Oliver Stone’s “JFK.” D’Onofrio received an Emmy Award nomination in 1998 for his riveting guest appearance in “Homicide: Life on the Street” episode “The Subway.”
Away from the set, D’Onofrio enjoys spending time in New York with his family.
The First Turn-On! (1983), It Don't Pay to Be an Honest Citizen (1984), Adventures in Babysitting (1987), Full Metal Jacket (1987), Mystic Pizza (1988), The Blood of Heroes (1988), Sign of Life (1989), Naked Tango (1990), Crooked Hearts (1991), Dying Young (1991), Fires Within (1991), JFK (1991), The Player (1992), Salt on Our Skin (1992), Malcolm X (1992), Household Saints (1993), Mr. Wonderful (1993), Being Human (1993), Ed Wood (1994), Imaginary Wings (1994), The Investigator (TV-1994),Stuart Saves His Family (1995), Strange Days (1995), Hotel Paradise (1995), The Whole Wide World (1996), The Winner (1996), Feeling Minnesota (1996), Guy (1996), Good Luck (1997), Boys Life 2 (1997), Men in Black (1997), Nunzio's Second Cousin (1997), The Taking of Pelham One, Two, Three (TV-1998), The Newton Boys (1998), The Velocity of Gary (1998), Claire Dolan (1998), The Thirteenth Floor (1999), That Championship Season (TV-1999), Spanish Judges (1999), Happy Accidents (2000), Steal This Movie (2000), The Cell (2000), Chelsea Walls (2001), Impostor (2002), Bark (2002), The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys (2002), The Red Sneakers (TV-2002), The Salton Sea (2002)
Kathryn Erbe
(Det. Alexandra Eames)
NBC bio: Kathryn Erbe relishes her pro-active role in NBC’s new drama “Law & Order: Criminal Intent ” as the assertive, clever New York Det. Alex Eames.
“I like playing a woman who gets to kick some butt,” says a frank Erbe. “It is an honor to work with Vincent D’Onofrio, Jamey Sheridan and Courtney B. Vance, as well as all of the New York actors we get to work with every day.”
Born in Boston and raised in Newton, Massachusetts, Erbe’s interest in acting developed at a young age.
Shortly before graduating from the New York University drama program with a bachelor of arts degree, Erbe was cast as Lynn Redgrave’s daughter on the 1989 sitcom “Chicken Soup.” Upon her return to New York City, she joined the cast of the Steppenwolf Broadway production of “The Grapes of Wrath,” which received the 1990 Tony Award for best play. Immediately following her Broadway appearance, Erbe won the role of Anna, the daughter of Richard Dreyfuss and friend of Bill Murray in the film “What About Bob?”
Soon after, Erbe returned to Broadway to star in “The Speed of Darkness,” and was nominated for a Tony for Best Supporting Actress. A member of both the Steppenwolf Theatre Company and the Atlantic Theatre Company, Erbe has performed in many plays, including “A Streetcar Named Desire,” “A Month in the Country,” “Down the Shore” and “My Thing of Love.”
On film, Erbe appeared with Albert Finney and Alfre Woodard in “Rich in Love,” and in “Kiss of Death” with Helen Hunt and Nicolas Cage, as well as in the independent films “Dream with the Fishes,” “Love from Ground Zero” and “Entropy.” Last year, she starred opposite Kevin Bacon in “A Stir of Echoes,” and recently finished filming “Dragon Fly” with Kevin Costner. She also can be seen in the upcoming film “Speaking of Sex” with Lara Flynn Boyle and James Spader.
On the small screen, Erbe played the infamous death row inmate Shirley Bellenger on the acclaimed cable series “Oz.” She has also appeared on “Homicide: Life on the Street,” the cable miniseries “George Wallace,” the daytime drama “Another World” and the TV movie “Breathing Lessons.”
Away from the set, Erbe enjoys spending time in New York with her husband, actor-director Terry Kinney, and her 5-year-old daughter Maeve. Her birthday is July 5.
Runaway Dreams (1989), What About Bob? (1991), Rich in Love (1992), Breathing Lessons (TV-1994), D2: The Mighty Ducks (1994), Kiss of Death (1995), The Addiction (1995), Dream with the Fishes (1997), George Wallace (TV-1997), Naked City: Justice with a Bullet (TV-1998), Love from Ground Zero (1999), Entropy (1999), Stir of Echoes (1999), The Runaway (TV-2000), Speaking of Sex (2001)
TV Series: Oz (1998-2000)
Jamey Sheridan
(Capt. James Deakins)
NBC bio: Jamey Sheridan -- who became an actor only after a knee injury ruined his chances for a dancing career -- first gained notice as a maverick attorney in the quirky drama “Shannon’s Deal,” then became a sensitive doctor on “Chicago Hope” -- now he fleshes out another popular TV profession as a politically savvy captain of police detectives in “Law & Order: Criminal Intent.”
“Captain Deakins put himself through college as a beat cop,” says Sheridan. “He’s young for his job and has his eyes on the police commissioner’s job. He’s a straight-arrow, streetwise, family man who is both patient and demanding with his detectives.”
Sheridan was born and raised in Pasadena, California. Long after his transition to stage work, he received a Tony Award nomination in 1987 for his performance in the revival of “All My Sons.” He made his feature-film debut in “Jumpin’ Jack Flash” and began guest-starring in such series as “Spenser: For Hire” before catching the collective eyes of TV network executives who featured him in the title role of “Shannon’s Deal” for two seasons from 1990-91.
Following Sheridan’s star turn in the drama, he began a string of starring roles in such early-1990s films as “Stanley & Iris” (opposite Jane Fonda), “All I Want for Christmas,” “A Stranger Among Us” (opposite Melanie Griffith) and “Whispers in the Dark.” He scored favorable reviews for his work as a villain in the miniseries “Stephen King’s ‘The Stand’” in 1994 and also appeared that year with Meredith Baxter in the TV movie “My Breast.” In 1995, Sheridan became an ensemble cast member on “Chicago Hope” during the medical drama’s second season.
More recently, Sheridan starred in the films “Cradle Will Rock” and “The Ice Storm.” He turned in a memorable performance as Ozzie Nelson in the TV movie “Ricky Nelson: Original Teen Idol” in 1999. His other TV movies include “Hamlet,” “The Lost Child” and “The Echo of Thunder.”
On the stage, he played Brutus in “Julius Caesar” at New York’s Shakespeare-in-the-Park and previously appeared on Broadway in “Long Day’s Journey into Dark” and “Biloxi Blues.” Sheridan recently finished filming the Irwin Winkler film “Life as a House” opposite Kevin Kline and Kristen Scott Thomas.
Sheridan is married and is the father of two children. His birthday is July 12.
Jumpin' Jack Flash (1986), One Police Plaza (TV-1986), The House on Carroll Street (1988), Distant Thunder (1988), Shannon's Deal (TV-1989), A Mother's Courage: The Mary Thomas Story (TV-1989), Stanley & Iris (1990), Quick Change (1990), Talent for the Game (1991), Murder in High Places (TV-1991), All I Want for Christmas (1991), A Stranger Among Us (1992), Whispers in the Dark (1992), Killer Rules (TV-1993), The Stand (TV miniseries-1994), My Breast (TV-1994), Spring Awakening (TV-1994), Sherwood's Travels (1994), All Lies End in Murder (TV-1997), The Ice Storm (1997), Wild America (1997), The Echo of Thunder (TV-1998), Luminous Motion (1998), Beauty (TV-1998), Cradle Will Rock (1999), Ricky Nelson: Original Teen Idol (TV-1999), Let the Devil Wear Black (1999), The Simian Line (2000), The Lost Child (TV-2000), Hamlet (TV-2000), The Amati Girls (TV-2000), Life as a House (2001), Video Voyeur: The Susan Wilson Story (TV-2001), Desert Saints (2002), Rain (2002)
TV Series: Shannon's Deal (1990), Chicago Hope (1995-96)
Courtney B. Vance
 (ADA Ron Carver)
NBC bio: Courtney B. Vance joined NBC’s new drama “Law & Order: Criminal Intent” this season and has already been nominated for an NAACP Image Award (Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series) for his role as a New York Assistant District Attorney.
Vance was born in Detroit, Michigan and later graduated from Harvard with a bachelor of arts degree and the Yale School of Drama with a master of fine arts degree. While attending Harvard, Vance was already working as an actor at the Boston Shakespeare Company. He went on to earn two Tony Award nominations, each in Tony-winning productions. He was first nominated for his role in August Wilson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play “Fences,” and later for his lead role in John Guare’s “Six Degrees of Separation.”
Vance’s feature-film roles have won him steady praise. His early credits include “Hamburger Hill” and “The Hunt for Red October.” More recently, he appeared in Robert Altman’s “Cookie’s Fortune,” Penny Marshall’s “Preacher’s Wife” and in Clint Eastwood’s “Space Cowboys.” He also starred in the independent film “Love and Action in Chicago,” a romantic comedy which he co-produced. Next, Vance stars opposite Sylvester Stallone in the thriller “Eye See You.”
Vance’s television credits include such cable movies as “Blind Faith” (opposite Charles S. Dutton, for which he received an Independent Spirit Award nomination for Best Actor), the William Friedkin-directed “12 Angry Men” (with Jack Lemmon, George C. Scott and Ossie Davis), the Hallmark presentation “The Boys Next Door” (alongside Nathan Lane, Tony Goldwyn and Michael Jeter), “The Tuskegee Airmen” (with Laurence Fishburne and Andre Braugher) and the television production of August Wilson’s play “The Piano Lesson.”
Away from the set, Vance enjoys spending time with his wife, actress Angela Bassett. His birthday is March 12.
Hamburger Hill (1987), The Hunt for Red October (1990), Nonsense and Lullabyes: Nursery Rhymes (Video-1992), In the Line of Duty: Street War (TV-1992), Nonsense and Lullabyes: Poems (Video-1992), Beyond the Law (1992), The Adventures of Huck Finn (1993), Percy & Thunder (TV-1993), The Emperor's New Clothes (1993), Race to Freedom: The Underground Railroad (TV-1994), Holy Matrimony (1994), The Piano Lesson (TV-1995), Panther (1995), Dangerous Minds (1995), The Tuskegee Airmen (TV-1995), The Last Supper (1995), The Affair (TV-1995), The Boys Next Door (TV-1996), The Preacher's Wife (1996), 12 Angry Men (TV-1997), Blind Faith (1998), Ambushed (1998), Naked City: Justice with a Bullet (TV-1998), Naked City: Killer Christmas (TV-1998), Cookie's Fortune (1999), Love and Action in Chicago (TV-1999), Born to Trouble: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (TV-voice-2000), Space Cowboys (2000), The Acting Class (2000), Parting the Waters (TV miniseries-2000), War Letters (TV-2001), D-Tox (2002), Whitewash: The Clarence Brandley Story (TV-2002)
Dick Wolf
(Creator/Executive Producer)

Dick Wolf, one of television's most respected drama series creator/producers, is the architect of one of the most successful franchises in the history of television - Law & Order. Wolf serves as creator and executive producer of the three Law & Order - branded drama series from Wolf Films and Universal Television -- Law & Order, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and Law & Order: Criminal Intent -- which air Wednesdays at 10:00 p.m., Fridays at 10:00 p.m. and Sundays at 9:00 p.m., respectively, on NBC. In addition, he is creator and executive producer of the new NBC "dramamentary" Crime & Punishment. Wolf will also produce a new version of the classic television series Dragnet that is scheduled to premiere on ABC in January 2003.
Crime & Punishment chronicles real-life cases prosecuted by the San Diego District Attorney's office. Oscar and Emmy-winning documentarian Bill Guttentag is executive producer of this compelling new project, which combines the best of "cinema verite" with three-camera production, giving viewers the look and feel of a top-notch drama series.
Meanwhile, Wolf's Law & Order franchise continues to rewrite the annals of television history. All three of the Law & Order-branded series regularly place among the top 30 primetime programs with Law & Order in the top five and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit cracking the top ten.
Now entering its 13th season on NBC, Law & Order is the longest-running current drama series on television, it has received a record eleven consecutive Outstanding Drama Series Emmy nominations - the record for most consecutive series Emmy nominations in the history of television (tied with "Cheers" and "M*A*S*H") -- and it won the coveted Emmy in that category in 1997. With NBC's unprecedented five year pick up (through 2005), Law & Order will become the longest-running police series and the second longest running drama series in the history of television. Law & Order's other accolades include: the highly-coveted Peabody Award; multiple Emmys; the Crystal Apple Award from the New York City's Mayor's office of Film, Theater and Broadcasting; the Writer's Guild Award for Television and numerous other high ranking tributes.
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, entering its fourth year on NBC, has been one of the top-rated drama series for the past two years. It consistently wins its time period on Friday nights by a wide margin in ratings, share and key demographics and it continues to break records with its dual window USA Network showcase.
Law & Order: Criminal Intent premiered in September 2001 and stars Vincent D'Onofrio (Full Metal Jacket, The Cell), Kathryn Erbe, Courtney B. Vance and Jamey Sheridan. The series breaks from the traditional Law & Order format to reveal the point of view of the criminal, as well as the police and prosecutors. This critically-acclaimed drama series, the top-rated new drama of the season, was one of the first series of the 2001-2002 season to receive a second year pick up.
In addition, the Law & Order franchise includes the highly rated NBC telefilm Exiled: A Law & Order Movie (one of the top-rated telefilms for the 1997-98 season) in which Chris Noth reprised his role as Detective Mike Logan.
Wolf has been a creative force in television for more than 25 years, with an illustrious career as a top advertising executive and continuing as one of television's most prolific producer/writers with such series as Hill Street Blues, Miami Vice, New York Undercover, Arrest & Trial, South Beach, Feds and Players. Among his feature film credits are the screenplay for the hit Paramount release School Ties, writer and executive producer of Masquerade and writer and producer of No Man's Land.
His personal honors include such awards as: the prestigious Award of Excellence from the Banff Television Festival; the 2002 Creative Achievement Award from NATPE; the Anti-Defamation League's Distinguished Entertainment Industry Award; the Leadership and Inspiration Award from the Entertainment Industries Council; the Governor's Award by the New York Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences; the 1997 achievement award from the Caucus for Producers, Writers, and Directors and the 1998 Television Showman of the Year Award from the Publicist's Guild of America.
Wolf is also an Honorary Consul of Monaco and is actively involved in the principality's prestigious annual television Festival, and is its primary liaison with the entertainment community.
Law & Order, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, and Law & Order: Criminal Intent are Wolf Films productions in association with Universal Network Television. Crime & Punishment is produced by Wolf Films, Shape Pictures and Anonymous Content in association with Universal Network Television Distribution.
Rene Balcer
Executive Producer

Emmy Award-winning writer/producer René Balcer, a native of Montreal, Canada, began his career as a combat cameraman during the 1973 Yom Kippur War. A graduate of McGill and Loyola universities, Balcer was a journalist for numerous Canadian newspapers and magazines before becoming a documentary filmmaker at Canada's National Film Board. In 1980, he moved to Hollywood where from 1980-1992 he wrote and developed a variety of feature films for Zoetrope, Paramount, Universal, Fox, Disney and Columbia.
In 1990, Balcer joined the staff of Law & Order during its first season, becoming showrunner, executive producer and head writer in 1996. During his four years as showrunner, Balcer led Law & Order into the Top Ten, and to its first Emmy win for Best Drama Series. Over the course of ten years with the show, Balcer wrote over 70 episodes and won a number of top industry awards, including the Writers Guild Award for Outstanding Teleplay (plus two nominations), three Edgar Awards from the Mystery Writers of America (plus twelve nominations), the Peabody Award, two Silver Gavel Awards from the American Bar Association, and the Golden Laurel Award from the Producers Guild of America.
Balcer's other television credits include Out On The Edge (MOW, Hearst), which won him the Award for Excellence from the American Psychological Association, Stranger In The Family (MOW, Hearst), Nasty
Boys (Series, Universal/NBC), and Star Trek: The Next Generation (Paramount). Balcer also created the series Mission: Protection Rapprochee for TF1-France/Transfilm.
Balcer is currently involved in a three-year overall production deal with Universal Network Television.
Law & Order: Criminal Intent is produced by Wolf Films in association with Universal Network Television and airs on Sundays at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT on NBC. Dick Wolf is creator and executive producer. The series was developed by René Balcer who is also executive producer. Peter Jankowski also serves as executive producer.