Dennis Haysbert

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Dennis Haysbert
Dennis Haysbert cropped.jpg
Dennis Haysbert, April 2007
BornDennis Dexter Haysbert
(1954-06-02) June 2, 1954 (age 60)
San Mateo, California, U.S.
OccupationActor
Years active1978–2014
Spouse(s)Elena Simms (1980–1984)
Lynn Griffith (1989–2001)
 
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Dennis Haysbert
Dennis Haysbert cropped.jpg
Dennis Haysbert, April 2007
BornDennis Dexter Haysbert
(1954-06-02) June 2, 1954 (age 60)
San Mateo, California, U.S.
OccupationActor
Years active1978–2014
Spouse(s)Elena Simms (1980–1984)
Lynn Griffith (1989–2001)

Dennis Dexter Haysbert (born June 2, 1954) is an American film and television actor.

He is known for portraying baseball player Pedro Cerrano in the Major League film trilogy, David Palmer on the American television series 24, and Sergeant Major Jonas Blane on the drama series The Unit, as well as his work in commercials for Allstate Insurance.

Personal life[edit]

Dennis Dexter Haysbert was born in San Mateo, California, the son of Gladys (née Minor), a homemaker and house cleaner, and Charles Whitney Haysbert, Sr., a deputy sheriff and airline security guard.[1][2] He is the eighth of nine children, having two sisters and six brothers. His parents were from Louisiana.[3] Haysbert was raised Baptist.[3] He graduated from San Mateo High School in 1972.[4] After high school, measuring 6 feet 4.5 inches (1.94 m) tall, he was offered various athletic scholarships, but instead chose to study acting at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. Haysbert is a divorced father of two. He announced in April 2009 that he was starting a TV, film, and documentary production company.[5] His first project was to be a documentary for HBO about an up-and-coming boxer.[6] During the 2010 California elections, Haysbert supported Democratic Senatorial Incumbent Barbara Boxer by appearing with her at campaign events as well as recording radio commercials.[7][8]

Career[edit]

Television[edit]

Haysbert has been acting in film and television since 1979, starting with a guest role in The White Shadow. His television guest starring roles include Lou Grant, Growing Pains, Laverne & Shirley, The A-Team, Night Court, Dallas, The Incredible Hulk, Magnum, P.I., Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, and Duckman. In 1993, he had a featured role in Return to Lonesome Dove as outlaw Cherokee Jack Jackson. In 1999, Haysbert starred with Eric Close in Now and Again, which was cancelled after its first season.

In 2001, Haysbert became better known when he was cast in 24 as U.S. Senator David Palmer, who served as America's first African American President (in the context of the show) during the second and third seasons. He also returned as a guest star in the last six episodes of season 4 and the first episode of season 5. He was nominated for a Golden Globe and for a Golden Satellite Award in 2002 for this role. Haysbert stated in an interview for the show that the three men he admires most—Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and Colin Powell—collectively embody his idea of what a President should be.[9] Haysbert believes that his playing of David Palmer on 24 helped Barack Obama—whom Haysbert supported—to win the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination.[10][11]

Haysbert was the first actor to portray DC Comics character Kilowog, a member of the Green Lantern Corps, in a medium outside of comics. He provided the voice of Kilowog on various episodes of Justice League and Justice League Unlimited.

On March 4, 2006, Haysbert guest starred on the Saturday Night Live episode hosted by Natalie Portman as the host of a live action/animated TV Funhouse cartoon called "Belated Black History Moment". In his role, Haysbert paid homage to fictional short-lived Saturday morning cartoons featuring black characters, such as Ladysmith Black Mambazo in Outer Space. He also portrayed Nelson Mandela in Goodbye Bafana (also released under the name The Color of Freedom).

Haysbert portrayed the lead character Jonas Blane in the CBS action-drama The Unit, which ended after its fourth season on May 10, 2009.

He hosted and narrated the Military History Channel presentation of Secrets of Pearl Harbor, which documented his scuba dives with a film team on World War II era Japanese and American warships in the Pacific Theater of action.

In March 2013, Haysbert narrated the documentary "The World According to Dick Cheney" on the Showtime television channel

Film[edit]

1980s[edit]

In 1989, Haysbert got his first major film role portraying Pedro Cerrano, a voodoo-practicing Cuban refugee baseball player, in the movie Major League. In it, he uttered the memorable line: "Is very bad to steal Jobu's rum; is very bad".

1990s[edit]

Haysbert followed that up with a role in 1990's Navy SEALs, which also starred Charlie Sheen and Michael Biehn, before moving on to another baseball movie, Mr. Baseball with Tom Selleck. In 1991, he also starred in K-9000, where he played a police officer named Nick Sanrio. In 1992, he co-starred with Michelle Pfeiffer in Love Field, a film about a series of events occurring contemporaneously with the assassination and funeral of President John F. Kennedy.[12]

In 1994, Haysbert reprised his role as Cerrano in Major League II. This was followed by low key appearances in Waiting to Exhale, Heat, and Absolute Power. In 1998, Haysbert made another appearance as Cerrano in Major League: Back to the Minors. In 1999, Haysbert played a police detective in three different films: The Minus Man, The Thirteenth Floor, and Random Hearts.

2000s[edit]

In 2000, Haysbert played the role of Zeke McCall in Love & Basketball. In 2002, Haysbert played the role of gardener Raymond Deagan in Far From Heaven. He won three awards (Satellite Award, Black Reel Award, and Washington DC Area Film Critics Association Award) for Best Supporting Actor for that role. In 2005, he had a supporting role in Sam Mendes's film, Jarhead. In 2007, Haysbert returned to the big screen to portray Nelson Mandela in Goodbye Bafana and an FBI agent in Breach.

2010s[edit]

In 2012, Haysbert served as an official judge for the Noor Iranian Film Festival. He replaced the deceased Michael Clark Duncan as Manute in Sin City: A Dame to Kill For (2014).[13]

Commercials[edit]

Haysbert is the official spokesman for the Allstate Insurance Company. His commercials typically end with one of the two Allstate Corporation official slogans, either Are you in good hands? or That's Allstate's stand. More recently however his commercials have combined the two with "That's Allstate's stand. Are you in good hands?". He has also appeared in Spanish language commercials with the line "Con Allstate, Estás En Buenos Manos." (You're in good hands with Allstate.) In 2009–2010 Allstate used the Neil Sedaka song "Breaking Up Is Hard to Do" in television commercials to promote Allstate's car insurance. Breaking up is hard to do, the ads averred, unless one has an Allstate agent to undertake the deed for the customer (switching from another insurer to Allstate). The viewer learned that "breaking up is easy to do" as reassured on the screen by Haysbert. In his role as spokesman for Allstate, Haysbert officiated the coin toss prior to the 2007 Sugar Bowl between LSU and Notre Dame.[14]

In 2008, Haysbert was featured in national television ads to raise public awareness about lending discrimination. The ads were commissioned by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity.[15] In one of these ads, Haysbert warns consumers about lenders' targeting minorities for inferior loan products.[16]

For the 2006 college football season, Haysbert did voice work for ticket sales promotions for Brigham Young University. He did it as a favor to his younger brother Adam, who played wide receiver at BYU in the early 1980s.[17]

Haysbert also voices the Military Channel's commercials with their official slogan: "The Military Channel—Go Behind the Lines."

Video games[edit]

In addition to his acting, Haysbert has also done voice work for various video games, most notably as Irving Lambert in the Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell series and narrator of Call of Duty: Finest Hour. He also voiced David Palmer in 24: The Game.

Theater[edit]

In June 2010, Haysbert joined the cast of David Mamet's Race on Broadway as character Henry Brown, performing alongside actors Eddie Izzard, Richard Thomas, and Afton Williamson. The play ran until August 21, 2010.

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

YearTitleRoleNotes
1979ScoringLt. Harrigan
1989Major LeaguePedro Cerrano
1990Navy SealsGraham
1992Mr. BaseballMax "Hammer" Dubois
1992Love FieldPaul Cater
1993SutureClay Arlington
1993Alex Haley's QueenDavis
1994Major League IIPedro Cerrano
1995HeatDonald Breedan
1995Waiting to ExhaleKenneth Dawkins
1996AmandaSeven/Sir Jordan
1997Absolute PowerTim Collin
1998How to Make the Cruelest MonthManhattan Parks
1998Major League: Back to the MinorsPedro Cerrano
1999The Minus ManGraves
1999The Thirteenth FloorDetective Larry McBain
1999Random HeartsDetective George Beaufort
2000What's Cooking?Ronald Williams
2000Love & BasketballZeke McCall
2002Far from HeavenRaymond Deagan
2003Sinbad: Legend of the Seven SeasKaleVoice
2005JarheadMajor Lincoln
2007Goodbye BafanaNelson Mandela
2007BreachDean Plesac
2011The DetailsLincoln
2011Kung Fu Panda 2Master Storming OxVoice
2012LUVMr. Fish
2012Wreck-It RalphGeneral HologramVoice
2014Mr. Peabody & ShermanJudgeVoice
2014Think Like A Man TooUncle Eddie
2014Life of a KingSearcy
2014Sin City: A Dame to Kill ForManute
2014Men, Women & Children
2014Sniper: LegacyThe Colonel
2015ExperimenterOssie Davis
2015Dead Rising: WatchtowerDigital film

Television[edit]

YearTitleRoleNotes
1978Lou GrantVictorEpisode: "Schools"
1979The White ShadowBasketball PlayerEpisode: "Wanna Bet?"
1979Laverne & ShirleyNavy Shore PatrolmanEpisode: "What Do You Do with a Drunken Sailor?"
1980Quincy M.E.FredEpisode: "New Blood"
1980The Incredible HulkGuardEpisode: "Nine Hours"
1980Galactica 1980Imperious LeaderEpisode: "Space Croppers"
1980–1981Buck Rogers in the 25th CenturyVarious5 episodes
1981Quincy M.E.DriverEpisode: "Headhunter"
1981Grambling's White TigerJames "Shack" HarrisTelevision movie
1981–1982Code RedStuff Wade8 episodes
1983The A-TeamPsych Ward StaffEpisode: "One More Time"
1984DallasDr. ForbesEpisode: "Killer at Large"
1984RiptideOdellEpisode: "Father's Day"
1984Gimme a Break!Rev. WinfieldEpisode: "Baby of the Family"
1984–1985Off the RackCletus Maxwell7 episodes
1985Magnum P.I.Lieutenant Jameson, USNEpisode: "Blood and Honor"
1985What's Happening Now!!PolicemanEpisode: "I'll Be Homeless for Christmas"
1985Growing PainsPolice OfficerEpisode: "Weekend Fantasy"
1986The Fall GuyJeremy WolfEpisode: "Trial by Fire"
1986227Sgt. BanksEpisode: "Redecorating Blues"
1986Scarecrow and Mrs. KingKimamboEpisode: "Billy's Lost Weekend"
1986The Young and the RestlessRon Clark8 episodes
1987Growing PainsOfficer WrightEpisode: "Gone But Not Forgottten"
1987Knots LandingPolice OfficerEpisode: "The Unraveling"
1987Easy StreetChipEpisode: "The Country Club"
1987ValerieDr. ErvinEpisode: "Oedipus Wrecks"
1987Our HouseUnknownEpisode: "Sounds from a Silent Clock: Part 2"
1987The Facts of LifeSgt. EvansEpisode: "Before the Fall"
1988Growing PainsFrankEpisode: "State of the Union"
1988Crime StoryFranklin Himes2 episodes
1988–1989Just the Ten of UsCoach Duane Johnson9 episodes
1989Night CourtJames MorganEpisode: "Pen Pal"
1989The Robert Guillaume ShowMr. PetersonEpisode: "Guaranteed Not to Shrink"
1991K-9000Nick SanrioTelevision movie
1993QueenDavisTelevision movie
1993Return to Lonesome DoveJack Jackson3 episodes
1993American PlayhouseRev. Oliver CrawfordEpisode: "Hallelujah"
1998The New Batman AdventuresBarkley JamesEpisode: "Mean Seasons"
1998–1999SupermanAgent #12 episodes
1999–2000Now and AgainDr. Theodore Morris22 episodes
2001Soul FoodRick Grant2 episodes
2001The Outer LimitsJoshua FinchEpisode: "Rule of Law"
2001–200624David Palmer81 episodes
2001–2002Static ShockChief Barnsdale3 episodes
2001–2004Justice LeagueKilowog3 episodes
2006–2009The UnitJonas Blane69 episodes
2013NewsreadersDet. Fenster LandauEpisode: "CCSI: Boston"
2013Trophy WifeRuss Bradley Morrison2 episodes
2014The BoondocksSturdy HarrisEpisode: "Freedom Ride or Die"

Awards and nominations[edit]

YearAssociationCategoryNominated workResult
2000Saturn AwardsBest Supporting Actor on TelevisionNow and AgainWon
2001Satellite AwardsBest Actor – Television Series DramaNominated
2003Golden Globe AwardsBest Supporting Actor – Series, Miniseries or Television Film24Nominated
NAACP Image AwardsOutstanding Actor in a Drama SeriesNominated
Satellite AwardsBest Supporting Actor – Series, Miniseries or Television FilmNominated
Best Supporting Actor – Motion PictureFar from HeavenWon
Screen Actors Guild AwardsOutstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series24Nominated
2004NAACP Image AwardsOutstanding Actor in a Drama SeriesNominated
2005Screen Actors Guild AwardsOutstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama SeriesNominated
2006NAACP Image AwardsOutstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama SeriesNominated
2007Outstanding Actor in a Drama SeriesThe UnitNominated
2008Nominated
2009Nominated

References[edit]

  1. ^ Author unknown (date unknown). Dennis Haysbert Biography. TVGuide.com. Retrieved from http://www.tvguide.com/detail/celebrity.aspx?tvobjectid=147081&more=ucCelebInfo.
  2. ^ Author unknown (date unknown). Deaths: Haysbert, Charles Whitney. NewsLibrary Search Result; access to original article restricted to subscribers. Retrieved from http://nl.newsbank.com/nl-search/we/Archives?p_product=AD&p_theme=ad&p_action=search&p_maxdocs=200&p_topdoc=1&p_text_direct-0=0EB476A66650E1F9&p_field_direct-0=document_id&p_perpage=10&p_sort=YMD_date:D&s_trackval=GooglePM.
  3. ^ a b Avery, Laura (2007). Excerpt from Newsmakers 2007 Cumulation. Retrieved from http://books.google.ca/books?id=hnRmAAAAMAAJ&q=%22Haysbert+was+born+on+June+2,+1954,+in+San+Mateo,+California%22&dq=%22Haysbert+was+born+on+June+2,+1954,+in+San+Mateo,+California%22&hl=en.
  4. ^ "San Mateo High School Alumni". San Mateo High School. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  5. ^ http://www.alarabiya.net/articles/2009/04/14/70662.html
  6. ^ http://www.alarabiya.net/articles/2009/04/14/70663.html
  7. ^ Retrieved from http://www.mercurynews.com/breaking-news/ci_16416407?nclick_check=1[dead link].
  8. ^ Video on YouTube
  9. ^ "'24' Exposed (Part 1) featurette". '24' season 2 bonus DVD. 
  10. ^ "Haysbert Says '24' Role Paved the Way for Presidential Hopeful Barack Obamawork=buddytv.com". buddytv.com. ]
  11. ^ http://www.cnn.com/2008/SHOWBIZ/TV/07/02/haysbert.obama.ap/index.html.  Missing or empty |title= (help)[dead link]
  12. ^ "Dennis Haysbert". Noted Guys. 
  13. ^ Kit, Borys (5 December 2012). "Dennis Haysbert Replaces Michael Clarke Duncan in 'Sin City 2' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  14. ^ http://article.wn.com/view/2011/12/21/Allstate_ads_to_remain_in_Haysberts_good_hands_for_three_mor/
  15. ^ http://archives.hud.gov/news/2008/pr08-108.cfm
  16. ^ Video on YouTube
  17. ^ Deseret News: BYU connection yields strong voice

External links[edit]