Ray Liotta

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Ray Liotta
BornRaymond Julian Vicimarli
(1954-12-18) December 18, 1954 (age 59)
Newark, New Jersey, US
Alma materUniversity of Miami
Years active1978–present
Spouse(s)Michelle Grace
(1997–2004; divorced)
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Ray Liotta
BornRaymond Julian Vicimarli
(1954-12-18) December 18, 1954 (age 59)
Newark, New Jersey, US
Alma materUniversity of Miami
Years active1978–present
Spouse(s)Michelle Grace
(1997–2004; divorced)

Raymond Allen "Ray" Liotta (born December 18, 1954) is an American actor, best known for his portrayal of Henry Hill in the crime-drama Goodfellas (1990) and for his role as Shoeless Joe Jackson in Field of Dreams (1989). He has won an Emmy Award and been nominated for Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild awards.

Early life[edit]

Liotta was born Raymond Julian Vicimarli in Newark, New Jersey, and was adopted at the age of six months by Mary Liotta, an appointed township clerk, and Alfred Liotta, an auto parts store owner, personnel director, and the president of a local Democratic club.[1] Both of his parents unsuccessfully ran for local office.[2] Liotta's adoptive parents were of Italian and Scottish/Irish ancestry; his biological father was Italian American. After research and talks with his biological mother, Liotta discovered he is of part Scottish ancestry.[3][4][5][6]

In 1973,[citation needed] Liotta graduated from Union High School in Union, New Jersey and was inducted into the school's Hall of Fame in 1992.[citation needed] Liotta studied acting at the University of Miami, where he performed at the university's Jerry Herman Ring Theatre.[citation needed]


One of Liotta's earliest roles was as Joey Perrini on the soap opera Another World; he appeared on the show from 1978 to 1981. He infamously made his film debut in a sexual assault scene with Pia Zadora and a garden hose in the 1983 cult classic The Lonely Lady. In 1987, he earned his first Golden Globe nomination[7] for his portrayal of volatile ex-con Ray Sinclair in Jonathan Demme's film Something Wild (1986). In 1989, he costarred alongside Kevin Costner in the fantasy/drama film Field of Dreams—Liotta portrayed Shoeless Joe Jackson, the ghost of the famed baseball player. His voice over line, "If you build it, he will come," is #39 on the American Film Institute's list of 100 movie quotes. In 1990, Liotta portrayed real-life mobster Henry Hill in Martin Scorsese's film Goodfellas. In 1992, he costarred as a psychopathic cop alongside Kurt Russell and Madeleine Stowe in the thriller Unlawful Entry. He also appeared in a leading role in the sci-fi/action film No Escape. Liotta would earn more critical praise for his turn in James Mangold's film Cop Land, starring alongside Sylvester Stallone, Robert De Niro, and Harvey Keitel. In 1998, he received critical praise for his performance in the crime film Phoenix, in which he plays decent policeman Harry Collins who is also a compulsive gambler.

In addition to his film roles, Liotta portrayed singer Frank Sinatra in the 1998 TV movie The Rat Pack (for which he received a Screen Actors Guild Award nomination), he provided the voice of Tommy Vercetti for the 2002 video game Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, and appeared in the television drama ER in 2004, playing Charlie Metcalf in the episode "Time of Death". The ER role earned Liotta an Emmy for "Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series" (Liotta would later spoof himself and his Emmy win in Bee Movie). Liotta starred in the 2006 CBS television series Smith, which was pulled from the schedule after only three episodes had aired, and, in 2012, Liotta appeared as himself in a purely vocal role for the "What a Croc!" episode of the Disney Channel comedy series Phineas & Ferb.

Liotta played the father of drug dealer George Jung in the 2001 Johnny Depp film Blow and, in the following year, appeared as Det. Lt. Henry Oak in the Joe Carnahan-directed film Narc, a role that led to an Independent Spirit Award nomination and a Phoenix Film Critics Society Awards nomination for Best Supporting Male—many critics considered the role to be Liotta's career best.[citation needed] He then reunited with director James Mangold in 2003, alongside John Cusack and Alfred Molina, in the dark horror-thriller Identity. In 2005, he narrated Inside the Mafia for the National Geographic Channel. He later appeared in Smokin' Aces—reuniting with Narc director Carnahan—in which he portrayed an FBI agent named Donald Carruthers in one of the lead roles.

Liotta appeared with John Travolta in the movie Wild Hogs, in Battle in Seattle as the city's mayor, and in Hero Wanted as a detective alongside Cuba Gooding Jr.. He was also in Crossing Over, co-starring Harrison Ford. Liotta played Detective Harrison in the 2009 Jody Hill comedy Observe and Report as Seth Rogen's nemesis from the local police. In 2011, he starred in The Son of No One, opposite Channing Tatum and, for the first time in his career, Al Pacino.

In the 2010s, Liotta appeared in Date Night, with Steve Carell, Charlie St. Cloud with Zac Efron, the independent drama Snowmen, and The River Sorrow, which stars Liotta as a detective alongside Christian Slater and Ving Rhames. Liotta starred alongside Brad Pitt and James Gandolfini in the 2012 Andrew Dominik film Killing Them Softly[8] and the 2013 Ariel Vromen film The Iceman features Liotta as the character of Roy DeMeo.[9][10] He had a supporting role in Muppets Most Wanted (2014).

Personal life[edit]

Liotta married actress Michelle Grace in February 1997 after they had met at her ex-husband (Mark Grace)'s professional baseball game. The couple co-starred in The Rat Pack, in which Liotta played Frank Sinatra and Grace played Judith Campbell Exner. Their daughter Karsen was born in December 1998, six years prior to the couple's divorce in 2004.



1983Lonely Lady, TheThe Lonely LadyJoe Heron
1986Something WildRay SinclairBoston Society of Film Critics Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated: Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture
Nominated: National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Supporting Actor (3rd place)
Nominated: New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor (3rd place)
1987Arena BrainsThe ArtistShort film
1988Dominick and EugeneEugene "Gino" Luciano
1989Field of DreamsShoeless Joe Jackson
1990GoodfellasHenry Hill
1992Article 99Dr. Richard Sturgess
1992Unlawful EntryOfficer Pete DavisNominated: MTV Movie Award for Best Villain
1994No EscapeCapt. J.T. Robbins
1994Corrina, CorrinaManny Singer
1995Operation Dumbo DropCapt. T.C. Doyle
1996UnforgettableDr. David Krane
1997TurbulenceRyan Weaver
1997Cop LandDet. Gary "Figgsy" Figgis
1998PhoenixHarry CollinsAlso co-producer
1999Muppets from SpaceGate Guard # 1Cameo
1999Forever MineMark Brice
2000Rumor of Angels, AA Rumor of AngelsNathan Neubauer
2001HannibalPaul Krendler
2001HeartbreakersDean Cummano / Vinny Staggliano
2001BlowFred Jung
2002NarcDet. Lt. Henry OakAlso producer
Nominated: Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Male
Nominated: Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor
2002John QChief Gus Monroe
2002TickerFBI AgentShort film
2004Last Shot, TheThe Last ShotJack Devine
2004ControlLee Ray OliverDirect-to-video
2005RevolverDorothy Macha
2005Slow BurnFord ColeCo-executive producer
2006Even MoneyTom Carver
2006Take the LeadExecutive producer
2006Local ColorJohn Talia Sr.
2006Comeback SeasonWalter Pearce
2006Smokin' AcesDonald Carruthers
2007Wild HogsJack
2007In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege TaleGallian
2007Battle in SeattleMayor Jim Tobin
2007Bee MovieHimself (voice)
2008Hero WantedDet. Terry Subcott
2009Crossing OverCole Frankel
2009Observe and ReportDet. Harrison
2009Powder BlueJack Doheny
2009La LineaMark ShieldsAlso executive producer
2009Youth in RevoltLance Wescott
2010Crazy on the OutsideGray
2010Date NightJoe Miletto
2010SnowmenReggie Kirkfield
2010Chasing 3000Adult Mickey
2010Charlie St. CloudFlorio Ferrente
2011The DetailsPeter Mazzoni
2011Son of No One, TheThe Son of No OneCaptain Marion Mathers
2011All Things Fall ApartDr. Brintall
2011Street Kings: Motor CityMarty KingstonDirect-to-video
2011River Murders, TheThe River MurdersJack Verdon
2011Field of Dreams 2: LockoutRoger GoodellShort film
2011Ticket OutJim
2011Entitled, TheThe EntitledRichard Nader
2012Killing Them SoftlyMarkie Trattman
2012BreathlessSheriff Cooley
2012The IcemanRoy DeMeo
2012Place Beyond the Pines, TheThe Place Beyond the PinesDeluca
2012Bad KarmaMolloy
2012Dear DraculaCount Dracula (voice)Direct-to-video
2013Devil's in the Details, TheThe Devil's in the DetailsDr. Robert Michaels
2013PawnMan in the Suit
2013SuddenlyTodd Shaw
2014Better Living Through ChemistryJack Roberts
2014Muppets Most WantedBig Papa
2014The IdenticalReece WadeCompleted
2014Revenge of the Green DragonsMichael BloomPost-production
2014Kill the MessengerPost-production
2014Flock of DudesUncle ReedPost-production
2014Sin City: A Dame to Kill ForJoeyPost-production


1980Hardhat and LegsFamilyTV movie
1980–1981Another WorldJoey Perrini #28 episodes
1981Crazy TimesJohnny "Wizard" LazarraTV movie
1983St. ElsewhereMurrayEpisode: "Rain"
1983CasablancaSacha5 episodes
1984Mike HammerTony CableEpisode: "Kill Devil"
1985Our Family HonorOfficer Ed Santini10 episodes
1990Women and Men: Stories of SeductionJerry DamonTV movie
1991Women & Men 2: In Love There Are No RulesMartin MeadowsTV movie
1995FrasierBob (voice)Episode: "Frasier Grinch"
1998Rat Pack, TheThe Rat PackFrank SinatraTV movie
Nominated: Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Miniseries or Television Movie
2001Family GuyZack (voice)Episode: "Brian Does Hollywood"
2001–2002Just Shoot Me!Himself2 episodes
2002Point of OriginJohn Leonard Orr / Aaron StilesTV movie
2004ERCharlie MetcalfEpisode: "Time of Death"
Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor – Drama Series
Prism Award for Best Performance in a Drama Series Episode
2006–2007SmithBobby Stevens7 episodes
2008SpongeBob SquarePantsTrevor (voice)Episode: "What Ever Happened to SpongeBob?"
2010Hannah Montana ForeverPrincipal LugerEpisode: "Hannah Montana to the Principal's Office"
2011The LeagueRuxin's BossEpisode: "Yobogoya!"
2012Phineas and FerbHimself (voice)Episode: "What A Croc!"
2012NTSF:SD:SUV::JasonEpisode: "Wasilla Hills Cop"
2012Abominable ChristmasAbominable Dad (voice)TV movie
2014The MoneyGeorge ArcherPilot



Video games[edit]

2002Grand Theft Auto: Vice CityTommy Vercetti (voice)G-Phoria Award for Best Male Voice Performance
Spike Video Game Awards for Best Performance by a Human
2013Call of Duty: Black Ops IIBilly Handsome (voice)Mob of the Dead DLC


  1. ^ "Ray Liotta Biography (1955?-)". Filmreference.com. Retrieved July 7, 2009. 
  2. ^ "Ray Liotta". Movies.yahoo.com. Retrieved July 7, 2009. 
  3. ^ Finke, Nikki (September 16, 1990). "Not Your Typical Wise Guy : Why Ray Liotta had a tough time getting a deal he didn't want to refuse--a leading role in Martin Scorsese's Mafia movie, 'GoodFellas'". Los Angeles Times. 
  4. ^ Joan Tarshis and Richard Mclaren. "SMOKE 09/01 – Ray Liotta is praised as one of the best actors of all times. – One-on-one with Ray Liotta". Smokemag.com. Retrieved July 7, 2009. 
  5. ^ "Ray Liotta Is Glad He Met His Biological Mother – Starpulse Entertainment News Blog "he discovered he isn't Italian and that he has a half-brother."". Starpulse.com. October 6, 2006. Retrieved July 7, 2009. 
  6. ^ Keier, Helen (March 1, 2001). "IGN: Interview with Ray Liotta "I myself am adopted, so I'm not Italian"". IGN. Retrieved ) July 7, 2009. 
  7. ^ "HFPA – Awards Search". 1.hfpa.org. Retrieved July 7, 2009. 
  8. ^ A.O. Scott (29 November 2012). "One Bad Turn Deserves Another". The New York Times. Retrieved 9 June 2013. 
  9. ^ Alex Godfrey (6 June 2013). "Ray Liotta: 'I like Brad. I admire his whole career'". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 9 June 2013. 
  10. ^ "The Iceman". The Guardian (London). 2013. Retrieved 9 June 2013. 

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