Scott Wilson (actor)

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Scott Wilson
Scott Wilson Oct 2013.jpg
Wilson in October 2013.
Born(1942-03-29) March 29, 1942 (age 72)
Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.
Years active1967–present
Spouse(s)Heavenly Wilson (1977–present)
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Scott Wilson
Scott Wilson Oct 2013.jpg
Wilson in October 2013.
Born(1942-03-29) March 29, 1942 (age 72)
Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.
Years active1967–present
Spouse(s)Heavenly Wilson (1977–present)

Scott Wilson (born March 29, 1942) is an American film and television actor. Wilson has more than 50 film credits from the 1960s to the 2010s, including In the Heat of the Night, In Cold Blood, The Great Gatsby, Dead Man Walking, Pearl Harbor, and Junebug.[1] In 1980, Wilson received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture for his role in The Ninth Configuration.[2][3] Wilson was mostly known for acting as a main cast member on the AMC television seriesThe Walking Dead, played from 2011 to 2014[4] in which he played veterinarian and Greene family patriarch Hershel Greene. Wilson is well-known especially for his recurring role on CSI: Crime Scene Investigation as casino mogul Sam Braun, the father of investigator Catherine Willows.


Wilson made his screen debut portraying characters suspected of murder in his first three films. In his debut film, Wilson played a murder suspect in 1967's In the Heat of the Night, which starred Sidney Poitier, Rod Steiger and Warren Oates.[2] His follow-up role, in the same year, was In Cold Blood, based on the book of the same name by Truman Capote.[3] Wilson portrays real-life murderer Richard Hickock, while Robert Blake played his partner, Perry Smith.[3] Director Richard Brooks cast Wilson and Blake in the starring roles specifically because they were unknown at the time.[3] The director passed over better-known actors, including Steve McQueen and Paul Newman, for the parts.[3] Wilson later explained Brooks' casting motivations: "Brooks hired two 'unknowns' and he wanted to keep it that way. We were treated like two killers he had somehow run across."[3] Wilson appeared in Sparta on March 15th, 2014 to celebrate the city's 175th anniversary in reference to his debut appearance in the film.

The film earned Wilson an appearance on the cover of Life Magazine, published on May 12, 1967.[3] Wilson was just 24 years old at the time.[3] The cover features Truman Capote standing between Wilson and Blake on an empty highway in Kansas.[3] The caption, Nightmare Revisited, appears with them on the cover.[3] Wilson appeared in The Great Gatsby in 1974 opposite Robert Redford.[2] He received a 1980 Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in The Ninth Configuration by director and friend William Peter Blatty.[2][3] He lost the Golden Globe to Timothy Hutton. In 1995 Wilson got attention for his role as a prison chaplain in Dead Man Walking, starring Susan Sarandon and Sean Penn, based on the book of the same name by Sister Helen Prejean.[2][3]

Wilson's long filmography also includes The Gypsy Moths, The Right Stuff, A Year of the Quiet Sun, Malone, The Grass Harp, Junebug, The Host, Monster, Young Guns II, Pearl Harbor, Big Stan, Judge Dredd, the Shiloh film series and Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon. Wilson has filmed on location in South Korea, Japan and Spain.[2] Wilson had a recurring role in several episodes of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation as Sam Braun, father of crime-scene investigator Catherine Willows (portrayed by Marg Helgenberger).[5] Braun was killed off in the episode "Built to Kill, Part 2". In the fall of 2011 he also made an appearance opposite Laura Dern in the HBO series, Enlightened.

Wilson was cast as veterinarian, Hershel Greene in the second season of The Walking Dead in June 2011.[4] The role has earned him positive reviews, including a "cheer" from TV Guide, which wrote that he had contributed "subtle shades of humanity to the character of Hershel Greene."[5] Wilson was offered the opportunity to join the show while visiting his 97-year-old mother in Georgia.[2] He has described his mother as "a fan of the show."[2] Wilson left the show in December 2013 after his character was killed off in the Season 4 mid-season finale Too Far Gone. However, he has made two appearances since his character's death.

Wilson reflected on his career in a 2011 interview with Access Atlanta's Rodney Ho: "It's been up and down. It's always been. You have dry spells. At different times, you are starting over. If you love it, you stay with it. That's what I'm doing. I've accomplished more than I would have hoped to have accomplished. I don't want to be a big movie star. I can be someone who walks the streets and not get mobbed. I want to be as fine an actor as I can be. I am still striving to be as good as I can be."[2] Wilson was filming scenes for The Walking Dead in Senoia, Georgia, at the time the interview took place.[2]



1967In the Heat of the NightHarvey Oberst
1967In Cold BloodRichard Hickock
1969Castle KeepCorporal Clearboy
1969The Gypsy MothsMalcolm Webson
1971The Grissom GangSlim Grissom
1972The New CenturionsGus
1973Lolly-Madonna XXXThrush
1974The Great GatsbyGeorge Wilson
1976The Passover PlotJudah
1979La IlegalPolice Officer
1980The Ninth ConfigurationCaptain Billy CutshawNominated - Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture
1983The Right StuffScott Crossfield
1984A Year of the Quiet SunNorman
1985The AviatorJerry Stiller
1986Blue CityPercy Kerch
1987MalonePaul Barlow
1988JesseSam MaloneyTelevision film
1988TrackerJohn 'Red Jack' StillwellTelevision film
1989Johnny HandsomeMikey Chalmette
1990The Exorcist IIIDr. Temple
1990Young Guns IIGovernor Lew Wallace
1990La Cruz de IberiaJohnson
1991Femme FataleDr. Beaumont
1991Pure LuckFrank Grimes
1993Geronimo: An American LegendRedondo
1993Flesh and BoneElliot
1993Elvis and the Colonel: The Untold StoryVernon PresleyTelevision film
1995Tall TaleZeb
1995Judge DreddPa AngelUncredited
1995Soul SurvivorsBradley FacemeyerTelevision film
1995Dead Man WalkingChaplain Farley
1995The Grass HarpEugene Fenwick
1995MotherDr. ChaseDirect-to-video
1996ShilohJudd Travers
1997G.I. JaneCaptain Salem
1997Our God's BrotherAlbert Chmielowski
1998Clay PigeonsSheriff Dan Mooney
1998Puraido: Unmei no TokiJoseph B. Keenan
1999Shiloh 2: Shiloh SeasonJudd Travers
1999The Debtors
1999The Jack BullGovernorTelevision film
2000South of Heaven, West of HellClete Monroe
2000The Way of the GunHale Chidduck
2001The AnimalMayor
2001Pearl HarborGeneral George Marshall
2002CoastlinesPa Mann
2002Don't Let GoHershel Ray Stevens
2003MonsterHorton/Last "John"
2003The Last SamuraiAmbassador Swanbeck
2005JunebugEugene Johnsten
2006Come Early MorningLowell Fowler
2006Open WindowEddie
2006Saving ShilohJudd Travers
2006The HostUS Doctor in Morgue
2006Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie VernonEugene
2006The Sensation of SightTucker
2007The Heartbreak KidBoo
2007Big StanWarden Gasque
2009Saving Grace B. JonesReverend Potter
2009For Sale by OwnerDr. Banks
2010Radio Free AlbemuthPresident Fremont
2011DorfmanWinston Cooke Sr.
2011FiveOld BillTelevision film


1986The Twilight ZoneMatthew ForemanEpisode: "Quarantine"
2000The X-FilesRev. OrisonEpisode: "Orison"
2001–2006CSI: Crime Scene InvestigationSam Braun9 Episodes
2003Karen SiscoHomerEpisode: "Dumb Bunnies"
2005Law & OrderBen ChaneyEpisode: "Sport of Kings"
2011JustifiedFrank ReasonerEpisode: "Blaze of Glory"
2011EnlightenedMarvEpisode: "Someone Else's Life"
2011–2014The Walking DeadHershel GreeneSeason 2 (Recurring; 11 episodes)
Seasons 3-4 (Series Regular; 21 episodes)
2014BoschDr. GuyotEpisode: "Pilot"

Other awards and nominations[edit]

1968Laurel Award for Male New FaceNominated
1998Florida Film Festival Special Achievement AwardWon
2007Ralph Morgan AwardWon


External links[edit]