Stephen Lang

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Stephen Lang
Stephen Lang 2014.jpg
Lang in 2014
Born(1952-07-11) July 11, 1952 (age 62)
New York City, New York, U.S.
Alma materSwarthmore College
Years active1984–present
Spouse(s)Kristina Watson
(1980–present; 4 children)
ParentsEugene Lang
Theresa Volmer
  (Redirected from Stephen Lang (actor))
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For other people named Stephen Lang, see Stephen Lang (disambiguation).
Stephen Lang
Stephen Lang 2014.jpg
Lang in 2014
Born(1952-07-11) July 11, 1952 (age 62)
New York City, New York, U.S.
Alma materSwarthmore College
Years active1984–present
Spouse(s)Kristina Watson
(1980–present; 4 children)
ParentsEugene Lang
Theresa Volmer

Stephen Lang (born July 11, 1952) is a Tony Award-nominated American actor and playwright. He started in Broadway theatre but is more widely known for his film roles in Gods and Generals (2003) and Avatar (2009).

From 2004 to 2006, Lang was a co-artistic director of Actors Studio.

Personal life[edit]

Lang was born in New York City, the youngest child of Theresa (née Volmer, dec. 2008) and Eugene Lang, a prominent entrepreneur and philanthropist.[1] He has two elder siblings - Jane, an attorney and activist, and David, who served as an executive at REFAC, the company Eugene founded in 1952.[2] Lang's father has donated much of his net worth (in excess of $150 million) to charity and will not leave an inheritance to his children, believing they each needed to learn to become self-sufficient.[3] Lang's mother was of Irish Catholic descent, and his father is Jewish (Lang's paternal grandparents were immigrants from Hungary).[2][4]

Lang attended school in Jamaica Estates, Queens.[5][6] For high school he attended George School, a Quaker boarding school in Newtown, PA. He graduated from Swarthmore College in 1973 with a degree in English Literature; on May 30, 2010, Swarthmore awarded him an Honorary Degree from College in recognition of his distinguished career in theatre, television, and film.[7] His youngest son, Noah, received his bachelor's degree during the same ceremony.[7] He also holds an Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from Jacksonville University and was an artist in residence at Northeastern University in 2011.[8]

Lang has been married to Kristina Watson, a costume designer and teacher, since June 1, 1980. They have four children.[1][2]


Lang played Harold (Happy) Loman in the 1984 Broadway revival of Death of a Salesman and the 1985 television film with Dustin Hoffman as Willy Loman, and appeared in the first Hannibal Lecter film Manhunter (1986), as reporter Freddy Lounds.[9] He played attorney David Abrams in the television series Crime Story (1986–88). He played the title role in the NBC movie Babe Ruth (1991). He later played the "One Armed Man" in the 2000 revival of The Fugitive starring Tim Daly. The series was a modest success but lasted only one season because of its large production budget.

In 1992, he was nominated for a Tony Award for his lead role in The Speed of Darkness. His film role in Last Exit to Brooklyn (1989) garnered him widespread critical acclaim, but its limited release prevented the film from reaching a wider audience. On stage, he was the first to play the role of Colonel Nathan Jessup in A Few Good Men, a role made famous on film (1992) by Jack Nicholson. He is the winner of over half a dozen theatre awards including the Drama Desk and Helen Hayes awards.

In films, he played Maj. Gen. George E. Pickett in Gettysburg (1993) and as the lead role of Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson in the Gettysburg prequel Gods and Generals (2003), both from director Ronald F. Maxwell. He considers Gods and Generals to be his finest performance. Arguably, his most famous film role, before Avatar, was his portrayal of the villainous Ike Clanton in the successful Western Tombstone (1993) with Kurt Russell and Val Kilmer.

Lang with Senator Daniel Inouye
Lang (left) with Senator Daniel Inouye in 2005

Shortly before Arthur Miller's death in February 2005, Lang appeared in his long-time friend's last play, titled Finishing the Picture. It premiered in 2004 at Chicago's Goodman Theatre, where Lang had the second run of his own play Beyond Glory, which had premiered in Arlington, Virginia, early in 2004, and his Tony-nominated portrayal for The Speed of Darkness. Lang also performed Beyond Glory, a one-man show, for troops deployed overseas.[10] In 2006, he played the role of Colonel Littlefield in John Patrick Shanley's play Defiance. He brought Beyond Glory to Roundabout's Off-Broadway Laura Pels Theatre in 2007.[11] Since its New York City premiere, Beyond Glory has been nominated for a Drama Desk Award and a Lucille Lortel Award both for outstanding solo performance.[12][13]

Lang has a role in the ESPN mini-series The Bronx is Burning, as well as roles in independent features Save Me and From Mexico With Love. He plays a lead role in James Cameron's sci-fi epic Avatar as the villainous Colonel Quaritch.[14]

In 2009, he appeared in Michael Mann's film Public Enemies as Texas Ranger Charles Winstead,[15] the man widely considered to have fired the shots that killed John Dillinger[16][17] and in Grant Heslov's The Men Who Stare at Goats alongside Jeff Bridges, Kevin Spacey, Ewan McGregor and George Clooney.[18]

Also in 2009, he narrated the audiobook Road Rage—which combines the short stories "Duel" by Richard Matheson and "Throttle" by Stephen King and Joe Hill—and guest-starred in the Law & Order: Criminal Intent Season 8 finale, "Revolution" in the role of Axel Kaspers. In 2010 he performed the narration for "The Gettysburg Story: Battlefield Auto Tour,"[19] the top-selling audio tour of the Gettysburg Battlefield at Gettysburg National Military Park in Gettysburg, PA. Written and produced by filmmaker Jake Boritt and based on works by historian Gabor Boritt it tells the story of the Battle of Gettysburg and Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address in Gettysburg National Cemetery. Lang is also the narrator of the companion Public Television documentary The Gettysburg Story presented by Maryland Public Television.

Lang played the villain Khalar Zym in the 2011 Conan the Barbarian reboot starring Jason Momoa.[20] He also played one of the leads, Nathaniel Taylor, in the Steven Spielberg-produced[21] TV series Terra Nova.[22]

In February 2012, he signed on to play Mary Shannon's estranged father in a three episode arc on the final season of the USA television series In Plain Sight.[23]

Lang starred in the 2013 horror film The Monkey's Paw.

Lang has been confirmed as reprising his role as Colonel Miles Quaritch in the upcoming sequels to Avatar.[24]

He plays Increase Mather, in a recurring role, on WGN America's first original scripted series, Salem.[25]



1985Death of a SalesmanHappy
1985Twice in a LifetimeKeith
1986Band of the HandJoe
1986ManhunterFreddy Lounds
1987Project XWatts
1989Last Exit to BrooklynHarry Black
1991Hard Way, TheThe Hard WayParty Crasher
1991Another YouDibbs
1992Human CargoAramco Contractor
1993Guilty as SinPhil Garson
1993GettysburgMaj. Gen. George E. Pickett
1993The Making Of GettysburgHimself/Maj. Gen. George E. PickettVideo Documentary
1993TombstoneIke Clanton
1994BaseballHimselfDocumentary Mini series by Ken Burns
1995Tall TaleJonas Hackett
1995Amazing Panda Adventure, TheThe Amazing Panda AdventureMichael Tyler
1996Loose WomenProphet Buddy
1996The WestHimselfDocumentary Mini series by Ken Burns
1996Gang in BlueMoose Tavola
1996Occasional Hell, AnAn Occasional HellAlex Laughton
1997Shadow ConspiracyThe Agent
1997Niagara, NiagaraClaude
1997Fire Down BelowEarl Kellogg
1998Escape: Human CargoDennis McNattTV movie produced by Showtime.
1999Story of a Bad BoySpygo
2000TrixieJacob Slotnick
2001Proposal, TheThe ProposalSimon Bacig
2002The Making of TombstoneHimself/Ike Clanton
2003I Inside, TheThe I InsideMr. Travitt
2003Code 11-14Justin Shaw
2003Gods and GeneralsGen. Thomas "Stonewall" JacksonWinner – MovieGuide Awards Grace Award for Acting
2003Gods and Generals: Journey to the PastHimself/Gen. Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson
2006Treatment, TheThe TreatmentCoach Galgano
2007Save MeTed
2008From Mexico with LoveBig Al Stevens
2008Medal of HonorNarratorPBS documentary
2009Public EnemiesCharles Winstead
2009Men Who Stare at Goats, TheThe Men Who Stare at GoatsGeneral Hopgood
2009AvatarCol. Miles QuaritchSaturn Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Teen Choice Award Choice Movie Villain
Nominated—Teen Choice Award Choice Movie Fight (shared with Sam Worthington)
Nominated—MTV Movie Award for Best Villain
Nominated—MTV Movie Award for Best Fight (shared with Sam Worthington)
2010ChristinaInspector Edgar Reinhardt
2010False Creek StoriesNarrator
2010White Irish DrinkersPatrick
2011Conan the BarbarianKhalar Zym
2011Someday This Pain Will Be Useful to YouBarry Rogers
2013Officer DownLieutenant Jake LaRussa
2013The Gettysburg StoryHimself/NarratorDocumentary
2013BackmaskFather Conway
2013The Monkey's PawTony Cobb
2014The Nut JobKing
2014In the BloodCasey
2014Jarhead 2: Field of FireMajor James Gavins
2014A Good Marriage
2015Beyond Glory: Tour Of DutyHimselfDocumentary
2016Avatar 2Col. Miles Quaritch(pre-production)


1986–1988Crime StoryAttorney David Abrams26 episodes
1995The Fresh Prince of Bel-AirCriminal Gun ShooterEpisode: "Bullets Over Bel-Air"
1997The Outer LimitsDr. James HoughtonEpisode: "New Lease"
1997Liberty! The American RevolutionGeorge Washington6 episodes
2000–2001The FugitiveBen Charnquist5 episodes
2002EdJack FosterEpisode: "Wheel of Justice"
2003Law & Order: Special Victims UnitMichael BaxterEpisode: "Escape"
2005Johnny ZeroOfficer TannerEpisode: "To Serve and to Protect"
2005Law & OrderTerry DornEpisode: "New York Minute"
2007The Bronx Is BurningInspector Dowd3 episodes
2009Law & Order: Criminal IntentAxel KaspersEpisode: "Revolution"
2009PsychMr. SalamatchlaEpisode: "Shawn Gets the Yips"
2011Terra NovaCommander Nathaniel Taylor13 episodes
2012In Plain SightJames Wiley Shannon3 episodes
2014SalemIncrease Mather7 episodes
2015To AppomattoxJohn Brownepisode: The Point (pre-production)

Video games[edit]

2013Call of Duty: GhostsElias Walker[26]


  1. ^ a b "Stephen Lang Biography (1952-)". Retrieved 2010-05-30. 
  2. ^ a b c Stark, John (1990-05-28). "Forgoing His Father's Millions, Stephen Lang Bootstraps to Acting Fame with the Help of a Few Good Men. Vol. 33. № 21.". Retrieved 2010-05-30. 
  3. ^ Breitman, Rachel; Jones, Del (2006-07-26). "Heirs not-so-apparent?". USA Today. 
  4. ^ Panarello, Joseph. "The Multiple Personalities of Stephen Lang". Retrieved 2009-08-12. 
  5. ^ "Stephen Lang Biography - Yahoo! Movies". 1952-07-11. Archived from the original on 13 October 2007. Retrieved 2010-05-30. 
  6. ^ Klein, Alvin (1998-04-19). "Stephen Lang, 'An Actor's Actor'". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-04-03. [not in citation given]
  7. ^ a b Attendee of the ceremony for his son Sergio's graduation, Ricardo V Rivas, EA, president of the Texas Society of Enrolled Agents and
  8. ^ Stephen Lang
  9. ^ "STEPHEN LANG - Bing Afbeeldingen". Retrieved 2010-05-30. 
  10. ^ "In Step With: Stephen Lang". Parade Magazine. June 5, 2005. [dead link]
  11. ^ Daniel Henninger (2007-08-09). "Wonder Land -". Retrieved 2010-05-30. 
  12. ^ Dziemianowicz, Joe (2008-04-28). "Drama Desk nominees announced". New York: Retrieved 2010-05-30. 
  13. ^ Lucille Lortel Awards, Lucille Lortel Foundation, Off-Broadway database. "Lucille Lortel Awards, Off-Broadway Awards". Retrieved 2010-05-30. [dead link]
  14. ^ Thompson, Anne (2007-08-02). "Lang, Rodriguez armed for 'Avatar'". Variety. 
  15. ^ By (2008-04-02). "Crudup to play Hoover in 'Public' - Entertainment News, Film News, Media". Variety. Retrieved 2010-05-30. 
  16. ^ Biffle, Kent (6 August 2005). "Who drilled Dillinger? Credit goes to Texan". The Dallas Morning News. Retrieved 15 July 2009. [dead link]
  17. ^ John Dillinger: The Life and Death ... - Google Books. 1933-05-22. Retrieved 2010-05-30. 
  18. ^ Kit, Borys (2008-10-10). "Rebecca Mader joins 'Goats' herd". Retrieved 2010-05-30. [dead link]
  19. ^ Home | The Gettysburg Story
  20. ^ Frappier, Rob. "Stephen Lang Talks ‘Conan’ Remake" Screen Rant; June 29, 2010
  21. ^ Sweney, Mark. "Fox unveils Steven Spielberg's Terra Nova as it hunts for new Simon Cowell" The Guardian; May 18, 2010
  22. ^ Rice, Lynette. "Stephen Lang joins Fox's 'Terra Nova'" Entertainment Weekly; September 14, 2010
  23. ^
  24. ^ James Cameron Books Stephen Lang For Next 3 Avatar Films
  25. ^ Stephen Lang Joins WGN America's 'Salem' -
  26. ^ Brandon J. Routh and Stephen Lang confirmed as one of voice actors for Ghosts – Charlie INTEL: Call of Duty Advanced Warfare - Ghosts - Black Ops 2

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Estelle Parsons
Vacant (2003-2004)
Artistic Director of the Actors Studio
With: Carlin Glynn
and Lee Grant
Succeeded by
Carlin Glynn
Lee Grant