Hal Holbrook

Hal Holbrook Photo


Date of Birth: February 17, 1925

Born in Cleveland, Ohio, Hal Holbrook's career began with a one-man play entitled Mark Twain Tonight! which he adapted himself from Mark Twain's writings. Holbrook premiered it in summer stock, then opened on Broadway with it in 1959, winning a Tony Award. While appearing onstage, he made his TV debut as a regular in the daytime CBS drama The Brighter Day. Her brought Mark Twain Tonight to TV in 1967, receiving his first Emmy nomination.

Holbrook won his first Emmy award in 1971, for his recurring role in the NBC drama series The Bold Ones: The Senator. In 1974, he received two more, as Actor of the Year and Best Lead Actor in a Drama for the TV movie Pueblo. He won a fourth Emmy as Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series for Lincoln in 1976. He received his fifth Emmy in 1989 for Outstanding Performance in Informational Programming for Portrait of America.

Over the years, Holbrook has racked up more than 100 television and film credits. On TV, he's played regular roles in Designing Women (opposite his real-life wife, Dixie Carter) and Evening Shade and made guest appearances on such diverse series as Family Law, The F.B.I., The Outer Limits, The West Wing, Hope & Faith and The Sopranos.

His feature films are too numerous to mention them all, but a small sampling includes Magnum Force (1973), All the President's Men (1976), The Fog (1980), Wall Street (1987), The Firm (1993), Waking the Dead (2000), The Majestic (2001) and Into the Wild (2007).

Besides Mark Twain, he has played a number of historical figures in mini-series, including John Adams in George Washington (1984) and Abraham Lincoln in North and South (1985) and North and South Book II (1986).

He returned to the stage in between screen projects, including The Apple Tree, King Lear, Man of La Mancha and I Never Sang For My Father.

In 2008, at the age of 82, he received the distinction of being the oldest actor to ever receive an Oscar nomination—for his performance in the feature film Into the Wild (2007). Now over 85 years old, Holbrook still manages to land roles in big titles. He can most recently be seen in 2011's big-screen adaptation of Water for Elephants, Steven Spielberg's 2012 biographical drama Lincoln and alongside Matt Damon in the 2013 drama Promised Land.

Married three times, Holbrook has been married to current wife Dixie Carter for over 20 years. He has three children from his first two marriages.


Promised Land (2013)
Lincoln (2012)
Water for Elephants (2011)
Good Day for It (2011)
Flying Lessons (2010)
That Evening Sun (2009)
Killshot (2008)
Into the Wild (2007)
Shade (2003)
Purpose (2002)
The Majestic (2001)
Men of Honor (2000)
Waking the Dead (2000)
The Bachelor (1999)
The Florentine (1999)
Rusty: A Dog's Tale (1998)
Judas Kiss (1998)
Walking to the Waterline (1998)
Hush (1998)
Eye of God (1997)
Hercules (1997) (voice)
Cats Don't Dance (1997)
Carried Away (1996)
The Firm (1993)
The Unholy (1988)
Wall Street (1987)
The Star Chamber (1983)
Girls Nite Out (1982)
Creepshow (1982)
The Kidnapping of the President (1980)
The Fog (1980)
Natural Enemies (1979)
Capricorn One (1977)
Julia (1977)
Rituals (1977)
Midway (1976)
All the President's Men (1976)
The Girl from Petrovka (1974)
Magnum Force (1973)
The Only Kill Their Masters (1972)
The Great White Hope (1970)
The People Next Door (1970)
The Group (1966)