kids encyclopedia robot

Sam Anderson facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Quick facts for kids
Sam Anderson
Sam Anderson cropped2.jpg
Anderson in 2006
Born (1947-04-02) April 2, 1947 (age 77)
Alma mater University of North Dakota, Antelope Valley College
Occupation Actor
Years active 1969–present

Sam Anderson (born April 2, 1947) is an American actor. He is best known for his character roles such as Sam Gorpley on Perfect Strangers Principal Willis DeWitt on Growing Pains, Holland Manners on Angel, dentist Bernard Nadler on Lost, Doctor Harad in Friends, and in film, as the principal in Forrest Gump.

Early life

Anderson was born in Wahpeton, North Dakota. He received a Master of Arts degree in American literature and creative writing at the University of North Dakota and the University of Wisconsin. During the 1970s, he taught drama at Antelope Valley College in Lancaster, California.


Anderson is best known for his roles as mailroom supervisor Mr. Gorpley on Perfect Strangers, the lawyer Holland Manners on the first two seasons of Angel and as Bernard on Lost. He notably played the school principal in Forrest Gump. He is also known as the assistant manager of the Hotel Royale in Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "The Royale", and as Mike Seaver's adversarial Principal DeWitt on Growing Pains. In addition, he was one of the recurring actors on various episodes of WKRP in Cincinnati, playing various roles, including an immigration officer in the episode "The Americanization of Ivan". Anderson has guest-starred in Season 8 of NCIS as Walter Carmichael, a middle school teacher whose classroom becomes a crime scene where one of his students is kidnapped.



Year Title Role Notes
1979 The Swap Paul
1982 Airplane II: The Sequel Man in white
1982 The Tragedy of King Lear Duke of Albany
1985 Movers & Shakers Ray Berg
1987 La Bamba Mr. Ludwig
1988 Critters 2: The Main Course Mr. Morgan
1990 Dark Angel Warren
1992 Memoirs of an Invisible Man Chairman of the House Committee
1994 Forrest Gump Principal
1994 The Puppet Masters Culbertson
1997 After the Game Jimmy Walsh
1998 Permanent Midnight Dr. Olsen
1999 Sonic Impact Alex Holmes
2000 The Independent Ed
2000 The Distance John Harrison
2002 Slackers Charles Patton
2003 The Commission Dr. Robert Roeder Shaw
2004 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover George
2005 Touched Dr. Reynolds
2006 Dirty Habit Bishop
2011 Water for Elephants Mr. Hyde
2012 3, 2, 1... Frankie Go Boom Dad (Chris)
2012 Breaking the Girls Professor Nolan
2014 Devil's Due Father Thomas
2016 Do You Take This Man Steven
2016 Ouija: Origin of Evil Mr. Browning
2017 Maybe Someday Douglas Donnelly
2018 Song of Back and Neck Jarred Foxen
2021 Echoes of Violence Conroy
2022 Where the Crawdads Sing Tate Walker


Year Title Role Notes
1978 Police Story Jaques Episode: "The Broken Badge"
1979–1981 WKRP in Cincinnati Various roles 4 episodes
1980 The Stockard Channing Show Arnold Episode: "Catch a Falling Star"
1983 St. Elsewhere Mr. McGrath Episode: "Dog Day Hospital"
1983 Gloria Mr. Copley Episode: "An Uncredited Woman"
1983 Murder 1, Dancer 0 Paul Iberville Television film
1983 Remington Steele Store manager Episode: "Altared Steele"
1983 Policewoman Centerfold Druggist Television film
1984 Blue Thunder Benjamin Kelty Episode: "Arms Race"
1984 T. J. Hooker Leo Santee Episode: "Death Strip"
1984 Mama Malone Stanley, the announcer 11 episodes
1984 E/R Mr. Dobbs Episode: "All's Well That Ends"
1984 Hill Street Blues Kenny Sterling Episode: "Last Chance Salon"
1985 Hotel Lon Schaeffer Episode: "Fallen Idols"
1985 Magnum, P.I. Ray Jones / John Doe Episode: "Ms. Jones"
1985 Dallas Inspector Frank Howard 2 episodes
1985 Tales from the Darkside Dr. Synapsis Episode: "Bigalow's Last Smoke"
1985 Hunter Vinny Cochran Episode: "Case X"
1985 Newhart Larry's supporter Episode: "Candidate Larry"
1985 Simon & Simon Ellis Episode: "Down-Home Country Blues"
1985 Eye to Eye Walter Briggs Episode #1.6
1986 Hardcastle and McCormick Teddy Peters Episode: "McCormick's Bar and Grill"
1986 Valerie Customer Episode: "This Son for Hire"
1986 Rowdies George Modell Television film
1986 You Again? Judge Episode: "Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Traffic Lights"
1986 The Golden Girls Meyer Episode: "'Twas the Nightmare Before Christmas"
1986–1992 Growing Pains Principal Willis Dewitt 13 episodes
1986–1992 Perfect Strangers Mr. Sam Gorpley / Harrison Harper 37 episodes
1987 Cagney & Lacey Mike Episode: "Easy Does It"
1987 What's Happening Now!! Ingraham Episode: "Raj on the Double"
1987 The Charmings Dr. Peters Episode: "Pilot"
1987 Buck James Elias Turner Episode: "Sins of the Father"
1988 21 Jump Street Dan Finger Episode: "School's Out"
1989 Star Trek: The Next Generation Assistant manager Episode: "The Royale"
1989 Hooperman Dr. Lazlo Episode: "Dog Day Afternoon, Morning and Night"
1989 Alien Nation Thomas Edison Episode: "The Game"
1990, 1991 Uncle Buck Kroger 2 episodes
1991 Married People Beiderman Episode: "You Were Right and I Was..."
1991–1993 L.A. Law D.D.A. Bill Graphia 4 episodes
1992 The New WKRP in Cincinnati Floyd Castro Episode: "Mama Was a Rolling Stone"
1992 Jake and the Fatman Arnie Crane Episode: "Nightmare"
1992–1995 Picket Fences FBI Agent Donald Morrell 7 episodes
1993 A Place to Be Loved Judge Thomas S. Kirk Television film
1993 Danger Theatre Andre the Gourmet Episode: "An Old Friend for Dinner"
1993 Melrose Place Agent Hill 2 episodes
1993–1996 Murder, She Wrote Various roles 4 episodes
1994 In the Heat of the Night Drew Ward Episode: "Maybelle Returns"
1994 Confessions: Two Faces of Evil Father Dominic Television film
1994 The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr. Simon Wolfe Episode: "Brooklyn Dodgers"
1994 The Stand Whitney Horgan 3 episodes
1994 Thunder Alley Mr. Riley Episode: "Speak No Evil"
1994, 2000 Diagnosis: Murder Dr. Hjortsberg / Ernie Pitt 3 episodes
1994–2007 ER Dr. Jack Kayson 20 episodes
1995 Pointman Phil Lettamar Episode: "Trading Up in the Pale Moonlight"
1995 Live Shot Marvin Seaborne 13 episodes
1996 The Man Next Door Dwight Cooley Television film
1996 Nowhere Man The Man Episode: "Through a Lens Darkly"
1996 Norma Jean & Marilyn Doctor Television film
1996 The Cape Kevin Davis, Capcom Episode: "Pilot"
1996 Aaahh!!! Real Monsters Farrig / Kid #1 Episode: "Festival of the Festering Moon/Simon's Big Score"
1996 High Incident Gulliksen Episode: "Who'll Stop the Bombs?"
1996 Boston Common President Butterfield / Wesley Butterfield 7 episodes
1996 Millennium Agent Jack Pierson Episode: "5-2-2-6-6-6"
1997 The Jeff Foxworthy Show Mr. Hertford Episode: "Can't Teach an Old Dog New Tricks"
1997 The Sleepwalker Killing Roth Lane Television film
1997 The Visitor Army General Episode: "The Devil's Rainbow"
1997 Fame L.A. Larry Peters Episode: "Seize the Day"
1997 Rugrats Salesman / Announcer Episode: "Ransom of Cynthia/Turtle Recall"
1997 The Pretender Dr. Curtis Episode: "Over the Edge"
1998 The Pentagon Wars Congressman #2 Television film
1998 Chicago Hope Howard Sherwood Episode: "Liver, Hold the Mushrooms"
1998 From the Earth to the Moon Thomas O. Paine 2 episodes
1998 The X-Files Leamus Episode: "The Pine Bluff Variant"
1998 Prey Dr. Ian Copeland 2 episodes
1998 Friends Dr. Harad Episode: "The One Hundredth"
1998 Fantasy Island Mr. Gable Episode: "Wishboned"
1999 Ally McBeal Mark Harrison Episode: "In Dreams"
1999 NetForce Fox Television film
1999 Profiler Ken Harker Episode: "..."
2000 Two Guys and a Girl Dr. Harvey Episode: "Love Shack"
2000 The West Wing John LaSalle Episode: "Shibboleth"
2000–2001 Angel Holland Manners 8 episodes
2001 The Fighting Fitzgeralds Judge Flanagan Episode: "One Angry Man"
2001 JAG Consulate General Raymond Dart Episode: "Guilt"
2002 First Monday Kristen Bremerton's Attorney Episode: "Age of Consent"
2002 The Chronicle Dr. Emmanuel Fickas Episode: "I See Dead Fat People"
2002 Everybody Loves Raymond Special Agent Thomas Garfield Episode: "Lucky Suit"
2002 The Court White House Counsel Reinhart Episode: "Life Sentence"
2002 Family Law Carlisle Tucker Episode: "Admissions"
2002 Wolf Lake Arthur Van Halen Episode: "If These Wolves Could Talk"
2002 Pasadena Dr. Paul Darwell 3 episodes
2002 CSI: Miami Scott Sommer Episode: "Golden Parachute"
2002 Presidio Med Andy Sloan Episode: "Pick Your Battles"
2003 Judging Amy Gordon Kirby Episode: "The Best Interests of the Child"
2003 Without a Trace Congressman Whitehurst Episode: "Kam Li"
2003 Boomtown Scott Dawson 2 episodes
2003 Miracles Cinda's Father Episode: "Mother's Daughter"
2003 Secret Santa Mr. Gibson Television film
2003–2004 Married to the Kellys Bill Kelly 21 episodes
2004 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Dr. Mercer Episode: "Ch-Ch-Changes"
2005 Boston Legal Boston Legal Episode: "From Whence We Came"
2005 Malcolm in the Middle Police Commissioner Episode: "Billboard"
2005 Medium Dr. Eliot Peterson Episode: "Time Out of Mind"
2005–2010 Lost Bernard Nadler 21 episodes
2006 Cold Case Ted Robinson Episode: "Joseph"
2006 CSI: NY Dr. Richards Episode: "And Here's to You, Mrs. Azrael"
2007 K-Ville Mr. Dubois Episode: "Pilot"
2009 Leverage Henry Retzing Episode: "The Snow Job"
2009 Grey's Anatomy Michael Whitman Episode: "Before and After"
2009 Criminal Minds Dr. Rawlings Episode: "House on Fire"
2010 The Forgotten Train engineer Episode: "Train Jane"
2010 Memphis Beat Councilman Orland Episode: "Don't Be So Cruel"
2010 NCIS Walter Carmichael Episode: "Worst Nightmare"
2012 Hawaii Five-0 Owen Sutherland Episode: "Ka Ho' Oponopono"
2012 Work It Dr. Keith Sorenson Episode: "Shake Your Moneymaker"
2012 Harry's Law Judge William Rothman Episode: "Judge William Rothman"
2012 Men at Work James Wilson Episode: "Inventing Milo"
2012 NCIS: Los Angeles Senator Dick Osborne Episode: "Dead Body Politic"
2012 Scandal Melvin Feen Episode: "Spies Like Us"
2013 Dallas Dr. David Gordon 2 episodes
2013–2014 Justified Lee Paxton 9 episodes
2014 Castle Principal Dunnan Episode: "Smells Like Teen Spirit"
2014 Grimm Rolek Porter / Old Man 2 episodes
2014 Chasing Life Gerald Rayburn
2014 Bones Hugo Sanderson
2016 Damien Professor Igor Reneus Episode: "The Beast Rises"
2017 Doubt Judge Jonah Porter Episode: "Then and Now"
2017 This Is Us Judge Walter Crowder Episode: "The Most Disappointed Man"
2018 American Woman Raymond Turner Episode: "Changes and the New Normal"
2019 How to Get Away with Murder Thomas Fitzgerald Episode: "I'm the Murderer"
2023 Painkiller (TV series) Raymond Sackler 6 episodes

Awards and nominations

Ovation Awards

  • 2019: Nominated for Lead Actor in a Play for the role of Ichabod Banks in the Road Theatre Company production of The Bird and Mr. Banks

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Sam Anderson para niños

kids search engine
Sam Anderson Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.