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Stacy Keach
Keach in 2007
Walter Stacy Keach Jr.

(1941-06-02) June 2, 1941 (age 83)
  • Actor
  • narrator
Years active 1964–present
  • Kathryn Baker
    (m. 1964, divorced)
  • Marilyn Aiken
    (m. 1975; div. 1979)
  • Jill Donahue
    (m. 1981; div. 1986)
  • Małgosia Tomassi
    (m. 1986)
Children 2
  • Stacy Keach Sr. (father)
  • Mary Peckham (mother)
Relatives James Keach (brother)

Walter Stacy Keach Jr. (born June 2, 1941) is an American actor and narrator. He has played mainly dramatic roles throughout his career, often in law enforcement or as a private detective. His most prominent role was as Mickey Spillane's fictional detective Mike Hammer, which he played in numerous stand-alone television films and at least three television series throughout the 1980s and 1990s. The role earned him a Golden Globe Award nomination in 1984.

He has appeared as the lead in films such as Fat City and The Ninth Configuration. He has also performed as a narrator for programs including CNBC'S American Greed (2008–) and various educational television programs. Comedic roles include Ken, the father of comedian Christopher Titus in the FOX sitcom Titus (2000–2002), and as Sergeant Stedenko in Cheech & Chong's films Up in Smoke (1978) and Nice Dreams (1981). Keach won a Golden Globe Award and was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for the television miniseries Hemingway (1988). He is an inductee of the Theatre Hall of Fame and was honored with a star on The Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2019.

Early life

Keach was born in Savannah, Georgia, to Mary Cain (née Peckham), an actress, and Stacy Keach Sr., a theatre director, drama teacher, and actor with dozens of television and theatrical film credits billed as "Stacy Keach." His brother James is an actor and television director. Keach graduated from Van Nuys High School in June 1959, where he was class president, then earned two BA degrees at the University of California, Berkeley (1963): one in English, the other in Dramatic Art. He earned a Master of Fine Arts at the Yale School of Drama in 1966 and was a Fulbright Scholar at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art.

While studying in London, Keach met Laurence Olivier, his acting hero.



Stacy Keach 1969
Keach in 1969 (Central Park, New York City)

Keach played the title role in MacBird!, an Off-Broadway anti-war satire by Barbara Garson staged at the Village Gate in 1966. In 1967, Keach starred in We Bombed in New Haven, a play by Joseph Heller that premiered in New Haven at the Yale Repertory Theatre and later was produced on Broadway. Keach first appeared on Broadway in 1969 as Buffalo Bill in Indians by Arthur Kopit. Early in his career, he was credited as Stacy Keach Jr. to distinguish himself from his father. He played the lead actor in The Nude Paper Sermon, an avant-garde musical theatre piece for media presentation, commissioned by Nonesuch Records by composer Eric Salzman.

Keach has won numerous awards, including Obie Awards, Drama Desk Awards and Vernon Rice Awards. In the early 1980s, he starred in the title role of the national touring company of the musical Barnum, composed by Cy Coleman. In 1991 and 1996 he won Helen Hayes Awards for Outstanding Actor for his work in Richard III and Macbeth with the Shakespeare Theatre Company. In 1998, he was one of the three characters in a London West End production of 'Art' with David Dukes and George Wendt.

In 2006, Keach performed the lead role in Shakespeare's King Lear at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago. In 2008, he played Merlin in Lerner and Loewe's Camelot, done with the New York Philharmonic. In the summer of 2009, Shakespeare Theatre Company remounted the production of King Lear at Sidney Harman Hall in Washington, D.C., for which Keach won another Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding Actor.

He has played the title role in two separate productions of Hamlet.

In 2008 and 2009, Keach portrayed Richard M. Nixon in the U.S. touring company of the play Frost/Nixon.

On December 16, 2010, Keach began performances as patriarch Lyman Wyeth in the off-Broadway premiere of Jon Robin Baitz' acclaimed new play Other Desert Cities. The production transferred to Broadway's Booth Theatre, where it opened November 3, 2011.

Keach is a founding member of L.A. Theatre Works. He has performed leads in many productions with the company, including 'Willy Loman' in Death of a Salesman and 'John Proctor' in The Crucible.

He was scheduled to return to Broadway in December 2014 in the revival of Love Letters at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre alongside Diana Rigg, but the production closed before Keach and Rigg began their runs.

Keach was scheduled to play Ernest Hemingway in Jim McGrath's one-man play Pamplona at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago from May 30 to June 25, 2017. Keach appeared in previews of Pamplona, May 19 through May 28, and was well received by audiences. On opening night, he suffered a mild heart attack on stage and the next day, Keach had bypass surgery. On June 2, the Goodman Theatre announced that the entire run would be canceled after Keach's doctors advised a period of rest and recuperation.

Keach returned to the role at The Goodman one year later, July 10 through August 18, 2018. Keach said it would fulfill an obligation "to the play, to the city and to myself".


Keach is an accomplished pianist and composer. He sang backing vocals on the Judy Collins hit song "Amazing Grace". He is also credited with co-writing a song, "Easy Times", on the Judy Collins live album Living. He provided music for the film Imbued, directed by Rob Nilssen. He has also completed composing the music for the Mike Hammer audio radio series, "Encore For Murder", written by Max Collins, directed by Carl Amari, and produced by Blackstone Audio.


Keach played a rookie policeman in The New Centurions (1972), opposite George C. Scott. That year he also starred in Fat City, a boxing film directed by John Huston. He was the first choice for the role of Damien Karras in the 1973 movie The Exorcist, but he did not accept the role. He went on to play Kane in the 1980 movie The Ninth Configuration, written and directed by Exorcist author William Peter Blatty; this role was itself intended for Nicol Williamson.

Keach was narrator of the 1973 Formula One racing documentary Champions Forever, The Quick and the Dead by Claude du Boc. He played Cheech & Chong's police department nemesis Sgt. Stedenko in Up in Smoke and Nice Dreams. He also appeared as Barabbas in Jesus of Nazareth. Another one of his screen performances was as Frank James (elder brother of Jesse) in The Long Riders (1980). His brother James played Jesse James. Keach starred in the 1981 Australian thriller Roadgames alongside Jamie Lee Curtis. In 1982, Keach starred in Butterfly with Pia Zadora and Orson Welles. In the 1993 movie, Body Bags he played a man who is obsessed with hair.

He portrayed a white supremacist in American History X, alongside Edward Norton and Edward Furlong. In Oliver Stone's 2008 biographical film W., Keach portrays a Texas preacher whose spiritual guidance begins with George W. Bush's AA experience, but extends long thereafter.

Keach also starred in the TV film Ring of Death playing a prison warden who runs an underground fight club where prisoners compete for their lives. He had also starred in the movie Planes as Skipper Riley, main character Dusty Crophopper's flight instructor. He reprised the role in Planes: Fire & Rescue.

In 2012, Keach had a supporting role in The Bourne Legacy, and in the 2013 Alexander Payne film Nebraska. In the 2017 film Gotti, Keach played the part of Neil Dellacroce, the underboss of the Gambino crime family.


Stacy Keach and Tanya Roberts
Keach as Mike Hammer and Tanya Roberts as Velda in Murder Me, Murder You in 1983

Keach's first-ever experience as a series regular on a television program was playing the lead role of Lieutenant Ben Logan in Caribe in 1975. He played Barabbas in 1977's Jesus of Nazareth, and portrayed Jonas Steele, a psychic and Scout of the United States Army in the 1982 CBS miniseries, The Blue and the Gray. He later portrayed and is best known as Mike Hammer in the CBS television series Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer and The New Mike Hammer from 1984 to 1987. He returned to the role of Hammer in Mike Hammer, Private Eye, a new syndicated series that aired from 1997 to 1998. In 1988, he starred as Ernest Hemingway in the made-for-TV movie Hemingway. He also hosted segments for the Encore Mystery premium cable network in the late 1990s and 2000s.

In 2000, he played Ken Titus, the sarcastic, chain-smoking, five-times-divorced father of the title character in Fox's sitcom Titus. Cast members of Titus have commented they enjoyed working with Keach because he would find a way to make even the driest line funny.

Keach lent his voice to The Simpsons episodes "Hungry, Hungry Homer", "Old Yeller-Belly", "Marge and Homer Turn a Couple Play", and "Waiting for Duffman", portraying Duff Brewery President Howard K. Duff VIII, and the Batman Beyond episode "Lost Soul" as an artificial intelligence. He also guest starred in a 2005 episode of the sitcom Will & Grace, and had a recurring role as Warden Henry Pope in the Fox drama Prison Break.

In 2006, he acted in the mini-series Blackbeard, made for the Hallmark Channel. It was directed by Kevin Connor, and starred Angus Macfadyen, with Richard Chamberlain, David Winters, and Jessica Chastain. In 2011, Keach co-starred as "Pops", the father of the main character in the short lived boxing drama series Lights Out.

In November 2013, Keach appeared on the Fox comedy series Brooklyn Nine-Nine, in the episode "Old School". In February 2015, Keach started guest appearing in NCIS: New Orleans as Cassius Pride, father of NCIS Agent Dwayne Pride. He played the elderly father Bob on the 2016 sitcom Crowded. Beginning in 2016, Keach occasionally appears on CBS's drama Blue Bloods as Archbishop Kevin Kearns. In 2017, Keach started guest appearing in Man with a Plan as Joe Burns, father of Adam Burns (played by co-star Matt LeBlanc) and was later promoted to series regular status for season three.


Stacy Keach narrated several episodes of Nova, National Geographic, and various other informational series. From 1989 to 1992, he was host of the syndicated informational reenactment show, Missing Reward, which had a similar format to the popular Unsolved Mysteries at the time. From 1992 to 1995, he became the voice-over narrator for the paranormal series Haunted Lives: True Ghost Stories.

Beginning in 1999, he served as the narrator for the home video clip show World's Most Amazing Videos, which is now seen on Spike TV. He currently hosts The Twilight Zone radio series. Keach can also be heard narrating the CNBC series American Greed. For the PBS series American Experience, he narrated The Kennedys, among others.

In 2008, Keach once again reprised his famous role as Mike Hammer in a series of full-cast radio dramatisations for Blackstone Audio. (He also arranged and performed the music for the audio dramas. His wife, Malgosia Tomassi also starred in the dramas playing Maya Ricci, a yoga instructor.) Keach has also read many of Mickey Spillane's original Mike Hammer novels as Audiobooks.

Keach played the role of John in The Truth & Life Dramatized Audio Bible, a 22-hour audio version of the RSV-CE translation of the New Testament. He also voiced both Job and Paul the Apostle in The Word of Promise, a 2007 dramatic audio presentation based on the New King James Version.

On January 6, 2014, Keach became the official voice of The Opie and Anthony Channel on SiriusXM Satellite Radio (Sirius Channel 206, XM Channel 103). Keach is the voice of CNBC's American Greed, now on their thirteenth season.

Personal life

Celebrity Star Stacy Keach Orpheum Theater Memphis TN
Keach's star at the Orpheum Theatre, 2010

Keach was born with a cleft lip and a partial cleft of the hard palate, and he underwent numerous operations as a child. Throughout his adult life he has usually worn a mustache to hide the scars. He is now the honorary chairman of the Cleft Palate Foundation and advocates for insurance coverage for surgeries.

Keach stated that his time in prison, which he described as the lowest point of his life, and the friendship he formed with a priest during that time led to his conversion to Roman Catholicism. Subsequently, he and his wife met Pope John Paul II. His wife, Małgosia Tomassi, had attended the same school in Warsaw as the pope.

Keach has been married four times: to Kathryn Baker in 1964, to Marilyn Aiken in 1975, to Jill Donahue in 1981, and to Małgosia Tomassi in 1986. He has two children with Małgosia: son Shannon Keach and daughter Karolina Keach. In 2015, Keach became a Polish citizen.


In 2015, Keach was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame. In 2019, he received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.



Title Year Role Notes
Heart Is a Lonely Hunter, TheThe Heart Is a Lonely Hunter 1968 Blount
Brewster McCloud 1970 Abraham Wright
End of the Road Jacob Horner
Traveling Executioner, TheThe Traveling Executioner Jonas Candide
Doc 1971 'Doc' Holliday
New Centurions, TheThe New Centurions 1972 Roy Fehler
Fat City Billy Tully
Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean, TheThe Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean Original Bad Bob The Albino
Wilbur and Orville: The First to Fly 1973 Wilbur Wright
Luther Martin Luther
The Gravy Train 1974 Calvin
Watched! Mike Mandell / 'Sonny'
Conduct Unbecoming 1975 Captain Harper
Street People 1976 Charlie Hanson
Killer Inside Me, TheThe Killer Inside Me Lou Ford
Squeeze, TheThe Squeeze 1977 Jim Naboth
Greatest Battle, TheThe Greatest Battle 1978 Major Mannfred Roland
Gray Lady Down Captain Bennett
Up in Smoke Sergeant Stedenko
Two Solitudes Huntley McQueen
Ninth Configuration, TheThe Ninth Configuration 1980 Colonel Vincent Kane
Long Riders, TheThe Long Riders Frank James
Roadgames 1981 Patrick Quid
Nice Dreams Sergeant Stedenko
Butterfly 1982 Jess Tyler
That Championship Season James Daley
False Identity 1990 Ben Driscoll / Harlan Errickson
Class of 1999 Dr. Bob Forest
Milena 1991 Jesenski
Sunset Grill 1993 Harrison Shelgrove
Batman: Mask of the Phantasm Carl Beaumont / Voice of Phantasm Voice
New Crime City 1994 Wynorski
Raw Justice Deputy Mayor Bob Jenkins
Escape From L.A. 1996 Commander Mac Malloy
Prey of the Jaguar Commander
The Sea Wolf 1997 Captain Wolf
American History X 1998 Cameron Alexander
Future Fear General Wallace
Fear Runs Silent 1999 Mr. Hill
Children of the Corn 666: Isaac's Return Dr. Michaels
Unshackled 2000 Warden Kelso
Icebreaker Bill Foster
Militia George Armstrong Montgomery
Mercy Streets Tom
Sunstorm 2001 General John Parker
Birds of Passage Captain Savienko
When Eagles Strike 2003 General Thurmond
The Hollow 2004 Claus Van Ripper
Caught in the Headlights Mr. Jones
Galaxy Hunter 3V3
El Padrino: The Latin Godfather Governor Lancaster
Man with the Screaming Brain 2005 Dr. Ivanov
Keep Your Distance Brooks Voight
Come Early Morning 2006 Owen Allen
Jesus, Mary and Joey Jack O'Callahan
Honeydripper 2007 Sheriff
W. 2008 Earle Hudd
Chicago Overcoat 2009 Ray Berkowski
The Boxer Joe
Weather Wars 2011 Marcus Grange
Cellmates Warden Merville
Jerusalem Countdown Jackson
The Bourne Legacy 2012 Turso
The Great Chameleon Max
Ooga Booga 2013
Planes Skipper Riley Voice
Nebraska Ed Pegram
Planes: Fire & Rescue 2014 Skipper Riley Voice
Sin City: A Dame to Kill For Alarich 'Kraut' Wallenquist
If I Stay Grandpa
Truth 2015 Lieutenant Colonel Bill Burkett
Cell 2016 Charles Ardai
Gold Clive Coleman
Girlfriend's Day 2017 Gundy
Gotti 2018 Aniello "Neil" Dellacroce
Survival Skills 2020 Narrator


Title Year Role Notes
Channing 1964 The Colleague Episode: "The Face in the Sun"
The Winter's Tale 1967 Autolycus Television film
Macbeth 1968 Banquo
NET Playhouse 1971 Wilbur Wright Episode: "The Wright Brothers"
The Man of Destiny 1973 Napoleon Bonaparte Television film
All the Kind Strangers 1974 Jimmy Wheeler
Great Performances Chorus Episode: "Antigone"
Caribe 1975 Lieutenant Ben Logan 6 episodes
Dynasty 1976 Matt Blackwood Miniseries
Lincoln Politician Episode: "Crossing Fox River"
Jesus of Nazareth 1977 Barabbas Miniseries; episode: "Part 2"
The Fitzpatricks 1978 Unnamed Character Episode: "The New Fitzpatrick"
Saturday Night Live Man In Cold As Ice Episode: "Christopher Lee/Meatloaf"
A Rumor of War 1980 Major Ball Miniseries
The Blue and the Gray 1982 Jonas Steele
Princess Daisy 1983 Prince Alexander 'Stash' Valensky
Murder Me, Murder You Mike Hammer Television film
Mistral's Daughter 1984 Julien Mistral Miniseries
More Than Murder Mike Hammer Television film
Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer 1984–1985 Nominated - Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series - Drama
The Return of Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer 1986 Television film
Intimate Strangers Dr. Jeff Bierston
The New Mike Hammer 1986–1987
Hemingway 1988 Ernest Hemingway Miniseries
Golden Globe Award for Best Actor - Miniseries or Television Film (tied with Michael Caine for Jack the Ripper)
Nominated - Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor - Miniseries or a Movie
The Forgotten 1989 Adam Roth Television film
Mike Hammer: Murder Takes All Mike Hammer
Missing: Reward 1989–1992 Host
The Mysteries of the Dark Jungle 1991 Colonel Edward Corishant Miniseries
Mission of the Shark: The Saga of the U.S.S. Indianapolis Captain Charles Butler McVay III, USN Television film
Lincoln 1992 George McClellan (voice only)
Haunted Lives: True Ghost Stories Narrator
Revenge on the Highway Claude Sams Television film
Rio Diablo 1993 'Kansas'
Body Bags Richard Coberts
In The Heat of the Night Wade Hatton
Against Their Will: Women in Prison 1994 Jack Devlin
Texas Sam Houston
Young Ivanhoe 1995 Pembrooke
Amanda & the Alien Emmitt Mallory
The Pathfinder 1996 Compte Du Leon
Promised Land 1997 Ned Bernhart Episode: "Downsized"
Legend of the Lost Tomb Dr. William Bent Television film
Murder in My Mind Cargill
Mike Hammer, Private Eye 1997–1998 Mike Hammer 26 episodes
Touched by an Angel 1997 & 2003 Maury Hoover / Ty Duncan 2 episodes
Planet of Life 1998 Narrator 7 episodes
Rugrats 1998–2001 Marvin Finster (voice) 3 episodes: The Family Tree, Parts One and Two & Finsterella
Batman Beyond 1999 Vance (voice) Episode: "Lost Soul"
The Courage to Love 2000 Jean Baptiste Television film
The Outer Limits Cord Van Owen Episode: "The Gun"
Titus 2000–2002 Ken Titus 54 episodes
Lightning: Fire from the Sky 2001 Bart Pointdexter Television film
The Zeta Project Roland De Flores (voice) Episode: "The Next Gun"
The Simpsons 2001–2016 Howard Duff / Various (voice) 6 episodes
The Santa Trap 2002 Max Hurst Television film
The Zeta Project Roland De Flores (voice) Episode: "The Next Gun"
Girls Club Harold Falcon Episode: "Book of Virtues"
Miracle Dogs 2003 C.W. Aldrich Television film
Frozen Impact Pete Crane
What's New, Scooby-Doo? 2003 & 2005 Harold Lind / The Mayor (voice) 2 episodes
George Lopez 2005 Blaine McNamara Episode: "George Stare-oids Down Jason"
Will & Grace Wendell Schacter Episode: "From Queer to Eternity"
Prison Break 2005–2007 Henry Pope 23 episodes
Desolation Canyon 2006 Samuel Kendrick Television film
Fatal Contact: Bird Flu in America Secretary Collin Reed
Blackbeard Captain Benjamin Hornigold
Death Row (a.k.a. Haunted Prison) John Elias
ER 2007 Mike Gates 3 episodes
American Greed 2007–present Narrator Transmitted on the Consumer News-and-Business Channel
Lone Rider 2008 Robert Hattaway Television film
Ring of Death Warden Golan
Meteor 2009 Sheriff Crowe
The Nanny Express Reverend McGuiness
Two and a Half Men 2010 Tom, Chelsea's Father 4 episodes
Lights Out 2011 'Pops' Leary 13 episodes
Bored to Death Bergeron 2 episodes
Mater's Tall Tales Skipper (voice) Episode: "Air Mater"
Hindenburg: The Last Flight [de] Edward Van Zandt Television film
30 Rock 2012 Himself Episode: "Murphy Brown Lied to Us"
Anything For Money Narrator Song written and composed to promote CNBC's series American Greed (see above)
The Neighbors 2012–2013 Dominick Weaver 3 episodes
Sean Saves the World 2013 Lee Thompson 3 episodes
1600 Penn Senator Frohm Thoroughgood 2 episodes
Anger Management Ray Episode: "Charlie and Deception Therapy"
Brooklyn Nine-Nine Jimmy Brogan Episode: "Old School"
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit 2014 Orion Bauer Episode: "American Disgrace"
Enlisted Patrick Episode: "Vets"
Jennifer Falls Mike Episode: "Jennifer's Song"
The Exes Bill Drake Episode: "An Officer and a Dental Man"
Hot in Cleveland 2015 Alex 2 episodes
Full Circle Bud O'Rourke 8 episodes
NCIS: New Orleans 2015, 2017-2019 Cassius Pride 6 episodes
Crowded 2016 Bob Moore 13 episodes
Blunt Talk Arthur Bronson 2 episodes
Ray Donovan Marty 'The Texan' Swanbeck 2 episodes
Blue Bloods 2016–present Archbishop Kevin Kearns 8 episodes
Man with a Plan 2017–2020 Joe Burns 50 episodes
The Blacklist 2019, 2021 Robert Vesco 2 episodes


Title Year Language version Role Notes
Planes 2013 Polish Tom Stinger Cameo

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Stacy Keach para niños

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