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Robert Loggia

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Actor
Born:
January 3, 1930 in Staten Island, New York City, NY
Biography
Forceful leading actor Robert Loggia left plans for a journalistic career behind when he began his studies at New York's Actors Studio. His first important Broadway assignment was 1955's The Man with the Golden Arm; one year later, he made his first film, Somebody Up There Likes Me. In 1958 he enjoyed a brief flurry of TV popularity as the title character in "The Nine Lives of Elfego Baca," a multipart western originally telecast on Walt Disney Presents. His next weekly TV assignment was as a good-guy burglar in 1967's T.H.E. Cat. A fitfully successful movie leading man, Loggia truly came into his own when he cast off his toupee and became a character actor, often in roles requiring quiet menace. As Richard Gere's bullying father, Loggia dominated the precredits scenes of An Officer and a Gentleman (1981), and was equally effective as the villain in Curse of the Pink Panther (1982) and as mafia functionaries in Scarface (1983) and Prizzi's Honor (1985). He was nominated for an Oscar for his portrayal of a two-bit detective in The Jagged Edge (1985). The most likeable Robert Loggia screen character thus far is his toy manufacturer in Big (1988), the film in which Loggia and Tom Hanks exuberantly dance to the tune of "Heart and Soul" on a gigantic keyboard. Loggia would remain an active force on screen for decades to come, appearing in movies like Opportunity Knocks, Independence Day, and Return to Me, as well as TV shows like Mancuso, FBI, Wild Palms, and Queens Supreme. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
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