Award-winning film, stage and television actor Dabney Coleman is a prolific character actor best known for playing endearing (if outspoken) grumps and perversely likeable cads and schemers. His most memorable film roles include the villainous boss in '9 to 5,' the pompous director in 'Tootsie' and the sympathetic role of Jane Fonda's boyfriend in 'On Golden Pond.'
On film, Coleman gave one his most ambitious performances in John Boorman's 'Where the Heart Is' as a formidable New York patriarch who decides to teach his pampered children the value of money. Over the years, the veteran actor has starred in 'WarGames,' 'Cloak and Dagger,' 'Dragnet,' 'Meet the Applegates' and 'The Beverly Hillbillies.' His TV career began with a recurring role of the boyfriend of 'That Girl' and has included award-worthy performances in series such as 'Buffalo Bill' (Golden Globe nomination, two Emmy® nominations) and 'The 'Slap' Maxwell Story' (Golden Globe award, Emmy® nomination).
Although much of his earlier television series work was in comedy, it was equally rich in drama, showing Coleman's tremendous range as an actor. He was nominated for a Golden Globe and won an Emmy® for his dramatic performance in the television movie 'Sworn to Silence,' opposite Liam Neeson and Peter Coyote; he earned an Emmy® nomination for the miniseries 'Baby M,' one of the first shows to deal with surrogate mothers. He earned another Emmy® nomination for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series for 'Columbo,' and he was nominated for a CableACE Award for his performance as the prudent head of a network in the HBO original movie 'Murrow.' In 2001, he began a three-season run on 'The Guardian,' starring alongside Simon Baker as his concerned and driven father.
In addition to 'Boardwalk Empire,' Coleman can be seen this fall in 'Char·ac·ter,' a documentary on six illuminating filmmakers and friends.