The Big Lebowski: About The Cast

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Three time Academy Award nominee JEFF BRIDGES (the Dude), is regarded as one of today's most talented and sought-after leading men. His recent films include Barbra Streisand's The Mirror Has Two Faces, Walter Hill's Wild Bill and Ridley Scott's White Squall. In 1994, Bridges made his first foray into the action film genre in Blown Away, while in 1993 received widespread acclaim for his performance in Peter Weir's Fearless and was honored with the 1993 IFP/Spirit Award for Best Actor for the critically acclaimed American Heart, on which he also made his producing debut.

Bridges earned his first Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor in Peter Bogdanovich's The Last Picture Show, and received a second nod in the same category the following year for his role in Michael Cimino's Thunderbolt and Lightfoot. Starman brought him his third Academy Award nomination, this time as Best Actor, as well as a Golden Globe nomination.

In recent years he has also starred in a variety of popular film hits including The Fisher King, The Fabulous Baker Boys and Jagged Edge.

His extensive list of film credits includes Fat City, Stay Hungry, Texasville, Tucker, Nadine, The Morning After, Stay Hungry, Against All Odds, Tron, Heaven's Gate, 8 Million Ways to Die, Cutter's Way, Winter Kills, The Vanishing, See You in the Morning and many others.

In 1988, Bridges became the youngest actor to be honored by the National Film Theater in London with a three-week, 18 film tribute. Two years later he was named NATO's (National Association of Theater Owners) Male Star of the Year.

In addition to American Heart, Bridges production company, AsIs Productions, has produced Showtime's multi-award nominated Hidden In America, starring brother Beau. He is also developing the Newberry Award winning young people's novel The Giver, with Joe Johnston ( Jumanji ) set to direct in the fall on 1998.

An accomplished musician and composer, Bridges has written over 70 songs. He is also a painter and photographer.

The Big Lebowski marks Jeff Bridges debut in a Coen brothers film.

JOHN GOODMAN (Walter Sobcek) has played Dan Conner for eight seasons on the TV comedy series Roseanne, a role that has earned him seven Emmy nominations and a Golden Globe. One of Hollywood's most respected actors, Goodman is reunited on THE BIG LEBOWSKI with the Coen brothers for the third time, having previously appeared in Raising Arizona and Barton Fink --the latter earning him a Golden Globe nomination in 1992.

Goodman grew up in St. Louis and attended Afton High where he played football. He continued to dedicate himself to the sport in college, first at Meramac Community College and then Southwest Missouri State University. Because of a knee injury, he was forced to sit out a year and spent the time studying drama with fellow students Kathleen Turner and Tess Harper. John graduated in 1975 with a B.F.A. in theater.

Moving to New York, Goodman performed off-Broadway as well as in dinner and various children's theater productions. His regional theater credits include Henry IV, Parts I and II, Anthony and Cleopatra, and As You Like It. After appearing in the road company of The Robber Bridegroom, he starred in two Broadway shows, Loose Ends and Big River.

Goodman made his screen debut in HBO's Mystery of the Moro Castle, and his other credits include The Big Easy, True Stories, Sweet Dreams, Maria's Lovers, Revenge of the Nerds, C.H.U.D., Eddie Macon's Run, Stella, Everybody's All-American, Sea of Love, Punchline, King Ralph, The Babe, Born Yesterday, Pie in the Sky, Mother Night, Matinee, Arachnophobia, Always and The Flintstones. In 1998, Goodman will star in Fallen, The Borrowers and Blues Brothers 2000.

Goodman's recent television credits include producing and starring in TNT's Kingfish: A Story of Huey P. Long. He also starred as Mitch in the CBS production of A Streetcar Named Desire. Goodman received an Emmy nomination for both roles.

JULIANNE MOORE (Maude Lebowski), an actress of exceptional range, has delivered outstanding work in both box office hits and independent features. Most recently she was seen starring in the critically acclaimed Boogie Nights and The Myth of Fingerprints. This past summer, she starred opposite Jeff Goldblum in Steven Spielberg's box office blockbuster The Lost World: Jurassic Park.

Moore was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award for both Robert Altman's Short Cuts and Todd Haynes Safe. She also received critical acclaim for her performance as Yelena in Louis Malle's Vanya on 42nd Street and Dora Maar in James Ivory's Surviving Picasso. Her additional film credits include The Hand That Rocks The Cradle, Benny & Joon, The Fugitive, Nine Months and Assassins.

After earning her B.F.A. from Boston University for the Performing Arts, Moore starred in a number of off-Broadway productions, including Caryl Churchill's Serious Money and Ice Cream/Hot Fudge at the Public Theater. She appeared in Minneapolis in Guthrie Theater's Hamlet, and recently participated in workshop productions of Strindberg's The Father with Al Pacino and Wendy Wasserstein's An American Daughter with Meryl Streep.

The Big Lebowski marks STEVE BUSCEMI's fifth appearance in a Coen brothers film. Co-starring in Fargo, Buscemi also played roles in The Hudsucker Proxy, Barton Fink and Miller's Crossing.

Other recent films include Escape From L.A., Desperado, Things To Do In Denver When You're Dead, Living In Oblivion, and starred with Nicolas Cage and John Cusack in the summer blockbuster, Con Air. He will soon be seen in Jerry Bruckheimer's Armageddon starring with Bruce Willis, Liv Tyler and Ben Affleck and Stanley Tucci's Ship of Fools.

Born in Brooklyn, New York, Buscemi began to show an interest in drama in high school. Soon after, he moved to Manhattan to study acting with John Strasberg. He and a fellow actor/writer Mark Boone Jr. began writing their own theater pieces in New York performance spaces and downtown theaters. This soon led to being cast in a leading role as a musician with AIDS in Bill Sherwood's Parting Glances.

Buscemi then played a role in Quentin Tarantino's Reservoir Dogs, for which he won a Spirit Award for Best Supporting Actor. He also received a Spirit Award nomination in 1989 for his performance in Jim Jarmusch's Mystery Train.

His other film credits include In the Soup, New York Stories, Twenty Bucks, Airheads, Rising Sun and Pulp Fiction.

In the early 1990s, Buscemi wrote, directed and starred in the short film, What Happened to Pete, and went on to do the same for the 1996 feature film Trees Lounge.

Veteran stage, screen and television actor DAVID HUDDLESTON (The Big Lebowski) has more than 30 films to his credit. Born in Vinton, Virginia, Huddleston began acting as a child in school and church productions.

After serving in the US Air Force, Huddleston moved to New York, graduated from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and began touring in a series of Broadway musicals including The Music Man and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.

Among Huddleston's film credits are Rio Lobo, with John Wayne, Blazing Saddles, McQ, Fool's Parade, with Jimmy Stewart, Billy Two Hats, with Gregory Peck, The Klansman and Bad Company. He starred in the title role of Alexander Salkind's Santa Claus, The Movie.

On television, Huddleston has made hundreds of Guest Star appearances and starred in his own NBC-TV series Hizzonner. Huddleston also was nominated for an Emmy for his portrayal of Grandpa in the series The Wonder Years. TV movies and Miniseries have been many and include Brian's Song, How the West Was Won, Family Reunion with Bette Davis, Finnegan Begin Again, with Robert Preston and the HBO movie The Tracker.

On Broadway, Huddleston appeared as Charley with Dustin Hoffman in the revival of Arthur Miller's Death of A Salesman, at the Lincoln Center with Sam Waterston in Abe Lincoln in Illinois, The Roast, and created the role of Branch Rickey, owner of the Brooklyn Dodgers in a musical version of the life of Jackie Robinson entitled The First.

JOHN TURTURRO (Quintana) starred in the title role of Joel and Ethan Coen's Barton Fink, winning a Palme D Or as Best Actor at the 1991 Cannes Film Festival and a David diDonatello award for his performance. He also appeared in the Coens Miller's Crossing.

Turturro appears three new independent films, Brandon Cole's The O.K. Garage, Francesco Rossi's The Truce and Tom DiCillo's Box of Moonlight. Turturro's other film credits include Spike Lee's Girl 6, Clockers, Mo Better Blues, Jungle Fever and Do the Right Thing.

He has starred in Robert Redford's Quiz Show, Alison Anders Grace of My Heart, Diane Keaton's Unstrung Heroes, David Salle's Search and Destroy, Peter Weir's Fearless, Bill Forsyth's Being Human, Michael Cimino's The Sicilian, Martin Scorsese's The Color of Money, William Friedkin's To Live and Die in LA, and Susan Seidelman's Desperately Seeking Susan. John directed his first feature Mac in 1992, which won the Camera D Or at the Cannes Film Festival. John is now completing post-production on his second feature, Illuminata.

Turturro is a graduate of the Yale Drama School. He has appeared on stage in Bertolt Brecht's Arturo Ui, Shakespeare's Troilus and Cressida, John Patrick Shanley's The Italian American Reconciliation, Eugene Ionesco's The Bald Soprano, La Puta Vida, The Worker's Life, Men Without Dates and Danny and the Deep Blue Sea.

Swedish actor/director/writer PETER STORMARE (Uli) who appeared in the Coen brother's Fargo, recently co-starred in Steven Spielberg's The Lost World: Jurassic Park. Stormare's other credits include Louis Malle's Damage, Penny Marshall's Awakenings and Ingmar Bergman's Fanny and Alexander and Bacchants.

Stormare's association with famed Swedish director Ingmar Bergman extends to the theater as well. Stormare appeared in Bergman's production of Hamlet at the Brooklyn Academy of Music as well in the National Theater of Sweden's world tour productions of Long Day's Journey Into Night, Miss Julie, King Lear and Bacchants.

Stormare's other National Theater of Sweden's stage credits include Don Juan, Cyrano de Bergerac, Curse of the Starving Class, Seneca's Death, Action, Class Enemy and Amorina.

He has directed various Swedish National Theater productions, including The Dwarfs, Mountain Language, The Bride and The Highway.

Other directorial credits include English language productions of Miss Julie at New York Actor's Theater and Tokyo's Globe, Hamlet (on stage and in an operatic version), A Midsummer Night's Dream, Comedy of Errors, Strindberg's Dance of Death at London's Almeida Theater and a production of his own play, La Futurista at Stockholm's Company Theater.

Stormare has also directed numerous classical and contemporary plays for the Swedish Broadcasting Company on radio and television.

SAM ELLIOTT's (The Stranger) recent films include three independent productions, John Langley's Dogwatch, Roger Christian's Final Cut and Evelyn Purcell's Woman Undone.

Elliott has appeared in Turner Picture's The Desperate Trail, Ronald Maxwell's Gettysburg, Tombstone, Rush, Prancer, Roadhouse and many others.

Elliott's television credits include the TNT's Conagher, one of their all-time highest-rated movies, for which he co-wrote, produced and starred. Others include the mini series Rough Riders, Hallmark's Blue River, Buffalo Girls, (Emmy Nomination) The Hole in the Sky, Fugitive Nights, and HBO's The Quick and the Dead.

DAVID THEWLIS (John Herrington) was most recently seen co-starring with Brad Pitt in Jean-Jacques Annaud's Seven Years In Tibet. The actor first won widespread recognition for his work in three films by Mike Leigh-- Naked, The Short and Curlies and Life Is Sweet.

Upcoming films include Paul Chart's American Perfekt with Amanda Plummer and David Caffrey's Divorcing Jack, based on the critically acclaimed novel by Colin Bateman.

Among Thewlis recent film credits are Agnieszka Holland's Total Eclipse, Rob Cohen's Dragonheart, Michael Hoffman's Restoration, John Frankenheimer's The Island of Dr. Moreau, Caroline Thompson's Black Beauty, Little Dorrit and Vroom. Thewlis also provided the voice for The Earthworm in Henry Selick's James and the Giant Peach.

On television, Thewlis has appeared in opposite Helen Mirren in PBS Emmy Award winning Mystery! Theatre's Prime Suspect 3 and Mike Hodges Dandelion Dead. Additional credits include Frank Stubbs, The Singing Detective, Journey to Knock, and many other shows. His stage credits include The Sea at Britain's National Theater, Ice Cream at the Royal Court, Buddy Holly at the Regal with the New Vic Company and Ruffian on the Stairs/The Woolley at the Farnham Theater.

For his performance in Naked, Thewlis was named Best Actor by the New York Film Critics Association, the Cannes Film Festival, the National Society of Film Critics, and the London's Evening Standard.

BEN GAZZARA (Jackie Treehorn) has been acting on stage, television and on screen since the mid-1950s. Known for his work in the films of John Cassevetes ( Husbands, Opening Night, A Rage to Live ), Gazzara's recent films include David Mamet's The Spanish Prisoner.

Ben Gazzara was born in New York City, the son of Sicilian immigrants. He attended New York's City College, studied under Erwin Piscator at the New School and became a member of the Actor's Studio in its first and most exciting years.

Gazzara conquered the New York critics with his stage debut in the play End As A Man, which was filmed as The Strange One. Among his other important stage credits are Cat On A Hot Tin Roof, A Hatful of Rain, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and Love Letters.

He has appeared in close to 40 feature films, including Anatomy of a Murder, The Young Doctors, A Rage to Live, The Bridge at Remagen, Killing of a Chinese Bookie, Voyage of the Damned, Saint Jack, Bloodline, They All Laughed, Roadhouse and Vicious Circle.

Gazzara's television credits include CBS TV film To Sleep With Danger, Showtime's Parallel Lives and Convict Cowboy, Mafia Marriage, An Early Frost, for which he won an Emmy nomination, the series Run For Your Life, the Philco Playhouse, Playhouse 90" and Lies Like Kisses. He was recently honored at the 1997 Ft. Lauderdale Film Festival with a Lifetime Achievement Award.

Texas-born recording artist JIMMIE DALE GILMORE (Smokey) makes his screen-acting debut in The Big Lebowski. Gilmore cut his first album, Jimmie Dale Gilmore and the Flatlanders in 1972, after which he moved to Denver and pursued other interests. In 1980, Gilmore returned to Austin playing in bars and folk clubs. In 1988, he released the first of two albums for High Tone Records: Fair and Square, followed a year later by Jimmie Dale Gilmore.

In 1990, Gilmore teamed up with Butch Hancock and recorded Two Roads--Live In Australia, but it wasn't until 1991 when he made his first album for Elektra, After Awhile, that Rolling Stone hailed it as a masterpiece and named him Country Artist of the Year in its annual critics poll. He retained the honor in 1992 and 1993.

Gilmore's album Spinning Around the Sun received a Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary Folk Album. His most recent album is Braver New World.

PHILIP SEYMOUR HOFFMAN (Brandt) has appeared in two recent films, Boogie Nights (with The Big Lebowski co-star Julianne Moore) and Next Stop Wonderland.

His recent films include Twister, Hard Eight, Nobody's Fool, When A Man Loves A Woman, The Getaway, Leap of Faith, Scent of A Woman, My New Gun and several others.

Hoffman's theater credits are extensive and include appearances at New York's Public Theater in The Skriker, Greensboro: A Requiem at the McCarter Theater, The Merchant of Venice at the Goodman Theater, and most recently Defying Gravity at the American Place Theater.

On television he has appeared in Law and Order and The Yearling.

TARA REID (Bunny) made her film debut at the age of 15 in Larry Cohen's Return to Salem's Lot, which was produced by Warner Bros. Following her appearance in The Big Lebowski, Tara played the lead role in the independent feature Around The Fire, opposite Devon Sawa. She is presently shooting Girl and plays the lead opposite Dominique Swain and Sean Patrick Flanery. On television, she had a recurring role on Days of Our Lives.

FLEA (Kiefer) is a founding member and current performer with the rock band The Red Hot Chili Peppers, recently completed a sold-out tour as a guest performer with Jane's Addiction and has contributed to several film soundtracks. In addition to his musical career, Flea has appeared in more than a dozen feature films. Among them are Gus Van Sant's My Own Private Idaho, Robert Zemeckis Back to the Future II & III and Penelope Spheeris Suburbia, and Dudes. He has also lent his vocal talents to several animated projects such as Duckman, a regular on The Wild Thornberry's and the soon to be released animated feature Gen-13.

TORSTEN VOGES (Franz) born in Germany, was a guest star on the TV series City Hospital. A noted stage and screen actor in his native Germany, Torsten's film credits include Dangerous Games, The Eye, Sound Off, Gnadiges Fraulein, Stop and Moritz Lieber Moritz.

An actor with the Dusseldorfer Schauspielhaus for seven years, his German stage credits include My Mother's Courage, David Mamet's Oleanna, Wozzeck, Shakespeare's Twelfth Night and King Lear, and many other plays.

Among Torsten's television credits are A Case for Two, The Precinct, Children of the Sun and The Life of G.

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