Mar. 12th, 1960
Detroit, Michigan, USA
Courtney B. Vance's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Courtney Bernard Vance(born March 12, 1960) is an American actor. He was formerly a regular on the NBC/USA television series Law & Order: Criminal Intent as Assistant District Attorney Ron Carver. He was also a series regular on the ABC series FlashForward. Currently appears on the TNT series The Closer as Chief Tommy Delk
Vance was born in Detroit, Michigan, the son of Leslie, a librarian, and Conroy Vance, a grocery store manager and benefits administrator. He attended Detroit Country Day School, a fee-paying university-preparatory school, and later graduated from Harvard University with a bachelor of arts degree. While attending Harvard, Vance was already working as an actor at the Boston Shakespeare Company. He earned a Master of Fine Arts degree later at Yale School of Drama where he met future wife and fellow student Angela Bassett.
Vance has earned two Tony Award nominations, each in Tony Award-winning productions. He was first nominated for his role in August Wilson's Pulitzer Prize-winning play Fences and later for his lead role in John Guare's Six Degrees of Separation. In 1987 he won a Clarence Derwent Award for his appearance as Cory Maxson in Fences.
Prior to joining the cast of Law & Order: Criminal Intent, Vance appeared on the original Law & Order series twice: in a minor role in the first-season episode "By Hooker, By Crook", and in a major role in the fifth season episode "Rage".
Vance's feature film roles have won him steady praise. His early credits include Hamburger Hill, The Hunt for Red October, The Last Supper, and The Adventures of Huck Finn. More recently, he appeared in Robert Altman's Cookie's Fortune, Penny Marshall's The Preacher's Wife, and in Clint Eastwood's Space Cowboys. Vance also starred in the independent film Love and Action in Chicago, a romantic comedy which he also co-produced. Vance played Black Panther Bobby Seale in the Melvin and Mario Van Peebles docudrama Panther. In 2008 and 2009 he guest starred in the final season of ER alongside his wife, Angela Bassett.
Vance's television credits include such cable movies as:
Blind Faith (opposite Charles S. Dutton), for which he received an Independent Spirit Award nomination for Best Actor in 1999)
the 1997 William Friedkin-directed 12 Angry Men (with Jack Lemmon, George C. Scott and Ossie Davis)
the Hallmark presentation The Boys Next Door (alongside Nathan Lane, Tony Goldwyn, and Michael Jeter)
The Tuskegee Airmen (with Laurence Fishburne and Andre Braugher)
the television production of August Wilson's play The Piano Lesson
The Affair, for which he received a 1996 CableACE Award nomination as Best Actor
the Showtime presentation Whitewash: The Clarence Brandley Story
guest starred in ER as Russell Banfield, Dr. Catherine Banfield's husband.
Voiced several ex-slave narratives in Unchained Memories, aired on HBO in February 2003.
On December 2, 2008, TV Guide reported that Vance has been cast as the Los Angeles bureau chief of the FBI in the new ABC pilot FlashForward, which is based on a Robert J. Sawyer novel and is said to be a possible “companion show” to Lost. Vance is set for the lead in the German-American apocalypse thriller The Divide.
Vance is married to actress Angela Bassett. The couple's first children were twins, son Slater Josiah and daughter Bronwyn Golden, born on January 27, 2006. He and Bassett authored a book, Friends: A Love Story. The two also participate in the annual Christmas celebration, Candlelight Processional, at Epcot.
Vance is on the Board of Directors for The Actors Center in New York City. Vance is an active supporter of Boys & Girls Clubs of America. He is an alumnus of the Detroit Boys & Girls Club, and was recently inducted into the Alumni Hall of Fame for all of Boys & Girls Clubs of America.
- Graduated from Harvard University.
- Won an off-Broadway Obie award in 1990 for his theater work in "My Children! My Africa!"
- Attended Detroit Country Day School in Birmingham, Michigan; graduated 1978.
- A 1986 graduate of Yale Drama school.
- Was twice nominated for Broadway's Tony Award: in 1987 as Best Actor (Featured Role - Play) for 'August Wilson' (qv)'s "Fences;" and in 1991 as Best Actor (Play) for 'John Guare' (qv)'s "Six Degrees of Separation."
- It was at Harvard that he first became interested in theater, appearing in several college productions and becoming a member of the Boston Shakespeare Company.
- He and his wife, 'Angela Bassett' (qv), became the parents of twins a daughter Bronwyn Golden and son Josiah Slater, who were born on January 27, 2006, in California through a surrogate.