Oct. 28th, 1944
Chicago, Illinois, USA
Dennis Franz's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Dennis Franz was born Dennis Franz Schlacta in Maywood, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. His father was a German immigrant and both he and Franz's mother, were postal workers. He has two sisters, Marlene (born 1938) and Heidi (born 1935). He graduated from Southern Illinois University and was immediately drafted into the military. He served 11 month in Vietnam in a reconnaissance unit, and after his service he suffered depression for some time afterwards. In 1972 he joined the Organic Theatre Company. Robert Altman (I) discovered him at an auditions and urged him to go to Los Angeles, where he became part of Altman's resident company. He met Joanie Zeck on April Fool's Day 1982 and aided her in raising her two daughters, Krista (born 1976) and Tricia (born 1974). They married thirteen years later in Carmel, California.
- Attended Wright Junior College and Southern Illinois University, with a major in speech and theater
- Andy Sipowicz, Franz's character on _"NYPD Blue" (1993)_ (qv), was ranked #31 in TV Guide's list of the "50 Greatest TV Dads of All Time" [20 June 2004 issue].
- Frequently plays cops
- Always travels with a pet bird.
- Was considered for the role of Vic in _American Graffiti (1973)_ (qv).
- Was a mailman before becoming an actor
- In high school, he was active in baseball, football and swimming
- By 11th grade, he tried out for a part in a school play called, "The Crucible," because his girlfriend was auditioning. He won the part, but his girlfriend didn't