Jan. 26th, 1941
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
Scott Glenn's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Scott Glenn was born January, 26, 1941, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. As he grew up in Appalachia, his health was poor; he was bedridden for a year and doctors predicted he would limp for the rest of his life. During long periods of illness, Glenn was reading a lot and "dreaming of becoming Lord Byron." He challenged his illness by intense training programs and eventually got rid of his limp.
Glenn entered William and Mary College where he majored in English. He spent three years in the Marines and then tried to combine his passion for storytelling with his passion for adventures by working for five months as a criminal reporter at the Kenosha Evening News. Glenn planned to become an author but found out he had "problems with dialogs," so he decided to overcome it by studying acting. In 1966, he headed to New York where he joined George Morrison acting class. He helped in directing student plays to pay for his studies and appeared onstage in La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club productions. Soon after arriving to New York, Glenn became a fan of martial arts. In 1968 he joined The Actors Studio and began working in professional theater and TV. In 1970 James Bridges (I) offered him his first movie work in The Baby Maker (1970).
Glenn left for L.A., where he spent seven of the "most miserable years of [his] life." He couldn't find interesting film roles and, doing brief TV stints, he felt "like a person who had to paint the Sistine Chapel with a house-painter's brush." On a brighter side, he worked episodically with Jonathan Demme (Angels Hard as They Come (1971), Fighting Mad (1976)), Robert Altman (I) (Nashville (1975)) and Francis Ford Coppola (Apocalypse Now (1979)). In 1978 Glenn got tired of Hollywood and moved his family to Ketchum, Idaho, where he worked as a barman, huntsman and mountain ranger for two years (occasionally acting in Seattle stage productions). James Bridges (I) once more changed the course of Glenn's life in 1980 when he offered him the role of John Travolta's rival in Urban Cowboy (1980) and made him a star. Glenn's acting abilities and physical presence helped him to excel both in action (Silverado (1985), The Challenge (1982)) and drama (The Right Stuff (1983), Countdown to Looking Glass (1984) (TV), The River (1984)) as he alternately played good guys and bad guys.
In the beginning of the '90s his career was at its peak - he appeared in such indisputable masterpieces as The Silence of the Lambs (1991), and The Hunt for Red October (1990). Later he gravitated toward more kinky stuff, such as the black Freudian farce _Reckless (1995/I)_, the tragicomedy Edie & Pen (1996) and Ken Loach's socio-political declaration Carla's Song (1996). Today Glenn alternates mainstream (Courage Under Fire (1996), Absolute Power (1997)) with independent projects (Lesser Prophets (1997) and Larga distancia (1998), written by his daughter Dakota Glenn) and TV (Naked City: A Killer Christmas (1998) (TV)).
- Received a BA in English at William & Mary College.
- Brother of Bonnie Glenn and Terry Glenn.
- In preparation for the filming of Backdraft, he rode along with the firemen in the Chicago area and was injured when exposed to active fire.
- Despite being left-handed, he was so dedicated to playing right-handed astronaut 'Alan Shepard' (qv) in _The Right Stuff (1983)_ (qv), that he used his right hand for writing and other important actions on-screen.
- Did 2,000 push-ups (at one time) on the set of _Urban Cowboy (1980)_ (qv).
- Rode along with the Chicago Fire Dept.'s Squad 5 in preperation for his role in _Backdraft (1991)_ (qv).
- As a former Marine, he is the only actor playing a member of the Bush administration in _W. (2008/I)_ (qv) who has actual military experience (in addition to the director 'Oliver Stone (I)' (qv)).
- Typically does his own thorough research for his roles, not trusting advisers or coaches.