77 (passed away Dec. 8th, 2008)
Dec. 13th, 1930
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
Robert Prosky's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Robert Prosky (December 13, 1930 – December 8, 2008) was an American actor.
Prosky, a Polish American, was born Robert Joseph Porzuczek in the Manayunk neighborhood of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to Helen and Joseph Porzuczek. His father was a grocer and butcher. He was raised in a working-class neighborhood and studied at the American Theatre Wing, later graduating from Temple University. He performed at Old Academy Players, a small theater in the East Falls section of Philadelphia, adjacent to Manayunk.
He appeared in Thief, Christine, Hanky Panky, The Natural, Hoffa, Broadcast News, Things Change, Rudy, Mrs. Doubtfire, Green Card, and Dead Man Walking. In addition to appearing in movies, Prosky appeared as a regular on the television series Hill Street Blues, Danny and Veronica's Closet. He was considered for the role of Martin Crane in Frasier and later made a guest appearance in the show as a reclusive writer. He played Rebecca Howe's father on Cheers. He also played Coach Hayden Fox's mentor Jake "the Snake" Connolly on a two part 1991 episode of Coach.
He also appeared as Will Darnell, the man who owned the auto repair shop where Arnie Cunningham (Keith Gordon) rebuilds the possessed car "Christine" in the film John Carpenter's Christine based on Stephen King's novel. Prior to his film and television career, he appeared in numerous productions at the Arena Stage in Washington, D.C., most notably as Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman. Prosky often performed at Arena Stage with over 100 stage credits to his name at that theatre alone. He also originated the role of Shelly Levene in David Mamet's Pulitzer Prize-winning play Glengarry Glen Ross. He was also a board member of the Cape May Stage in Cape May, New Jersey.
In 1960, he married Ida Hove, who survived him, along with three sons, Stefan, John and Andrew Prosky. Andrew and John Prosky are also actors.
Prosky died on December 8, 2008, five days short of his 78th birthday, from complications following a heart procedure. At the time of his death, he was living in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Washington, D.C..
- Father of 'Andy Prosky' (qv), Stefan Prosky and 'John Prosky' (qv).
- Received a degree in Economics from Temple University. Later worked as a bookkeeper with the Federal Reserve Bank while taking acting classes at the American Theatre Wing in New York.
- He was nominated for a 1984 Joseph Jefferson Award For Actor in a Supporting Role in a Play for "Glengarry Glen Ross" at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago, Illinois.
- Was twice nominated for Broadway's Tony Award: in 1984, as Best Actor (Featured Role - Play) for 'David Mamet' (qv)'s "Glengarry Glen Ross," and in 1988 as Best Actor (Play) for "A Walk In the Woods."
- Has played 'Kirstie Alley' (qv)'s father twice, first in a guest appearance on _"Cheers" (1982)_ (qv), and later on the series _"Veronica's Closet" (1997)_ (qv).
- Appeared on Broadway in "A View From the Bridge, " "Glengarry, Glen Ross" (Tony nomination for Featured Actor) and "A Walk In the Woods" (Tony nomination for Best Actor).
- Made his movie debut in 'Michael Mann (I)' (qv)'s _Thief (1981)_ (qv). That film also marked the film debuts of 'James Belushi' (qv), 'Dennis Farina' (qv), and 'William Petersen' (qv).