Jul. 15th, 1952
Newberry, Michigan, USA
Terry O'Quinn's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Terry O'Quinn (born July 15, 1952) is an American actor, most famous for playing John Locke on the TV series Lost.
O'Quinn was born as Terrance Quinn at War Memorial Hospital in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, one of 11 siblings born to Irish American parents. He grew up in nearby Newberry, Michigan, and was raised Roman Catholic. He attended Central Michigan University in Mount Pleasant, Michigan, and the University of Iowa in Iowa City. He changed his surname from Quinn to O'Quinn as another registered actor already had the name Terrance Quinn.
In the 1970s he came to Baltimore to act in the Baltimore regional theater play Tartuffe. He was cast in his first movie role Heaven's Gate, but it required horse riding. O'Quinn took riding lessons from Lori Binkley at Wood Gait Farm in northwest Baltimore County. He took on the role of Captain Minardi in Heaven's Gate, a Western that starred a slew of big names like Kris Kristofferson, Christopher Walken, 'Jeff Bridges' and 'John Hurt'. The movie failed, and is one of the biggest box-office bombs of all time: grossing $3 million on a $44 million budget.
However out of the experience O'Quinn married Lori in 1979. They have sons Oliver and Hunter. They raised their boys in Reisterstown before selling the house and moving to Hawaii in 2004. In 2013, The Baltimore Sun reported that O'Quinn was spotted at a Towson, Maryland bagel store called Towson Hot Bagels where he told people in the store that he now lives in Timonium, Maryland.
He made his debut in a 1980 television movie called F.D.R.: The Last Year. Since then, O'Quinn has had minor supporting roles in films and TV movies such as Young Guns, All the Right Moves, Silver Bullet, Places in the Heart, Between Two Women, and The Rocketeer, in which he portrayed Howard Hughes. O'Quinn has had guest roles on TV shows such as Miami Vice, The Twilight Zone, Tales of the Unexpected, The West Wing, Star Trek: The Next Generation, JAG, Remington Steele, The X Files, Alias, Falling Skies, and the 2010 version of Hawaii Five-0. He starred in the ABC supernatural drama series 666 Park Avenue.
Terry began acting in the 1970s during his time at Central Michigan University. He not only was an outstanding actor but also playwright/director. He wrote and directed the musical Orchestrina.
Starting in 1980, O'Quinn has appeared in various feature films such as Silver Bullet, Tombstone, Heaven's Gate, Young Guns, alongside Rutger Haue' in Blind Fury, and as Howard Hughes in The Rocketeer. His early television roles include guest appearances on Miami Vice (episode "Give a Little, Take a Little"), Earth 2, Moonlighting, Star Trek: The Next Generation (episode "The Pegasus"), The New Twilight Zone (episode "Chameleon"), Homicide: Life on the Street (episode "Hate Crimes"), and a recurring role as Rear Admiral Thomas Boone on JAG as well as Colonel Will Ryan in episode 15 of season 1 on NCIS (episode "Enigma").
O'Quinn made his breakthrough by appearing as the deranged serial-killing title character in The Stepfather. His acting performance was praised by film critic Roger Ebert, from the Chicago Sun Times, who commented: "'The Stepfather' has one wonderful element: Terry O'Quinn's performance". O'Quinn was nominated for both a Saturn Award and an Independent Spirit Award for his performance. A sequel was released, two years after the first movie, but it wasn't as much of a success as the first movie. It grossed almost a million dollars less at the box office. It was never explained why O'Quinn wasn't in the third installment of the series, in which the stepfather character was portrayed by Robert Wightman.
Around 1995, O'Quinn made guest appearances in The X-Files and Harsh Realm, produced by Chris Carter, who also cast him in the film The X-Files: Fight The Future and then once again in the final season. In 1996 O'Quinn started acting in the television series Millennium as Peter Watts, also produced by Chris Carter. O'Quinn held this role for all three seasons of the series. O'Quinn holds the distinction of having played four different characters within the extended X-Files/Millennium continuum (the two shows being classed together since both Lance Henriksen's character of Frank Black and Charles Nelson Reilly's character of Jose Chung have appeared in both shows).
O'Quinn appeared in the second season of Falling Skies in 2012.
- He is one of the few cast members of _"Lost" (2004)_ (qv) who did not have to audition, because his former collaborator (from _"Alias" (2001)_ (qv)) 'J.J. Abrams' (qv) thought of O'Quinn for the part of Locke before the actor was even offered it.
- His brother, Thomas Anthony Quinn, is also an actor, who acts and teaches theatre in central Illinois.
- He has been balding since his early 20s and has appeared with a partially or entirely shaved head in most of his films.
- Although always friendly onset, he keeps private and mysterious habits apart from his younger _"Lost" (2004)_ (qv) co-stars, who often get together for wild parties when not shooting. He keeps this enigmatic aura so they will regard him similarly to the way they regard his mysterious character Locke.
- Has had roles in both of 'J.J. Abrams' (qv)' hit television series, _"Alias" (2001)_ (qv) and _"Lost" (2004)_ (qv).
- Has 2 sons: Oliver O'Quinn (b. 1984) and Hunter O'Quinn (b. 1986).
- Actually learned how to properly throw and handle knives for his role on _"Lost" (2004)_ (qv).
- Is good friends with 1013 Productions' 'Chris Carter (I)' (qv), having appeared in most of his work: as a guest star in two episodes of _"The X Files" (1993)_ (qv), a supporting role in _The X Files (1998)_ (qv) and recurring roles on _"Harsh Realm" (1999)_ (qv) and _"Millennium" (1996/I)_ (qv).