George Grizzard

George Cooper Grizzard Jr. (April 1, 1928 – October 2, 2007) was an American stage, television, and film actor.[1] He was the recipient of a Grammy Award, a Primetime Emmy Award and a Tony Award, among other accolades.

George Grizzard
George Grizzard Patricia Barry The Twilight Zone 1960.JPG
Grizzard and Patricia Barry in the episode "The Chaser" of the television series The Twilight Zone
George Cooper Grizzard Jr.

(1928-04-01)April 1, 1928
DiedOctober 2, 2007(2007-10-02) (aged 79)
EducationWoodrow Wilson High School
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Years active1955–2006
Partner(s)William Tynan

Life and careerEdit

Grizzard and Jane Fonda in a 1961 presentation of W. Somerset Maugham's A String of Beads

Grizzard was born in Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina, the son of Mary Winifred (née Albritton) and George Cooper Grizzard, an accountant.[2]

Grizzard was raised in Washington, DC, and attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, returning to Washington after graduation to work in advertising. He began his acting career at Washington's Arena Stage.[3]

Grizzard memorably appeared as an unscrupulous United States Senator in the film Advise and Consent in 1962. His other theatrical films included the drama From the Terrace with Paul Newman (1960), the Western story Comes a Horseman with Jane Fonda (1978), and a Neil Simon comedy, Seems Like Old Times (1980).[1]

Grizzard made his Broadway debut in The Desperate Hours in 1955. He was a frequent interpreter of the plays of Edward Albee, having appeared in the original 1962 production of Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? as Nick, which won him a Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album along with his castmates. He also appeared in the 1996 revival of A Delicate Balance and the 2005 revival of Seascape. He also starred in You Know I Can't Hear You When the Water's Running. He won the 1996 Tony Award for Best Actor in a Play for A Delicate Balance. Additional Broadway credits include The Creation of the World and Other Business, The Glass Menagerie, The Country Girl, The Royal Family, and California Suite.[1]

Grizzard guest-starred several times during the 1990s on the NBC television drama Law & Order as defense attorney Arthur Gold. He also portrayed President John Adams in the Emmy Award-winning WNET-produced PBS miniseries The Adams Chronicles. In 1980, he won an Emmy for his work in The Oldest Living Graduate. He starred as reporter Richard Larsen in The Deliberate Stranger, a television movie about serial killer Ted Bundy.[1][4]

He was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame in 2002.[5]


Grizzard died in Manhattan of complications from lung cancer. According to his New York Times obituary, his only survivor was his long-time companion William Tynan. Grizzard had kept his sexuality private during his life.[1]

Selected TV and filmographyEdit


  1. ^ a b c d e Berkvist, Robert (3 October 2007). "George Grizzard, Actor Noted for Albee Roles, Dies at 79". The New York Times.
  2. ^ "George Grizzard Biography". Film Reference. Retrieved 12 February 2020.
  3. ^ Bryer, Jackson R.; Davison, Richard Allan (2001). The Actor's Art: Conversations with Contemporary American Stage Performers. Rutgers University Press. pp. 70-87. ISBN 978-0-8135-2873-1.
  4. ^ Stewart, Jocelyn Y. (October 4, 2007). "George Grizzard, 79; versatile stage, TV and film actor originated role of Nick in 'Virginia Woolf'". Los Angeles Times.
  5. ^ Ridge, Richard. The Theatre Hall of Fame Awards Broadway Beat. Archived November 17, 2006, at the Wayback Machine

External linksEdit