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Timothy Lee Reid[1] (born December 19, 1944) is an American actor and film director best known for his roles in prime time American television programs, such as Venus Flytrap on WKRP in Cincinnati (1978–82), Marcel "Downtown" Brown on Simon & Simon (1983–87), Ray Campbell on Sister, Sister (1994–99) and William Barnett on That '70s Show (2004–06). Reid starred in a CBS series, Frank's Place, as a professor who inherits a Louisiana restaurant. Reid is the founder and president of Legacy Media Institute, a non-profit organization "dedicated to bringing together leading professionals in the film and television industry, outstanding actors, and young men and women who wish to pursue a career in the entertainment media".[2]

Tim Reid
Tim Reid at USDA Black History Month celebration.jpg
Reid speaking at the USDA Black History Month celebration in February 2012
Born
Timothy Lee Reid

(1944-12-19) December 19, 1944 (age 73)
OccupationActor, film director
Years active1968–present
Spouse(s)
Rita Sykes
(m. 1966; div. 1980)

Daphne Maxwell
(m. 1982)
Children2

Contents

Early yearsEdit

Reid was born in Norfolk, Virginia, and raised in the Crestwood area of Chesapeake, Virginia, formerly Norfolk County, Virginia. He is the son of Augustine (née Wilkins) and William Lee Reid.[1] He earned his Bachelor of Business Administration at Norfolk State College in 1968. Reid also became a member of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity. After graduation, he was hired by Dupont Corporation, where he worked for three years.[3]

Reid's entertainment career also began in 1968. He and insurance salesman Tom Dreesen met at a Junior Chamber of Commerce meeting near Chicago.[4] They were "put together to promote an anti-drug program in the local schools" and, prompted by a comment from a child, decided to form a comedy team.[4] The team, later billed as "Tim and Tom", was the first interracial comedy duo. Years later, Reid and Dreesen wrote a book about those years called Tim & Tom: An American Comedy in Black and White (2008, ISBN 978-0-226-70900-0), co-written with sports writer Ron Rapoport).[5][6]

Television acting careerEdit

Reid started out on the short-lived The Richard Pryor Show. Reid starred as DJ "Venus Flytrap" on the hit CBS sitcom WKRP in Cincinnati, in what is perhaps his best known TV role. Reid starred as Lieutenant Marcel Proust "Downtown" Brown (episodes 43-127), on the CBS detective series Simon & Simon. In 1988, Reid won an award from Viewers for Quality Television Awards as "Best Actor in a Quality Comedy Series" in Frank's Place. In 1988, the same role earned him an Image Award for "Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series".[7]

Reid appeared in the initial movie version of Stephen King's epic horror novel It. He played the role of Mike Hanlon, librarian at the Derry, Maine Public Library and one of the seven main protagonists. Though he admitted having a great time working on the project, Reid later expressed his disappointment with the fact that his character was absent from the climatic showdown against the titular villain (played by Tim Curry). He made an appearance as Sgt. Ray Bennett of the Seacouver Police Department in three first-season episodes of Highlander: The Series. He had a starring role in the series Sister Sister as Ray Campbell, for the entire six-season run. On April 13, 2009, Reid appeared opposite former co-star Tamera Mowry on the short-lived ABC Family series Roommates as Mr Daniels. Reid had a recurring role on That '70s Show as William Barnett.[8]

DirectingEdit

Reid has directed various television programs as well the film Once Upon a Time...When We Were Colored based on a novel by Clifton L. Taulbert. He directed and adapted a children's TV show called Bobobobs which aired in the late 1980s. Reid is the creator of Stop the Madness, an after-school special video in the fight against drugs recorded on December 11, 1985.[9]

New Millennium StudiosEdit

Tim and Daphne Maxwell Reid built New Millennium Studios in 1997. Located in Petersburg, Virginia the 57.4-acre site with its 14,850-square-foot sound studio was both the only Black owned film studio in the United States since the 1930s, but also one of the largest independent film studios outside of Hollywood.

New Millennium Studios was used in dozens of movie and television productions, including scenes from the 2001 film "Hearts in Atlantis," of the Stephen King novel; parts of 2000's "The Contender," and elements of Steven Spielberg's 2012 film, "Lincoln," were all shot there. The Reids also produced feature films of their own.

Due to "a lack of incentives in the state" to bring film production to Virginia, the Reids sold the property in March 2015 for $1.475 million to Four Square Property Management LLC, a company formed by Four Square Industrial Constructors, based in Chester, Virginia.

Personal lifeEdit

In 1966, Reid married Rita Ann Sykes; they divorced on May 9, 1980. They have two children together: Timothy II (born 1968) and Tori Reid (born 1971). On December 4, 1982, he married actress Daphne Maxwell Reid. Reid was named to the board of directors of the American Civil War Center in July 2011 at Tredegar Iron Works.[10] On May 10, 2014, Reid received a VCU honorary doctorate for his many outstanding and distinguished contributions. He delivered a commencement speech during the ceremony. During the 1980s and 1990s Reid served on the advisory board of the National Student Film Institute.[11][12]

FilmographyEdit

Year Film Role Notes
1974 That's My Mama Rev. Armbruster Episode:"Clifton's Persuasion "
1976 Mother, Jugs & Speed Unity Dispatcher uncredited
Rhoda Kitchen Helper Ep."Guess Who I Saw Today"
1977 The Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis, Jr. Show unknown
Fernwood 2 Night Matthew Johnson Ep."#1.43"
The Richard Pryor Show Blind Man Ep."#1.2"
Lou Grant TV Cameraman Ep."Hostages"
What's Happening!! Dr. Claymore Ep."It's All in Your Head"
Maude Policeman Ep."Maude's Christmas Surprise"
1978 ABC Weekend Specials Tillson Ep."Little Lulu"
WKRP in Cincinnati Venus Flytrap / Gordon Sims 83 episodes;1978-1982
1979 You Can't Take It with You Donald TV
1982 Benson Russell DuBois Ep."Thy Brother's Keeper"
1983 Teachers Only Michael Horne 5 episodes
Simon & Simon Det. Marcel 'Downtown' Brown 79 episodes;1983–87
1985 Code Name: Foxfire unknown Ep."Robin's Egg Blues"
1987 Matlock Danny Miller Ep."The Court-Martial: Part 1 and 2"
Frank's Place Frank Parish 22 episodes;1987–88
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
Outstanding Achievement in Comedy (shared with Hugh Wilson)
Best Actor in a Quality Comedy Series
Nominated-Golden Globe Award for Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy
Nominated-Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
Nominated-Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Comedy Series
1989 Dead Bang Chief Dixon
Snoops Chance Dennis 4 episodes
1990 ABC TGIF Ray
The Fourth War Lt. Col. Clark
Perry Mason: The Case of the Silenced Singer Jack Barnett TV
Stephen King's It Mike Hanlon TV Movie
1991 Zorro Dr. Lorenzo Lozano Ep."Wicked, Wicked Zorro"
1992 You Must Remember This Joe TV
The New WKRP in Cincinnati Gordon Sims / Venus Flytrap Ep."Venus, We Hardly Knew Ya"
Mastergate Chip Chatworth TV
Highlander: The Series Sgt. Bennett 3 episodes;1992–93
1993 Say a Little Prayer Thug
1994 Sister, Sister Ray Campbell 120 episodes;1994–99
Race to Freedom: The Underground Railroad Frederick Douglass
1995 Simon & Simon: In Trouble Again Downtown Brown
Out-of-Sync Det. Wilson
1996 Once Upon a Time...When We Were Colored Director Debut as a film director
1997 Touched by an Angel Buddy Baker Ep."Last Call"
1998 Linc's Priest unknown episodes
1999 Just Deserts Scott Waring TV
2000 Alley Cats Strike Mayor McLemore TV
2002 Mu Sa Do Doorman 2
2003 You Wish! Larry TV
For Real Mac
2004–2006 That '70s Show William Barnett 9 episodes
2005 On the One Prophet
The Reading Room Douglas TV
2006 That's So Raven Sheriff Jefferson Ep."Driving Miss Lazy"
2007 Trade Hank Jefferson
2009 Roommates Mr. Stanley Daniels Ep. "The Break-In"
2010 Treme Judge John A. Gatling
2016 93 Days
Limitless Astrophysicist Sturgeon Reid Ep. "Close Encounters"
The Rooftop Christmas Tree Dale Landis
2017 Greenleaf Bishop Lionel Jeffries 3 episodes

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Tim Reid Biography (1944-)". Film Reference. Retrieved June 4, 2012.
  2. ^ Legacy Media Institute.
  3. ^ Tim Reid profile, Museum of Broadcast Communications website; accessed January 11, 2014.
  4. ^ a b Todd Leopold, "'WKRP' vet Reid, standup Dreesen's previous life", CNN, October 2, 2008.
  5. ^ Tim and Tom page at The University Press of Chicago.
  6. ^ "Tim Reid Biography" at IMDb.
  7. ^ Tim Reid profile; accessed November 26, 2007.
  8. ^ Tim Reid on IMDb
  9. ^ ""STOP THE MADNESS" (1985, 1986) anti-drug music video", YouTube.
  10. ^ "Actor, studio founder Tim Reid named to board of Virginia Civil War center", This Week in the Civil War, This Week in the Civil War.
  11. ^ Editor (June 10, 1994). National Student Film Institute/L.A: The Sixteenth Annual Los Angeles Student Film Festival. The Directors Guild Theatre. pp. 10–11. |access-date= requires |url= (help)
  12. ^ Editor (June 7, 1991). Los Angeles Student Film Institute: 13th Annual Student Film Festival. The Directors Guild Theatre. p. 3. |access-date= requires |url= (help)

External linksEdit

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