JOHN MAHONEYBorn: June 20, 1940
Birthplace: Manchester, England
(Martin Crane) "Martin and Frasier are trying to figure each other out," says John Mahoney of his character, Martin Crane, the ex-cop father of psychiatrist Frasier Crane, and that of Kelsey Grammer, who plays Frasier. "Martin's a fish out of water in his own family, which had three psychiatrists -- his wife and two sons -- and there's a great deal of bad blood that he and Frasier will have to cleanse to be able to live together."
The Tony-winning actor ("House of Blue Leaves") may be remembered by audiences as the college professor who was splashed in the face with a drink in "Moonstruck." Ironically, teaching is one of the professions he tried before becoming an actor.
Born in Manchester on a June 20 during the German blitz of England, Mahoney was the seventh of eight children raised by his mother and father, a baker by trade and a pianist by avocation. He emigrated to the United States after high school and joined the Army, where he worked on losing his British accent. He received a B.A. degree from Quincy College and an M.A. degree in English from Western Illinois University. However, he did not decide to pursue acting until after trying careers as diverse as a college professor, hospital orderly and medical- journal editor, all of which left him unfulfilled.
At age 37, Mahoney enrolled in classes at Chicago's St. Nicholas Theatre -- co-founded by David Mamet -- where he performed opposite John Malkovich, who invited him to join the Steppenwolf Theatre. Mahoney has since appeared in more than 30 Steppenwolf productions. In addition to a Tony Award, he received a Clarence Derwent Award and a Drama Desk nomination for his performance in "House of Blue Leaves." He received his second Drama Desk nomination and a Theatre World Award for his portrayal of Harold in the Off-Broadway production of "Orphans." He made his directorial debut with the play "Talking Heads" at the Steppenwolf Theatre.
Mahoney's feature film credits include "Barton Fink," "Suspect," "The Russia House," "Frantic," "Betrayed," "Eight Men Out," "Say Anything," "The Manhattan Project," "Striking Distance," "The Hudsucker Proxy," "Reality Bites" and "In the Line of Fire."
On television, he has starred on the series "The Human Factor," "H.E.L.P." and "Lady Blue"; in the NBC mini-series "Favorite Son"; and in such films as "Will," "Dinner at Eight," "The Image," "The Killing Floor," "First Step" and "The Water Engine." His performance as the Crane patriarch, Martin, earned him a recent Golden Globe nomination as Best Supporting Actor.
Mahoney lives in Chicago.