John Spencer

John Spencer

  • Highest Rated: 93% WarGames (War Games) (1983)
  • Lowest Rated: 33% Hiding Out (1987)
  • Birthday: Dec 20, 1946
  • Birthplace: Not Available
  • Actor John Spencer was born John Speshock to a working-class family in Patterson, NJ, on December 20, 1946. He attended the Professional Children's High School in New York City, and while a student adopted the stage name John Spencer. Spencer began acting in his teens, and landed his first big break was he was cast as Henry Anderson on the TV series The Patty Duke Show. After the end of the show's run, Spencer resumed his education, enrolling at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck, NJ; he later transferred to New York University. In the early '70s, Spencer began pursuing a career as a stage actor in New York City, and in 1981, he won an Obie award for his performance in the play Still Life. In 1983, Spencer began working in film, appearing in supporting roles in two movies that year, War Games and Echoes. By the mid-'80s, Spencer was working steadily in movies and making frequent television guest shots; he was also earning increasing acclaim for his stage roles, receiving a Drama Desk Award nomination for his role in The Day Room in 1988.However, Spencer's first real brush with fame came in 1990, when he won the role of Tommy Mullany, a tough but goodhearted lawyer, on the hit TV series L.A. Law. While Spencer's regular guy looks seemed to rule him out of leading man roles, his success on L.A. Law established him as a first-call character actor, and he began scoring higher-profile roles in a variety of higher-profile films (such as Presumed Innocent, Copland, Forget Paris, and The Rock), while earning higher billing in made-for-TV movies, and appearing in stage roles as his schedule permitted. In 1999, Spencer's career received yet another boost when he was cast as Chief of Staff Leo McGarry on the acclaimed television series The West Wing; Spencer's work as part of the ensemble cast earned him a Screen Actor's Guild award in 2001 and 2002, and he was nominated for an Emmy five times for Best Supporting Actor, winning in 2002. In the same year that his character Leo suffered a heart attack on West Wing, Spencer sadly suffered the same fate: after a severe attack, he died among friends and family in a Los Angeles hospital in December, 2005. He was 58 years old.

Highest Rated Movies

Filmography

Movies

Rating

Title

Credit

Box
Office

Year

45% Ravenous General Slauson 1999
75% The Negotiator Travis 1998
60% Twilight Capt. Phil Egan 1998
No Score Yet O.K. Garage Bill Gunter 1998
No Score Yet Lesser Prophets (The Last Bet) Ed 1997
No Score Yet Cold Around the Heart Mike 1997
74% Cop Land Leo Crasky 1997
50% Albino Alligator Jack 1996
66% The Rock FBI Director Womack 1996
50% Forget Paris Jack 1995
No Score Yet Cafe Society Ray Davioni 1995
No Score Yet Perry Mason: The Case of the Grimacing Governor Al Rhinehart 1994
No Score Yet When No One Would Listen Walter Wheeler 1992
No Score Yet We're Talkin' Serious Money Rosemarie's Son 1992
No Score Yet In the Arms of a Killer Det. Vincent Cusack 1992
No Score Yet From The Files Of Joseph Wambaugh: A Jury Of One Actor 1992
60% Green Card Harry 1990
87% Presumed Innocent Det. Lipranzer 1990
78% Sea of Love Lieutenant 1989
52% Black Rain Oliver 1989
No Score Yet Simple Justice Inspector Sullivan 1989
No Score Yet Far from Home TV Preacher 1988
33% Hiding Out Bakey 1987
No Score Yet The Verne Miller Story (Gangland) (Verne Miller) George Sally 1987
50% Key Exchange Record Executive 1985
93% WarGames (War Games) Jerry 1983
No Score Yet Living Nightmare Stephen 1983

TV

Rating

Title

Credit

Year

75% The West Wing
1999-2006
Leo McGarry
  • 2006
  • 2005
  • 2004
  • 2003
  • 2002
  • 2001
  • 2000
  • 1999
No Score Yet The Outer Limits
1995-2002
Thurman
  • 1999
86% Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman
1993-1997
Hank Landry
  • 1997
No Score Yet Tracey Takes On...
1996-1999
  • 1997
No Score Yet Touched by an Angel
1994-2003
Leo
  • 1995
No Score Yet L.A. Law
1986-1994
Tommy Mullaney
  • 1994
  • 1993
  • 1992
  • 1991
  • 1990
  • 1987
No Score Yet Law & Order
1990-2010
Howard Morton
  • 1990
46% Trinity
1999
Simon McCallister

QUOTES FROM John Spencer CHARACTERS

No quotes approved yet.