Paul Le Mat

Highest Rated: 100% Citizens Band (1977)
Birthday: Sep 22, 1945
Birthplace: Not Available
A one-time boxer and a veteran of the Vietnam War, actor Paul Le Mat made a career out of playing gruff, rugged male characters. After attending San Diego City College, Cypress Junior College, Chapman College, and L.A. Valley College following graduation from Newport Harbor High School, the New Jersey native became a war hero after winning a National Defense Medal, a Vietnam Service Medal, and a George Washington Honor Medal for his heroic wartime actions. Though he considered a career in the ring after winning the L.A. Diamond Belt and Southern Pacific Boxing Championship in the early '70s, Le Mat decided on a less physically-intensive career path, and studied acting at the Mitchell Ryan Actors' Studio and San Francisco's American Conservatory Theater. His role as a tire-squealing drag racer in George Lucas' American Graffiti earned the actor a Most Promising Newcomer award at the 1974 Golden Globe Awards, but Le Mat's star waned after a memorable role as a CB coordinator in Jonathan Demme's Handle With Care (1977). He reprised his American Graffiti role in the film's 1979 sequel, but after appearing in Demme's underappreciated Melvin and Howard and a menacing, Golden Globe-winning performance in the harrowing domestic drama The Burning Bed, good parts became scarce. By the 1990s, Le Mat's roles had gone from leading to supporting, and aside from American History X (1998), most of his roles were in bottom-of-the-barrel, B-grade schlock. Genre fans still relished in his performances in such fare as Grave Secrets and Puppet Master (both 1989), but the most exposure Le Mat received in the '90s was his role as the mayor in the Western series Lonesome Dove: The Outlaw Years. In 2001, Le Mat received his most substantial dramatic role in years as the best friend to a troubled Vietnam veteran in Arliss Howard's Big Bad Love.

Highest Rated Movies

Filmography

MOVIES

CREDIT
No Score Yet Cyborg Conquest (Chrome Angels) Elliot 2009
No Score Yet Tales of the Rat Fink Crusin' 2006
No Score Yet The Long Shot: Believe in Courage Guido 2004
41% Big Bad Love Monroe $0.2M 2001
No Score Yet Citizen's Band Actor 2000
No Score Yet The Outfitters Robby 1999
83% American History X McMahon 1998
No Score Yet Sensation Mitch Snyder 1994
No Score Yet Deep Down Ray 1994
No Score Yet Woman with a Past Merle 1994
No Score Yet Caroline at Midnight Emmet 1993
No Score Yet In the Line of Duty: Siege at Marion Doug Bodrero 1992
No Score Yet Easy Wheels Bruce 1990
No Score Yet Blind Witness Det. Tuthill 1989
50% Puppet Master Alex 1989
No Score Yet Grave Secrets David Shaw 1989
No Score Yet P.I. Private Investigations Detective Wexler 1987
No Score Yet P.K. and the Kid Kid Kane 1987
No Score Yet Into the Homeland Derrick Winston 1987
No Score Yet The Hanoi Hilton Hubman 1987
No Score Yet Long Time Gone Actor 1986
No Score Yet On Wings of Eagles Coburn 1986
No Score Yet The Night They Saved Christmas Michael Baldwin 1984
No Score Yet The Burning Bed Mickey Hughes 1984
63% Strange Invaders Charles Bigelow 1983
No Score Yet Rock And Rule Omar [speaking] 1983
No Score Yet Jimmy the Kid John Dortmunder 1982
No Score Yet Death Valley Mike 1982
90% Melvin and Howard Melvin Dummar 1980
20% More American Graffiti John $8.2M 1979
100% Citizens Band Spider 1977
No Score Yet Aloha, Bobby and Rose Bobby 1975
96% American Graffiti John 1973
No Score Yet Firehouse Bill Dalzell 1973

TV

CREDIT
No Score Yet Grace Under Fire
1993-1998
Stranger
  • 1995
No Score Yet Murder, She Wrote
1984-1996
Luke Perdue
  • 1988
No Score Yet The Twilight Zone
1985-1989
  • 1988
  • 1986

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