Robert Urich Biography


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Birth Name: Robert Urich
Born: 12/19/1946
Birth Place: Toronto, Ohio, USA


After enjoying a standout career as an offensive lineman at Florida State University, Urich caught the acting bug while working as an account executive at WGN-Radio in Chicago. Dismissed by the station when his boss learned he was moonlighting, he performed professionally in the Chicago area before moving to Los Angeles and making his feature debut as one of the bad cops in Michael Cimino's "Magnum Force" (1973), starring Clint Eastwood. That same year he also made his small-screen debut as a series regular in "Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice" (ABC), inspired by the 1969 feature film directed by Paul Mazursky. Though its run was brief, Urich had found his niche in TV, going on to co-star in "S.W.A.T." (ABC, 1975-76), play tennis pro Peter Campbell on ABC's "Soap" in 1977 and co-star in "Tabitha" (ABC, 1977-78) before scoring his first certifiable hit with "Vega$". After three years there and a short-lived starring turn as "Gavilan" (NBC, 1982-83), the planets lined up for him again, and he landed the title role in "Spencer: For Hire", based on the Robert B Parker detective novels.

In addition to starring in the features "Endangered Species" (1982), "The Ice Pirates" (1984) and "Turk 182!" (1985), Urich has had major roles in well over 30 miniseries and TV-movies, perhaps most notably in the Emmy-winning "Lonesome Dove" (CBS, 1989), which established his Western persona and led to his casting as "The Lazarus Man". He also appeared in a final salute to the Cold War, the miniseries "Amerika" (ABC, 1987), and the true-crime drama "Blind Faith" (NBC, 1990), as well as co-starring opposite Faye Dunaway in the short-lived CBS sitcom "It Had to Be You" (1993). Urich hosted "National Geographic Explorer" on the Turner Broadcasting System (TBS) from 1991-1994, earning both an Emmy and a CableACE Award for his efforts. Following his bout with cancer, he hosted ABC's short-lived medical anthology "Vital Signs" and the 13-part PBS documentary series "Boatworks" (both 1997). He was back in the saddle as Captain of "The Love Boat: The Next Wave" (UPN, 1998-99), moving past Harry Morgan as the actor with the most regular series roles (12),




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