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Tommy Lee Jones (born September 15, 1946) is an American actor and director.

His film roles include federal marshal Samuel Gerard in The Fugitive and U.S. Marshals, the villain "Two-Face" in Batman Forever, the completely insane terrorist William Strannix in Under Siege, the mysterious Agent K in the Men in Black films, Western peace officers Woodrow F. Call in Lonesome Dove and Ed Tom Bell in No Country for Old Men. Jones has also portrayed real-life figures such as billionaire Howard Hughes, executed murderer Gary Gilmore and baseball great Ty Cobb.

Early life

Jones was born in San Saba, Texasmarker, the son of Lucille Marie (née Scott), a police officer, school teacher, and beauty shop owner, and Clyde C. Jones, an oil field worker; the two were married and divorced twice. Jones, an eighth-generation Texan of Welsh descent, had a Cherokee grandparent. He was a resident of Midland, Texasmarker and attended Robert E. Lee High School.

Jones graduated from the St. Mark's School of Texasmarker, where he is now on the board of directors, and attended Harvard Collegemarker on a need-based scholarship, staying in Mower B-12 as a freshman, across the hall from future Vice President Al Gore. As an upperclassman, he was roommates with Gore and Bob Somerby, who later became editor of the media criticism site the Daily Howler. Another actor who rose to prominence, John Lithgow, also lived in Dunster Housemarker. Jones played offensive guard on Harvard's undefeated 1968 varsity football team, was nominated as a first-team All-Ivy League selection, and played in the memorable and literal last-minute Harvard sixteen-point comeback to tie Yale in the 1968 Game. Jones graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in English in 1969.


Jones moved to New Yorkmarker to become an actor, making his Broadwaymarker debut in 1969's A Patriot for Me in a number of supporting roles. In 1970, he landed his first film role, appropriately playing a Harvard student in Love Story (Erich Segal, the author of "Love Story," said that he based the lead character of Oliver on the two undergrad roommates he knew while teaching at Harvard, Jones and Gore).

In early 1971, he returned to Broadway in Abe Burrows' Four on a Garden where he shared the stage with Carol Channing and Sid Caesar. Between 1971 and 1975, he portrayed Dr. Mark Toland on the ABC soap opera, One Life to Live. He returned to the stage for a 1974 production of Ulysses in Nighttown with Zero Mostel. In films, he played an escaped convict hunted in Jackson County Jail (1976), a Vietnam veteran in Rolling Thunder (1977) and an automobile mogul, co-starring with Laurence Olivier, in the Harold Robbins drama The Betsy.

In 1980, Jones earned his first Golden Globe nomination for his portrayal of country singer Loretta Lynn's husband, Doolittle "Mooney" Lynn, in the popular Coal Miner's Daughter. In 1981, he played a drifter opposite Sally Field in Back Roads, a comedy that received middling reviews.

In 1983, he received an Emmy for Best Actor for his performance as murderer Gary Gilmore in a TV adaptation of Norman Mailer's The Executioner's Song. That same year he starred in a pirate adventure, Nate and Hayes, playing the heavily bearded Captain Bully Hayes.

In 1989, he earned another Emmy nomination for his portrayal of Texas Ranger lawman Woodrow F. Call in the acclaimed television mini-series Lonesome Dove, based on the best-seller by Larry McMurtry.

In the 1990s, blockbuster hits such as The Fugitive co-starring Harrison Ford, Batman Forever co-starring Val Kilmer, and Men in Black with Will Smith made Jones one of the best-paid and most in-demand actors in Hollywoodmarker. His role in The Fugitive won wide acclaim and an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. When he accepted his Oscar, his head was shaved for his role in the film Cobb, a situation he made light of in his speech with: "All a man can say at a time like this is 'I am not really bald.'"

Among his other well-known performances during the 1990s were those as an accused conspirator in the John F. Kennedy assassination in 1991's JFK (earning him another Oscar nomination), as a terrorist who hijacks a U.S. Navy battleship in 1992's Under Siege and as a maximum-security prison warden in way over his head in 1994's Natural Born Killers.

Jones co-starred with director Clint Eastwood as astronauts in the 2000 film Space Cowboys, leading a space rescue mission.

In 2005, the first theatrical feature film Jones directed, The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada, was presented at the 2005 Cannes Film Festival. In it, Jones speaks both English and Spanish. It won him the Best Actor Award. His first film as a director had been in The Good Old Boys in 1995, a made-for-television movie.

Two strong performances in 2007 marked a resurgence in Jones' career, one as a beleaguered father investigating the disappearance of his soldier son in In the Valley of Elah, the other as a Texas sheriff hunting an assassin in the Oscar-winning No Country for Old Men. For the former, he was nominated for an Academy Award.

Jones has been a spokesperson for Japanese brewing company Suntory since 2006. He can be seen in various Japanese TV commercials of Suntory's Coffee brand Boss as a character called "Alien Jones," an extraterrestrial who takes the form of a human being to check on the world of humans. There are 21 such commercials that can be seen on YouTube.

Personal life

At the 2000 Democratic National Convention, he presented the nominating speech for his college roommate, Al Gore, as the Democratic Party's nominee for President of the United States.

Jones was married to Kate Lardner, the daughter of Ring Lardner Jr. from 1971 to 1978. Jones has two children from his second marriage to Kimberlea Cloughley, the daughter of Phil Hardberger, the mayor of San Antonio: Austin Leonard (born 1982) and Victoria Kafka (born 1991). On March 19, 2001, he married his third wife, Dawn Laurel.

Jones resides in Terrell Hills, Texasmarker, a town near San Antoniomarker. He reportedly owns a large ranch in San Saba County, Texas off Chappell Hill Road. He also owns another ranch near Van Horn, Texasmarker which served as the set for Jones' film The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada.

Film and television credits

Year Film Role Notes
1970 Love Story Hank Simpson
1971 One Life to Live Dr. Mark Toland TV soap opera
1973 Life Study Gus
1975 Eliza's Horoscope Tommy Lee
1976 Charlie's Angels Aram Kolegian TV, 1 episode
Smash-Up on Interstate 5 Officer Hutton TV
Jackson County Jail Coley Blake
Family David Needham TV, 1 episode
1977 The Amazing Howard Hughes Howard Hughes
Rolling Thunder Corporal Johnny Vohden
1978 The Betsy Angelo Perino
Eyes of Laura Mars John Neville
1980 Coal Miner's Daughter Doolittle 'Mooney' Lynn aka 'Doo' Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
Barn Burning Ab Snopes TV
1981 Back Roads Elmore Pratt
1982 The Executioner's Song Gary Mark Gilmore Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor - Miniseries or a Movie
The Rainmaker Starbuck TV
1983 Nate and Hayes Captain Bully Hayes
1984 The River Rat Billy
1985 Cat on a Hot Tin Roof Brick Pollitt TV
1986 The Park is Mine Mitch TV
Black Moon Rising Quint
Yuri Nosenko, KGB Steve Daley TV
1987 Broken Vows Pater Joseph McMahon TV
The Big Town George Cole
1988 Stranger on My Land Bud Whitman TV
April Morning Moses Cooper TV
Stormy Monday Cosmo
Gotham Eddie Mallard TV
1989 Lonesome Dove Woodrow F. Call Nominated — Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor - Miniseries or a Movie
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor - Series, Miniseries or Television Film
The Package Thomas Boyette
1990 Fire Birds Brad Little
1991 JFK Clay Shaw/Clay Bertrand Nominated — Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated — BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role
1992 Under Siege William Strannix
1993 Heaven & Earth Steve Butler
House of Cards Jake Beerlander
The Fugitive Marshal Samuel Gerard Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor
Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture
KCFCC Award for Best Supporting Actor
LAFCA Award for Best Supporting Actor
SEFCA Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated — BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role

1994 Blown Away Ryan Gaerity
The Client 'Reverend' Roy Foltrigg
Natural Born Killers Warden Dwight McClusky
Blue Sky Maj. Henry 'Hank' Marshall
Cobb Ty Cobb
1995 The Good Old Boys Hewey Calloway also Director
Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Miniseries or Television Movie
Batman Forever Harvey Dent/Two-Face
1997 Volcano Mike Roark
Men in Black Kevin Brown/Agent K Satellite Award for Best Actor - Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
1998 U.S. Marshals Chief Deputy Marshal Samuel Gerard
Small Soldiers Chip Hazard Voice
1999 Double Jeopardy Travis Lehman
2000 Rules of Engagement Col. Hayes 'Hodge' Hodges
Space Cowboys Hawk Hawkins
2002 Men in Black II Kevin Brown/Agent K
2003 The Hunted L.T. Bonham
The Missing Samuel Jones/Chaa-duu-ba-its-iidan
2005 Man of the House Roland Sharp
The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada Pete Perkins also Director
Best Actor Award
Nominated — Palme d'Or
Nominated — Independent Spirit Award for Best Feature (shared with Michael Fitzgerald, Luc Besson and Pierre-Ange Le Pogam)
Nominated — Satellite Award for Best Actor - Motion Picture Drama

2006 A Prairie Home Companion Axeman
2007 No Country for Old Men Ed Tom Bell San Diego Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated — BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role

In the Valley of Elah Hank Deerfield Nominated — Academy Award for Best Actor
Nominated — London Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor
Nominated — Satellite Award for Best Actor - Motion Picture Drama

2009 In the Electric Mist Dave Robicheaux completed
2010 The Company Men Gene McClary post-production


  2. Tommy Lee Jones Biography (1946-)
  3. Eric O'Keefe :: WD Ranch
  4. Tommy Lee Jones - Trailer - Showtimes - Cast - Movies - New York Times

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