Great Character Actors of Today #10

May 12, 2012

Name: Bruce Altman.

Known For: Supporting roles in many major films of the nineties (Regarding Henry, Glengarry Glen Ross, Quiz Show) and recurring or regular parts on Nothing Sacred, Help Me Help You, and Damages.

Typecasting: “I play guys with ties,” Altman says.  Meaning: lots of doctors, lawyers, and businessmen.

The Ethnic Factor: Like the more flamboyant Saul Rubinek, Altman’s cadenced speech has led to many explicitly Jewish roles, often of the menschy variety.

His Home Turf: A Yale Drama School grad who still lives in New Haven, Altman skews toward projects shot in New York, including the inevitable recurring role on Law and Order as one of an endless rotation of upper-crust sleazebag lawyers.

Where’d He Go?: Altman was initially listed in the cast of The American, the lean, European-lensed George Clooney hit-man movie that is one of my favorite recent English-language films … but apparently Altman was cut out of, or replaced in, the film.

Last Seen: As the mayor of New York City in Blue Bloods, desperately trying to punch up a stock character in a bland cop show.

Dream Role: In an interview with the New Haven Independent, Altman says he’d like to play Willy Loman in Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman.  Consider my ticket bought.

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