Television & Film

Actor Dean Stockwell Dead at 85

Legendary Actor Dean Stockwell, an Oscar and Emmy nominated star whose career spanned over seven decades and 200 credits, died the morning of November 7th at home due to natural causes. He was 85.

Born March 5th, 1936 in North Hollywood, his entrance onto Broadway came was when he was seven, appearing in The Innocent Voyage and launching his career as a child actor. Two years later, MGM signed Stockwell on a contract where he appeared in The Valley of Decision and Anchors Aweigh along with Frank Sinatra and Gene Kelly. He was also featured in Gentlemen’s Agreement, The Boy With the Green Hair, The Secret Garden, and Down to the Sea in Ships, all before 1950.

Gentleman’s Agreement earned Stockwell his first Golden Globe. In 1959 and 1962 Stockwell won Best Actor in the Cannes Film Festival for his work in Compulsion and Long Day’s Journey into Night, respectively.

At one point in his career, Stockwell was about to leave Hollywood after receiving his real estate license, until actor Harry Dean Stanton called Stockwell and convinced him to join the cast of the 1984 film Paris, Texas. Stockwell then went to act in a multitude of films including: Blue Velvet, Dune, Married to the Mob (for which he earned an Oscar nomination), To Live and Die in L.A., Beverly Hills Cop II, The Player, Air Force One, and more.

But Stockwell is perhaps best known for his work as Admiral “Al” Calavicci opposite Scott Bakula in Quantum Leap from March 1989 to May 1993. His performance earned him a second Golden Globe and led to 4 back-to-back nominations for Emmy Awards from 1990-1993 in the category of Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series, though he never won.  Stockwell and Bakula would later reunite on both Star Trek: Enterprise and NCIS: New Orleans. Stockwell also played a significant role in the rebooted Battlestar Galactica as Brother John Cavil.

After Stockwell retired in 2015, started touring the country with his mixed media art, presenting it under his full name, Robert Dean Stockwell. He is survived by his wife, Joy, and their two children, Austin and Sophie.

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