BWW TV: Langella - Different Stages
Three-time Tony Award winner Frank Langella is among the American theater world's greatest living actors. Though he gained recognition as a film star in the 1970s, the stage has always been his first love.
His career off-Broadway was launched with an Obie Award in 1965 for his performance in poet-playwright Robert Lowell's The Old Glory: Benito Cereno. His other major off-Broadway productions include Edmond Rostand's Cyrano, Arthur Miller's After the Fall, John Webster's The White Devil, Heinrich von Kleist's The Prince of Homburg, Andre Gide's The Immortalist and Shakespeare's The Tempest.
Langella's triumphs on Broadway include Tony Awards for Edward Albee's Seascape, for Turgeneve's Fortune's Fool and last year for his role as President Richard Nixon in the New York production of Frost/Nixon. He also received a Tony nomination for his performance in Belber's Match and Hamilton Dean's Dracula and has starred on Broadway in productions of Strindgerg's The Father, Coward's Present Laughter and Design for Living, Shaffer's Amadeus, Rabe's Hurlyburly, Nichols' Passion, Marowitz's Sherlock's Last Case, Gibson's A Cry of Players and Lorca's Yerma among others.
Born in Bayonne, New Jersey, Langella studied acting at Syracuse Universiry before beginning his professional career in New York. He got his first break on screen when he was cast in Frank Perry's 1970 drama Diary of a Mad Housewife, co-starring with Richard Benjamin and Carrie Snodgress. The film earned him a Golden Globe nomination and an award from the National Board of Review for Best Supporting Actor. That same year, he starred in Mel Brooks The Twelve Chairs. A successful remake of Dracula, directed by John Badham, brought him to pop-culture stardom at that decade.
Some of his other past films are George Clooney's Oscar-nominated Good Night, and Good Luck, the box-office hit Superman Returns and the drama Starting Out in the Evening. He has also starred in Adrian Lyne's controversial Lolita, the hit comedy Dave, Ridley Scott's 1492: Conquest of Paradise, a humorous tribute to summer stock, Those Lips, Those Eyes; the touching drama I'm Losing You; David Duchovny's House of D; and The Ninth Gate, directed by Roman Polanski.
On television, Langella received an Emmy nomination for his work on I, Leonardo: A Journey of the Mind. Other major work on television includes PBS' productions of Eccentricities of a Nightingale and Chekhov's The Seagull; ABC's The Beast; HBO's Doomsday Gun; and Vonnegut's Monkey House for Showtime, which earned him a CableACE Award. He also starred in all 10 episodes of the short-lived but widely praised HBO series Unscripted.
Langella was inducted into the Theatre Hall of Fame in 2003. In addition to his three Tony Awards, he has won five Drama Desks, three Obies, two Outer Critics Circles and a Drama Lauge Award. Several dozen credits in America's leading regional theaters include Hampton's Les Liaisons Dangereuses, Anouilh's Ring Round the Moon, Whiting's The Devils, Bolt's A Man for All Seasons, Lerner & Loewe's My Fair Lady, Shepard's The Tool of Crime and Barker's Scenes From an Execution.