Arliss Howard is an American actor, director, and screenwriter, known for his stellar performances, as a Texan named ‘Cowboy’ in Stanley Kubrick’s ‘Full Metal Jacket’ (1987), as ‘Peter Ludlow’ in ‘The Lost World: Jurassic Park’ (1997), and as ‘Richard DeTamble’ in ‘The Time Traveler’s Wife ‘(2009). While many viewers believe Arliss Howard had made his debut with Kubrick’s film, the actor had already appeared as an innocent vacuum cleaner salesman in ‘Door to Door’ (1984). He had also appeared as a baby-faced high-school boy in ‘Plain Clothes’ (1988). Growing into the 1990s, Howard played characters that were considered “second fiddle” to top actors of the era. He was part of the Jessica Lange-starrer ‘Men Don’t Leave’ (1990). He played a disturbed Vietnam vet in ‘Crisscross’ (1992) and also appeared in ‘For the Boys’ (1991). His first marriage, with Karen Mary Sellars, was short-lived. He married Debra Winger in 1996. He has two sons: Sam Howard, from his first marriage, and Gideon “Babe” Howard, from his second marriage.
Childhood & Education
Arliss Howard was born on October 18, 1954, in Independence, Missouri. He graduated from ‘Truman High School’ and ‘Columbia College’ in Missouri, after which he joined theater.
He received formal training in acting at the prestigious ‘Actors Studio’ in New York.
He is the son of Richard “Dick” Howard and Barbara (Peavy). He is the elder brother of Jim Howard, who is a screenwriter, author, poet, and computer game creator. He has two other siblings, sister Joy Howard and younger brother Kip Howard.
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Howard rose to fame with his performances in ‘Natural Born Killers’ and ‘Ruby.’ He essayed the character of ‘Peter Ludlow,’ a manipulative and greedy businessman, with ease in ‘Jurassic Park’s sequel, ‘The Lost World: Jurassic Park.’
Howard appeared in the 2011 movie ‘Moneyball’ and the ‘CBS’ weekly drama series ‘Medium.’ He directed two films: ‘Big Bad Love’ (2002) and ‘Dawn Anna’ (2005). The screenplays of both the films were co-written by him with his brother Jim Howard. His wife, Debra Winger, starred in both these movies.
He was not credited for his performance as a USO performer in Bette Midler’s ‘GI Husband.’
Two of his notable TV movies are ‘I Know My First Name is Steven’ (1989) and ‘Iran: Days of Crisis’ (1991).
He essayed the character of a duplicitous supervisor working for an American intelligence agency in the cerebral TV series ‘Rubicon,’ which was withdrawn by ‘AMC’ after 13 episodes.
Howard served as a guest at the ‘Graceland University,’ performing in and directing Thornton Wilder’s American classic ‘Our Town,’ the “Homecoming Play” of 2012 and the inaugural production of the ‘JR Black Box Theatre,’ in the newly expanded ‘Shaw Center.’ He imparted acting and directing lessons to ‘Graceland’ theater students during his 6-week residency in Lamoni.
He has directed many stage plays and has appeared in a few, such as ‘The Monogamist,’; ‘How I Learned to Drive,’ featuring his wife Debra Winger, at the ‘American Repertory Theater’; ‘The Late Henry Moss’ at the ‘Signature Theatre’ in New York; ‘Fool for Love’ at ‘Alley Theatre’; and ‘Geography of Luck’ at the ‘Los Angeles Theatre Center.’
He has won extensive stage credits with performances at the ‘American Repertory Theater’ in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He has been featured in August Wilson’s 2009 revival of Joe Turner’s ‘Come and Gone’ on ‘Broadway,’ in Bertolt Brecht’s ‘In the Jungle of the Cities,’ and in Anton Chekhov’s ‘Uncle Vanya.’ He has also essayed the character of ‘Nikolai Ivanov’ in Chekhov’s ‘Ivanov.’
Family & Personal Life
Howard married actor Debra Winger on November 28, 1996.
He has two sons: Sam Howard (1987), born from his first marriage, to his talent agent Karen Mary Sellars, and Gideon “Babe” Howard (1997), born from his second marriage, to Debra Winger.
He is the stepfather of Noah Hutton. He is the son-in-law of actor Ruth Winger, Debra Winger’s mother.