Childhood & Early Life
Robert Loggia was born Salvatore Loggia on January 3, 1930, in Staten Island, New York, to Biagio Loggia and Elena Blandino. He went to ‘New Dorp High School’ and then attended ‘Wagner College.’
He enrolled at the ‘University of Missouri’ to pursue a degree in journalism, but later transferred to ‘Northwestern University’ where he attended drama classes under the tutelage of the famous drama teacher Alvina Krause.
Though Loggia’s father was not happy with his career choice, he allowed him to follow his passion. Before starting his acting career, Loggia served the ‘United States Army’ in the early 50s. He made his Broadway debut in 1955, when he was 25 years old.
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Robert Loggia made his film debut in 1956 when he was cast to play Frankie Peppo in the Robert Wise-directed drama film ‘Somebody Up There Likes Me.’ He was then seen playing minor roles in films, such as ‘The Garment Jungle,’ ‘Cop Hater,’ and ‘The Lost Missile.’
He received his big breakthrough when he was cast to play Elfego Baca in a series of ten ‘Walt Disney’ TV shows called ‘The Nine Lives of Elfego Baca.’ The shows were compiled and released as a film titled ‘Six Gun Law,’ in 1962.
In 1963, he played a prominent role in the Tay Garnett-directed western film ‘Cattle King.’ Meanwhile, he also appeared in many TV shows, such as ‘Alfred Hitchcock Presents’ and ‘The Wild Wild West.’ In 1966, he became part of the main cast of ‘NBC’ network’s action drama series ‘T.H.E. Cat’ in which he played Thomas Hewitt Edward Cat. His role in the series was similar to the one he had played in ‘The Nine Lives of Elfego Baca.’
He played Faustino Morales in the 1969 biographical drama film ‘Che!’ Directed by Richard Fleischer, the film is based on the life of Marxist revolutionary Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara. In 1974, he played Marches Gonzaga in an Italian action comedy film titled ‘Two Missionaries.’
In 1982, he portrayed Byron Mayo in the romantic drama film ‘An Officer and a Gentleman.’ In the same year, he also played Bruno Langois in the British comedy film ‘Trail of the Pink Panther.’ The following year, he reprised his role of Bruno Langois in ‘Curse of the Pink Panther’ and then played a prominent role in the American crime film ‘Scarface.’ He also became part of the main cast of a TV series titled ‘Emerald Point N.A.S.’
His performance in the 1985 film ‘Jagged Edge’ earned him an ‘Oscar’ nomination for ‘Best Supporting Actor.’ In 1987, he appeared in five films, namely ‘Over the Top,’ ‘Hot Pursuit,’ ‘The Believers,’ ‘Gaby: A True Story,’ and ‘Amazon Women on the Moon.’ In the same year, he was also seen in a TV film titled ‘Conspiracy: The Trial of the Chicago 8.’ He was nominated for ‘Cable ACE Award’ for ‘Best Actor in a Theatrical or Dramatic Special’ for his performance in ‘Conspiracy: The Trial of the Chicago 8.’
Loggia’s performance in the 1988 fantasy comedy film ‘Big’ earned him a ‘Saturn Award’ for ‘Best Supporting Actor.’ In 1989, he played the lead role in ‘NBC’ network’s crime drama series ‘Mancuso, F.B.I.’ The following year, he earned his first ‘Primetime Emmy Award’ nomination for playing Nick Mancuso in ‘Mancuso, F.B.I.’
In 1991, he was cast to play the lead role in the ‘CBS’ sitcom ‘Sunday Dinner.’ In 1992, his portrayal of Sallie ‘The Shark’ Macelli in the comedy horror film ‘Innocent Blood’ earned him a ‘Fangoria Chainsaw Award’ nomination for ‘Best Actor.’
In 1996, he played General William Grey in the epic science-fiction disaster film ‘Independence Day.’ The following year, he was cast to play important roles in four films, namely ‘Lost Highway,’ ‘Smilla's Sense of Snow,’ ‘The Dog of Flanders,’ and ‘The Don’s Analyst.’ In the next couple of years, he was seen in seven films, including ‘The Proposition’ and ‘American Virgin.’
He made a guest appearance in one of the episodes of the popular television sitcom ‘Malcolm in the Middle’ for which he was nominated at the 53rd ‘Primetime Emmy Awards’ for ‘Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series.’
In 2003, he was cast to play one of the main roles in ‘CBS’ network’s courtroom television series ‘Queens Supreme.’ In 2006, he appeared in four films, namely ‘Funny Money,’ ‘Rain,’ ‘Forget About It,’ and ‘Wild Seven.’
Loggia was honored with the ‘Charlotte Film Festival Award’ for ‘Best Actor’ for playing Siv in the 2010 film ‘Harvest.’ He played his last television role in ‘TNT’ network’s comedy-drama series ‘Men of a Certain Age.’ He continued appearing in films until his death in 2015. Three of his films, including ‘Independence Day: Resurgence’ were released posthumously in 2016.
Apart from acting in films and television series, Loggia appeared in many commercials as well. He also voiced important characters in video games, such as ‘Freespace 2,’ ‘Grand Theft Auto III,’ and ‘Scarface: The World Is Yours.’
Family & Personal Life
Robert Loggia’s parents were born in Italy. While his father was a shoemaker, his mother was a housewife. Loggia married Marjorie Sloan in 1954. The couple had three children, before they parted ways in 1981. He married Audrey O'Brien in 1982 and remained married to her until his death.
After suffering from Alzheimer’s disease for five years, Loggia passed away on December 4, 2015, at his home in Los Angeles, California.