Birthday: August 25, 1933
Age: 86 Years, 86 Year Old Males
Sun Sign: Virgo
Also Known As: Thomas Roy Tom Skerritt, Thomas Roy Skerritt
Born Country: United States
Born in: Detroit, Michigan
Famous as: Actor
Height: 6'0" (183 cm), 6'0" Males
Spouse/Ex-: Julie Tokashiki (m. 1998), Charlotte Shanks (m. 1957–1972), Sue Oran (m. 1977–1992)
father: Roy Skerritt
mother: Helen Skerritt
children: Andy Skerritt, Colin Skerritt, Erin Skerritt, Matt Skerritt
City: Detroit, Michigan
U.S. State: Michigan
education: Wayne State University, University of California, Los Angeles
Ton Skerritt is a well-known American actor, who has appeared in over 40 films and 200 TV episodes. He is best known for his handsome, rugged, and outdoorsy appearance and has matured with age. This makes him ideally suited to play the role of a soldier, a sheriff, or a father. He worked for four years in the American Air Force during his early years and that has definitely helped him in his career. Many of his roles are that of the villain. He made his acting debut in the film ‘War Hunt’ and got his big break in the American satirical war film ‘MASH,’ followed by ‘Harold and Maude.’ He made his debut on the small screen as a soldier in the ‘ABC’ series ‘Combat.’ He won the ‘Best Supporting Actor’ award at the ‘National Board of Review of Motion Pictures’ for his performance in ‘The Turning Point’ and received an ‘Emmy Award’ for ‘Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series’ for his role as ‘Sheriff Jimmy Brock’ in ‘Picket Fences.’ Skerritt married Charlotte Shanks when he was still very young, and the couple had three children. However, the marriage ended in a divorce, and he later married Sue Oran, with whom he had a son. His second marriage also ended in a divorce, and he finally married Julie Tokashiki, his current wife.
Childhood & Early Life
Thomas Roy Skerritt was born on August 25, 1933, in Detroit, Michigan, US, to Helen and Roy Skerritt. His father was a businessman, and his mother was a homemaker. He had two other siblings who were older than him.
He graduated from ‘Mackenzie High School’ in 1951 and then attended ‘Wayne State University’ and the ‘University of California, Los Angeles’ (UCLA). He was first noticed in a university production of ‘The Rainmaker.’ He joined the ‘United States Air Force,’ where he served for four years before taking up acting as a profession.
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He made his big-screen debut alongside Robert Redford, as ‘Sergeant Stan Showalter’ in the 1962 film ‘War Hunt,’ directed by Denis Sanders. His experience with the armed forces helped him get a role in the 1970 American black-comedy war film ‘MASH,’ which became an instant hit. This was closely followed by his appearance in ‘Harold and Maude’ in 1971.
In 1972, he played the role of ‘Detective Bert Kling,’ in the action comedy ‘Fuzz,’ directed by Richard A. Colla. He then took a short break from movies, and returned in 1974 with four movies, including ‘Big Bad Mama’ and ‘The Night Stalker.’
He played the significant role of ‘Wayne Rodgers’ in the drama ‘The Turning Point,’ which was nominated for eleven ‘Academy Awards,’ including the ‘Best Picture’ in 1977. He starred in the science-fiction horror ‘Alien’ in 1979 and proved himself to be a versatile actor in the role of ‘Captain Dallas,’ the captain and the only human crew member of a space ship.
During the 1980s, he appeared in a number of popular films, including ‘Silence of the North’ and ‘Maid to Order.’ The romantic military action–drama ‘Top Gun,’ which released in 1986, featured him alongside Tom Cruise and Kelly McGillis.
He played the role of ‘Darryl Cooper’ in the 1992 thriller–drama movie ‘Poison Ivy,’ directed by Katt Shea, alongside Drew Barrymore and Sara Gilbert. He was also seen in the coming-of-age drama ‘A River Runs Through It,’ directed by Robert Redford the same year.
To date, he has acted in more than 40 films, including his latest appearances as ‘Ron’ in ‘A Hologram for the King’ (2016) and as ‘Fred’ in the drama film ‘Lucky’ (2017).
He has appeared in over two hundred TV episodes in the course of his acting career. His debut on the small screen was as a soldier in the series ‘Combat,’ from 1962 to 1967, on ‘ABC.’
He played ‘Dr. Frank Farmer’ in the episode ‘Run for Doom’ of ‘The Alfred Hitchcock Hour’ in 1963. He also had recurring roles in ‘Death Valley Days’ (1963–1968) and ‘Twelve O’Clock High’ (1964–1967).
His longest-running radio and TV series was the Western drama ‘Gunsmoke,’ directed by Norman Macdonnell, which ran from 1965 to 1972. During this period, he also appeared in the serial ‘The F.B.I.’ (1966–1972).
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He has made several guest appearances during his career and has experimented with a variety of roles. His latest appearances on TV include the role of ‘James Paisley’ in ‘The Good Wife’ (2014) and that of ‘Patrick McCord’ in ‘Madam Secretary’ (2015).
Skerritt has made a few stage appearances too, including his performance with Lee Remick in ‘Love Letters’ in 1990 and his performance in the Seattle production of ‘Our Town’ in 2004.
He has also worked behind the camera and has directed a few TV serials, including the ‘ABC Afterschool Special’ episode ‘A Question About Sex’ that addressed the topic of birth control. He directed a few episodes of the award-winning serial ‘Picket Fences,’ in which he acted too.
His most noteworthy films include ‘MASH’ (1970), ‘Big Bad Mama’ (1974), ‘The Turning Point’ (1977), ‘Alien’ (1979), ‘Silence of the North’ (1981), ‘Top Gun’ (1986), ‘Maid to Order’ (1987), ‘The Rookie’ (1990), ‘Poison Ivy’ (1992), ‘A River Runs Through It’ (1992), ‘Texas Rangers’ (2001), and ‘Redwood Highway’ (2013).
His major TV appearances have been for the series ‘Combat’ (1962 – 1967), ‘The Virginian’ (1962– 1971), ‘Death Valley Days’ (1963–1968), ‘Twelve O’Clock High’ (1964–1967), ‘Gunsmoke’ (1965–1972), ‘The F.B.I.’ (1966–1972), ‘Cannon’ (1971–1975), ‘Cheers’ (1987–1988), ‘Picket Fences’ (1992–1996), ‘Huff’ (2006) and ‘Brothers & Sisters’ (2006–2008).
Awards & Achievements
He won the award for the ‘Best Supporting Actor’ at the 1977 ‘National Board of Review of Motion Pictures’ for his performance in ‘The Turning Point.’
He received an ‘Emmy Award’ for ‘Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series’ for his role as ‘Sheriff Jimmy Brock’ in ‘Picket Fences’ in 1993.
In 2003, he won the ‘Best Audio Commentary’ award at the ‘DVD Exclusive Awards’ for his performance in ‘Alien.’
He was awarded the ‘Best Guest Performer on Television’ at the 2011 ‘Saturn Awards’ for his performance in ‘Leverage.’
He also won a ‘Western Heritage Award’ for the ‘Best Television Feature Film,’ along with the cast and crew, for his role in ‘Two for Texas.’
Skerritt married Charlotte Shanks in 1957 and had three children, Andy, Erin, and Matt. The couple divorced in 1972. In 1977, he married Sue Oran, who ran a bed-and-breakfast inn. They had a son, Colin. However, the relationship ended in 1992. He then met his current wife, Julie Tokashiki, and got married for the third time, in 1998. The couple has adopted a daughter, and he divides his time between his Lake Washington residence and his home on Lopez Island, which is part of the San Luan Islands.
Tom appeared in commercials too, which included his campaigns for ‘Guess’ jeans (1996) and the ‘Kansas Medical Center’ (2006).
He is the co-founder of the Seattle-based film program that prepares students for a career in screenwriting and filmmaking. He also takes classes at the institute.