William Petersen Biography

William Petersen is an American actor and producer. Check out this biography to know about his birthday, childhood, family life, achievements and fun facts about him.

Quick Facts

Birthday: February 21, 1953

Nationality: American

Famous: Actors American Men

Age: 66 Years, 66 Year Old Males

Sun Sign: Pisces

Also Known As: William Louis Petersen

Born in: Evanston, Illinois

Famous as: Actor


Spouse/Ex-: Gina Cirone (m. 2003), Joanne Brady (m. 1974–1981)

children: Maite Petersen

U.S. State: Illinois

More Facts

education: Idaho State University, Bishop Kelly High School

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William Petersen is an American actor and producer best recognized for appearing as Gil Grissom in CBS’ drama series ‘CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,’ for which he earned a Golden Globe Award nomination and a Screen Actors Guild Award. He also garnered three Primetime Emmy Award nominations as the producer of the show. Born in Evanston, Illinois, as the youngest of six children to his parents, Petersen attended Idaho State University on a sport scholarship following high school. He then took an acting course at Idaho State and went on to study as a Shakespearean actor, eventually landing roles on stage and ultimately on the small screen. Petersen has also been active in movies since 1981. His most notable performances include those of Will Graham in ‘Manhunter’, Jack Hathaway in ‘The Contender,’ and Sarge in ‘Detachment.’ A father of three, Petersen has been married to his longtime girlfriend Gina Cirone since 2003. The actor also has two grandsons.

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  • William Petersen received his first break in 1985 when he played a Secret Service agent in William Friedkin's action movie ‘To Live and Die in L.A.’. A year later, he made his television debut in an episode of ‘The Twilight Zone’ and also played a role in the first Hannibal Lecter flick, ‘Manhunter’. Soon after this, he worked in HBO’s TV film ‘Long Gone’ as a minor baseball player and manager Cecil Cantrell. In the year 1990, the actor portrayed the legendary Patrick Floyd Garrett in ‘Young Guns II’. That year, he played the lead role in the miniseries ‘The Kennedys of Massachusetts’ which focused primarily on the married life of Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr. and Rose Kennedy.
  • Petersen next produced as well as starred in Martin Davidson’s romantic comedy ‘Hard Promises’. In 1993, he featured in three episodes of ‘Return to Lonesome Dove’. Three years later, he appeared in ‘Fear’, a physiological thriller revolving around a rich family whose apparently perfect existence is threatened as their young daughter starts dating a charming and mysterious guy, much to her father's chagrin. After this, the actor was cast as Jeff in ‘Kiss the Sky’, a drama film about two adult men, friends since college, who travel together on a professional trip to the Philippines.
  • In 2000, he joined the cast of CBS’ crime series ‘CSI: Crime Scene Investigation’ as Dr. Gil Grissom. That year, he also played the role of Jack Hathaway in the political drama film ‘The Contender’ and earned a Critics Choice Movie Award for his performance in the same. In 2011, Petersen featured in the drama movie ‘Detachment’ as Sarge. The following year, he starred in the romantic comedy ‘Seeking a Friend for the End of the World’. He next played Col. Emmett Darrow in the sitcom ‘Manhattan’.
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Family & Personal Life
  • William Petersen was born on February 21, 1953, in Evanston, Illinois, USA, to Arthur Edward Petersen and Helen June. He has three sisters: Mary Kay, Anne, and Elizabeth, and two brothers, Robert and Arthur Jr. He studied at Bishop Kelly High School and later attended Idaho State University with a football scholarship.
  • In 2003, the actor married his sweetheart, Gina Cirone. The couple welcomed twins via surrogacy in June 2011. Petersen also has a daughter named Maite from his previous marriage. He has two grandsons, Indigo August and Mazrik William.

How To Cite

Article Title
- William Petersen Biography
- Editors, TheFamousPeople.com
- TheFamousPeople.com
Last Updated
- March 05, 2019
William Petersen

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