Born Samuel Pack Elliott, on August 9, 1944 in Sacramento, California.
Tall, wirey, and sexy. A voice so low that it often seems little more than a growl. To some, these are the very essence of masculinity. These are the traits that first made Hollywood take notice of Sam Elliott. After a bit part in Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid (1969), Sam was cast based on his sex appeal in films such as The Games (1970), Lifeguard (1976), and The Legacy (1979), in which he worked closely with future wife Katherine Ross. Sam and his thicker-than-Selleck's moustache even posed for Playgirl (non-nude) in the Oct. 1979 issue, but even then he didn't want to be known just for his looks.
Sam then started filming westerns and action-thrillers, often made for television, for most of the late 70's and through the 80's. Highlights include The Sacketts (1979) and The Shadow Riders (1982) for Turner Network, and Mask (1985) in which he played Cher's romantic interest and garnered many female fans. Oddly enough, even though the western genre had been pretty much given up on by Hollywood, Sam continued to play cowboys throughout the nineties as well as the occasional military man in films such as Tombstone (1993) and Gettysburg (1993). He also produced, co-wrote and starred in an adaptation of Louis L'Amour's Conagher (1991), earning Emmy and Golden Globe nominations and winning a Western Heritage Award. Sam dedicated the film to L'Amour, who had passed away by that time.
Likely thanks to a small part in the Coen brothers' The Big Lebowski (1998), Sam started playing more diverse roles in the next decade, starting with the live-to-air Fail Safe (2000), The Contender (2000), and Off The Map (2003). The exposure from these films helped earn him roles in bigger budget films such as Hulk (2003) and Ghost Rider (2007). Sam also seems to play many roles with a strong moral code, as in Thank You For Smoking (2005), and Avenger (2006). Most recently, Sam worked on The Golden Compass (2007), and is expected to appear in any sequels.
Sam lives in Malibu, California with his wife, Katherine Ross (1984-present), and their daughter Cleo Rose Elliott, born on September 17, 1984.
Original content © Earl Cousins.