Christopher McDonald

Last updated

Christopher McDonald
Christopher McDonald 2011 Shankbone (cropped).JPG
McDonald in 2011
Born (1955-02-15) February 15, 1955 (age 68)
Alma mater Hobart College
Years active1978–present
Lupe Gidley
(m. 1992)

Christopher McDonald (born February 15, 1955) [1] [2] is an American film, television, theatre and voice actor.


McDonald is best known for playing the villainous professional golfer Shooter McGavin in the 1996 comedy Happy Gilmore . [3] Other notable starring roles for McDonald in film include "T-Birds" member Goose McKenzie in Grease 2 (1982), Darryl Dickinson opposite his former fiance Geena Davis in Thelma & Louise (1991), Ward Cleaver in the film adaptation Leave It to Beaver (1997), and Tappy Tibbons in Requiem for a Dream (2000). Along with numerous independent and small-budget film roles, he played supporting characters in box-office hits Grumpy Old Men (1993), Flubber (1997), Rumor Has It (2005), The House Bunny (2008) and About Last Night (2014).

Voice acting roles for McDonald include Jor-El on Superman: The Animated Series (1996), Kent Mansley in The Iron Giant (1999), Superman on Batman Beyond (2000) and Harvey Dent on Beware the Batman (2014). On television, McDonald was a series regular on network TV shows Walter & Emily (1991-1992, NBC), Good Advice (1993-1994, CBS), Family Law (1999-2002, NBC), Cracking Up (2004, FOX) and Harry's Law , (2011-2012, NBC).

McDonald has portrayed several notable real-life people, including game show host Jack Barry in Quiz Show (1994), mountaineer Jon Krakauer in Into Thin Air: Death on Everest on ABC (1997), sportscaster Mel Allen in the HBO film 61* (2001), Yankee legend Joe DiMaggio in ESPN's The Bronx Is Burning (2007), U.S. Attorney General Harry M. Daugherty on HBO's Boardwalk Empire (2010-2012), Texas revolution soldier Henry Karnes in History Channel's Texas Rising (2015), and Clinton lawyer Robert S. Bennett on FX's Impeachment: American Crime Story (2021).

In 2022, McDonald was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series for his role as casino CEO Marty Ghilain on the HBO Max show Hacks. [4]

Personal life

McDonald was born in New York City, to Patricia, a nursing professor and real estate agent, and James R. McDonald, an educator and high school principal. [5] [6] [7]

Of Irish descent and a practicing Catholic, [8] [9] [10] he and his siblings were raised in Romulus, New York. He graduated from Romulus Central School in 1973 [11] and later earned a degree from Hobart College in Geneva, New York where he played football and soccer. He was also a member of the Kappa Alpha Society. His younger brother, actor and singer Daniel McDonald, died of brain cancer in February 2007. [12] He is a prominent fan of the Buffalo Bills and a friend of former Bills quarterback Jim Kelly. [13]

McDonald was engaged to future Thelma and Louise co-star Geena Davis for a period in the mid-80s until 1985, when she left him for Jeff Goldblum. [14] McDonald met actress Lupe Gidley in 1989 when they performed together in a theatre production in New Mexico. [15] They married in 1992 and have three daughters and one son. [16]


McDonald has numerous film and television roles, often as a supporting actor and often portraying villains. In addition to the above, his credits also include Grease 2 , Breakin' , Where the Boys Are '84 , The Boys Next Door , Thelma & Louise , Grumpy Old Men , Celtic Pride , Quiz Show , Flubber , The Faculty , The Perfect Storm , House Arrest , Dirty Work , American Pie Presents: The Naked Mile , Broken Flowers , and Spy Kids 2: The Island of Lost Dreams . He was featured as Ward Cleaver in the movie version of Leave It to Beaver and famous baseball broadcaster Mel Allen in 61* . In 1994, he starred in the film Terminal Velocity as an aggressive Russian mafia villain.

In television, along with a starring role on the TV series Family Law , and recurring roles on North Shore , Veronica's Closet , Good Advice , and Harry's Law , McDonald has also made guest appearances on Matlock, Cheers , Riptide , Knight Rider , The Sopranos , Psych , both the 1985 and the 2002 versions of The Twilight Zone , Home Improvement , Las Vegas , the Law & Order franchise, Stargate Universe , and Star Trek: The Next Generation as Lt. Richard Castillo in the season three episode "Yesterday's Enterprise".

McDonald's voice work includes the determined government agent Kent Mansley in the animated film The Iron Giant . He also voiced Jor-El in Superman: The Animated Series and subsequently an older version of Superman in Batman Beyond . He has recalled great affection for these roles, saying that he enjoyed them because he was (and continues to be) such a fan of Superman and because they were in such contrast to the less than sympathetic onscreen roles for which he is known. He subbed for Burt Reynolds as Boss Hogg in The Dukes of Hazzard: The Beginning . In 2009, McDonald also lent his voice talents in the Thomas Nelson audio Bible production known as The Word of Promise. In this dramatized audio, McDonald played the role of Luke. [17] [18]

McDonald played the eponymous lead in Peter Gabriel's music video for the song "The Barry Williams Show". He also replaced Robert De Niro in the Midnight Run movie franchise, playing Jack Walsh in three films: Another Midnight Run , Midnight Runaround , and Midnight Run for Your Life . He portrayed baseball player Joe DiMaggio in the ESPN original series The Bronx Is Burning . In October 2013, McDonald started filming for A Conspiracy on Jekyll Island. [19] Under the title The Crash , it was released direct-to-video in 2017. [20]

McDonald appeared as Murphy in the Broadway show The Front Page at the Broadhurst Theater, which opened in late 2016. [21]

In 2021, McDonald joined the cast of Hacks on HBO Max as Marty, a Las Vegas casino owner. [22] In May 2021, McDonald was cast in the upcoming Disney+ series Secret Invasion, set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. [23] The show is set to premiere in 2023. [24] [25]



1980 The Hearse Pete
1982 Grease 2 Bradley "Goose" McKenzie
The Black Room Terry
1984 Where the Boys Are '84 Tony
Breakin' James
Chattanooga Choo Choo Alex O'Donnell
1985 The Boys Next Door Detective Mark Woods
1987 Outrageous Fortune George
1988 Paramedics Mike "Mad Mike"
1989 Cool Blue Peter Sin
Chances Are Louie Jeffries
1990 Playroom Chris
1991 Thelma & Louise Darryl Dickinson
Dutch Reed Standish
Wild Orchid II: Two Shades of Blue Senator Dixon
1993Cover StorySam Sparks
Benefit of the Doubt Dan
Conflict of Interest Mickey Flannery
Fatal Instinct Frank Kelbo
BumsSergeant Andrew Holloman
Grumpy Old Men Mike
1994 Roadflower Glen Lerolland
Monkey Trouble Tom
Terminal Velocity Kerr
Quiz Show Jack Barry
1995 My Teacher's Wife Roy Mueller
Forget Paris Zeus Voice
Best of the Best 3: No Turning Back Sheriff Jack Banning
Fair Game Lieutenant Meyerson
The Tuskegee Airmen Major Sherman Joy
1996 Happy Gilmore Shooter McGavin
Unforgettable Stewart Gleick
Celtic Pride Coach Kimball
House Arrest Donald Krupp
The Rich Man's Wife Tony Potenza
1997 Leave It to Beaver Ward Cleaver
A Smile Like Yours Richard Halstrom
Flubber Wilson Croft
The Eighteenth Angel Hugh Stanto
Lawn Dogs Morton Stockard
1998 Dirty Work Travis Cole
Jaded Jack Carlson
SLC Punk! Mr. Levy
Gideon Alan Longhurst
The Faculty Mr. Connor
Divorce: A Contemporary WesternTony
1999 Five Aces Ash Gray
The Iron Giant Kent MansleyVoice
Takedown Mitch Gibson
The Skulls Martin Lombard
Isn't She Great Brad Bradburn
Requiem for a Dream "Tappy" Tibbons
The Perfect Storm Todd Gross
2001The Theory of the Leisure ClassBuddy Barnett
The Man Who Wasn't There Macadam Salesman
2002 Speakeasy Dr. Addams
Spy Kids 2: The Island of Lost Dreams President of The United States
Children on Their Birthdays "Speedy" Thorne
2003 Grind Mr. Rivers
2005 The L.A. Riot Spectacular Officer Koon
Rumor Has It... Roger McManus
Broken Flowers Ron Anderson
2006 Funny Money Vic Johnson
American Pie Presents: The Naked Mile Harry Stifler Direct-to-video
2007 Kickin' It Old Skool Marty Schumacher
My Sexiest Year Adult Jake Stein
Awake Dr. Larry Lupin
American Pie Presents: Beta House Harry StiflerDirect-to-video
2008 Mad Money Bryce Arbogast
Superhero Movie Lou Landers, Hourglass
SummerhoodAssistant Director
Player 5150 Tony
The House Bunny Dean Simmons
An American Carol Lab Supervisor
2009 Fanboys Chuck "Big Chuck"
SpoonerDennis Spooner
Deep in the Valley Jim "Diamond Jim"
Splinterheads Sergeant Bruce Mancuso
Middle Men George Harris
2010 Black Widow Steve
Barry Munday Dr. Preston Edwards
The Best and the Brightest The Player
Ultraman Zero: The Revenge of Belial Mirrior KnightVoice (2012 English dub)
2011 Adventures of Serial Buddies Father Christopher
Cat Run Bill Kreb
2012 The Collection Mr. Peters
Not Fade Away Jack Dietz
Grassroots Jim Tripp
2014 About Last Night Casey McNeil
Believe Me Ken
2015 Don't Worry Baby Harry Lang
The Squeeze "Riverboat"
Zipper Peter Kirkland
2016 Exposed Lieutenant Galway
2017 The Crash Del Banco
Once Upon a Time in Venice Mr. Carter
Wetlands Detective Paddy "Red" Sheehan
2018 Deep Murder Richard Dangler
Backtrace FranksDirect-to-video
2020The Stand at Paxton CountySheriff Roger Bostwick
We Can Be Heroes Neil Anami
2021 Land of Dreams Blair
Walking with Herb Wiley Saunders
2022 Rosaline Lord Capulet
2023 Abruptio Police Chief Richter [26]


1978 Getting Married UsherTelevision film
1981 Insight Jeff CurryEpisode: "A Step Too Slow"
1982 Cheers Rick WalkerEpisode: "Endless Slumper"
1983 Lottery! PeterEpisode: "Being a Winner"
1984 Call to Glory Tim O'Reilly2 episodes
1984–1986 Riptide Dennis, Johnny2 episodes
1985 Hunter Sonny DupreeEpisode: "The Garbage Man"
1985 Knight Rider Joe FlynnEpisode: "Ten Wheel Trouble"
1985 It's a Living AlexiEpisode: "From Russia with Love"
1986 1st & Ten DetectiveEpisode: "California Freeze Out"
1986 The Twilight Zone Delivery ManEpisode: "Aqua Vita"
1986–1989 Matlock Eric Lane, David Channing3 episodes
1987 The Wizard PaigeEpisode: "The Heart of a Dancer"
1987 Our House Mr. TollfesonEpisode: "The Best Intentions"
1987 Eight Is Enough: A Family Reunion JebTelevision film
1988 The Highwayman Joshua TowlerEpisode: "Billionaire Body Club"
1988 Little Girl Lost WolffTelevision film
1989 Paradise Dexter2 episodes
1989 An Eight Is Enough Wedding JebTelevision film
1990 Star Trek: The Next Generation Lieutenant Richard CastilloEpisode: "Yesterday's Enterprise"
1990–1991 Empty Nest Nick Todd3 episodes
1991–1992 Walter & Emily Matt Collins13 episodes
1992 Home Improvement Stu CutlerEpisode: "For Whom The Belch Tolls"
1993–1994 Good Advice Joey DeRuzzaSeries regular
1994 Another Midnight Run Jack WalshTelevision film
1994 Midnight Runaround Jack WalshTelevision film
1994 Midnight Run for Your Life Jack WalshTelevision film
1995 The Tuskegee Airmen Major Sherman JoyTelevision film
1996 Superman: The Animated Series Jor-El Voice, 3 episodes
1997 Gun LutzEpisode: "Ricochet"
1997–1999 Veronica's Closet Bryce Anderson9 episodes
1997 Into Thin Air: Death on Everest Jon Krakauer Television film
1999–2002 Family Law Rex Weller68 episodes
2000 Batman Beyond Superman Voice, episode: "The Call"
2001 61* Mel Allen Television film
2002Total Access 24/7: Spy Kids 2Himself1 episode
2002 The Twilight Zone RickEpisode: "Mr. Motivation"
2003 Without a Trace Bob CarrollEpisodes: "The Bus"
2004 Justice League Unlimited Jor-ElVoice, episode: "For the Man Who Has Everything"
2004 North Shore Walter Booth6 episodes
2004–2006 Cracking Up Ted Shackleton8 episodes
2004–2007 Kim Possible HegoVoice, 3 episodes
2005 Fat Actress JimmyEpisode: "Crack for Good"
2006 Twins TerryEpisode: "Blast from the Past"
2006 Las Vegas Kidnapper Chips2 episodes
2006–2011 Law & Order: Criminal Intent Evan Corman, Declan Pace2 episodes
2007 The Dukes of Hazzard: The Beginning Jefferson Davis "Boss" Hogg Television film
2007 Medium Gregory KingEpisode: "1-900-Lucky"
2007 The Sopranos Eddie DunneEpisode: "Stage 5"
2007 The Bronx Is Burning Joe DiMaggio Miniseries
2008 Psych Paul HavershamEpisode: "Ghosts"
2008 My Boys George Newman2 episodes
2009 Law & Order John Jay McIntyreEpisode: "Illegitimate"
2009 Numbers Frank ThompsonEpisode: "Ultimatum"
2009–2010 Stargate Universe Senator Alan Armstrong3 episodes
2010–2012 Boardwalk Empire Harry M. Daugherty 7 episodes
2010–2012 Ben 10: Ultimate Alien Captain NemesisVoice, 2 episodes
2011 Lemonade Mouth Principal Stanley BreniganTelevision film
2011–2012 Harry's Law Tommy Jefferson32 episodes
2012–2013 Happy Endings Mr. Kerkovich2 episodes
2012 Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness UndertakerVoice, episode: "The Po Who Cried Ghost"
2013 Body of Proof Gerry RobertsEpisode: "Disappearing Act"
2013–2014 Kirstie Mr. Sheppard3 episodes
2014 Beware the Batman Harvey Dent Voice, 8 episodes
2014 Ben 10: Omniverse Captain NemesisVoice, episode: "The Vengers"
2014 Regular Show Carl PutterVoice, episode: "Daddy Issues"
2015 Texas Rising Henry Karnes 5 episodes
2015 The League Judge Raymond HardyEpisode: "The Last Temptation of Andre"
2015–2016 The Good Wife Judge Don Schakowsky7 episodes
2016–2019 Ballers Dallas Cowboys Owner13 episodes
2017 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Harold CoyleEpisode: "The Newsroom"
2017 Great News LenEpisode: "Award Show"
2017–2018 Gone Pastor2 episodes
2018 Superior Donuts TedEpisode: "The Chicago Way"
2018 Living Biblically Ron CurryEpisode: "Honor Thy Father"
2018 Sideswiped MarkEpisode: "Baby Steps"
2018 Rob Riggle's Ski Master Academy Jim BassmanEpisode: "The Bassman Cometh"
2018–2020 The Real Bros of Simi Valley Cal Surf9 episodes
2019 Mr. Iglesias Coach Dixon9 episodes
2019 Costume Quest Bob DickersonVoice, 9 episodes
2021 Search Party Bill2 episodes
2021 Hacks Marty3 episodes
2021 Impeachment: American Crime Story Robert S. Bennett 2 episodes
2022 The Watcher Detective Rourke Chamberland7 episodes
2023 [24] Secret Invasion TBAMiniseries; post-production

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  26. It only took 7 years but Abruptio is Done