Dennis Franz Schlachta
October 28, 1944
Maywood, Illinois, U.S.
Dennis Franz Schlachta ( // ; born October 28, 1944), known professionally as Dennis Franz, is a retired American actor best known for his role as NYPD Detective Andy Sipowicz in the ABC television series NYPD Blue (1993–2005), a role that earned him a Golden Globe Award, three Screen Actors Guild Awards and four Primetime Emmy Awards. He also portrayed two different characters on the similar NBC series Hill Street Blues (1983, 1985–1987) and its short-lived spinoff, Beverly Hills Buntz (1987–1988).
Franz was born October 28, 1944, in Maywood, Illinois, the son of German immigrants née Mueller), a postal worker, and Franz Ferdinand Schlachta, who was a baker and postal worker. He has two older sisters, Heidi (born 1935) and Marlene (born 1938).Eleanor (
Franz is a 1962 graduate of Proviso East High School in Maywood. During his high school years, he was active in baseball, football and swimming. He attended Wilbur Wright College and Southern Illinois University Carbondale, graduating from the latter with a bachelor's degree in speech and theater in 1968.
After graduating from college, Franz was drafted into the United States Army. He served eleven months with the 82nd Airborne Division and the 101st Airborne Division in Vietnam.
Franz began his acting career at Chicago's Organic Theater Company. Although he has in the past performed Shakespeare, his appearance led to his being typecast early in his career as a cop. (By Franz's own count, the character of Andy Sipowicz was his 28th role as a police officer). He also guest starred in shows such as The A-Team . Other major roles were on the television series Hill Street Blues in which he played two characters over the run of the show. Franz first played the role of the corrupt Detective Sal Benedetto in the 1982-1983 season. Benedetto eventually commits suicide when a large-scale scam he was running fails. Franz returned to the series in 1985 as main character Lt. Norman Buntz, remaining until the show's end in 1987. He also starred in the short-lived Beverly Hills Buntz as the same character.
During the late 1970s and early 1980s, Franz worked regularly with directors Brian De Palma and Robert Altman. He appeared in three of Altman's films from this period, and five of De Palma's, most prominently as a low-budget movie director in Body Double (1984).
Franz went on to win four Emmy Awards for his portrayal of Andy Sipowicz on NYPD Blue . The character of Sipowicz was ranked #23 on Bravo's 100 Greatest TV Characters list. In 1996, while still on NYPD Blue, Franz appeared in the Disney cartoon Mighty Ducks: The Animated Series in which he provided the voice of Captain Klegghorn, the commanding officer and head of the Anaheim Police Department. The series ran from September 1996 to January 1997.
In 1994, Franz made a cameo appearance as himself in The Simpsons episode "Homer Badman", in which Homer is accused of sexually harassing a babysitter and the case becomes tabloid fodder, generating an exploitative television movie, Homer S.: Portrait of an Ass-Grabber, in which Franz portrays Homer.
On May 11, 2001, Franz was a contestant on a celebrity edition of the hit television game show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, winning $250,000 for his charity.
Franz also was a commercial spokesman for Nextel in the early 2000s. The concept was that Franz "refused" to do the commercials, saying they were not something he did.
He starred as Earl, the abusive husband, in the Dixie Chicks' music video "Goodbye Earl", as airport police captain Carmine Lorenzo in the 1990 film Die Hard 2 and as Nathaniel Messinger in the 1998 film City of Angels . It was his final film role to date.
After the end of the show in 2005, Franz retired from acting to focus on his private life. He has told the New York Post he would be interested in returning to acting if given the right opportunity.He and his wife spend their summers in their lake home in northern Idaho. In 2012, he spoke of wartime experiences and post-war trauma of veterans at a Memorial Day Concert. (He spoke in the first person but it was not his own story.) He and his former NYPD Blue co-star Jimmy Smits made a surprise appearance at the 2016 Primetime Emmy Awards, presenting the award for Outstanding Drama Series to Game of Thrones .
In 1995, Franz married Joanie Zeck, whom he met in 1982. He is the stepfather of Zeck's two daughters from a previous marriage.
|1965||Mickey One||Minor Role in Dressing Room||Uncredited|
|1978||Remember My Name||Franks|
|1978||The Fury||Bob Eggleston|
|1978||Stony Island||Jerry Domino|
|1979||A Perfect Couple||Costa|
|1980||Dressed to Kill||Detective Marino|
|1981||Blow Out||Manny Karp|
|1983||Psycho II||Warren Toomey|
|1983||Scarface||Immigration Officer||Voice, uncredited|
|1986||A Fine Mess||Phil|
|1989||The Package||Lt. Milan Delich|
|1990||Die Hard 2||Captain Carmine Lorenzo|
|1991||The Sid Story||Sid||Video short|
|1996||American Buffalo||Don Dubrow|
|1997||Mighty Ducks the Movie: The First Face-Off||Captain Klegghorn||Voice|
|1998||City of Angels||Nathaniel Messinger|
|1979||Bleacher Bums||Zig||Television movie|
|1980||Chicago Story||Officer Joe Gilland||Television movie|
|1982||Chicago Story||Officer Joe Gilland||13 episodes|
|1983||Hill Street Blues||Det. Sal Benedetto||5 episodes|
|1983||Bay City Blues||Angelo Carbone||8 episodes|
|1984||Hardcastle and McCormick||Tony Boutros||Episode: "Did You See the One That Got Away?"|
|1984||The A-Team||Sam Friendly||Episode: "Chopping Spree"|
|1984||Riptide||Earl Bertrane||Episode: "Double Your Pleasure"|
|1984||E/R||The Boyfriend||Episode: "The Sister"|
|1984||T. J. Hooker||Andros Margolis||Episode: "Hardcore Connection"|
|1985–1987||Hill Street Blues||Lt. Norman Buntz||44 episodes|
|1985||Simon & Simon||Frank Mahoney||Episode: "Almost Foolproof"|
|1985||The A-Team||Brooks||Episode: "Beverly Hills Assault"|
|1985||Hardcastle and McCormick||Joe Hayes||Episode: "There Goes the Neighborhood"|
|1985||MacGruder and Loud||Roche||Episode: "On the Wire"|
|1985||Hunter||Sgt. Jackie Molinas||2 episodes|
|1985||Street Hawk||Inspector Frank Menlo||Episode: "Female of the Species"|
|1985||Scene of the Crime||Pat Grandy||Episode: "A Vote for Murder"|
|1985||Deadly Messages||Detective Max Lucas||Television movie|
|1987||Tales from the Hollywood Hills||Louie||Television movie|
|1987–1988||Beverly Hills Buntz||Norman Buntz||13 episodes|
|1989||Kiss Shot||Max Fleischer||Television movie|
|1989||Matlock||Jack Brennert||2 episodes|
|1989||Christine Cromwell||Detective Grainger||Episode: "Easy Come, Easy Go"|
|1990||Nasty Boys||Lt. Stan Krieger||12 episodes|
|1990||Nasty Boys, Part 2: Lone Justice||Lt. Stan Krieger||Television movie|
|1991||NYPD Mounted||Tony Spampatta||Unsold TV pilot|
|1991||Civil Wars||Murray Seidelman||Episode: "Pilot"|
|1992||In the Line of Duty: Siege at Marion||Bob Bryant||Television movie|
|1993–2005||NYPD Blue||Detective/Sergeant Andy Sipowicz||261 episodes|
|1994||The Simpsons||Himself playing Homer Simpson||Voice, Episode: "Homer Badman"|
|1994||Moment of Truth: Caught in the Crossfire||Gus Payne||Television movie|
|1995||Texas Justice||Richard Haynes||Television movie|
|1996||Healing the Hate||Host||Television movie|
|1996–1997||Mighty Ducks||Captain Klegghorn||Voice, 17 episodes|
|1998||Sesame Street||Himself||Episode: "Monster Day"|
There is a reference to Franz in the 2005 novel Shalimar the Clown by Salman Rushdie.
NYPD Blue is an American police procedural drama television series set in New York City, exploring the struggles of the fictional 15th Precinct detective squad in Manhattan. Each episode typically intertwines several plots involving an ensemble cast.
Hill Street Blues is an American serial police procedural television series that aired on NBC in prime-time from January 15, 1981, to May 12, 1987, for 146 episodes. The show chronicles the lives of the staff of a single police station located on Hill Street in an unnamed large city. The "blues" are the police officers in their blue uniforms. The show received critical acclaim and its production innovations influenced many subsequent dramatic television series produced in the United States and Canada. In its debut season, the series won eight Emmy Awards, a debut season record later surpassed only by The West Wing. The show won a total of 26 Emmy Awards during its run, including four consecutive wins for Outstanding Drama Series.
David Stephen Caruso is a retired American actor and producer, best known for his roles as Detective John Kelly on the ABC crime drama NYPD Blue and Lieutenant Horatio Caine on the CBS series CSI: Miami (2002-2012). He also appeared in the films An Officer and a Gentleman, First Blood, Twins (1988), Kiss of Death (1995) and Proof of Life (2000).
David Sanford Milch is an American writer and producer of television series. He has created several television shows, including NYPD Blue and Deadwood.
Andrew Sipowicz Sr. is a fictional character on the popular ABC television series NYPD Blue. The character began as the secondary focus of a more ensemble-like show, but by the middle of Season 6 Sipowicz is the clear protagonist of the show and receives the main storyline in every episode. Dennis Franz portrayed the character for its entire run.
Sharon Elizabeth Lawrence is an American actress. She is best known for the role of Sylvia Costas Sipowicz in the ABC drama series NYPD Blue. The role garnered her three Primetime Emmy Award nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series.
James McDaniel is an American stage, film and television actor. He is best known for playing Lt. Arthur Fancy on the television show NYPD Blue. He created the role of Paul in the hit Lincoln Center play Six Degrees of Separation. He played a police officer in the ill-fated 1990 series Cop Rock, and a close advisor to the director Spike Lee regarding the activist Malcolm X in the 1992 film Malcolm X. He also played Sgt. Jesse Longford in the ABC television series Detroit 1-8-7. He was born in Washington, D.C.
Beverly Hills Buntz is an American comedy-drama television series and a spin-off of the acclaimed police drama Hill Street Blues. Beverly Hills Buntz aired on NBC from November 5, 1987, to April 22, 1988.
Sylvia Costas-Sipowicz is a fictional character from the American television drama NYPD Blue, in which the character was married to Detective Andy Sipowicz, played by Dennis Franz. She was played by Sharon Lawrence.
John Bradley Kelly, Jr. is a fictional character and the original protagonist in the television series NYPD Blue, portrayed by David Caruso. The character appeared in the first season and the first four episodes of the second season.
Robert "Bobby" Simone is a fictional character in the television series NYPD Blue. Played by Jimmy Smits he was introduced in the fifth episode of the second season remaining until the fifth episode of the sixth.
The first season of NYPD Blue, an American television police drama set in New York City, aired as part of the 1993–94 United States network television schedule for ABC, premiering on 21 September 1993 and concluding on 17 May 1994. The show explores the internal and external struggles of the fictional 15th precinct of Manhattan. Each episode typically intertwines several plots involving an ensemble cast. The season led to a record 26 Emmy nominations. and six awards.
The second season of NYPD Blue, an American television police drama set in New York City, aired as part of the 1994-95 United States network television schedule for ABC, premiering on October 11, 1994 and concluding on May 23, 1995. The show explores the internal and external struggles of the fictional 15th precinct of Manhattan. Each episode typically intertwines several plots involving an ensemble cast.
The ninth season of NYPD Blue premiered on ABC on November 6, 2001, and concluded on May 21, 2002.
Gregory Medavoy is a fictional character in the television series NYPD Blue. He was played by Gordon Clapp from the third episode of the 1st season to the last episode of the series. Aside from Andy Sipowicz, he was the longest running regular character in the series.
Ted Mann is a Canadian born television writer and producer. He has worked in both capacities on the series NYPD Blue, Deadwood and Crash. In 1995 he won the Emmy award for Best Drama Series for his work on the second season of NYPD Blue.
Richard Channing Gibson is an American television writer and producer. He worked in both capacities with St. Elsewhere and NYPD Blue. He is one of the creators of the drama series Murder One and The Byrds of Paradise.
"Hearts and Souls" is the fifth episode of the sixth season and 115th overall of the American crime drama NYPD Blue. "Hearts and Souls" originally aired in the United States on ABC on Tuesday November 24, 1998, at 9:30 pm Eastern time as a 90-minute special. The episode was directed by Paris Barclay and written by Steven Bochco, David Milch, Bill Clark and Nicholas Wootton. It was the culmination of months of public speculation on the method of closure that would be employed to write Jimmy Smits's critically acclaimed Bobby Simone character out of the regular cast and clear the way for Smits' replacement, Rick Schroder. "Hearts and Souls" was a critical and commercial success, achieving both high ratings and positive critical feedback and is now regarded as one of the greatest television episodes in television history. It marked the second high-profile replacement of the partner for lead character Detective Andy Sipowicz, played by Dennis Franz.
The Good Cop is an American streaming television comedy-drama murder-mystery created by Andy Breckman. The ten-episode series premiered on Netflix on September 21, 2018. On November 13, 2018, Netflix canceled the series after one season.
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