Focus : About The Cast



William H. Macy earned an Oscar nomination and an Independent Spirit Award as Best Supporting Actor for his role as conniving car dealer Jerry Lundegaard in Fargo. He was also named Best Supporting Actor in Motion Pictures (American Comedy Awards), Best Actor (Chicago Film Critics), Best Supporting Actor (Dallas/Fort Worth Film Critics) and Best Actor in a Drama (International Press Academy) for the role. Macy's most recent film credits include Jurassic Park III, State and Main, Mystery Men, Happy, Texas, Magnolia, Psycho, A Civil Action and Pleasantville.

In the realm of television, Macy received an Emmy nomination as Best Guest Actor in a Comedy Series for Sports Night, Best Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie for A Slight Case of Murder and Best Guest Actor in a Drama Series for his recurring role as ER's Dr. Morgenstern. His television episodic credits include L. A. Law, Bakersfield P. D. , Civil Wars and the pilot and episodes of Law & Order.

His numerous movies-of-the-week credits include A Murderous Affair, Heart of Justice, Standoff At Marion, Andersonville, the miniseries The Murder of Mary Phagan and the Awakening Land and the politically-charged The Writing on the Wall. Macy has also appeared in two David Mamet vehicles, The Water Engine and The Team.

With writing partner Steven Schachter, Macy has written several television scripts: an episode of thirtysomething, HBO's Above Suspicion, USA Network's The Con, in which he also starred, and the TNT television film A Slight Case of Murder, in which he starred opposite his wife, Felicity Huffman.
Macy established his feature film presence with writer/director Mamet. He portrayed the college professor in Oleanna, a detective in Homicide, a Mafioso driver in Things Change, a Marine in House of Games and an FBI agent in Wag the Dog.

Macy's impressive stage performance credits, approaching 50 in number, include the Broadway production of Our Town, a Tony award winner for Best Ensemble. Just recently, Macy co-starred in the London stage revival of David Mamet's American Buffalo, in a role which Macy originated.

Macy has built a solid reputation in the theater as an orginator/creator of new roles in such off-Broadway productions as The Water Engine, Baby With the Bathwater, The Dining Room, which was filmed for PBS' Great Performances; Life During Wartime, Mr. Gogol and Mr. Preen, Bodies, Rest and Motion and Mamet's Praire du Chien and Oh, Hell.

Having led theater classes in Chicago and at New York University, Macy has earned respect as a teacher and director. He serves as director in residence at the Atlantic Theater Company in New York, which Macy writing partner Steven Schachter and Mamet formed. His directing resume includes Boy's Life at Lincoln Center, the L. A. production of Oleanna at the Tiffany Theater, and Lip Service, the HBO film that won a CableAce Award for Best Theatrical Production.


One of America's most diverse leading actresses, Laura Dern's recent films include Robert Altman's Dr. T and the Women opposite Richard Gere, Daddy and Them with Billy Bob Thornton, the critically acclaimed period drama October Sky and the blockbuster summertime sequel Jurassic Park III. Dern will next be seen opposite Steve Martin in Novocaine.

Dern has been the recipient of numerous film awards including Best Actress at the 1996 Montreal Film Festival for her performance in Alexander Payne's dark comedy Citizen Ruth. Last year, the Sundance Institute honored Dern with the prestigious Piper Heidseick Award for Independent Vision at the Sundance Film Festival. In addition, Dern has received both an Academy Award nomination and a Golden Globe nomination for her performance as "Rose" in the critically acclaimed film Rambling Rose.

Dern made her screen debut at the age of seven in Martin Scorsese's Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore. At the age of 11, she co-starred in Foxes with Jodie Foster. Dern won the Los Angeles Film Critics New Generation Award for her performance in the coming-of-age story Smooth Talk. She has also starred in Blue Velvet and Wild at Heart, which won the Palm d'Or at the 1990 Cannes Film Festival. Her other film credits include Jurassic Park, A Perfect World, Mask, Fat Man and Little Boy, Haunted Summer, Teachers and Ladies and Gentlemen, The Fabulous Stains.

Dern made her directorial debut with the short film The Gift, which aired as part of Showtime's "directed by" series. She also starred in Showtime's original film Down Came A Blackbird.

Dern's television accomplishments have been acknowledge with a Golden Globe nomination for her role in The Baby Dance for Showtime and an Emmy Award nomination for her guest-starring role in the controversial "Puppy Episode" of the comedy series Ellen. Dern received the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress as well as an Emmy and CableAce nomination for her starring role in Afterburn. She starred in Showtime's critically acclaimed film noir series Fallen Angel, for which she received an Emmy nomination.


Oscar-nominated David Paymer is well known for his seamless characterizations in both dramas and comedies on film and on television. He has appeared in more than 40 motion pictures. Paymer's performance as Billy Crystal's brother in Mr. Saturday Night won him an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor as well as a Golden Globe nomination.

Paymer recently appeared in Universal Pictures' The Hurricane, starring Denzel Washington; co-starred in David Mamet's State and Main, also starring William H. Macy; and starred in Miramax Films' Bounce, with Gwyneth Paltrow and Ben Affleck.

Other credits include such films as Lawrence Kasdan's Mumford, Oliver Stone's Nixon, Rob Reiner's The American President, Steven Spielberg's Amistad, Robert Redford's Quiz Show, Get Shorty, and Payback, starring Mel Gibson. Paymer has also appeared in a variety of roles in such diverse films as Gang Related, Searching For Bobby Fischer, Heart and Souls, City Slickers and The In-Laws, among many others.

Paymer also received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting Actor for his appearance in HBO's dramatic film about the Lindbergh kidnapping, Crime of the Century, directed by Mark Rydell.


Since a tour de force starring role as Eddy in The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Michael Lee Aday has continued to hone his acting skills. Recent additions to his feature film credits include such roles as Detective Sparky Sanderson in Wish Craft, Red in Black Dog, Sheriff Doggett in Crazy in Alabama, Bob in Fight Club, Floyd Bibbs in Outside Ozona, Jack in Black Top and Coach Trellingsby in Rustin. He next makes a cameo appearance as Bo in The Salton Sea.

His varied television credits include Showtime's Dead Man's Gun and Outer Limits, TNT's Everything That Rises, HBO's Tales from the Crypt, CBS's The Equalizer and the guest role of Charlie on Nash Bridges.

Michael Lee starred in New York Shakespeare Festival productions of Vietnam Project, Kleinhoff Demonstrates Tonight, As You Like It and More Than You Deserve, which was performed at Lincoln Center.

Aday's breakthrough album "Bat Out of Hell" is one of the best-selling albums of all-time. He received a Grammy Award for Best Vocal Performance for the song "I Would Do Anything for Love (But I Won't do That)" from the album "Bat Out of Hell II: Back Into Hell. "

Author : 2001 Paramount Classics