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William Hurt, Award Winner –

Hurt in Altered States.

William Hurt: Best Actor, 1985:

Kiss of the Spider Woman (Drama – R)

William Hurt won for his performance as the gay window dresser who slowly comes to understand the revolutionary (Raul Julia) who shares his South America jail cell.

About William Hurt (1950 – )

William Hurt was born in 1950 and raised in Washington, D.C. He is the child of a State Department worker and a Time Magazine employee. As a child he also lived in Lahore, Mogadishu and Khartoum. Hurt attended Tufts and Juilliard. He then worked in regional theater and off Broadway in New York in over 50 productions.

An actor's actor, William Hurt has shunned the "leading man" and "A-list" labels often attributed to him. According to Hurt, "I'm an actor caught in a movie star's body." Hurt has often been called an intellectual. That he is a thinker, there can be no doubt, as this quote shows: "I am not an actor. I'm just a man who likes acting. I am what I am. I am nobody. I don't exist. But the work exists. The work is more than the actor."

His breakthrough film role was in Ken Russel's Altered States (1980) where he played a scientist who experiments on himself with hallucinogenic drugs, while floating in an isolation tank, which propels him into a wonderland of progressively regressive, dreamlike states.

The following year in 1981, William Hurt played the sexy, loser lawyer in Body Heat, the remake of Double Indemnity, whose ego and fascination for a smouldering woman of mystery leads him down the garden path to murder. In 1983, he played another dysfunctional character in The Big Chill, a Vietnam Vet who returns with ptsd, minus any sexual function, who subtly fits into the matrix of friends who gather after the suicide of a mutual friend. The same year, Hurt played the rueful Arkady Renko, a demoted Soviet police investigator, in the Martin Cruz Smith novel adaptation of the grisly triple murder mystery, Gorky Park.

In 1985, William Hurt portrayed Luis Molina, imprisoned for his homosexual activities, in a cell with Valentin, a hunky political prisoner undergoing torture, played by Raul Julia. For his work in this adaptation of the Manuel Puig novel, Hurt won the Academy Award for Best Actor in 1986. The film also won Oscars for Best Picture, Best Director and Best Screenplay Adaptation.

William Hurt's next two film projects also brought him Academy Award nominations, for his role as a teacher in Children of a Lesser God (1986), and for Broadcast News (1987), where he played an attractive but intellectually questionable news broadcaster. In 1988, he played a hollow travel writer whose marriage crumbles after the death of his son, and finds inspiration in a quirky dog trainer, played by Geena Davis, who won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in 1989 for her portrayal.

In 2006, William Hurt was again nominated for an Academy Award for his cameo role as a mob boss in the film A History of Violence.

William Hurt is a pilot, speaks French fluently and maintains a house outside of Paris. He has had marriages and liaisons with actresses Mary Beth Hurt, Marlee Matlin and Sandrine Bonnaire, as well as Heidi Henderson and Sandra Jennings. He has four children.

William Hurt's notable movie credits include...

altered states (1980)
eyewitness (1981)
body heat (1981)
gorky park (1983)
the big chill (1983)
children of a lesser god (1986)
broadcast news (1987)
the accidental tourist (1988)
i love you to death (1990)
alice (1990)
the doctor (1991)
michael (1996)
dark city (1998)
the proposition (1998)
lost in space (1998)
one true thing (1998)
the big brass ring (1999)
sunshine (1999)
do not disturb (1999)
the 4th floor (1999)
the contaminated man (2000)
a.i. artificial intelligence (2001)
rare birds (2001)
changing lanes (2002)
tuck everlasting (2002)
nearest to heaven (2002)
the blue butterfly (2004)
the village (2004)
the king (2005)
a history of violence (2005)
neverwas (2005)
syriana (2005)
the legend of sasquatch (2006)
beautiful ohio (2006)
the good shepherd (2006)
mr. brooks (2007)
Into The Wild (2007)
Noise (2007)
The Yellow Handkerchief (2008)
Vantage Point (2008)
The Incredible Hulk (2008)
Endgame (2009)
Robin Hood (2010)
Late Bloomers (2011)
Winter's Tale (2014)
RACE (2016)

William Hurt's television credits include...

The Flamingo Rising (Hallmark Hall Of Fame - 2001)
Dune (Mini-Series 2000)
Riviere-Des-Jeremie (TV series - 2001)



William Hurt in The Accidental Tourist.


William Hurt in The Big Chill.



William Hurt in Gorky Park.


Hurt in The Good Shepherd.



Hurt in The Accidental Tourist (1988).




William Hurt in Michael (1996).


William Hurt in A.I. Artificial Intelligence.



William Hurt in Lost in Space (1998).


William Hurt in Body Heat (1981).



William Hurt in Children of a Lesser God.






William Hurt in Kiss of the Spider Woman.




Hurt in Robin Hood (2010).