With ruggedly handsome looks and a lengthy screen career, actor-producer Nick Nolte has established himself as a major industry figure. His enviable standing as one of Hollywood's most distinctive leading men was further cemented with a 1998 Best Actor Oscar nomination for his role in Affliction.
A native of Omaha, NE, Nolte was born February 8, 1941. While a student at Arizona State University, he revealed talent as a football player, but whatever promise he may have had on the field was aborted by his expulsion from the school for bad grades. A subsequent move to California convinced Nolte to try acting instead. He studied at the Pasadena Playhouse, then at Stella Adler's Academy in Los Angeles under Bryan O'Byrne, while he held down a job as an iron worker. After his training, Nolte spent 14 years traveling the country and working in regional theater, occasionally landing parts in B-movies and television films. Debuting onscreen with a small role in Dirty Little Billy (1972), Nolte was 34 when he finally got his break in the acclaimed television miniseries Rich Man, Poor Man (1976). His portrayal of Tom Jordache earned him an Emmy nomination and led to a starring role opposite Jacqueline Bisset in The Deep (1977). In addition to starring in the football exposé North Dallas Forty (1979), Nolte contributed to its screenplay, written by Peter Gent.