Courtney Vance Biography (1960-)

Full name, Courtney Bernard Vance; born March 12, 1960 (some sources say 1959), in Detroit (some sources say Birmingham), MI; son of Conroy (a benefits administrator and grocery store manager) and Leslie (a librarian) Vance; married Angela Basset (an actress), October 12, 1997. Religion: Baptist. Avocational interests: Folk art. Career: Actor and producer. Shakespeare and Company, Lenox, MA, company member, 1981. Awards, Honors: Clarence Derwent Award, Theatre World, 1987; Antoinette Perry Award nomination, best featured actor in a play, 1987, for Fences; Antoinette Perry Award nomination, for Six Degrees of Separation; Obie Award, 1990, for My Children! My Africa!; Antoinette Perry Award nomination, bestlead actor, 1991, for Six Degrees of Separation; Independent Spirit Award nomination, best male lead, 1999, for Blind Faith. Addresses: Home: Topanga, CA.; Agent: International Creative Management, 8899 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90048.

Actor, producer
Birth Details
March 12, 1960
Detroit, Michigan, United States

Famous Works

  • Film Appearances
  • Doc, Hamburger Hill, Paramount, 1987
  • Seaman Jones, The Hunt for Red October, Paramount, 1990
  • Jim, The Adventures of Huck Finn(also known as The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn), Buena Vista, 1993
  • Conroy Price, Beyond the Law(also known as Fixing the Shadow), LIVE Entertainment, 1994
  • Cooper, Holy Matrimony, Buena Vista, 1994
  • Justis Butler, Urban Crossfire, New Horizons Home Video, 1994
  • Luke, The Last Supper, Columbia, 1995
  • Bobby Seale, Panther, Gramercy Pictures, 1995
  • Mr. George Grandey, Dangerous Minds, Buena Vista, 1995
  • Rev. Henry Biggs, The Preacher's Wife, Buena Vista, 1996
  • Eddie Jones, Love and Action in Chicago,1999
  • Otis Tucker, Cookie's Fortune, October Films, 1999
  • Detox,2000
  • Film Work
  • Co-producer, Love and Action in Chicago,1999
  • Television Appearances
  • Movies
  • Second male student, First Affair, CBS, 1983
  • Justice Butler, In the Line of Duty: Street War(also known as In the Line of Duty: The Two Tonys and Urban Crossfire), NBC, 1992
  • Wayne "Thunder" Carter, "Percy and Thunder," TNT Screenworks, TNT,1993
  • Conroy Price, Beyond the Law(also known as Fixing the Shadow, The Sid, and Secret Investigation Division), HBO, 1994
  • Thomas, Race to Freedom: The Underground Railroad(also known as Underground to Freedom and Underground to Canada), syndicated, 1994
  • Lieutenant Jeffrey Glenn, The Tuskegee Airmen, HBO, 1995
  • Lymon, "The Piano Lesson," Hallmark Hall of Fame, CBS, 1995
  • Travis, The Affair(also known as Black Tuesday), HBO, 1995
  • Lucien P. Singer, "The Boys Next Door," Hallmark Hall of Fame, CBS, 1996
  • Juror number one, 12 Angry Men, Showtime, 1997
  • Officer Jimmy Halloran, Naked City: Justice with a Bullet, Showtime, 1998
  • Jerry Robinson, Ambushed, HBO, 1998
  • John Williams, Blind Faith, Showtime, 1998
  • Officer Jimmy Halloran, Naked City: A Killer Christmas, Showtime,1998
  • Miniseries
  • Martin Luther King, Parting the Waters,2000
  • Episodic
  • Curtis Caldwell, thirtysomething, ABC, 1989
  • Mayor's aide, "By Hooker, By Crook," Law & Order, NBC, 1990
  • Voice of scribe, "Emperor's New Clothes," Long Ago and Far Away(animated), PBS, 1989
  • Warren Grier, Picket Fences, CBS, 1994
  • Benjamin "Bud" Greer, "Rage," Law & Order, NBC, 1995
  • Warren Grier, "Without Mercy," Picket Fences, CBS, 1995
  • Warren Grier, "Final Judgment," Picket Fences, CBS, 1995
  • Voice of Scribe, "Emperor's New Clothes," Long Ago and Far Away(animated), 1989
  • Pilots
  • (As Courtney Vance) Mr. James Jackson, "Unfinished Symphony," Any DayNow, Lifetime, 1998
  • Stage Appearances
  • Attendant, The Comedy of Errors, Shakespeare and Company, Lenox, MA, 1982
  • A Raisin in the Sun, Yale Repertory Theatre, New Haven, CT, 1983
  • Fences, Yale Repertory Theatre, New Haven, CT, 1985
  • Cory, Fences, Goodman Theatre, Chicago, IL, 1986
  • (Broadway debut) Cory, Fences, 46th Street Theatre, New York City,1987
  • Mercutio, Romeo and Juliet, New York Shakespeare Festival, PublicTheatre, New York City, 1988
  • Thami Mbikwana, My Children! My Africa!, New York Theatre Workshop, Perry Street Theatre, New York City, 1989-90
  • Paul, Six Degrees of Separation, Lincoln Center Theatre Company, Mitzi E. Newhouse Theatre, New York City, 1990 then Vivian Beaumont Lincoln Center Theatre, New York City, 1990-92
  • Also appeared in Temptation; Geronimo Jones; A Lesson from Aloes; Butterfly; Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead;Hamlet; Jazz Wives Jazz Lives.
  • Taped Readings
  • Bo Jackson and Dick Schnapp's Bo Knows Bo,1991
  • Hank Aaron with Lonnie Wheeler's I Had a Hammer: The Hank Aaron Story,1991
  • Anne Rice's The Feast of All Saints,1992
  • Clancy Carlile's Children of the Dust,1995
  • E. Lynn Harris's And This Too Shall Pass,1996

Further Reference


    • Entertainment Weekly, October 24, 1997, p. 14.
    • In Style, February 24, 1998, p. 205.
    • Jet, January 13, 1997, p. 33; October 27, 1997, p. 64.
    • People Weekly, January 20, 1997, pp. 96-97; October 6, 1997, p. 55.

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