Actor Dylan Baker

Dylan Baker (born October 7, 1959) is an American character actor. He gained recognition for his roles in the films such as Planes, Trains & Automobiles (1987), Happiness (1998), Road to Perdition (2002), Spider-Man 2 (2004) and Spider-Man 3 (2007). and on the television series Murder One (1995-1996) and The Good Wife, the latter of which earned him three Primetime Emmy Award nominations.

In 1991, Baker was nominated for a Tony Award and a Drama Desk Award for his performance in the original production of La Bête. In 2013, he made his directorial debut with the film 23 Blast.

Early life and education

Baker was born in Syracuse, New York, but was raised in Lynchburg, Virginia. He began his acting career as a teenager in regional theater productions. He attended Holy Cross Regional Catholic School, went on to attend Darlington School, and graduated from the Georgetown Preparatory School in 1976.

Baker attended the College of William and Mary in Virginia and later graduated from Southern Methodist University in 1980. Baker then received a Master’s in Fine Arts from the Yale School of Drama, where he studied alongside Chris Noth and Patricia Clarkson.


Baker’s Broadway theatre credits include Eastern Standard, La Bête (for which he received a Tony Award nomination), Mauritius, and God of Carnage. He won an Obie Award in 1986 for his performance in the off-Broadway play Not About Heroes. The next year, he made his motion picture debut in the feature film Planes, Trains and Automobiles (1987).

Baker’s first recurring TV role was on Steven Bochco’s highly acclaimed Murder One (1995). Since then, he has appeared in such TV series as Northern Exposure, Law & Order, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, Without a Trace, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, The West Wing, and the short-lived sitcom The Pitts.

He garnered major critical attention with his performance as a tormented pedophile in Todd Solondz’s Happiness (1998). In 2000, he portrayed Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara in Thirteen Days, a historical drama about the Cuban Missile Crisis. He also held a small role in Requiem for a Dream, where he played a doctor who sees Jared Leto’s character with a severely infected, rotting arm. In 2002 he portrayed Alexander Rance, an accountant for the Chicago Outfit, in Road to Perdition. He played Dr. Curt Connors in Spider-Man 2 (2004) and Spider-Man 3 (2007).

During the short-lived 2007 series Drive, Baker played the role of John Trimble, a father suffering from a terminal illness. In 2009, Baker played William Cross in NBC’s Kings, in which his wife Becky Ann Baker played Jessie Shepherd, the mother of protagonist David Shepherd. Baker also guest starred in an episode of Monk, playing a theater critic in “Mr. Monk and the Critic”. Baker guest starred in the November 2010 House episode “A Pox on Our House”. Baker guest starred in the season four finale of Burn Notice as Raines, an old spy friend of Michael’s. He reprised the role in the season five premiere, and also permitted his likeness to be used in the Burn Notice graphic novel “A New Day”. In 2010, Baker played Hollis B. Chenery in Secretariat.

Baker played Pashto-speaking CIA agent Jerry Boorman in season 4 of the TV series Damages. He guest-starred in “Upper West Side Story” (2012), an episode of the TV series White Collar. He had a recurring role as the father of Katharine McPhee’s character Karen Cartwright on the NBC TV series Smash. He appeared in the USA Network miniseries Political Animals (2012). For his performance as Colin Sweeney on The Good Wife, he was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series in 2010, 2012, and 2014.

Baker performed with Helen Mirren on Broadway in The Audience, a play that depicted meetings between Queen Elizabeth II and important historical figures. Baker played former Prime Minister John Major. The play opened on March 8, 2015.

In 2016, Baker had a memorable recurring role as deep-cover KGB agent William Crandall, a morally conflicted biological weapons expert, on Season 4 of FX series The Americans.

In September 2017, it was announced that Baker would be joining the cast of the Showtime drama Homeland for the show’s 7th season, as Sen. Sam Paley, a ‘maverick’ that is leading an excessive investigation of the administration of new President Elizabeth Keane.

He starred in the 2020 series Hunters, in which his wife had a supporting role.


Baker is a prolific narrator of audiobooks, having narrated a wide range of books, from fiction (The Grapes of Wrath, The Corrections) to biographies (Steve Jobs) to Argo.

He garnered the 2002 Audie Award for Abridged Fiction for his reading of The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen. Baker has also recorded Franzen’s 2015 novel, Purity.

Personal life

In 1990, he married actress Becky Gelke, now known professionally as Becky Ann Baker. They have a daughter and reside in New York City.

On September 1, 2015, Dylan Baker tried to save the life of his neighbor, Broadway and movie actress and dancer Vivien Eng, in the high-rise where he lives in New York City when her apartment caught fire, but was driven back by smoke and fire. Firefighters eventually got the seriously injured woman out of the apartment and rushed her to the hospital. However, her injuries were too severe and she died two days later.



Year Title Role Notes
1987 Planes, Trains & Automobiles Owen
1988 The Wizard of Loneliness Duffy Kahler
1990 The Long Walk Home Tunker Thompson
1991 Delirious Blake Hedison
1992 Passed Away Unsworth
The Last of the Mohicans Captain De Bougainville
Love Potion No. 9 Prince Geoffrey
1993 Love, Honor & Obey: The Last Mafia Marriage
Life with Mikey Mr. Burns
1994 Radioland Murders Detective Jasper
1994 Disclosure Philip Blackburn
1995 The Stars Fell on Henrietta Alex Wilde
1996 True Blue Michael Suarez, S.J.
1998 Happiness Bill Maplewood Gotham Independent Film Award for Breakthrough Actor
National Board of Review Award for Best Cast
Nominated—Independent Spirit Award for Best Male Lead
Nominated—New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor
Celebrity Priest At Catholic Retreat
1999 Simply Irresistible Jonathan Bendel
Random Hearts Richard Judd
Oxygen FBI Agent Jackson Lantham
2000 Committed Carl’s Editor
Requiem for a Dream Southern Doctor
The Cell Henry West
Thirteen Days Robert McNamara
2001 The Tailor of Panama General Dusenbaker
Along Came a Spider Ollie McArthur
2002 Road to Perdition Alexander Rance
A Gentleman’s Game Mr. Price
Changing Lanes Finch
The Laramie Project Rulon Stacey
2003 Head of State Martin Geller
How to Deal Steve Beckwith
Rick ‘Buck’
2004 Spider-Man 2 Dr. Curt Connors
Kinsey Alan Gregg
2005 Hide and Seek Sheriff Hafferty
2006 The Matador Mr. Lovell
Stealing Martin Lane Parker Banks
Fido Bill Robinson
Let’s Go to Prison Warden
2007 When a Man Falls Bill
Spider-Man 3 Dr. Curt Connors
The Hunting Party CIA Operative
Across the Universe Mr. Carrigan – Lucy’s Father
The Stone Angel Marvin Shipley
Trick ‘r Treat Principal Steven Wilkins Fangoria Chainsaw Award for Best Supporting Actor
2008 Diminished Capacity ‘Mad Dog’ McClure
Revolutionary Road Jack Ordway Palm Springs International Film Festival Award for Best Cast
2009 Under New Management Legal Aid Lawyer
2010 Secretariat Hollis Chenery
2011 About Sunny Max
2012 2 Days in New York Ron
2013 23 Blast Larry Freeman Director
Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues Freddy Shapp
2014 Turks & Caicos Gary Bethwaite
The Humbling Dr. Farr
Selma J. Edgar Hoover Nominated—Critics’ Choice Movie Award for Best Acting Ensemble
Nominated—San Diego Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
Nominated—Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association Award for Best Ensemble
2015 Actor Seeks Role Dr. Freidman Short film
America Is Still the Place Mr. Bennett
Applesauce Stevie Bricks
Nightfire Olivetti Short film
The Benefactor Bobby
2016 Catfight Dr. Jones
Miss Sloane Jon O’Neill
2017 The Misogynists Cameron
2018 Elizabeth Harvest Logan
2019 Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile David Yokum


Year Title Role Notes
1986 A Case of Deadly Force Kevin O’Donnell Television movie
1988 The Murder of Mary Phagan N/A 2 episodes
Miami Vice Lt. Edward Jerell Episode: “Honor Among Thieves?”
Spenser: For Hire Sam Reynolds Episode: “Substantial Justice”
American Playhouse N/A Episode: “Journey Into Genius”
1990 Judgement Father Delambre Television movie
1991 Law & Order Sean Hyland Episode: “His Hour Upon the Stage”
1993 Return to Lonesome Dove Nigel Winston, Cattleman’s Alliance 3 episodes
Northern Exposure Jeffy O’Connell Episode: “Grosse Pointe, 48230”
1995–96 Murder One Det. Arthur Polson 18 episodes
1997 Feds Jack Gaffney Episode: “Smoking Gun”
1998 Law & Order Aaron Downing Episode: “Flight”
Oz Schillinger’s Defense Attorney Episode: “Great Men”
2000 Strangers with Candy Minister Arsenew Episode: “Is Freedom Free?”
2001 Big Apple Inspector Bob Cooper 2 episodes
The Practice Sen. Keith Ellison 2 episodes
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Father Powell Episode: “Alter Boys”
2003 The Pitts Bob Pitt 7 episodes
The West Wing Attorney General Alan Fisk Episode: “Abu el Banat”
The Elizabeth Smart Story Ed Smart Television movie
2004–06 Law & Order Sanford Rems 3 episodes
2004 Third Watch Councilman Daniels Episode: “Broken”
Life as We Know It Roland Conner 2 episodes
2005 Without a Trace Brian Stone Episode: “Manhunt”
2006 The Book of Daniel Roger Paxton 6 episodes
2007 Drive John Trimble 6 episodes
2009 Kings William Cross 12 episodes
Law & Order: Criminal Intent Henry Muller Episode: “Major Case”
Monk John Hannigan Episode: “Mr. Monk and the Critic”
Ugly Betty Bennett Wallis 3 episodes
2010–15 The Good Wife Colin Sweeney 8 episodes
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series (2010, 2012, 2014)
2010 House Dr. Dave Broda Episode: “A Pox on Our House”
2010–11 Burn Notice Raines 2 episodes
2011 Damages Jerry Boorman 10 episodes
Nominated—Critics’ Choice Television Award for Best Guest Performer in a Drama Series
2012 White Collar Andy Woods Episode: “Upper West Side Story”
Political Animals Fred Collier 5 episodes
2012–13 Smash Roger Cartwright 3 episodes
2013 Zero Hour FBI Chief Terrence Fisk 3 episodes
2013–14 Chicago Fire Dr. David Arata 2 episodes
2014 Chicago P.D. Dr. David Arata Episode: “8:30 PM”
2015 The Mentalist Bill Peterson 2 episodes
2016 The Americans William Crandall 8 episodes
Confirmation Orrin Hatch Television movie
2016–18 Blindspot FBI Director Pellington 5 episodes
2017–18 The Good Fight Colin Sweeney 2 episodes
2017 I’m Dying Up Here Johnny Carson 3 episodes
Difficult People Tourist Episode: “Criminal Minds”
Little Women Robert March 3 episodes
2018 Elementary Armand Venetto
2018 Homeland Senator Sam Paley 8 episodes
2020 Hunters Biff Simpson 10 episodes
2020 Social Distance Episode: “Humane Animal Trap”
2021 Evil Father Kay 2 episodes

External Links

Actor Dylan Baker – Wikipedia

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