- NAME: Roy Scheider
- OCCUPATION: Film Actor
- BIRTH DATE: November 10, 1932
- DEATH DATE: February 10, 2008
- EDUCATION: Columbia High School, Maplewood, NJ, Rutgers University, Franklin and Marshall College
- PLACE OF BIRTH: Orange, New Jersey
- PLACE OF DEATH: Little Rock, Arkansas
- Full Name: Roy Richard Scheider
Best Known For
Actor Roy Scheider landed his breakthrough role in 1971’s Klute, and later played Police Chief Martin Brody in the Steven Spielberg-directed film Jaws.
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Scheider's turn at the award ceremonies would come soon enough; the budding actor landed his first Academy Award nomination that same year for his turn in The French Connection (1971), a film about two undercover cops (played by Scheider and Gene Hackman) who try to bust a heroin cartel. Scheider's fame helped him land his first starring role in 1973,
playing a renegade cop in the action flick The Seven-Ups. The film featured some of Hollywood's most spectacular car chase sequences—but received no real recognition from fans or critics.
Then Scheider snagged what would become his best known role: playing Police Chief Martin Brody in Steven Spielberg's 1975 film, Jaws. The movie, based on a novel by writer Peter Benchley, told the story of a killer Great White shark who slaughtered unwitting beach-goers in a New England resort town. To save the town's reputation, Brody and marine biologist Matt Hooper take the beast head-on, hoping to kill the creature once and for all. Jaws was an instant smash hit, becoming the first film in movie history to gross more than $100 million and launching the era of the Hollywood blockbuster. One of Scheider's most famous lines in Jaws, the ad-libbed "You're gonna need a bigger boat," was also voted No. 35 on the American Film Institute's list of best quotes from movies.
A year after the success with Jaws, Scheider appeared as secret agent Doc Levy in Marathon Man, co-starring Dustin Hoffman and Sir Laurence Olivier. The critically acclaimed thriller, which told the story of a history student caught in an international crime conspiracy, featured Scheider as double agent Doc Levy. For his next project, Scheider had to pass on a part in the Oscar-winning Vietnam War drama The Deer Hunter (the role went to Robert De Niro) to reprise his role as Chief Brody in Jaws 2 (1978). Unfortunately, the action sequel turned out not to be as successful as the original.
But Scheider bounced back from his box-office flop with the 1979 film All That Jazz. The movie gave viewers a sneak peek into the making of a Broadway musical, while also telling the semi-autobiographical story about choreographer and director Bob Fosse. Because Scheider played Fosse, the actor had to learn how to dance for the role. His performance landed Scheider another Oscar nomination, this time for Best Actor.
Scheider's film career slowed down a bit in the 1980s, but the offers kept coming. Memorable appearances included Blue Thunder (1983), 2010: The Year We Make Contact (1984), Russia House (1990) and Romeo is Bleeding (1993). One of his most praised performances during this period was as the wisecracking Dr. Benway in Naked Lunch (1991). On TV, Scheider starred in Spielberg's SeaQuest DSV and frequently appeared in the TV drama Third Watch.
In 2004, Scheider was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a cancer of the white blood cells.
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