Image of Robert John Burke

Robert John Burke

1960-09-12 New York City, New York, USA

Image of Robert John Burke


A born-and-bred New Yorker, Robert John Burke made his film debut while in his early 20s with a small part in the drama "The Chosen" (1981), based on the Chaim Potok story. He went on to study acting at SUNY Purchase where he met aspiring filmmaker Hal Hartley, who cast him as one of the leads in his debut feature "The Unbelievable Truth," an offbeat indie tale where he played a man trying to escape his troubled past. Working with Hartley again on the charming brother-centric dark comedy "Simple Men," Burke caught a major break when Hollywood producers decided that his chiseled jawline was the right one to replace Peter Weller's in the sci-fi/action sequel "RoboCop 3." Despite Burke's efforts, the movie tanked, and he went on to smaller roles in major films, including the lauded Western "Tombstone" (1993) and the prison-break movie "Fled" (1996). Burke landed his second chance in a Hollywood starring role with the Stephen King adaptation "Thinner" (1996), but the macabre tale, which featured him under heavy makeup to depict a callous man who magically loses weight, was deemed almost universally unlikable.Though Burke's leading-man days were mostly behind him, his beastly role in Hartley's "No Such Thing" (2001) aside, he soldiered on, and began increasingly working on television with recurring roles on the grim prison drama "Oz" and the police procedural "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (NBC, 1999- ). Appearing in George Clooney's first two movies as director, "Confessions of a Dangerous Mind" (2002) and "Good Night, and Good Luck." (2005), Burke nonetheless became more familiar to TV audiences, particularly when he signed on to play Mickey Gavin, the ex-priest cousin of Denis Leary's lead character on the firefighter series "Rescue Me," a part that dovetailed with Burke's real-life second job as a New York State fireman.Often cast as a tough guy, the ruggedly handsome and tall actor continued to play imposing figures such as Major General James "Chaos" Mattis in the Iraq War miniseries "Generation Kill" (HBO, 2008) and Bart Bass, the controlling billionaire father of Chuck Bass (Ed Westwick) on the soapy drama "Gossip Girl." Before long, he was juggling his ongoing "Law & Order: SVU" part with regular spots on the military drama "Army Wives" (Lifetime, 2007- ) and the tense crime show "Person of Interest" (CBS, 2011- ), while still finding time for supporting turns in films, including the Denzel Washington/Mark Wahlberg action movie "2 Guns" (2013).


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The Retaliators Captain Briggs 2022-09-08
Intrusion Detective Steven Morse 2021-09-22
Being Sheriff Campbell 2020-01-07
We Only Know So Much Hal 2018-06-23
Boarding School Mr. Holcomb 2018-08-30
BlacKkKlansman Chief Bridges 2018-08-09
Where There's Smoke Captain Frascone 2017-04-01
Future '38 General Sportwood 2017-12-01
True Story Greg Ganley 2015-04-17
Bait Uncle Mack 2015-09-18
Ned Rifle Chet 2014-09-07
2 Guns Jessup 2013-08-02
Safe Captain Wolf 2012-04-16
Limitless Pierce 2011-03-08
Brooklyn's Finest State Trooper #1 2010-03-04
Years Later: The Unbelievable Truth and Its Consequences Himself 2010-11-01
Miracle at St. Anna General Ned Almond 2008-09-15
The Oh in Ohio Binky Taylor 2006-03-30
The Ex Colonel 2006-12-01
Good Night, and Good Luck. Charlie Mack 2005-09-16
Hide and Seek Steven 2005-01-27
Munich Belligerent American 2005-12-23
Speak Mr. Neck 2004-01-20
Connie and Carla Rudy 2004-04-16
Piggie Jim 2003-06-13
Confessions of a Dangerous Mind Instructor Jenks 2002-12-31
No Such Thing The Monster 2001-05-12
First Love, Last Rites Henry 1998-08-07
Somewhere in the City Frankie 1998-06-11
Alptraum im Airport Paul Bacon 1998-06-02
A Bright Shining Lie Frank Drummond 1998-05-30
Cop Land Officer B 1997-08-15
Mayday - Flug in den Tod Tom Hutton 1997-01-01
Thinner Billy Halleck 1996-10-25
Fled Pat Schiller 1996-07-19
If Lucy Fell Handsome Man 1996-03-08
Killer: A Journal of Murder R.G. Greiser 1996-09-06
Flirt Men's Room Man #2 1995-09-14
Crazy for a Kiss Steve 1995-04-23
Flirt Men's Room Man 1993-09-11
Tombstone Frank McLaury 1993-12-25
A Far Off Place Paul Parker 1993-03-12
Heaven & Earth Paul 1993-12-25
RoboCop 3 Robocop 1993-01-21
Dust Devil Dust Devil 1992-07-11
Simple Men Bill McCabe 1992-10-14
Rambling Rose Dave Wilkie 1991-09-10
The Unbelievable Truth Josh 1990-07-20
Nightmare Weekend Dave 1986-05-12
The Chosen Levi Saunders 1981-08-20
Gangster Wars Officer Reardon 1981-04-09
Looking for Mr. Goodbar Patrick 1977-10-19