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Biography of Richard Jordan

Parun Pereira
An actor who came into prominence in the 1970s, Richard Jordan was also well-known for his directorial abilities. His theatrical accomplishments on the New York stage are a constant source of inspiration to all budding artists. Read on to know more about his life...
Known for his acting prowess in movies and plays, Richard Anson Jordan was born on July 19, 1937. This Harvard-educated actor, who was a member of the New York Shakespeare festival, made several appearances in Broadway plays.


Born to Robert Anson Jordan and Constance Hand in New York City, Richard was the grandson of Learned Hand, one of the greatest American jurists. At a young age his parents got divorced, and his mother tied the knot with Newbold Morris, who was president of the New York City Council.
Jordan studied at some private schools in Manhattan, before attending the Hotchkiss School in Lakeville, Connecticut. He took part in plays, and was applauded for his exemplary performances. As an exchange student, he got a chance to attend Sherborne School in England, which is where he graduated from.

Early Years

While he was at Harvard, he decided to pursue a career as an actor. After graduating from Harvard in 1958, he seriously started concentrating on his acting abilities. He made his appearance on Broadway in Take Her, She's Mine, with Elizabeth Ashley and Art Carney.
Simultaneously, he also started concentrating on television production, and appeared in episodes such as Empire and Wide Country and The Defenders. He performed on a regular basis with Joseph Papp's 'New York Shakespeare Festival' on productions such as The Merchant of Venice and As You Like it.
In 1966, he appeared on Broadway with Henry Fonda in Generation. In 1973, he was appreciated for his performance in the movie The Friends of Eddie Coyle. Jordan played a variety of characters with negative shades in movies such as Interiors, Rooster Cogbum and Logan's Run.


In the late 1970s Jordan started directing, writing, and performing in plays for the LA Actor's Theater. The play Venus of Menschen Falls, which came out in 1978, made headlines throughout America. In the 1980s, Jordan appeared in a string of movies such as Flash of Green, Raise The Titanic and The Mean Season.
He also featured in a few episodes of The Equalizer, a well-known TV series of those times. In 1987, he won the LA Drama Critic's Award for his direction of the play Largo Desolato. In 1990, his directorial skills for Macbeth earned him critical appreciation the world over.
The role of Jeffrey Pelt in the movie The Hunt For Red October garnered attention from movie lovers all over the world. In April 1993, during the time he was working on the movie The Fugitive, his health began to deteriorate and he was forced to withdraw from the shooting sets, which is when he learned he had a brain tumor.


He was married to actress Kathleen Widdoes for eight years, and they had a daughter named Nina. He also had a relationship with Blair Brown for nine years, and they had a son called Robert. At the time he was diagnosed with brain tumor, he was in a relationship with actress Marcia Cross.
Richard Jordan succumbed to his illness in 1993. The accomplishments of this talented individual are remembered even today, and are truly instrumental in inspiring people to pursue their ambition related to the film world.