Biography

Character actor John P. Ryan was born on July 30, 1936 in New York City. The son of Irish immigrant parents, Ryan graduated from Rice High School and studied English at the City College of New York, where he first developed an interest in acting. He served six years in the US Army and worked as a welfare investigator prior to pursuing an acting career. John made his film debut in the 1967 comedy "The Tiger Makes Out." He appeared in five pictures for Jack Nicholson; he's especially memorable as male nurse Spicer in "Five Easy Pieces." Manic, pale-eyed and craggy-faced, with an often intense and explosive screen presence, Ryan was frequently cast as nasty villains, hard-boiled police officers, and strict military men. John gave a strong and touching performance in a rare change-of-pace sympathetic role as Frank Davis, the bitter and regretful father of a murderous monster mutant baby in Larry Cohen's excellent "It's Alive." He also portrayed Davis in the okay sequel "It Lives Again." Other notable movie parts include the fanatical Colonel Hardcore in "Shamus," shrewd mob capo Patsy O'Neill in the witty "Cops and Robbers," evil scientist Schneider in "Futureworld," the dogged Lt. Parmental in "Breathless," vicious Irish mobster Joe Flynn in "The Cotten Club;" at his ferocious best as sadistic prison Warden Ranken in the powerful "Runaway Train," hateful fascist lunatic Glastenbury in the exciting "Avenging Force," ruthless drug kingpin Nathan White in the cruddy "Death Wish IV: The Crackdown," ramrod high school principal Mr. O'Rourke in the amusing "Three O'Clock High," and lethal robot history teacher Mr. Hardin in "Class of 1999." Among the TV shows Ryan did guest spots on are "M.A.S.H.," "The Rockford Files," "Hawaii Five-O," "Buck Rogers in the 25th Century," "Starsky & Hutch," "Kojak," "Hart to Hart," "The F.B.I.," and "Miami Vice." John had a recurring role on the TV series "Archer." In addition to his film and TV credits, Ryan also appeared in over 90 stage plays. Following his final film appearance in "Bound," John spent his later years giving acting lessons and was an advocate of spiritual healing. John P. Ryan died from a stroke at age 70 on March 20, 2007 in Los Angeles, California; he's survived by two daughters.

Character actor John P. Ryan was born on July 30, 1936 in New York City. The son of Irish immigrant parents, Ryan graduated from Rice High School and studied English at the City College of New York, where he first developed an interest in acting. He served six years in the US Army and worked as a welfare investigator prior to pursuing an acting career. John made his film debut in the 1967 comedy "The Tiger Makes Out." He appeared in five pictures for Jack Nicholson; he's especially memorable as male nurse Spicer in "Five Easy Pieces." Manic, pale-eyed and craggy-faced, with an often intense and explosive screen presence, Ryan was frequently cast as nasty villains, hard-boiled police officers, and strict military men. John gave a strong and touching performance in a rare change-of-pace sympathetic role as Frank Davis, the bitter and regretful father of a murderous monster mutant baby in Larry Cohen's excellent "It's Alive." He also portrayed Davis in the okay sequel "It Lives Again." Other notable movie parts include the fanatical Colonel Hardcore in "Shamus," shrewd mob capo Patsy O'Neill in the witty "Cops and Robbers," evil scientist Schneider in "Futureworld," the dogged Lt. Parmental in "Breathless," vicious Irish mobster Joe Flynn in "The Cotten Club;" at his ferocious best as sadistic prison Warden Ranken in the powerful "Runaway Train," hateful fascist lunatic Glastenbury in the exciting "Avenging Force," ruthless drug kingpin Nathan White in the cruddy "Death Wish IV: The Crackdown," ramrod high school principal Mr. O'Rourke in the amusing "Three O'Clock High," and lethal robot history teacher Mr. Hardin in "Class of 1999." Among the TV shows Ryan did guest spots on are "M.A.S.H.," "The Rockford Files," "Hawaii Five-O," "Buck Rogers in the 25th Century," "Starsky & Hutch," "Kojak," "Hart to Hart," "The F.B.I.," and "Miami Vice." John had a recurring role on the TV series "Archer." In addition to his film and TV credits, Ryan also appeared in over 90 stage plays. Following his final film appearance in "Bound," John spent his later years giving acting lessons and was an advocate of spiritual healing. John P. Ryan died from a stroke at age 70 on March 20, 2007 in Los Angeles, California; he's survived by two daughters.

Personal Info

Known For Acting

Gender Male

Known Credits 57

Birthday 1936-07-30

Day of Death 2007-03-20

Place of Birth New York City, New York, USA

Official Site -

Also Known As

  • -

Acting TV ShowsMovies

1996 Bound as Mickey Malnato
1994 Bad Blood as John Blackstone
1994 The Patriots as Arthur
1993 Batman: Mask of the Phantasm as Buzz Bronski (voice)
1993 The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr. (1 episode)
1993 Young Goodman Brown as The Devil
1992 Hoffa as Red Bennett
1992 Star Time as Sam Bones
1991 Blood River as Henry Logan
1990 Eternity as Thomas Vandervere / Prosecutor
1990 Delta Force 2: The Colombian Connection as Gen. Taylor
1990 Class of 1999 as Mr. Hardin
1989 Best of the Best as Jennings
1988 Paramedics as Captain Prescott
1987 Rent-a-Cop as Wieser
1987 Fatal Beauty as Lt. Kellerman
1987 Three O'Clock High as Mr. O'Rourke
1987 Death Wish 4: The Crackdown as Nathan White
1986 Houston: The Legend of Texas as David Burnett
1986 Avenging Force as Prof. Elliott Glastenbury
1985 Runaway Train as Ranken
1985 Hollywood Beat (1 episode)
1984 The Cotton Club as Joe Flynn
1984 Miami Vice (1 episode)
1983 The Right Stuff as Head of Program
1983 Shooting Stars as McGee
1983 Breathless as Lt. Parmental
1982 Matt Houston (1 episode)
1982 The Escape Artist as Vernon
1982 Cagney & Lacey (1 episode)
1981 Simon & Simon (1 episode)
1981 The Postman Always Rings Twice as Kennedy
1980 The Last Flight of Noah's Ark as Coslough
1979 Paris (1 episode)
1979 Hart to Hart (1 episode)
1979 Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (1 episode)
1978 Kaz (1 episode)
1978 It Lives Again as Frank Davis
1977 Kill Me If You Can as Johnson
1977 A Killing Affair as Flagler
1976 Futureworld as Dr. Schneider
1976 The Missouri Breaks as Si
1975 Starsky & Hutch (2 episodes)
1975 Archer (6 episodes) as Lieutenant Barney Brighton
1974 It's Alive as Frank Davis
1974 The Rockford Files (1 episode) as Dearborn
1974 Police Woman (1 episode)
1973 Kojak (1 episode)
1973 Cops and Robbers as Patsy O'Neill
1973 Dillinger as Charles Mackley
1973 Shamus as Col. Craig C. Hardcore
1972 The King of Marvin Gardens as Surtees
1972 M*A*S*H (1 episode)
1970 Five Easy Pieces as Spicer
1968 Hawaii Five-O (1 episode)
1968 A Hatful of Rain as Chuck
1965 The F.B.I. (2 episodes)

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