Whitford was nominated for three consecutive Emmy Awards from 2001-2003 for "Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series" for his role on The West Wing, winning the award in 2001. This role has also garnered him three consecutive Golden Globe Award nominations for "Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role".
He is a columnist for The Huffington Post.
Early Life and EducationEdit
Whitford was born in Madison, Wisconsin and graduated from Madison East High School in 1977. He majored in English and Theatre at Wesleyan University (B.A. 1981), where his roommate was the younger brother of future castmate Richard Schiff. Whitford then attended the Juilliard School's Drama Division as a member of Group 14 (1981-1985), which also included actor Thomas Gibson.
Whitford first appeared on television in 1985 in an episode of The Equalizer. His film debut was in the 1986 film Doorman. He made his Broadway theatre debut in 1990 playing Lt. Jack Ross (followed a few months later in the lead role of Lt. Daniel Kaffee), in the Aaron Sorkin written play A Few Good Men. This was the beginning of a recurring working relationship between Whitford and Sorkin. Whitford also made a guest appearance on ER in the Emmy award-winning March 1995 episode "Love's Labor Lost".
Whitford joined the cast of Sorkin's The West Wing as Josh Lyman with the show's premiere in 1999. For his role, he won an Emmy Award in 2001 for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series. Whitford also wrote two episodes of the series ("Faith Based Initiative" in the sixth season and "Internal Displacement" in the seventh). After The West Wing ended in May 2006, Whitford appeared in Aaron Sorkin's later series Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip playing the role of Danny Tripp. He appeared in the British drama Burn Up on the BBC in July 2008.
He starred in Broadway in Boeing-Boeing which began in previews on April 19, 2008 and opened on May 4, 2008. He left the show in September 2008, and was succeeded in the role by Greg Germann. He co-starred in the Joss Whedon/Drew Goddard horror film The Cabin in the Woods, filmed in 2009 but not released until April 2012. In 2010, Whitford starred as Dan Stark in the cancelled FOX TV series The Good Guys opposite Colin Hanks.
In 2011, Whitford guest starred in In Plain Sight on USA Network as a man combatting paranoia. He appeared in the season three finale of The Mentalist as the long-sought nemesis of Patrick Jane, Red John. He also appeared on Law & Order: Los Angeles as a lawyer. On September 15, 2011, the American Foundation for Equal Rights, in partnership with Broadway Impact, announced the complete cast, including Whitford, and roles for the one-night only staged reading of "8," a new play chronicling the historic trial in the federal legal challenge to California's Proposition 8.
Whitford was married to fellow Wisconsin native, actress Jane Kaczmarek, best known for her role as Lois on Malcolm in the Middle. They lived in San Marino, California with their three children, Frances Genevieve (October 31, 1997), George Edward (December 23, 1999) and Mary Louisa (November 25, 2002). In 2007 the family appeared in magazine advertisements for the 2008 Chrysler Town and Country van. On June 19, 2009, the couple announced that they were filing for divorce after 16 years of marriage. One of the last times they were seen together publicly was in September 2008, at the opening of a Los Angeles production of The House of Blue Leaves, in which Kaczmarek was starring.
Whitford is a political liberal and has appeared several times on Real Time with Bill Maher. He once co-hosted The Majority Report on Air America Radio alongside Janeane Garofalo, and made an appearance on the Al Franken Show Party Album. On February 26, 2011, Whitford spoke at one of the many protests in Madison, Wisconsin in opposition to Governor Scott Walker's controversial budget bill.
In May 2007, Whitford was honoured by Alliance for Justice, a non-profit organisation, as the 2007 Champion of Justice. He was the keynote speaker for Class Day at Princeton University in June 2007.
|1986||The Doorman||Terry Reilly|
|1987||Adventures in Babysitting||Mike Todwell|
|Revenge of the Nerds 2: Nerds in Paradise||Roger|
|1990||Vital Signs||Dr. Donald Ballentine|
|Presumed Innocent||Jamie Kemp|
|Young Guns 2||Charles Phalen|
|1992||Scent of a Woman||Randy Slade|
|1993||The Silent Alarm||Referee Dad|
|My Life||Paul Ivanovich|
|A Perfect World||Bobby Lee|
|1994||The Client||Thomas Fink|
|1995||Billy Madison||Eric Gordon|
|The Desperate Trail||Tommy Donnelly|
|1996||My Fellow Americans||Carl Witnaur|
|1997||The Spittin' Image|
|The People||Michael Leary|
|Red Corner||Bob Ghery|
|Bicentennial Man||Lloyd Charney|
|2001||Kate & Leopold||J.J. Camden|
|2005||The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants||Al|
|2007||An American Crime||Prosecutor Leroy K. New|
|2008||Bottle Shock||Professor Saunders|
|2012||Cabin in the Woods||Steve Hadley|
|1986||C.A.T. Squad||Leon Trepper|
|1987||The Betty Ford Story||Jack Ford|
|1988||Tales from the Darkside||Tom Dash|
|1993||Black Tie Affair||Dave Brodsky|
|1994||Web of Deception||Larry Lake|
|NYPD Blue||Norman Gardner|
|The X-Files||Daniel Trepkos|
|1995||Nothing But the Truth||"Mack" McCarthy|
|1996||Touched by an Angel||Steven Thomas Bell|
|1997||In the Line of Duty: Blaze of Glory||Tom LaSalle|
|Tracey Takes On...||Nik|
|1998||The Sky's on Fire||John Morgan|
|The Secret Lives of Men||Phil|
|1999||Behind the Mask||Brian Shushan|
|1999-2006||The West Wing||Josh Lyman|
|2002||Malcolm in the Middle||Meg's Husband|
|2005||Fathers and Sons||Anthony|
|2006-2007||Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip||Danny Tripp|
|2009||Off Duty||Detective Glenn Falcon|
|2010||The Sarah Silverman Program||Toby Grossnickel|
|The Good Guys||Dan Stark|
|2011||In Plain Sight||Adam Wilson|
|The Mentalist||Timothy Carter|
|2012||Parks and Recreation||Councilman Pillner|