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JOHN LITHGOW'S (Senator Sperling) roots are in the theater. In 1973 he won a Tony Award three weeks after his Broadway debut, in David Storey's "The Changing Room." Since then, he has appeared on Broadway 20 more times, earning another Tony Award, four more Tony nominations, four Drama Desk Awards, and induction into the Theater Hall of Fame. Ensuing stage performances have included major roles in "My Fat Friend," "Trelawney of the Wells," "Comedians," "Anna Christie," "Bedroom Farce," "Beyond Therapy," "M. Butterfly," "The Front Page," "Retreat from Moscow," "All My Sons," the Off Broadway premieres of "Mrs. Farnsworth" and "Mr. and Mrs. Fitch," and the musicals "Sweet Smell of Success" (his second Tony), and "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels."

In 2007 he was one of the very few American actors ever invited to join The Royal Shakespeare Company, playing Malvolio in "Twelfth Night" at Stratford-upon-Avon.

In 2008 he devised his own one-man show "Stories by Heart" for the Lincoln Center Theater Company, and has been touring it around the country ever since, including a triumphant six-week run at The Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles. He was most recently seen on Broadway in David Auburn's new drama "The Columnist," in which Lithgow portrayed famed Washington political columnist Joseph Alsop, a performance that earned Lithgow his sixth Tony nomination. Last year, he finished a wonderfully received four-month stint at London's National Theatre playing the title role in Arthur Wing Pinero's "The Magistrate." Lithgow will return to the New York stage this summer as the title role in "King Lear" for Public Theater's Shakespeare in the Park, reuniting him with director Daniel Sullivan.

In the early 1980s Lithgow began to make a major mark in films. At the time, he was nominated for Academy Awards in back-to-back years for The World According to Garp and Terms of Endearment. In the years before and after that, he has appeared in over 30 films.


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