It's time to play Name That Guy!
February 29, 2012 2:44 PM   Subscribe

A guy just walked in and asked for a key to the men's room. I'm absolutely certain he's an actor of moderate fame (this is in a Hollywood office building where actors are in and out all the time, so it's nothing out of the ordinary), but I'm really bad with actors' names. Help me figure out who he was! Details inside.

*American
*Probably in his 50s
*Wore glasses, and I believe I've seen him in glasses before
*Thin build, on the short side but not Danny DeVito short
*Soft voice
*He kind of reminded me of a younger Max Wright with more hair (his hair was in the style of Bill Lumbergh but a little shaggier and grayer)
*Also sort of resembled Dustin Hoffman and maybe a younger Eric Idle
*I have only the vaguest idea, but it seems like maybe I've seen him play an executive or other businessy type. He's not someone who's been in any leading roles

Auuugghhhh, it's driving me crazy! I wasn't about to ask the guy who he was when he was trying to get into the restroom.
posted by katillathehun to Media & Arts (58 answers total) 15 users marked this as a favorite
 
Robert Downey Jr?
posted by Rad_Boy at 2:46 PM on February 29, 2012


Ask him. It bugs the hell out of them to not be recognized. It will either be awkward, or result in a great conversation.
posted by Danf at 2:46 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Gary Busey?
posted by KokuRyu at 2:48 PM on February 29, 2012


Richard Lewis?
posted by quiet coyote at 2:49 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Robert Downey Jr. is not especially short and doesn't really look like Dustin Hoffman. And he has been in leading roles.
posted by dfriedman at 2:50 PM on February 29, 2012


Do you remember any movies/tv shows he was in?
posted by El Sabor Asiatico at 2:50 PM on February 29, 2012


Not anyone as famous as RDJ. Not Gary Busey or Richard Lewis, either.

Aaaughhh... I just had another wave of recognition hit me. I think maybe he's been a CIA director? Or FBI guy? I see him being the cold, unfeeling government type who wants Agent so-and-so to stick to their job despite the moral costs. I think he's been in more serious roles than anything else.

No, I don't remember anything he's been in or this would be a lot easier. :-\
posted by katillathehun at 2:52 PM on February 29, 2012


William Fichtner? I dunno, he just reminds me of Lumbergh. I assume it wasn't actually Lumbergh.
posted by freezer cake at 2:53 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Henry Czerny's probably too tall...
posted by El Sabor Asiatico at 2:57 PM on February 29, 2012


Bob Baliban?
posted by Danf at 2:57 PM on February 29, 2012


Chris Cooper? He's always playing an FBI or CIA director.
posted by 2bucksplus at 2:58 PM on February 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


Chris Cooper?

Brian Cox?

David Strathairn?
posted by Sassyfras at 2:58 PM on February 29, 2012


Glenn Morshower fits some of your descriptors and often plays CIA/FBI agents. Not sure how tall Michael O'Neill is, but he also often plays these type of parts and could have a Dustin Hoffman-esque face.
posted by Laura Macbeth at 2:59 PM on February 29, 2012


Chris cooper was my guess after your follow-up as well.
posted by supercres at 3:02 PM on February 29, 2012


Edward Herrmann?
posted by entropicamericana at 3:03 PM on February 29, 2012


Tom Everett?
posted by otolith at 3:04 PM on February 29, 2012


Not that this necessarily clarifies anything, but actors tend to look skinnier and shorter in real life than they appear on tv / film. If he appears skinny, then he might look pretty average on tv, and if he's shorter, again, average height on tv.

Recall what style of glasses he was wearing?
posted by jabberjaw at 3:07 PM on February 29, 2012


Ron Rifkin?
posted by fireflies at 3:07 PM on February 29, 2012


I came in to guess William Fichtner, too. He was my immediate thought in your first part, and the follow up clenched it.
posted by phunniemee at 3:08 PM on February 29, 2012


I'd get a good laugh if it were Gary Oldman. Not American though.
posted by mullacc at 3:09 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Any of these "Hey, it's that guy!" guys?
posted by The Bellman at 3:12 PM on February 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


Oh man, here's Gary Oldman on Sunday wearing glasses and sporting a Lumbergh-like haircut.
posted by mullacc at 3:14 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


David Paymer?
posted by BlahLaLa at 3:25 PM on February 29, 2012


No matter what, please tell us when you get it figured out!
posted by kinetic at 3:28 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'd suggest David Strathairn too and he's played a CIA Deputy Director in 'The Bourne Ultimatum'.
posted by wannalol at 3:33 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


If none of the above are correct , might you try to sketch him for us?
posted by Lieber Frau at 3:43 PM on February 29, 2012


Clancy Brown, a bad-guy guard in Shawshank Redemption, a guy in Buckaroo Bonzai, many others
Lance Henriksen, Bishop from Alien, many others
William B Davis, the cigarette-smoking man from the X-Files
Robert Patrick, the newer-model Terminator in T2, and later a guy on the X Files
Dan Hedaya, of many things - on the side of his page, there are several lists of "great character actors' you could look thru.

Bald or semi-bald:
JK Simmons, J Jonah Jameson from Spiderman, many others
Mitch Pileggi, the boss from the X Files
Richard Jenkins
Kurtwood Smith, the dad from that 70s show

list of hey it's that guy actors
list of actors with similar faces
list of character actors - more underrated actors - more underrated character actors
posted by LobsterMitten at 3:59 PM on February 29, 2012 [4 favorites]


Ah, I wasn't thinking about the slight build.

not William H Macy?
posted by LobsterMitten at 4:11 PM on February 29, 2012


Steven Tobolowski?
posted by Mchelly at 4:14 PM on February 29, 2012


Anthony Heald?
posted by Gable Oak at 4:29 PM on February 29, 2012


Came here to say Ron Rifkin. If that's right, the CIA agent character is Arvin Sloane from Alias.
posted by Mavri at 4:33 PM on February 29, 2012


Not American, but he sounds a lot like Tim Roth.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 4:34 PM on February 29, 2012


Philip Seymour Hoffman?
posted by I_Love_Bananas at 5:14 PM on February 29, 2012


John Spencer?
posted by I_Love_Bananas at 5:17 PM on February 29, 2012


John Mahoney?
posted by I_Love_Bananas at 5:18 PM on February 29, 2012


I_Love_Bananas, I'm sorry to tell you but John Spencer is no longer with us.
(freaking tragedy that there are THREE Kardashians on my teevee, but no John Spencer.)
posted by ApathyGirl at 5:21 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Sadly, it's none of the above. I'm trying to remember as much as I can, though!
posted by katillathehun at 6:11 PM on February 29, 2012


I was going to guess Brian Cox, Ron Rifkin or David Strathairn. But since it isn't one of them...

John Slattery? He's one of the Bureau guys in Adjustment Bureau, and he plays Roger Sterling on Mad Men.
posted by misha at 7:17 PM on February 29, 2012


You folks have weird ideas of what "probably in his 50s" means. Dan Hedaya? He's 72. And Philip Seymour Hoffman has a "thin build"?

I'm gonna offer Michael Kelly but IMDB says he's 5'11".
posted by ethnomethodologist at 7:18 PM on February 29, 2012


Scott Glenn? He played Jodie Foster's boss in Silence of the Lambs.
posted by Addlepated at 8:41 PM on February 29, 2012


Or Ed Harris with a hairpiece?
posted by Addlepated at 8:44 PM on February 29, 2012


Peter Scolari?
posted by Oriole Adams at 8:54 PM on February 29, 2012


Dann Florek?
posted by TheCavorter at 9:02 PM on February 29, 2012


You folks have weird ideas of what "probably in his 50s" means.

True, I was more thinking of actors who I think of as eternally in their late 40s-50s.
posted by LobsterMitten at 9:49 PM on February 29, 2012


Really not J.K. Simmons?

Played a cop on Law & Order, the dad in Juno, and a CIA managerial-type person in Burn After Reading.
posted by ewiar at 9:59 PM on February 29, 2012


Each of these guys matches at least two of your elements, though they often mismatch on another -

Tim Blake Nelson
John Heard
Charles Martin Smith
Dylan Baker
Bob Balaban
Steve Railsback
Joe Grifasi
Grant Heslov
Leon Rippy
William Sadler
Sean Whalen (aaron burrh!)
Tony Plana
Mark Linn-Baker
posted by LobsterMitten at 11:12 PM on February 29, 2012


I was going to suggest Mark Harmon but apparently he's six feet tall...which is completely shocking to me.
posted by iguessgabby at 4:01 AM on March 1, 2012


Asking "I'm sorry - you look familiar, have we met? Or do I know you from somewhere?" might be an slightly less awkward way to inquire, rather than "dude, are you an actor? what were you in?"
posted by rmd1023 at 5:23 AM on March 1, 2012


I woke up this morning, and it struck me - I'm having such a hard time placing him because I saw him when he was much younger. He was in movies in the 80s. He definitely played some sort of government guy at some point, and I seem to recall him being kind of dickish.

I feel like I'm dragging you guys on a wild goose chase!
posted by katillathehun at 8:48 AM on March 1, 2012


(Well, 80s or early 90s. I'm leaning more toward early 90s now.)
posted by katillathehun at 9:08 AM on March 1, 2012


David Patrick Kelly?
posted by otolith at 10:35 AM on March 1, 2012


Miguel Ferrer? He played an asshole FBI agent in Twin Peaks (early 90s)
posted by amicamentis at 1:01 PM on March 1, 2012


a few more that match at least a couple of your characteristics, tho mismatching on others:
David Garrison
Tim Kazurinsky who was in Police Academy
Lance Kinsey also of Police Academy
Taylor Negron of memorable face
Peter MacNicol
David Rasche, Sledge Hammer
Brent Spiner, Data from Star Trek
Arye Gross
Robert Joy
Barry Pepper
posted by LobsterMitten at 4:19 PM on March 1, 2012


Also sort of resembled Dustin Hoffman and maybe a younger Eric Idle

So, did he resemble these guys back in the 80s/90s, or does he resemble them now?

Do you mean young, middle-aged, or old Dustin Hoffman? Or do you mean resemblance in general, regardless of age?
posted by jabberjaw at 4:39 PM on March 1, 2012


He resembled those guys now, but he had some of those qualities when he was younger, too. And I just mean appearance in general.

Aw, man. I can SEE him in one particular role, but I just can't produce the movie name.

I think this may be a hopeless cause, but I appreciate everybody's effort!
posted by katillathehun at 8:14 PM on March 1, 2012


If you can add anything else it might help..
light or dark hair?
light or dark complexion?
squinty eyes or round eyes?
jowly/vertical lines around mouth like max wright/ joe leiberman or no?
could your movie have been a comedy, or sci-fi, or other genre?
posted by LobsterMitten at 8:21 PM on March 1, 2012


facial hair, then or now?
posted by LobsterMitten at 8:21 PM on March 1, 2012




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