Craig Theodore Nelson was born April 4th, 1944 in Spokane, Washington. In his youth he wanted to race hydroplanes. His father said he'd have as much luck at that as he would being an actor. Well, he was half right. Nelson still loves race car driving. When he first started acting, there was already a Craig Richard Nelson registered with the Screen Actors Guild so that's why Craig T. Nelson uses his middle initial professionally. His friends reportedly call him "Fish" but I wouldn't recommend doing that if you happen to run into him and ask for an autograph. I mean the guy's six foot three inches tall. He'd kick your ass.

When it comes to television, film and theater, Nelson is a veritable Renaissance man. His resume includes the credits of an actor, a director, a writer, a producer and I bet he'd even put in a little elbow grease and strike the sets if the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees would let him. Nelson has appeared in over fifty films, he's produced and directed episodes of television series, and he has worked in television since 1973 when he first appeared in the Mary Tyler Moore show. Some of his early film credits include Stir Crazy, Private Benjamin, And Justice For All, and Where the Buffalo Roam. Nelson was also the voice of the monster in Flesh Gordon. However, the role that put Nelson on the map was the part of Steve Freeling; father of the family spooked out of their suburban home in the movie Poltergeist. That was back in 1982. He also appeared in its first sequel. Other highlights in his past experience after Poltergeist include All The Right Moves, Silkwood, The Killing Fields, and Action Jackson, periodically making television appearances as well. From 1989 to 1997, Nelson took the leading role of Coach Hayden Fox in the much heralded television series Coach. In 1992, Nelson won an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series for his work on Coach. During and after Coach, Nelson appeared in Turner & Hooch, Troop Beverly Hills, Wag The Dog, Ghosts of Mississippi, and a swarm of tv movies, most notably the Josephine Baker Story. From 2000 to 2004, Nelson took point in TV again, this time in the lead role of Chief Jack Mannion for the hour long drama The District. For 2004, Nelson's voice was chosen to portray the role of Bob Parr in the Pixar produced animated feature The Incredibles.

Nelson has been married twice. First to Robin Nelson, the mother of his three children. Secondly to Doria Cook-Nelson. He divorced Robin in 1978 and married Doria in 1987. At last report they were still happily married, and any marriage that lasts more than fifteen years nowadays? That's Incredible.


Servo5678 says re Craig T. Nelson: "Don't forget his auto racing exploits. ...I saw him race at the Rolex 24 a few years ago... All hail Craig T. Nelson!" You're absolutely right. Nelson loves his race cars. I mentioned it briefly in the first paragraph, but I don't have details about races he's funded or participated in. Again thanks to Servo, Nelson did participate in the 1997 Rolex 24 hrs of Daytona; he came in 65th place. Considering this was 24 hours of left turns for almost twenty five hundred miles, accomplishing such an endurance test is phenomenal at any ranking.

If anyone out there's got more information about Nelson's racing experience, or anything else at all about his life and works, please pass it on to me and I'll be happy to update the wu.

http://www.eonline.com/Facts/People/Bio/0,128,11485,00.html
http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0005266/bio
http://www.daytona24hr.com/24hrs97/final.html

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