William Dwight Schultz (born November 24, 1947 in Baltimore, Maryland) is an American actor best known for his roles on television as Captain H.M. Murdock from The A-Team and Lieutenant Reg Barclay from Star Trek: The Next Generation.
Prior to The A-Team Schultz was primarily a theatre actor, appearing in plays opposite Maggie Smith, Glenn Close, and Charlton Heston. In 1989 he starred with Paul Newman in Fat Man and Little Boy. He is currently known for a variety of voice work in animation such as Ben 10 and Chowder and video games such as Dragon Age, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Mass Effect and The Darkness. He also regularly fills in for various radio shows including Rusty Humphries, Michael Savage and Jerry Doyle. Since 1983, he has been happily married to Wendy Fulton.
Tropes commonly associated with Dwight Schultz' characters.
- Breakout Character: As Murdock, on The A-Team. The producers were going to cut Murdock and fire Schultz from the show, but the test audiences loved him so much that all they had to do was see a glimpse of Murdock/Schultz or hear his voice and they'd give him high ratings, so the producers kept him on and Murdock went on to be one of the most popular of the A-Team.
- Brief Accent Imitation: In a lot of his roles.
- The Cast Show Off:
- The man can sing, dance, do a crazy amount of wildly good accents and impressions, and all of that was showcased (pretty much every week) on The A-Team.
- Schultz is, by his own admission, bad at auditioning for roles, so when he is hired, casting directors already know that they want him.
- Large Ham: While quite capable of subtle performances, his automatic default is to let loose the hog. And it is glorious.
- Man of a Thousand Voices:
- Is an extremely talented voice actor and very well known for his voice work in video games and cartoons, often playing several characters which are completely indistinguishable as being played by the same person; good luck should be wished to anyone who might try to make it a game to try to figure out what characters he plays without cheating and looking at credits or looking it up online. His jumping from voice to voice and accent to accent at cons mesmerizes audiences who cannot believes their senses that it is the same man doing all of them.
- His daughter even made it a game with her friends, seeing if they could guess which roles he was playing.
- Playing Against Type: As the extremely level-headed, methodical but utterly megalomaniacal Wilhelm "Deathshead" Strasse in Wolfenstein: The New Order.
- Playing with Character Type: Best known for playing the hilariously insane Howlin' Mad Murdock, he enjoyed playing the element of madness greatly, and often accepts roles as insane characters as he finds them to be the "most interesting characters to play," this includes the dastardly, evil insane ones; the broken and tearjerking Reluctant Psychos; ones slipping into dark madness; the Mad Hatters; the Cloudcuckoo Landers; and the just plain Ax-Crazy.
- Talking to Himself: As Dr. Animo talking to Dr. Animo, and also in live action when playing Murdock who would create personas or characters and have arguments or conversations between them in real time each having a different voice and accent. Considering his prolific vocal career, there are probably many more examples.
- Wild Hair: At times on The A-Team.