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Creator / William H. Macy

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"If I like the story and it's well written, and it's a character I want to play and they'll pay me, then I decide to do it."

William Hall Macy Jr. (born March 13, 1950 in Miami, Florida) is an American actor, screenwriter, teacher and director in theater, film and television.

He is probably best known for his Academy Award-nominated role in The Coen Brothers' masterpiece Fargo, although prior to that his career was strong and built on both small independant films and action movie blockbusters. With his Ned Flanders appearance and unassuming voice, Macy is often cast as middle-class ineffectual types although he has played a variety of different roles out of that spectrum. He describes himself, accurately, as "sort of a Middle American, WASPy, Lutheran kind of guy... Everyman".

Macy has been nominated for nine Emmy Awards and seven Screen Actors Guild Awards, winning two of the former and one of the latter. He is also a three-time Golden Globe Award nominee. Since 2011 he has played the main antagonist in the Showtime television series Shameless.

Macy and actress Felicity Huffman have been married since 1997.

Filmography on this wiki

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    Television Roles 


  • The Chew Toy: In several films, it's a particular joy to watch his characters be sad and pathetic, which they often are, like in Fargo and Boogie Nights. It's such a Running Gag that he plays losers that he plays a professional loser who's such a loser he makes other people lose in The Cooler.
  • The Everyman: Often plays such roles, finding the darkness within the unassuming, put-upon Working Joes, notable examples would be roles like in Fargo and Pleasantville, which play on that.
  • Happily Married: To Felicity Huffman since 1997.
  • Playing Against Type:
    • In one episode of Batman Beyond he voiced a ruthless mercenary who was able to take on Batman in hand-to-hand combat with none of the pathetic or everyman traits of his usual characters. It’s especially noticeable since he had voiced a character more in line with his usual type in another episode.
    • In Superman: The Animated Series he voiced a powerful psychic who ran a center that helped kids with superpowers learn to control their powers.
    • In Seabiscuit he played a fast-talking, charismatic radio host.
    • His longest running character of Frank Gallagher in the American adaptation of Shameless is a substance-abusing reprobate who can be as eloquent as he is depraved.