Podtalk: Actor Tom Skerritt at 7th Chicago Critics Film Festival

Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly versionE-mail page to friendE-mail page to friendPDF versionPDF version
Average: 5 (1 vote)

CHICAGO – One of the great movie character actors is hale and hearty at age 85. Tom Skerritt has over 50 years of roles, and has appeared in such film classics as “M*A*S*H,” “Harold and Maude,” “Up in Smoke,” “Top Gun” and “Steel Magnolias.” Skerritt was at the 7th Chicago Critics Film Festival for the 40th Anniversary of “Alien.”

Thomas Roy Skerritt was born in Detroit, and after the Air Force and college developed a fascination for acting. He made his film debut in “War Hunt” (1962), which was also the debut for Robert Redford, who would later direct Skerritt in “A River Runs Through It” (1992). He spent most of the 1960s doing episodic TV, and began to get film notice around the time of “M*A*S*H” (1970), where he portrayed a southern doctor named Duke, as well as a small-but-crucial appearance in “Harold and Maude” (1971).

Tom Skerritt at the 7th Chicago Critics Film Festival
Photo credit: Joe Arce of Starstruck Foto for HollywoodChicago.com

From there, he became a sought after character actor in both mainstream (“The Turning Point”) and cult movies (“Big Bad Mama”). In “Alien,” he was the captain of the doomed ship Nostromo, and was a commander figure yet again in “Top Gun” (1986). He portrayed a southerner again in “Steel Magnolias” (1989), as the father of Julia Roberts, and lately has appeared in “Ted” (2012) as himself, “A Hologram for the King” (2016) and 2017’s “Lucky.”

HollywoodChicago.com talked to Tom Skerritt at the 7th Chicago Critics Film Festival, which runs through May 23rd, 2019. Photographer Joe Arce took the Exclusive Photo.

In part of a Podtalk with Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com, Tom Skerritt talks about his origin of involvement in the film “Alien.” The full interview will be published later.

The 7th Chicago Critics Film Festival runs from May 17th through May 23rd, 2019, at the Music Box Theatre, 3733 North Southport, Chicago. For the CCFF website, click here.

HollywoodChicago.com senior staff writer Patrick McDonald

Editor and Film Writer

© 2019 Patrick McDonald, HollywoodChicago.com

User Login

Free Giveaway Mailing


  • Grace, Or the Art of Climbing

    CHICAGO – What is life but a constant climb? The Brown Paper Box Co., one of the most vital storefront theater groups in Chicago, asks that question and more in the significant “Grace, Or the Art of Climbing.” Using a woman’s journey through some difficult situations, the parallels of “the climb” become a artfully performed story that is all inspiration and uplift. The play runs through July 7th, 2019, at Stage 773 in the Belmont Avenue Theater District in Chicago. For more information and tickets, click here.

  • Elizabeth Laidlaw

    CHICAGO – The recent limited series “The Red Line” on CBS-TV was notable for a couple elements – it was set in Chicago and it featured Chicago actors in major roles. Creators Caitlin Parrish and Erica Weiss (from here), cast their Chi-town colleague Elizabeth Laidlaw, who portrayed police officer “Vic” Renna.


HollywoodChicago.com on Twitter


HollywoodChicago.com Top Ten Discussions