A character actor who became a familiar presence on television through a series of drama roles has died. The New York Times reports that James Rebhorn died Friday at his home in South Orange, N.J., follwoing a battle with melanoma. He was 65.
Rebhorn recently played the father of Claire Danes’ character on Showtime’s “Homeland,” and previously had a recurring role as a defense attorney on NBC’s "Law & Order." His other TV work included roles on USA Network’s “White Collar" and the NBC drama "The Book of Daniel.”
Earlier in his career, Rebhorn appeared on the soap operas "Guiding Light" and "As the World Turns."
He had a steady stream of feature film work, including appearances in "Scent of a Woman," "My Cousin Vinny," "Carlito’s Way," “The Talented Mr. Ripley” and “Lorenzo’s Oil.”
“Tall and lanky with an ever-receding hairline, Mr. Rebhorn liked to joke that his characters tended to wear suits, whether he was the secretary of defense in ‘Independence Day,’ the 1996 blockbuster about an alien invasion, or an assistant district attorney in the ballyhooed series finale of ‘Seinfeld,’” the story reports.
After considering becoming a Lutheran minister, Rebhorn decided to study theater and political science. He started out working in TV commercials and theater, and then moved into films.
“He was a wonderful, wonderful man. I represented him since 1990, and I represented him for my entire career,” Dianne Busch, his Leading Artist rep, told Deadline.com. “He was an absolute joy to work with. He was very funny and was warm. He was drawn to projects with a social conscience. One of his favorite movies that he did was ‘Lorenzo’s Oil’ because it made a difference. He had a very strong faith and loved his family. His family was extremely important to him and I saw him make career sacrifices for them.”