Peter MacNicol was born in Dallas, Texas. He grew up in both Texas and Minnesota, and started his acting career at the age of 9, taking a VERY LONG moment as a statue of St. Peter. His "real" career began at the Guthrie theater in the late 1970s. At age 27 in 1981, he was catapulted into Broadway alongside Holly Hunter in "Crimes Of The Heart". He got excellent reviews from the NY Times, who were also pleased with his performance in "Rum & Coke", saying he "couldn't be better". Overall, good reviews but no big success. Not even the sorcery drama "Dragonslayer", which followed those two plays, could bring him big success. He wasn't sure what to do after that, going from place to place, theater to theater in search of roles that suited his personality. He returned to Minnesota for a while, before getting a call from NY for a new movie audition. He aced it, and that brought him his "Big Credit", a stand-out of any resume: he got to be the narrator/main hero in "Sophie's Choice", a post-WW II drama about a polish woman's horrid Holocaust memories. The cast included stars such as Meryl Streep (who won an Oscar for this movie, btw) and Kevin Kline. It came out in December of 1982, and the media was in awe of Streep, Kline and the cinematography. Peter, too, got strong notices, but was also reviewed to be the guy holding the movie back from matching Streep's performance in it... After this, all Peter got was a small lousy play in New Haven while Streep and Kline went on to conquer the big screen in "The French Lieutenant's Woman" and "The Big Chill"... In his 1982 NY Times profile, he said he was "off to the side of things" at that time. He did mainly stage work throughout the 1980s, doing a lot of Shakespeare on and off-Broadway. In 1986, he married Marsue Cumming, and following that came his next "big" role: Janosz Poha in "Ghostbusters II". In 1992, he accepted a role on a network (NBC) sitcom ("The Powers That Be". Unfortunately, he didn't stay much on the show because the show didn't stay much on the air: in less than a year it became roadkill and was cancelled. In 1993, he went back to the big screen, appearing in "Addams Family Values", and later (1995), in "Dracula: Dead And Loving It">. Just about that time, David E. Kelley decided he needed a lawyer for another brainchild of his, "Chicago Hope". Here, Peter played hospital advocate Alan Birch, who quickly (by 1995) got killed off. Even though it wasn't breakthrough success or anything, but at least it lenghthened the resume... Yeah, well it did another thing: it introduced Kelley to MacNicol... And in 1997, when "Ally" was just starting out, David invited Peter back onto the show for what he thought would be just several appearances: in the episode "Compromising Positions" (AM-102), Peter was introduced as co-founder/co-senior partner John Cage (a "mooncalf" in Peter's words)... He was supposed to appear to pour a glass of water, but Peter did more than just pour a glass of water: he poured a glass of water, showed off his talent in being the "mooncalf" he'd later permanently become and made David E. Kelley think twice about his "several appearances" role... Thanks to that one glass of water, he now has it all: a great role, fame, wonderful acting possibilities and last but not least, money... In his own words, he's very satisfied. And so is Kelley, as he told "USA Today" - "I'm a patsy for his work...".
Peter now lives in L.A. with Marsue and two dogs.

Peter MacNicol: Selected Credits

*The Pooch and The Pauper (ABC, to air) (1999)
*Ally (1999-?) - John Cage
*Ally McBeal (1997-?) - John Cage
*Abducted: A Father's Love (1996) - Roy
*Chicago Hope (1994-1995; reappearance in 1998) - Alan Birch
*Tales From The Crypt (1994)
*Cheers (1993) - Mario
*The Powers That Be (1992) - Bradley Grist
*By Dawn's Early Light (1990) - Sedgewicke
*Days and Nights Of Molly Dodd (1987) - Steve Cooper
*Johnny Bull (1986) - Joe Kovacs


*Baby Genuises (1999) - Dan Bobbins
*Silencing Mary (1998) - Lawrence
*Bean (1997) - David
* Mojave Moon (1996) - Tire Repairman
*Toto Lost In New York (1996) - voice of Ork
*Dracula: Dead And Loving It (1995) - Renfield
*Radioland Murders (1994) - Son Writer
*Addams Family Values (1993) - Gary Granger
*Housesitter (1992) - Marty
*Hard Promises (1991) - Stuart
*American Blue Note (1989) - Jack Solow
*Ghostbusters II (1989) - Janozs Poha
*Heat (1987) - Cyrus
*Faerie Tale Theatre - The Boy Who Left Home To Find Out About The Shivers (1983)
*Sophie's Choice (1982) - Stingo
*Dragonslayer (1981) - Galen


1993-Black Comedy/White Liars
1991-The Dream Theme
1990-The 52nd Street Project
1988-Romeo And Juliet
1986-Twelfth Night
1986-Rum & Coke
1984-Found A Peanut
1981 & 1980-Crimes Of The Heart

Books On Tape Narrated By Peter MacNicol:

*Beach Music
*Shiloh, Saving Shiloh, Shiloh Season

See bios: Calista Flockhart -- Gil Bellows -- Courtney Thorne-Smith -- Peter MacNicol -- Portia de Rossi -- Lucy Liu -- Greg Germann -- Lisa Nicole Carson -- Jane Krakowski -- Vonda Shepard