Actor Oliver Platt, who first gained critical attention through his role of
greedy Dr. Mark Weller in Doctor Dolittle (1998), received his first Emmy
nomination after playing Oliver Babish, a White House Counsel, in the
international series “The West Wing” (2001-2005). He earned a second Emmy and
Golden Globe nomination thanks to his skillful portrayal of Russell Tupper in
the now-running series “Huff” (2004-?). Platt, who proved his versatility with
the Tony-nominated role in the Broadway production of “Shining City” (2006),
will play a role in Menno Meyjes’ sci-fi drama The Martian Child (2006).
Outside the limelight, the actor is known as an avid fan of the Boston Red Sox.
Platt, who is also a distant cousin of Diana (deceased Princess of Wales) and
Orson Welles, reportedly became an inspiration for the character of Jeff “Comic
Book Guy” Albertson in the renowned animated series “The Simpsons.” On a more
private note, the actor is the husband of Camilla Campbell (1993-now), and the
father of three: two daughters and a son.
Childhood and Family:
On January 12, 1960, Oliver Platt was born in Windsor, Ontario, Canada. He is
the second son of Nicholas Platt (former ambassador) and Sheila Platt, and the
brother of Adam Platt (travel writer) and Nicholas Platt Jr. (financial journal
publisher). Soon after his birth, the whole family relocated to Washington, D.C.
As a son of an ambassador, Oliver attended 12 different schools, from The
Sheridan and The Potomac schools in Washington, to The American School in Japan.
In 1978, he graduated from the Colorado Rocky Mountain School. Young Oliver, who
possessed a certain interest in acting, decided to study Drama at Tufts
University in Boston, Massachusetts. Finishing his education in 1983, he stayed
in Boston to pursue an acting career.
In 1993, Oliver married Camilla Campbell. The couple has three children:
daughters Lili (born in 1995) and Claire (born in 1999), and a son named George
(born in 1997).
After three years of living in Boston, Oliver Platt moved to New York in 1986,
where he had a number of stage performances with Manhattan Punch Line during
1987. Also in 1987, he was seen on the small screen by guest appearing as Norm
in an episode of “The Equalizer.” It was followed by his silver screen debut in
the crime comedy Married to the Mob (1988), as Ed Benitez. Platt’s turn as Mr.
Newby in the little seen movie Crusoe (1989) led him to bigger parts in his next
Still in 1989, the actor acquired his first leading stage role as Pere Ubu in
the Lincoln Center production of “Ubu,” as well as took a part in the staging of
“Moon Over Miami,” along with Tony Shalhoub and Stanley Tucci. The following
year, he took a supporting turn as medical student Randy Steckle in Joel
Schumacher’s movie Flatliners (1990), which was ensued with a turn as Harvey in
the family comedy Beethoven (1992).
Platt was cast as attorney Jeremy in Indecent Proposal (1993), before having his
first film lead role in The Three Musketeers (1993, as Porthos). Two years
later, he debuted in television movies by starring as Yaron Svoray, a Jewish
freelance reporter dealing with neo-Nazism in Germany, in The Infiltrator
(1995). Working again with director Schumacher, Platt played the shifty,
alcoholic Harry Rex Vonner in the screen adaptation of John Grisham’s novel, A
Time to Kill (1996). Delving further, Platt became an associate producer for the
independent drama Big Night (1996), featuring Marc Anthony, and his stage
partners Tony Shalhoub and Stanley Tucci.
The actor gained critical acknowledgment and received a Blockbuster
Entertainment nomination after having the role of greedy Dr. Mark Weller in
Doctor Dolittle (1998). That same year, he also shared the stage with Stanley
Tucci, playing Depression-era actors, in the Tucci-helmed “The Impostors.” Platt
continued delivering scene-stealing performances with such roles as sarcastic
gay architect Peter Steinberg in the romantic comedy Three to Tango (1999) and
Jimmy King in the sport comedy Ready to Rumble (2000).
The voice of Luther-Dwayne Grady in the star-studded video game SSX Tricky
(2001), Platt presented an amazing performance when he was cast as White House
Counsel Oliver Babish in the high profile series “The West Wing” (2001-2005).
For his fine recurring appearances, the actor was nominated for an Emmy for
Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series. Meanwhile, Platt was also seen as
Victor Wallace in Liberty Stands Still (2002), Jim Burns in the comedy Pieces of
April (2003) and Herman Wells in Bill Condon’s Kinsey (2004, alongside Liam
Creator Robert Lowry, who was impressed by Platt’s memorable performances, chose
him to play Russell Tupper, the best friend of Hank Azaria’s character, in the
drama comedy series “Huff” (2004-?). Brilliantly carrying out his first regular
role, the actor received an Emmy and Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting
Actor. While working with the series, he also took the role of Pete Van Heuten
in Harold Ramis’ dark comedy The Ice Harvest (2005).
Recently, the actor was seen as a haunted husband named John in the Broadway
production of “Shining City” (2006), which earned him a Tony nomination. On the
silver screen, Platt will play a role in Menno Meyjes’ sci-fi drama The Martian
Child (2006). The upcoming movie will also feature Bobby Coleman, John Cusack,
Joan Cusack and Amanda Peet.