John Shea

Full / Real Name: John Victor Shea
Born: 14 April 1949 (72 years old)
Gender: Male



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John Shea is an American actor best known for his television roles as Lex Luthor in Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, appearing in 21 episodes of the first season, from 1993-1997; and as Adam Kane in Mutant X, from 2001-2004.

Other television series he has appeared in include Eight Is Enough; The Man From Atlantis; Alfred Hitchcock Presents; WIOU; Almost Perfect; Sex And The City; Law & Order; Law & Order: Criminal Intent; and Medium.

Feature films he has acted in include Missing (1982), Stealing Home (1988), Freejack (1992), Honey I Blew Up the Kid (1992), Nowhere to Go (1998), Catalina Trust (1999), Heartbreak Hospital (2002), Godless. (2005), Pitch (2006), and The Insurgents (2006).

Shea is a native of Massachusetts and received his BA from Bates College, which he managed to achieve on a debating and football scholarship. He next attended Yale and earned an MFA in directing from the School of Drama.

Following New York stage work, initial on-camera notice came on TV with his portrayal of Joseph in the mini-series The Nativity (1978) and a few years later in the small but memorable role of the impassioned, ill-fated American idealist who becomes a casualty to Chilean war-torn politics in Costa-Gavras' Academy Award-winning thriller Missing (1982).

Jack Lemmon and Sissy Spacek, who respectively played his despairing father and wife, were nominated for Oscars for their roles.

Critical kudos and awards have also come in John's direction over the years. In Windy City (1984) opposite Kate Capshaw, he earned the Best Actor Award at the Montreal Film Festival.

On stage he received a Drama Desk award for American Days, an Obie award for The Dining Room, and a 1976 Theatre World Award for his portrayal of the Jewish student Avigdor in Yentl. The role was later portrayed by Mandy Patinkin in Barbra Streisand's 1983 film adaptation.

On television Shea was awarded the coveted Emmy for his depiction of the distressed husband and father wannabe who touches off a legal landmark case in the mini-series Baby M (1988).

In a career filled with interesting ranges and choices he has played everything from a young Nazi in the mini-series Hitler's S.S.: Portrait in Evil (1985) to Robert F. Kennedy in the epic-styled mini-series Kennedy (1983).

He has kept his face alive in guest parts over the years on such well-received series as Sex and the City, Tales From the Crypt, The Hitchhiker and Law & Order.

A budding Irish-American filmmaker, Shea co-wrote, directed and appeared in the low budget film Southie (1998), a drama set in the Irish-American section of Boston. The film won the Jury Award for Best Independent Film at the 1998 Seattle International Film Festival.

More recently he found popularity on the Mutant X (2001) sci-fi series, playing the role of Adam Kane.

A father of two and founding member of the Nantucket Film Festival, Shea is based in New York City with his second wife Melissa.

Television Roles


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