Dennis Farina, one of Hollywood's busiest actors and a familiar face to moviegoers and
television viewers, joins the esteemed cast of NBC’s venerable “Law & Order.” He will portray New York
City Police Detective Joe Fontana.
Farina has been working as an actor for 20 years. His latest projects include the Fox feature “Paparazzi”
and he plays a cheesy womanizer and gym owner opposite an all-star cast in HBO’s upcoming “Empire Falls,”
with fellow stars Helen Hunt, Ed Harris, Paul Newman, and Robin Wright-Penn.
In recent years, Farina starred on the series “The In-Laws,” and co-starred with Brad Pitt
and Oscar-winner Benicio Del Toro in the darkly comedic crime drama “Snatch.” He reunited with "Get Shorty" director
Barry Sonnenfeld to play a “seatbelt challenged” hit man in Touchstone’s comedy "Big Trouble" and teamed
up with Jason Lee in Bruce McCullough’s “Stealing Harvard.”
Farina also re-teamed in “Sidewalks of New York” with his "Saving Private Ryan" co-star
Farina is also known for his role in Steven Soderbergh's "Out of Sight," as the retired lawman/father
of Jennifer Lopez’ character. This was Farina's second outing in an Elmore Leonard best-seller adaptation, following
"Get Shorty," directed by Barry Sonnenfeld and co-starring John Travolta. As a result, he received an American Comedy Award
for Funniest Supporting Male for his performance as “Ray ‘Bones’ Barboni.” In 1998's "Saving Private
Ryan," Farina played Colonel Anderson, a pivotal character in the film who convinces Tom Hanks’ character to lead a
squad deep into Nazi territory.
Farina's numerous other screen credits include John Frankenheimer’s "Reindeer Games," "The Mod
Squad," Martin Brest’s "Midnight Run," "Little Big League," "Striking Distance," "Another Stakeout," and two Michael
Mann films -- "Manhunter" and "Thief" (the latter marked Farina’s film debut).
Farina also starred in two television drama series: "Buddy Faro" and NBC’s "Crime Story" (created
by long-time collaborator Mann). He also appeared in the Emmy-nominated "The Drug Wars: Colombia."
As a veteran of the Chicago theater, Farina has appeared in Joseph Mantegna's "Bleacher Bums," "A Prayer
For My Daughter," “A Class Three Trial in Yokohama,” “The Time of Your Life,” “Heat,”
“Streamers” and “Tracers” (a Joseph Jefferson Award Winner for Best Ensemble), among others.
"I look forward to the challenge of creating a new character for Dick Wolf and ‘Law and Order,’"
says Chicago-native Farina. “The only downside is that I won't see enough Cubs and Bears games.