Armand Assante is a coarsely handsome American actor who has successfully portrayed a wide range of intriguing characters from numerous ethnic backgrounds, both on screen and in the theater.
Armand Anthony Assante, Jr. was born on October 4, 1949 in New York City, to Katherine (Healey), a music teacher and poet, and Armand Anthony Assante, Sr., an artist and painter. His father was of Italian descent and his mother was of Irish ancestry.
Assante graduated from Cornwall Central High School and received his dramatic training at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. His first screen role was as a wedding guest in the minor cult film The Lords of Flatbush (1974) starring Henry Winkler and Sylvester Stallone, then after guest appearances in several soap operas, he was back alongside Sylvester Stallone in Paradise Alley (1978). He played a wealthy Frenchman seducing army recruit Goldie Hawn in Private Benjamin (1980), portrayed literary “hard boiled” detective Mike Hammer in I, the Jury (1982) plus, he was excellent as the title role in Belizaire the Cajun (1986).
Assante continued on into the 1990s with more strong performances as a drug baron in Q & A (1990) directed by Sidney Lumet, he made a sensational team with Antonio Banderas for the Cuban music spectacular The Mambo Kings (1992), he was very impressive in the mob drama Hoffa (1992), and once more he was on screen with Sylvester Stallone in the film adaptation of the futuristic comic book Judge Dredd (1995), and Assante co-starred in the uneven Demi Moore film Striptease (1996).
Assante’s acting talents remain in strong demand, and he has continued to stay busy on screen with recent appearances in One Eyed King (2001), Citizen Verdict (2003) and Two for the Money (2005).
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