James Keach is the son of actor/producer Stacy Keach Sr. and the younger brother of actor Stacy Keach Jr. An actor himself, Keach has appeared with his brother in PBS' The Wings of Kitty Hawk (as Orville Wright) and in the 1980 theatrical feature The Long Riders (as Jesse James). He also worked on the script of the last-named project. Emulating his father, Keach has concentrated on behind-the-camera work as a producer and director. In the latter capacity, he has helmed such projects as False Identity (1991) Sunstroke (1991), Stars Fell on Henrietta (1994). In addition, James Keach has directed several episodes of the popular CBS TV series Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman, starring his then-wife, actress Jane Seymour.
Biography by Hal Erickson
- Played high-school football while growing up in California.
- Appeared in the New York Shakespeare Festival prior to his on-screen career.
- Made his screen debut in 1971, acting alongside his brother Stacy in a public-television drama about the Wright Brothers.
- Again appeared with Stacy in the 1980 western The Long Riders, which the brothers also co-executive produced.
- Close friends with Johnny Cash; one of his sons is named for the country singer and Keach co-produced Walk the Line, the 2005 biopic on Cash.
- In 2010, was awarded the Ellis Island Medal of Honor.