The son of actor John Carradine, Keith Carradine began his own theatrical training at Colorado State University, dropping out after one semester because he felt he wasn't getting anywhere. Soon afterward, Carradine made his stage debut in the "tribal love rock musical" Hair; his brief relationship with fellow cast member Shelley Plimpton resulted in a daughter, Martha Plimpton, who grew up to become a prominent actress in her own right. Carradine's first film was 1971's McCabe and Mrs. Miller, directed by Robert Altman. Four years later, Carradine's musical composition "I'm Easy," which he performed in Altman's Nashville (1975), won an Academy Award. Carradine divested himself of his familiar movie mannerisms in the early 1990s to portray the folksy, gum-chewing title character in the Broadway hit The Will Rogers Follies. In 1995, he emulated the past screen villainy of his father and his brother, David, as the smirking antagonist of the movie melodrama The Ties That Bind. He continued to work in film and television throughout the rest of the decade, showing up in movies like A Thousand Acres (1997) and various TV series. Meanwhile, the early 2000s found Carradine as busy as ever, with a recurring role as Wild Bill Hickock (whom he had previously played in the 1995 feature WIld Bill) on HBO's popular wild west series Deadwood, as well as roles on Dexter, Dollhouse, and Damages serving well to keep him in the public eye. Always handy with a six-shooter, Carradine took aim at some particularly nasty extraterrestrials in Iron Man director Jon Favreau's sci-fi/western genre mash-up Cowboys and Aliens in 2011.