Canadian actor Michael Ironside has specialized in tough, steel-fisted villainous film roles. Ironside played the ruthless brain-splitting cult leader in Scanners (1981), the unethical cop in Cross Country (1983), and the megalomaniacal cyborg in Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone (1984), among other wicked characterizations. He was also seen as Dick Wetherly in Top Gun, 1986's biggest hit, and as General Katana in Highlander II: The Quickening (1991). He'd go on to appear in films like The Machinist and Terminator Salvation, as well as TV series like ER, SeaQuest DSV: 2032, and Desperate Housewives.
Biography by Hal Erickson
- At age 15, he wrote a play called The Shelter that won first prize in an all-Canada university contest, and used the prize money to produce it.
- Worked in the construction industry as a roofer before his career in movies and television took off.
- Breakthrough role was in David Cronenberg's Scanners.
- Best-known films are Top Gun, Total Recall, The Perfect Storm, Terminator Salvation, Free Willy.
- Voices Sam Fisher in the Splinter Cell video games.