Trained at Juilliard, actor Michael Beach worked in regional theater and off-Broadway productions before moving to Los Angeles to work on television and film. His stage credits include Much Ado About Nothing and Ascension Day. Though he appeared on television a lot in the late '80s, his film breakthrough came in Carl Franklin's 1991 crime thriller One False Move. He played the ex-con Pluto opposite Billy Bob Thornton, who also co-wrote the script. Thornton later wrote the role of Virgil for Beach in the 1996 drama A Family Thing, starring James Earl Jones. In 1993, he was a part of the ensemble cast in Robert Altman's award-winning feature Short Cuts. After playing opposite Laurence Fishburne in the crime thriller Bad Company (1995), Beach went on to play several unfaithful husbands. He cheated on Angela Bassett in Waiting to Exhale (1995), Vanessa Williams in Soul Food (1997), and Gloria Reuben on ER. Fellow ER cast member Eriq La Salle cast Beach in his sports drama Rebound: The Legend of Earl 'The Goat' Manigault (1996) for HBO. Back on television, Beach earned an Image Award for his role of Monte 'Doc' Parker on the NBC dramatic series Third Watch. In 2002, he re-teamed with actor/director La Salle for the lead role of Dr. Ty Adams in the thriller Crazy as Hell.
Biography by Andrea LeVasseur
- As a teen, was a talented running back and attended high school on a football scholarship.
- Became involved in acting after an injury ended his athletic career aspirations.
- Auditioned for the part of Dr. Peter Benton on NBC's long-running drama ER, but the part ultimately went to his Juilliard classmate Eriq La Salle. Beach instead had a memorable guest-starring role on the series as the ex-husband of physician assistant Jeanie Boulet (Gloria Reuben).
- Earned an NAACP Image Award in 2003 for his role as Monte "Doc" Parker on NBC's Third Watch.