Richard Beymer

Active - 1952 - 2014  |   Born - Feb 20, 1938 in Avoca, Iowa, United States  |   Genres - Mystery, Drama, Avant-garde / Experimental

Share on

Biography by Sandra Brennan

Actor Richard Beymer has been working steadily on television and in feature films for over four decades. Born in Avoca, IA, Beymer first went before cameras on a Los Angeles children's show at the age of 12, and two years later made his feature-film debut in Vittorio De Sica's Stazione Termini (Indiscretion of an American Wife) (1953). After appearing in several more films during the '50s, with only two major performances in The Diary of Anne Frank (1959) and West Side Story (1961), Beymer had a significant role in The Longest Day (1962), sharing the film's unforgettable last scene with Richard Burton.

Beymer enrolled in New York's Actor's Studio in 1963, but subsequently became an active participant in the struggle to allow African-Americans to register for the vote in Mississippi; during his time down South, he also helped to make a prize-winning documentary of the event. In 1974, Beymer directed his first feature film, The Innerview, an avant-garde effort he distributed to various international film festivals. During the '80s, Beymer became a supporting actor and is best remembered for his regular role as Benjamin Horne on David Lynch's television series Twin Peaks.

Movie Highlights

See Full Filmography


  • Encouraged Sharon Tate to pursue acting after meeting her on the set of an earlier film of his wherein she was an extra.
  • Was an active participant in the Civil Rights struggle to allow African-Americans to register to vote in Mississippi.
  • Is a longtime avid photographer, sculptor and painter.
  • Completed and self-published his first book, Impostor: Or Whatever Happened to Richard Beymer?, a semi-autobiographical account of a young actor's struggle to find himself, in 2007.
  • Has made a number of acclaimed documentaries, including 2014’s It’s a Beautiful World in which he travels to India with Twin Peaks creator David Lynch to explore the origins of Transcendental Meditation.