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John C. McGinley

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Title: John C. McGinley  
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Subject: Ground Floor, Scrubs (TV series), Stealing Harvard, 1994 in film, Rounding Third
Collection: 1959 Births, 20Th-Century American Male Actors, 21St-Century American Male Actors, American Film Producers, American Male Film Actors, American Male Screenwriters, American Male Stage Actors, American Male Television Actors, American Male Voice Actors, American People of Irish Descent, American Screenwriters, Circle in the Square Theatre School Alumni, Living People, Male Actors from New Jersey, Male Actors from New York City, People from Greenwich Village, People from Millburn, New Jersey, Syracuse University Alumni, Tisch School of the Arts Alumni
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John C. McGinley

John C. McGinley
McGinley at the UCD Law Society, October 2008.
Born John Christopher McGinley
(1959-08-03) August 3, 1959
New York City, New York, U.S.
Nationality American
Other names John C. Mc Ginley
John McGinley
Occupation Actor, author
Years active 1985–present
Spouse(s) Lauren Lambert (1997–2001; divorced)
Nicole Kessler (2007–present)
Children 3

John Christopher McGinley (born August 3, 1959) is an American actor, author and former comedian. He is most notable for his roles as Perry Cox in Scrubs, Bob Slydell in Office Space, Captain Hendrix in The Rock, Sergeant Red O'Neill in Oliver Stone's Platoon and Marv in Stone's Wall Street. He has also written and produced for television and film. Apart from acting, McGinley is also an author, a board member and international spokesperson for the Global Down Syndrome Foundation, and a spokesperson for the National Down Syndrome Society.


  • Early life 1
  • Career 2
  • Personal life 3
  • Filmography 4
  • Television work 5
  • Awards and nominations 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8

Early life

McGinley, who is one of five children, was born in the Greenwich Village section of New York City, the son of a schoolteacher and a stockbroker.[1] His paternal great-grandfather was from Donegal, Ireland.[2] McGinley was raised in Millburn, New Jersey, and attended Millburn High School, where he played wide receiver for the school's football team.[3] He studied acting at Syracuse University, and later at New York University's Graduate Acting Program at the Tisch School of the Arts, graduating in 1984.[4] Upon completing his education, McGinley did a variety of different work, including Off Broadway and Broadway productions, and a two-year stint on the soap opera Another World.


McGinley has had a prolific career, primarily as a supporting character actor. He was noticed by a casting scout while working as John Turturro's understudy in John Patrick Shanley's 1984 production of Danny and the Deep Blue Sea,[5] which led to a successful audition for the role of Sergeant Red O'Neill in the Oscar-winning Platoon (1986). McGinley had been cast in his first film role in Alan Alda's Sweet Liberty earlier in 1986. That was followed the next year with Wall Street (1987), and again the next with Talk Radio (1988). He also was featured in a 1980s Subaru commercial.[6] He appeared in the "Celebrity Challenge" version of American Gladiators, losing to Dean Cain. McGinley wrote the script for 1990s Suffering Bastards,[7] in which he also co-starred.

He worked continually throughout the 1990s, appearing in films such as Point Break (1991), Highlander II: The Quickening (1991), Article 99 (1992), Wagons East! (1994), Seven (1995), The Rock (1996), Set It Off (1996), Nothing to Lose (1997) and Office Space (1999) (McGinley improvised several takes about his character's fondness for Michael Bolton). In 2007, he had a role as Chuck in the film Are We Done Yet?. He also had a small role as a gay highway patrolman in the film Wild Hogs.

McGinley has done voice-over work on animated television series, including the superhero The Atom on several episodes of Justice League Unlimited, a guest appearance as "The White Shadow", the secret government agent overseeing Huey Freeman on The Boondocks, voicing The Whammer on the PBS Kids Go! series WordGirl as well as the lead character in the Sony PSP video game Dead Head Fred.

McGinley received critical acclaim for his performance as a serial killer in Dean Koontz's suspense drama, Intensity (1997). It became Fox Television's highest-rated miniseries. He worked with Koontz and Fox once more in Sole Survivor (2000).

In 2001, McGinley began work as a regular on the NBC television series Scrubs as the acerbic Dr. Perry Cox. Throughout the series Dr. Cox acts as an unwilling mentor to the protagonist J.D. (Zach Braff). McGinley has said that there are three things over the course of the series that he improvises: his constant usage of girls' names for JD, which he does with all his real friends; his whistle, which he describes as "a bad habit"; and his habit of touching his nose, a tribute to Robert Redford's character in The Sting; he says the gesture means "It's gonna be OK."[8]

Since the NFL season of 2007, McGinley has played the "Commish" of the More Taste League commercials for Miller Lite. He has also done commercials for the Champions Tour, a professional golf tour for men over the age of 50.[9] In 2008, McGinley was the narrator of the documentary of the Detroit Red Wings' 2008 Stanley Cup Championship.[10] In 2009, McGinley started narrating commercials for

McGinley wrote a 2005 book titled, Untalkative Bunny: How to be Heard Without saying a Word which featured the title character from the show Untalkative Bunny on its cover.

In 2008, McGinley was named an Honorary Patron of the University Philosophical Society, Trinity College, Dublin.

Recently, he was cast in the film adaptation of the comic book Superman/Batman: Public Enemies, and he plays the role of the classic Superman villain, Metallo.[11]

In 2012, it was announced that McGinley will be a recurring character on USA Network's Burn Notice as Michael Westen's original CIA trainer, Tom Card.[12] He was first introduced in the second episode of the show's sixth season.

In 2012, he appeared in a State Farm insurance commercial as a father wanting his college graduate son to move out. Using the State Farm magic, he and his wife turn his son's room into a spa, a dojo, and a steam room. He began 2013 in the Broadway revival of Glengarry Glen Ross as Dave Moss. In 2013, it was announced that TBS made a series order for the television series Ground Floor, which stars McGinley. The series was canceled in 2015 after two seasons. In October 2014, McGinley hosted The E Street Radio channel on Sirius XM20 radio, discussing his appreciation of Bruce Springsteen's music, and their shared New Jersey roots.

Personal life

In February 1997, McGinley married Lauren Lambert. Their son, Max, who has Down Syndrome, was born that year. In December 2001, Lambert and McGinley divorced. In October 2002, he was chosen as "Dad of the Month" at[13] In August 2006, McGinley became engaged to yoga instructor Nicole Kessler in Malibu, whom he had dated for two years. The couple married on April 7, 2007 in a private ceremony at their home.[14] They have two daughters.[15]

McGinley owns a stake in one of Billy Gilroy's New York SoHo bistros, along with fellow actor Willem Dafoe. He is a close friend of John Cusack, with whom he likes to play golf.[16]

McGinley serves on the Board of The Global Down Syndrome Foundation (based in Denver). He is a celebrity Ambassador for the National Down Syndrome Society. In addition, he is a Global Ambassador for Special Olympics and was an integral part in crafting Special Olympics' "R-word: Spread The Word, To End The Word" campaign. McGinley is a vocal supporter for the special needs community, and commented in late 2011 on the experience of raising a teenager with Down syndrome along with two young daughters:

Half the gene pool that spawned Max also spawned Billie, my soon-to-be-four-year-old, so I'm hypersensitive to any challenges she may have. [Kate, at 17 months old, is too young for school.] We've discovered that Billie can completely disengage, which troubled Nicole and I, so we took her to an early-education interventionist. She tested our daughter primarily by giving her tactical puzzles. As long as Billie was left alone to do them, she was fine. But when the teacher tried to give Billie praise, she was not interested. What this revealed is that Billie is fine as long as she is engaged in an activity, but she doesn't care for the traditional approval or an A, B or C grade. Our takeaway is that Billie is fine and that we'll have to find ways, people, systems, etc., that challenge her, because she doesn't care about kudos.
Her biggest strength is language. She's extraordinarily verbal, and Max's biggest challenge is his lack of spoken language. He can read at a certain level and do arithmetic, but he doesn't form sentences. So parenting Max and parenting Billie represent two polar opposites on the spoken-word spectrum. How we parent them in the same household and find a happy middle has been really interesting and continues to be.[17]

McGinley is also an avid fan of the NHL Detroit Red Wings, and shows this by wearing a Red Wings jersey (usually Chris Chelios') in several Scrubs episodes. He was the narrator of the Red Wings' 2008 Championship DVD. McGinley maintains a home in Malibu, California, and is well known as a member of the "Malibu Mob",[18] a group of celebrity friends and neighbors including John Cusack, Tony Danza, former Detroit Red Wings defenseman Chris Chelios, big-wave surfer Laird Hamilton, beach volleyball pro Gabrielle Reece, and tennis player John McEnroe.[19]


Film work
Year Film Role Notes
1986 Sweet Liberty Floyd
1986 Platoon Sergeant O'Neill
1987 Wall Street Marvin
1988 Talk Radio Stu
1988 Shakedown Sean Phillips
1989 Lost Angels Dr. Farmer
1989 Born on the Fourth of July Official #1 – Democratic Convention, Pushing Wheelchair
1989 Fat Man and Little Boy Capt. Richard Schoenfield, MD
1989 Suffering Bastards Buddy Johnson Writer
1991 Point Break FBI Agent Ben Harp
1991 Highlander II: The Quickening David Blake
1992 Article 99 Dr. Rudy Bobrick
1992 Cruel Doubt Attorney Jim Vos Burgh
1992 A Midnight Clear Major Griffin
1993 Hear No Evil Mickey O'Malley
1993 Watch It Rick Producer
1994 On Deadly Ground MacGruder
1994 Surviving the Game John Griffin
1994 Car 54, Where Are You? Officer Francis Muldoon
1994 Wagons East! Julian Rogers
1995 Born to Be Wild Max Carr
1995 Seven California (SWAT leader)
1995 Nixon Earl in Training Film
1996 Rock, TheThe Rock Marine Captain Hendrix
1996 Set It Off Detective Strode
1997 Flypaper Joe
1997 Colin Fitz Lives! Colin Fitz
1997 Intensity Edgler Foreman Vess
1997 Truth or Consequences, N.M. Eddie Grillo
1997 Nothing to Lose Davis 'Rig' Lanlow
1998 Target Earth Agent Vincent Naples
1999 Office Space Bob Slydell
1999 Any Given Sunday Jack Rose
1999 Three to Tango Strauss
1999 Jack Bull, TheThe Jack Bull Woody
2000 Get Carter Con McCarty
2001 Summer Catch Hugh Alexander Uncredited
2001 Animal, TheThe Animal Sgt. Sisk
2002 Stealing Harvard Detective Charles
2002 Highway Johnny the Fox
2002 Crazy as Hell Parker
2002 It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie Himself
2003 Identity George York
2005 Alien Planet Narrator
2006 Puff, Puff, Pass Jerry Dupree
2006 A.W.O.L. Garris
2006 Two Tickets to Paradise Mark Won - Method Fest - Festival Directors Award
2007 Wild Hogs Gay Highway Patrolman
2007 Are We Done Yet? Chuck Mitchell Jr.
2008 American Crude Jim
2009 Life's a Trip Mark Hewson
2009 Superman/Batman: Public Enemies John Corben / Metallo (Voice) Direct-to-video
2012 Alex Cross Richard Brookwell
2013 42 Red Barber
2014 Kid Cannabis John Grefard
2015 Get a Job
2016 Rounding Third Filming

Television work

Television work
Year Title Role Notes
1985–1986 Another World Ned Unknown episodes
1988 Spenser: For Hire K.C. 1 episode
1993 Last Outlaw, TheThe Last Outlaw Wills Television film
1994 Frasier Danny Kriezel Episode: "Seat of Power"
1997 Practice, TheThe Practice Atty. Leonard Goode 2 episodes
1997 Intensity Edgler Foreman Vess Television film
1998 Pentagon Wars, TheThe Pentagon Wars Col. J.D. Bock Television film
2000 Sole Survivor Victor Yates Television film
2001–2010 Scrubs Dr. Perry Cox 179 episodes
Series Regular
Nominated - TCA Award for Individual Achievement in Comedy (2002)
Nominated - Satellite Award for Best Actor – Television Series Musical or Comedy (2002)
2002 Clone High Doug Prepcourse (Voice) 1 episode
2003 Kim Possible Rudolph "White Stripe" Farnsworth (Voice) 1 episode
2003 Spider-Man: The New Animated Series Richard Damien (Voice) 2 episodes
2003–2005 Justice League Unlimited The Atom (Voice) 4 episodes
2005 Alien Planet Narrator
2006–2010 Boondocks, TheThe Boondocks The White Shadow (Voice) 2 episodes
2008–present WordGirl The Whammer (Voice) 4 episodes
2011 Dan Vs. Imposter Dan (voice) 2 episodes
2012 Burn Notice Tom Card 6 episodes
2013–2015 Ground Floor Remington Stewart Mansfield Series regular

Awards and nominations

Year Award Category Work Result
2002 Television Critics Association Awards Individual Achievement in Comedy Scrubs Nominated
Online Film & Television Association Award Best Actor in a New Comedy Series Won
Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Won
2003 Satellite Awards Best Performance by an Actor in a Series, Comedy or Musical Nominated
2006 Method Fest Festival Director's Award Two Tickets to Paradise Won


  1. ^ "John C. McGinley Biography (1959-)". Retrieved March 26, 2015. 
  2. ^ Irish America Magazine
  3. ^ Biography of John McGinley, Accessed August 2, 2011. "A tall, lanky actor who honed his craft on stage before hitting his stride as a character actor in films and TV, John C. McGinley was born in NYC's Greenwich Village and raised in Short Hills, New Jersey."
  4. ^ "NYU Graduate Acting Alumni". 2011. Retrieved 2011-12-01. 
  5. ^ Johnny C Bio Site retrieved August 23, 2007
  6. ^ Video on YouTube
  7. ^ Suffering Bastards at the Internet Movie Database
  8. ^ Scrubs DVD special features
  9. ^ "Golf Magazine: News, Equipment, Instructions, Courses & Travel". Retrieved March 26, 2015. 
  10. ^ "McGinley narrates the Wings' Cup journey". Retrieved March 26, 2015. 
  11. ^ "Superman: The Animated Series DVD news: Announcement for Superman/Batman: Public Enemies -". Retrieved March 26, 2015. 
  12. ^ Gelman, Vlada. "TVLine Items: Comedy Central Nabs Community, Scrubs Vet Heads to Burn Notice and More!". TVLine. 
  13. ^'s Dedicated Dads: John C. McGinley. Retrieved March 21, 2007.
  14. ^ Star John C. McGinley Gets MarriedScrubsThe Ceremony was conducted by Mary Jean Valente of A Ceremony of the Heart retrieved April 9, 2007
  15. ^ "John C. McGinley Welcomes Daughter Kate Aleena – Moms & Babies – Celebrity Babies and Kids - Moms & Babies -". Retrieved March 26, 2015. 
  16. ^ John C. McGinley Interview. Retrieved October 21, 2007.
  17. ^ "John C McGinley Interview with Chet Cooper" Retrieved April 3, 2012.
  18. ^ Chris Chelios' new team: The Malibu Mob | | Detroit Free Press
  19. ^ MSN TV Blog: Paging Dr. Cox: 'Scrubs' Doc John C. McGinley Dishes on His Motor-Mouthed Alter Ego, His Famous Friends and His Elle MacPherson Jones

External links

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