Seymour Cassel

Seymour Cassel

actor, cinematographer, additional crew

Seymour Cassel was born on Jan 22, 1935 in USA. Seymour Cassel's big-screen debut came with Shadows directed by John Cassavetes in 1958, strarring . Seymour Cassel is known for The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou directed by Wes Anderson, Bill Murray stars as Steve Zissou and Owen Wilson as Ned Plimpton. Seymour Cassel has got 8 awards and 2 nominations so far. The most recent award Seymour Cassel achieved is Oldenburg Film Festival. The upcoming new movie Seymour Cassel plays is Lucky Dog which will be released on Oct 13, 2015.

Seymour Cassel, the veteran character actor who was nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his role as the hippie swinger Chet in John Cassavetes' Faces (1968), studied acting at the American Theatre Wing and at the Actors Studio. He made his movie debut in Cassavetes' first film, Shadows (1958), on which he also served as associate producer.Seymour Joseph Cassel was born on January 22, 1935 in Detroit, Michigan, to Pancretia Ann (Kearney), a performer, and Seymour Joseph Cassel, who owned a night club. His father was of Russian Jewish and German Jewish descent, and his mother was of Irish heritage. Cassel's early career was tied to Cassavetes, who himself had a flourishing career as an actor on television and in major Hollywood productions in addition to becoming, arguably, the first great independent movie director after the collapse of the studio system in the late 1950s/early 1960s. As for Cassel, after his uncredited role in "Shadows," he co-starred with Cassavetes in The Webster Boy (1962) and La ballade des sans-espoirs (1961) before winding up in support of his friend in Don Siegel's drama À bout portant (1964), a movie shot for TV that had to be released theatrically due to its heightened violence (it was also Ronald Reagan's last movie). Cassel primarily made his living on TV in the 1960s, frequently typecast as beatniks and hippies. He had a supporting role in the Cassavetes-directed episode "A Pair of Boots" (1962) for The Lloyd Bridges Show (1962) as well as appearing on such popular programs as 12 O'Clock High (1964), Combat! (1962) and Sur la piste du crime (1965) before scoring with his aging hippie in "Faces" at the end of that tumultuous decade.Along with "Shadows," "Faces" remained his favorite Cassavettes film. In addition to acting, Cassel was also a crew member on the film, as the technical staff numbered all of seven. He helped shoot the film as a second cameraman, as well as adjusting the lighting. As the film was financed by Cassavettes himself, there were no union regulations to deal with, nor a studio schedule to keep.Several of Cassavettes' films were shot in continuity, so the actors could develop a character in sequence--similar to stage acting--rather than the traditional method of film making, which is shot out of sequence. Cassel had stated that this technique enhanced the success of his works by eliminating the "fourth wall" between the audience and the actors. He believed that acting tells the film's story, not the images and that what is important is how the audience relates to the characters on screen.As their careers matured, Cassel also co-starred with Cassavetes in two TV movies, Nightside (1973) and Nightside (1973) and appeared in supporting roles in three more Cassavetes-directed films: Le Bal des vauriens (1976), Opening Night (1977) and Love Streams - Torrents d'amour (1984).In addition to appearing in studio films, Cassel remained prominent in the American independent film community since the death of his friend and collaborator. He contributed a cameo appearance in the directorial debut of Steve Buscemi (with whom he appeared as a co-star in the black comedy In the Soup (1992)), Happy Hour (1996), and has appeared in three films by Wes Anderson: Rushmore (1998), La famille Tenenbaum (2001) and La vie aquatique (2004).Cassel was prized by independent directors for two things: his positive nature, and his (perhaps) facetious declaration that he'd be in any independent film for the price of a plane ticket if he liked the script.He died on April 7, 2019 in Los Angeles, California.

  • Birthday

    Jan 22, 1935
  • Place of Birth

    Detroit, Michigan, USA

Known For


8 wins & 2 nominations

Oldenburg Film Festival
Winner - German Independence Honorary Award
Walk of Fame
Winner - Star of Excellence
Shared with:
Winner - German Independence Honorary Award
Rhode Island International Film Festival
Winner - Lifetime Achievement Award
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Movies & TV Shows

TV Shows