Desperate Measures: About The Cast

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MICHAEL KEATON(Peter McCabe) is that rare combination of leading man and character actor who continually reinvents his image, having played everything from the superhero in Batman to the demonic self-described Bio Exorcist Beetlejuice to the completely average house husband Mr. Mom. Most recently he starred as multiple clones of the same character in the fantasy-comedy Multiplicity.

Keaton began his career as a stand-up comic before gaining national recognition as the manic morgue attendant in Ron Howard's 1982 film, Night Shift. In 1988, he starred concurrently as a young man battling drug and alcohol addiction in the acclaimed drama Clean and Sober and as the comic yet horrifying title character in Tim Burton's wildly inventive Beetlejuice, which jointly earned him a Best Actor Award from the National Society of Film Critics.

Keaton continued his association with Burton when he took on the coveted role of the solitary, caped crime-fighter in the back-to-back blockbusters, Batman and Batman Returns. He reteamed with director Ron Howard in Gung Ho and turned in other comic performances in The Dream Team, Mr. Mom and Speechless. His dramatic film credits include the thriller Pacific Heights, in which he first essayed the sort of dark character he portrays in DESPERATE MEASURES, and One Good Cop, in which he portrayed a policeman faced with a dilemma of the heart.

More recently, he starred as a dying man trying to leave a legacy for his child in the poignant drama, My Life, and in Kenneth Branagh's adaptation of Much Ado About Nothing. He also worked again with Howard in the ensemble film The Paper, in which he starred as an ambitious newspaper editor.

ANDY GARCIA (Frank Connor) received Academy Award® and Golden Globe nominations for his role of Vincent Mancini in The Godfather, Part III. That same year he was voted "Star of the Year" by the National Association of Theater Owners for his performances in both Internal Affairs and The Godfather, Part III. He has also been honored with the Harvard University Foundation Award for his outstanding contributions to the American Performing Arts and Intercultural Relations, with a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and, most recently, with a Hispanic Heritage Award for the Arts.

Garcia also received acclaim this past year for his work in Sidney Lumet's Night Falls on Manhattan, and for his performances as two legendary figures, Lucky Luciano in Hoodlum and the celebrated Spanish poet and playwright Federico García Lorca in The Disappearance of Garcia Lorca. His other films include Things To Do In Denver When You're Dead, Steal Big, Steal Little (for which he also produced, wrote and performed four songs for the soundtrack), When a Man Loves a Woman, Jennifer 8, Hero, Dead Again, Black Rain, The Untouchables, 8 Million Ways to Die, Stand and Deliver, The Mean Season, American Roulette, and one of the original HBO telefilms, "Clinton and Nadine." He will soon be seen opposite Andie MacDowall in the urban romance, The Scalper, which he produced for his own CineSon Productions.

Under the CineSon banner he made his directorial debut with Cachao...Como Su Ritmo No Hay Dos (Like His Rhythm There Is No Other), a feature-length documentary concert film on renowned Cuban bass player and composer Israel Lopez "Cachao," who co-created the Mambo. The film, which he co-produced, has received worldwide critical praise, and was released through Epic Music Video. Subsequently, Garcia also produced and performed on "Cachao Master Sessions Volume I," which won a 1994 Grammy Award, and "Cachao Master Sessions Volume II," which received a 1995 Grammy Award nomination. Both were CineSon Productions released under the Crescent Moon Records label through Sony/Epic Music.

Born in Havana, Cuba, Garcia moved with his family to Miami Beach, Florida at the age of five. He attended Florida International University and spent several years performing in regional theater productions before moving to Los Angeles in the late 1970s.

MARCIA GAY HARDEN (Dr. Samantha Hawkins) received widespread recognition for her feature debut as Verna in the Coen brothers' Miller's Crossing. She recently starred in the prize-winning The Spitfire Grill and also portrayed Diane Keaton's duplicitous psychologist in The First Wives Club, also staring Goldie Hawn and Bette Midler.

Harden, who holds a BA in Theater from the University of Texas and an MFA from New York University, began her impressive career in the theater in Washington, D.C., where she was honored with two Helen Hayes Award nominations for performances in Beth Henley's plays "Crimes of the Heart" and "The Miss Firecracker Contest."

On Broadway, Harden received Tony and Drama Desk Award nominations as well as a Theater World Award for Best Actress for her starring role in "Angels in America." She also received critical acclaim for her performances in the original stage productions of David Rabe's "Those The River Keeps," and Sam Shepard's "Simpatico."

Harden's other motion picture credits include the films Used People, Safe Passage, Late For Dinner and Crush, which was presented at the Cannes Film Festival. On the small screen, Harden's appearances include the miniseries, "Sinatra" (in which she portrayed Ava Gardner), "Convict Cowboy," "Talking With," "Good Housekeeping" and "Fever."

Harden preceded DESPERATE MEASURES with a co-starring role opposite Robin Williams in Flubber.

BRIAN COX (Jeremiah Cassidy) originated the role of Dr. Hannibal Lecter in Michael Mann's Manhunter, the screen antecedent to the Oscar®-winning Silence of the Lambs. Perhaps best known for his memorable roles in Rob Roy and Braveheart, the Scottish actor was recently seen in Chain Reaction opposite Keanu Reeves and Morgan Freeman, Glimmer Man, opposite Steven Seagal and Keenan Ivory Wayans and The Long Kiss Goodnight with Geena Davis and Samuel L. Jackson. In the fall 1997 hit Kiss the Girls, he reteamed with Morgan Freeman. Currently he can be seen in Jim Sheridan's The Boxer. Cox is now in Texas filming the Disney comedy Rushmore with Bill Murray and will soon be seen in "St. Nicholas," an off-broadway one-man show at New York's Primary Stages beginning in March.

A mainstay of British theater and television for more than three decades, Cox has been honored in England with two Olivier Awards and two British Theatre Association Drama Awards as well as the prestigious International Theater Institute Award. Raised in Dundee, Scotland, he joined the Dundee Repertory Theatre before his 15th birthday, then trained at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts. He spent several seasons with the Royal Lyceum Edinburgh and the Birmingham Repertory Theatres, and included in his resume are such plays as "The Master Builder," "King Lear," "Richard II," and over 20 additional major productions in Scotland and London. In 1985, Cox co-starred with Glenda Jackson in a highly acclaimed Broadway production of Eugene O'Neill's "Strange Interlude." That same year, he performed in "Rat in the Skull," an exchange production between New York's Public Theater and London's Royal Court Theatre.

Cox made his motion picture debut in Nicholas & Alexandra. He reprised his theatrical role as a miner's son in In Celebration and starred as a Scottish nobleman in the BAFTA Award-winning The Privilege before being cast in Michael Mann's Manhunter, which brought him to the attention of American audiences. Other feature film credits include Iron Will, Hidden Agenda, which won a Special Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival, and Shadow of the Sun.

Cox has also been seen in a number of prestigious British television projects, many of which have been seen in the United States. These include "Inspector Morse," "Six Characters in Search of an Author," "Picasso," "The Negotiator," "The Big Battalions," the mini-series "Grushko," "The Cloning of Joanna May" (for the A&E Network) and "The Lost Language of Cranes."

As a director, Cox has helmed stage productions of "Mrs. Warren's Profession" in London and Edinburgh. He has taught master acting classes for the last 25 years at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts and was the first to initiate an acting exchange program in post-Soviet Russia. He has also taught at both Harvard and Cal Arts, and his video training course, "Acting and Tragedy," was also screened on A&E. Cox has also written two books: The Lear Diaries, a chronicle of his year-long experience as King Lear, and Salem to Moscow: An Actor's Odyssey, a semi-autobiographical tale about directing Arthur Miller's "The Crucible" at the Moscow Arts Theater.

JOSEPH CROSS (Matthew Connor) was cast in DESPERATE MEASURES following a nationwide search for a young actor who had the capability of echoing the same kind of heroism as his father, portrayed by Andy Garcia.

Cross made his feature film debut in Wide Awake with Denis Leary, Robert Loggia, Dana Delany and Anne Meara. His prior acting experience includes several commercials, plus a role in the ABC daytime series "Loving." Born in New Jersey, Cross is the eldest of four siblings. The fifth grader lives with his family in New York City.

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