R.I.P. Ray Liotta, star of Goodfellas and Field of Dreams

He started his career on Eighties TV before jumping to feature films.

The Everett Collection

Ray Liotta will forever be remembered as Henry Hill, the kid who grew up to be a gangster in Martin Scorsese’s iconic film Goodfellas. Liotta more than held his own alongside acting greats Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci, the latter winning an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor. Hill remained sympathetic, even as he made one bad decision after another – a testament to Liotta’s talent.

Though Goodfellas made Liotta a star, he had already proven his skill in late-Eighties movies like the heart-wrenching drama Dominick and Eugene (with Amadeus star Tom Hulce and Jamie Lee Curtis) and baseball classic Field of Dreams. Liotta played controversial Chicago White Sox player Shoeless Joe Jackson who brought Kevin Costner’s dreams to life in an Iowa cornfield.

Liotta got his start in Hollywood as Joey Perrini in the NBC soap opera Another World. He appeared in 36 episodes from 1978-1981. He then starred in the TV movie Crazy Times, about teenagers in Queens, New York, in 1955. The project capitalized on the Happy Days trend of nostalgia for drive-in, rock n roll culture of three decades earlier.

He also guest starred in a first-season episode of St. Elsewhere and won regular roles in two short-lived shows. The first, Casablanca, was a small-screen attempt at a prequel to the famous film which only lasted a few episodes. Liotta played Sacha with Starsky and Hutch’s David Soul as the Humphrey Bogart character Rick Blaine and Hector Elizondo as Captain Louis Renault. 

Two years later, Liotta was cast in Our Family Honor, a modern Romeo and Juliet about a crime family and a family of cops whose children fall in love. Liotta played a police officer and friend of the law enforcement family. 

Though he’s most famous as a gangster, Liotta played many roles on both sides of the law. He was Officer Pete Davis in the 1992 film Unlawful Entry and Arm Captain T.C. Doyle in 1995’s Operation Dumbo Drop. He was also in Nineties movies Corrina, Corrina, Unforgettable and Cop Land with Sylvester Stallone, Robert De Niro and Harvey Keitel. 

In 2005, Liotta won an Emmy Award for his guest spot on ER. He would appear in both movies and shows for the rest of his career. He headlined the cop series Shades of Blue with Jennifer Lopez and appeared in films as varied as Killing Them Softly, Muppets Most Wanted and Marriage Story

He will always be remembered for his incredible performances and iconic characters. He was 67.

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Matsui 22 months ago
When I heard the news about Ray Liotta death, automatically the movie "Goodfellas" from 1990 comes to mind. Henry Hill was a great main character in that Great Movie. Also, Field of Dreams (1989), Article 99 (1992), Unlawful Entry (1992, Corrina Corrina (1994). RIP RAY LIOTTA.
iloveromance 24 months ago
Sad. He was a great actor. I loved him in Jerry Seinfeld's "Bee Movie" of all things. He was hilarious! I've seen more of his movies but as a Seinfeld fan, that one is the one I remember most.
AllisonWunderland 24 months ago
Wow! What a shocker…he was one of my favorite actors. I had to read it twice. So very sad to hear of his sudden passing 😔 You will be missed, Ray Liotta but not forgotten. R.I.P. Ray
Peter_Falk_Fan 24 months ago
Ray Liotta was very good in the roles he played. I liked him in "Goodfellas", and he played an excellent psychopathic cop in "Unlawful Entry". I was on vacation in Atlanta (MomoCon) when I learned of his passing.

R.I.P. Ray Liotta, a very talented actor.
Yes. He was phenomenal in playing the part of Henry Hill 😎
PDCougar 24 months ago
A lot of years ago, I can remember some "Star Trek" fans hoping for a Christopher Pike TV series that would star Ray Liotta because of how much he looked like Jeffrey Hunter.
TheDavBow3 24 months ago
I was totally stunned when I heard the news.
Sachelle 24 months ago
Oh no! He was one of my favorite.
tootsieg 25 months ago
Very sad. Another World was one of my favorite soaps and I remember him well. RIP “Joey”.
retired2019 25 months ago
I watched him on Another World and thought he had a good future ahead of him. I have to admit that I watched Goodfellas last night and got a little teary eyed. RIP sweet Ray.😇
BrittReid 25 months ago
Fine actor to say the least. Great in "NARC". R.I.P.
texasluva 25 months ago
Sad to hear about this when I got the message via my phone. Same thing that happened to one of my neighbor a few months ago. Went to sleep and never woke up. In 60's also. Always wanted to watch movies he played in. R.I.P. Ray Liotta
Runeshaper 25 months ago
R.I.P. Ray Liotta. You will be missed.
gaylehelen Runeshaper 24 months ago
Rest in Peace for sure. This is an actor who should be remembered for a long time.
Yort 25 months ago
In my opinion...one of the greatest actors of all time. He was so unique. Scorsese's decision to cast Liotta as Henry Hill was brilliant. Thanks for the memories Ray.
AllisonWunderland Yort 24 months ago
Couldn’t agree more 👍
Sway 25 months ago
Sad, still young. RIP Ray Liotta. Outstanding in Goodfellas.
LoveMETV22 25 months ago
R.I.P. Ray Liotta. That is so sad. Goodfellas is an awesome movie with a great cast. Thank you for your contributions to Television and Film.
MrsPhilHarris LoveMETV22 25 months ago
Sad. He was great in Goodfellas. I’m going to look up the tv version of Casablanca. Never heard of it.
And Field Of Dreams. Shoeless Joe.
LoveMETV22 MrsPhilHarris 25 months ago
Donnie Brasco was a good movie as well ( JMO ) if you like the genre.
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