Wallace Shawn

Having proved himself as an endearing and often hilarious character player on both the big screen and on television, actor Wallace Shawn was also noted for his work as a serious and provocative playwright. Shawn announced his arrival with his OBIE-winning play "Our Late Night" (1975), which led to a small, but memorable film debut in Woody Allen's "Manhattan" (1979). But it was his writing and performance in the art-house hit "My Dinner with Andre" (1981) that captured the attention of Hollywood at large. From there he enlivened a number of movies in relatively minor parts before essaying his most remembered character, the maniacal Sicilian Vizzini, in "The Princess Bride" (1987). Shawn segued over to television for recurring roles on "The Cosby Show" (NBC, 1984-1992) and "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" (syndicated, 1993-99), while carving out yet another career path in animation with the voice role of the insecure Rex in "Toy Story" (1995), which he reprised in the 1999 and 2010 sequels. Always capable of elevating even the most mundane of material - as he did with "My Favorite Martian" (1999) and "The Haunted Mansion" (2003) - Shawn was a favorite among filmmakers and audiences, while continuing to earn considerable acclaim as an award-winning playwright.