Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
O'Quinn began acting in the 1970s in films from Tombstone to Heaven's Gate. His early television guest starring roles included appearances on Earth 2, Moonlighting and Star Trek: The Next Generation. He also appeared as Captain Thomas Boone in the pilot episode of JAG. He would reprise the role several times in the series.
In 1995, O'Quinn guest starred as a troubled police offer in an episode of The X-Files entitled Aubrey. The show's creator, Chris Carter - a good friend of O'Quinn's - then cast him in his 1996 series Millennium alongside Lance Henriksen. It was this role that achieved O'Quinn mainstream recognition.
Millennium was cancelled after its third season, but Carter kept O'Quinn in business by casting him in a secondary role in the X-Files movie: Fight the Future as Agent Darius Michaud, and then cast him in his 1999 series Harsh Realm as the crazed General Omar Santiago. The pilot - which featured a voice cameo from X-Files actress Gillian Anderson - received mixed reactions on first airing and after only three episodes, was taken off the air. The remaining six episodes were aired in 2000, and the series was cancelled. Notably, it did recieve an eventual DVD release, an unusual effort for a series cancelled so early on.
Carter made use of O'Quinn's talents once more in the final season of The X-Files where he played another character, "Shadow Man", in the episode Trust No 1. (It was a common practice for The X-Files to re-use popular actors.)
From 2002, O'Quinn began a recurring role on J.J. Abrams's Alias, alongside Victor Garber, Jennifer Garner and Lena Olin. O'Quinn played FBI Assistant Director Kendall during the show's second season (with one episode in each of the first and third). He followed this with a seven-episode guest role as General Alexander on The West Wing in 2003 and 2004.
In 2004, Abrams cast O'Quinn in his new television drama Lost about a group of people stranded on a mysterious island after a plane crash. The mystery - conspiracy theory series proved an immediate success with viewers, and O'Quinn's character John Locke - the island's prophet of sorts - is a fan favorite.
- Lost (2004) TV Series .... Locke
- Old School (2003) ... as Goldberg (uncredited)
- Alias (2002-2003) ... as F.B.I. Asst. Director Kendall
- Harsh Realm (1999) ... as General Omar Santiago
- The X-Files: Fight the Future (1998) ... as Darius Michaud
- Millennium (1996-1999) ... as Peter Watts
- Primal Fear (1996) ... as Bud Yancy
- Tombstone (movie) (1993) ... as Mayor John Clum
- The Rocketeer (1991) ... as Howard Hughes
- Prisoners of the Sun (1990) ... as Maj. Beckett
- ... aka Blood Oath (1990) (Australia)
- Young Guns (1988) ... as Alex McSween
- The Stepfather (1987) ... as Jerry Blake
- SpaceCamp (1986) ... as Launch Director
- Places in the Heart (1984) ... as Buddy Kelsey
- The Doctors (1981) ... as Dr. Jerry Dancy
- Heaven's Gate (1980) ... as Capt. Minardi
- ... aka Johnson County Wars (1980)
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