Bruce Boxleitner

Bruce William Boxleitner (born May 12, 1950) is an American actor, and science fiction and suspense writer. He is known for his leading roles in the television series How the West Was Won, Bring 'Em Back Alive, Scarecrow and Mrs. King (with Kate Jackson), and Babylon 5 (as John Sheridan in seasons 2–5, 1994–98).

Bruce Boxleitner
Bruce Boxleitner in May 2008
Bruce William Boxleitner

(1950-05-12) May 12, 1950
OccupationActor, writer
Years active1973–present
Known forLuke Macahan
Alan Bradley/Tron
Lee Stetson a.k.a. Scarecrow
Captain John Sheridan
Kathryn Holcomb
(m. 1977; div. 1987)

Melissa Gilbert
(m. 1995; div. 2011)

Verena King-Boxleitner (m. 2016)

He is also known for his dual role as the characters Alan Bradley and Tron in the 1982 Walt Disney Pictures film Tron, a role which he reprised in the 2003 video game Tron 2.0, the 2006 Square-Enix/Disney crossover game Kingdom Hearts II, the 2010 film sequel, Tron: Legacy[1] and the animated series Tron: Uprising. He co-starred in most of the Gambler films with Kenny Rogers, where his character provides comic relief.

Early life

Boxleitner was born in Elgin, Illinois, the son of a certified public accountant.[2] He attended Prospect High School in Mount Prospect, Illinois, and the Goodman Theater School of Drama of the Art Institute of Chicago (later renamed The Theatre School at DePaul University).



Boxleitner is best known for his leading roles in the television series How the West Was Won, Bring 'Em Back Alive, Scarecrow and Mrs. King (with Kate Jackson and Beverly Garland), and Babylon 5 (as John Sheridan in seasons 2–5, 1994–98).[3]

He also starred in The Gambler (as Billy Montana, alongside Kenny Rogers: 1980, 1983 and 1987) and in such TV movies as Judith Krantz's Till We Meet Again and Danielle Steel's Zoya. In 2005, he co-starred as Captain Martin Duvall in Young Blades. He has also starred in several films within the Babylon 5 universe, including Babylon 5: In the Beginning (TV, 1998), Babylon 5: Thirdspace (TV, 1998), Babylon 5: A Call to Arms (TV, 1999), and the direct-to-DVD Babylon 5: The Lost Tales (2007).

He has appeared in many other TV shows, including an appearance in 1973 as Rick Welsh, a University of Minnesota Track Star, in the season four episode, "I Gave at the Office" in The Mary Tyler Moore Show. Other appearances include Gunsmoke, Tales from the Crypt, Touched by an Angel, The Outer Limits and She Spies, and in 1982, he played Chase Marshall in the TV film Bare Essence, with Genie Francis. He was a member of the cast of Heroes for seasons three and four, playing New York Governor Robert Malden in three episodes. He also appears on the television series Chuck as the father of Devon Woodcomb. He was in such made-for-television films as The Secret, Hope Ranch, Falling in Love with the Girl Next Door, Pandemic, Sharpshooter and Aces 'n Eights.

Boxleitner was a guest-star on NCIS in the fall of 2010. He played Vice Admiral C. Clifford Chase, a high-ranking Navy official.[4] Boxleitner also lends his voice to the animated version of his iconic character Tron in the animated series Tron: Uprising. The series premiered on Disney XD on June 7, 2012. He also reprises the character Alan Bradley/Tron from the films Tron and Tron: Legacy.[5] From 2013-2015, he played Bob Beldon, the owner of the local bed and breakfast, in the Hallmark Channel series Cedar Cove.[6][7]

Boxleitner later recurred on Supergirl portraying Baker, the Vice-President of the United States who is later sworn in as the new President after Lynda Carter's character Olivia Marsdin is outed as a Durlan by Mercy Graves and Otis Graves. He gained the role after Brent Spiner stepped down due to a scheduling conflict related to a family matter.[8]


He has also appeared in several films, including Tron (in which he played the title role) and The Baltimore Bullet (1980) with James Coburn. He reprised his role in the Tron sequel Tron: Legacy and in the video game Tron: Evolution which was released alongside the film Tron: Legacy, as he did for sequel video game named Tron 2.0, and Disney/Square Enix crossover video game Kingdom Hearts II. Boxleitner also voice as Col. John Konrad in video game Spec Ops: The Line. He also starred as Confederate General James Longstreet in the 2003 film Gods and Generals. He provides the voice of Colin Barrow in the animated science fiction horror film Dead Space: Downfall, based on the video game Dead Space. Other films he has been in include Kuffs, The Babe, Brilliant, Snakehead Terror, Legion of the Dead, King of the Lost World, Shadows in Paradise and Transmorphers: Fall of Man.

In 2011, he officially announced that he will reprise his role as Alan Bradley/Tron in Tron 3. July 2015 Boxleitner said that he is done with the franchise, as "it's been too up and down for me. I would rather not just keep going. I don't want to repeat my career anymore."[9]


From 1986 to 1989, Boxleitner appeared in advertisements for Estee Lauder's "Lauder For Men".


Boxleitner is credited as the author of two science fiction novels with a Western setting, Frontier Earth (1999)[10] and Searcher (2001).[11] - although the novels were in fact ghost-written by William H Keith Jr[12].

Audio books

Boxleitner played a major role in the audio dramatization of The Great Secret, part of the Golden Age of Fiction series by L. Ron Hubbard. He also played Captain Gavin Blaire in the unabridged version of World War Z.

Personal life

Boxleitner's first marriage (1977–1987) was to American actress Kathryn Holcomb, who co-starred with him on How The West Was Won as his on-screen sister Laura. They had two sons together: Sam (born 1980) and Lee (born 1985). Holcomb went on to marry English actor Ian Ogilvy.

Boxleitner's second marriage (1995–2011) was to American actress Melissa Gilbert. They had one son together: Michael (born 1995).[13] Gilbert also guest-starred as Boxleitner's on-screen wife, Anna Sheridan, during Season 3 of Babylon 5.[14] On March 1, 2011, Gilbert announced that she and Bruce had separated after 16 years of marriage.[15] On August 25 of the same year the Associated Press reported that, based on court records, Gilbert had filed for divorce.[16]


In 2003, Boxleitner was appointed to the Board of Governors of the National Space Society, a nonprofit, educational space advocacy organization founded by Dr. Wernher von Braun.[17]

He was friends with actress Beverly Garland for nearly 30 years. He met her on an episode of How The West Was Won, and later co-starred alongside her on Scarecrow & Mrs. King, though he had very few scenes with her. Then, in 1986, Boxleitner presented Garland the Golden Boot Award. After the cancellation of Scarecrow, Boxleitner remained close to Garland, contacting her consistently, until her death, on December 5, 2008. He said in an interview, "I used to keep up with Beverly Garland until she passed. There was actually a hotel named after her. She was such a trip. She was a great lady."[18]



Year Title Role Notes
1975 Sixpack Annie Bobby Joe
1980 The Baltimore Bullet Billie Joe Robbins
1981 Fly Away Home N/A Uncredited
1982 Tron Alan Bradley / Tron
1982 Bare Essence Chase Marshall
1987 Angel in Green Captain William Wicker
1988 Red River Matthew Garth
1990 Breakaway Joey
1991 Murderous Vision Detective Kyle Robeshaw
1991 Diplomatic Immunity Cole Hickel
1992 Kuffs Brad Kuffs
1992 The Babe Jumpin' Joe Dugan
1992 The Secret Patrick Dunmore
1992 Perfect Family Allan Bodine
1992 Double Jeopardy Jack Hart
1998 Babylon 5: In the Beginning Capt. John J. Sheridan
1998 Babylon 5: Thirdspace Capt. John J. Sheridan
1999 Babylon 5: A Call to Arms President John J. Sheridan
1999 Free Fall Mark Ettinger
2000 The Perfect Nanny Dr. Robert Lewis
2002 Contagion President Howard
2003 Gods and Generals James Longstreet
2004 Brilliant Dr. Dietrich
2004 Snakehead Terror Sheriff Patrick James
2007 Babylon 5: The Lost Tales President John J. Sheridan
2008 Transmorphers: Fall of Man Hadley Ryan
2010 Tron: Legacy Alan Bradley / Tron / Rinzler
2011 51 Col. Martin
2011 Tron: The Next Day Alan Bradley Short film

Television films

Year Title Role Notes
1974 The Chadwick Family Danny
1975 A Cry for Help Richie Danko
1976 The Macahans Luke Macahan
1976 Kiss Me, Kill Me Douglas Lane
1977 Murder at the World Series Cisco
1978 Happily Ever After Jack
1979 The Last Convertible George Virdon
1980 Kenny Rogers as The Gambler Billy Montana
1981 Little House on The Prairie episode ‘A Wiser Heart’ Professor Westahoff
1983 Kenny Rogers as the Gambler: The Adventure Continues Billy Montana
1983 I Married Wyatt Earp Wyatt Earp
1986 Down the Long Hills Louis L'amour
1987 Kenny Rogers as the Gambler, Part III: The Legend Continues Billy Montana
1987 Passion Flower Larry Janson
1988 Red River Matthew Garth
1988 The Town Bully Robert Doniger
1989 From the Dead of Night Peter Langford
1989 Road Raiders Charlie Rhodes
1994 The Maharaja's Daughter Patrick O'Riley
1994 Gunsmoke: One Man's Justice Davis Healy
1994 Gambler V: Playing for Keeps Billy Montana
2002 Perilous Judd
2002 Hope Ranch J.T. Hope
2003 Killer Flood: The Day the Dam Broke Jordan Walker
2005 A Killer Upstairs Detective Bruning
2006 Mystery Woman: Wild West Mystery Clint Lawson
2006 Falling in Love with the Girl Next Door Frank Lucas
2007 Bone Eater Sheriff Steve Evans
2007 Sharpshooter Sheriff Graham
2011 Love's Everlasting Courage Lloyd Davis
2013 Silver Bells Bruce Dalton
2015 So You Said Yes Nick
2016 Wedding Bells Charlie
2016 Double Mommy Scott

Television series

Year Title Role Notes
1973 The Mary Tyler Moore Show Rick Episode: "I Gave At the Office"
1974 Hawaii Five-O Cam Farraday Episode: "We Hang Our Own"
1975 Gunsmoke Toby Hogue Episode: "The Sharecroppers"
1975 Hawaii Five-O Kevin Caulder Episode: "And the Horse Jumped Over the Moon"
1975 Police Woman Ed Krohl Episode: "Paradise Mall"
1976 Baretta Tom Episode: "The Left Hand of the Devil"
1976 Hawaii Five-O Paul Colburn Episode: "The Capsule Kidnapping"
1976–79 How the West Was Won Luke Macahan 25 episodes
1980 Wild Times Vern Tyree 2 episodes
1981 East of Eden Charles Trask Episode: "Part One"
1982–83 Bring 'Em Back Alive Frank Buck 17 episodes
1983–87 Scarecrow and Mrs. King Lee Stetson 89 episodes
1989 Judith Krantz's Till We Meet Again Jock Hampton 2 episodes
1991 Tales from the Crypt Winton Robbins Episode: "Top Billing"
1994–98 Babylon 5 Captain John J. Sheridan 87 episodes
Nominated—Saturn Award for Best Actor on Television
1998 Touched by an Angel Scott Tanner Episode: "The Peacemaker"
2000 The Outer Limits Senator Wyndom Brody Episode: "Decompression"
2003 She Spies The Chairman 3 episodes
2005 Commander in Chief Tucker Bayes Episode: "First Choice"
2005 Young Blades Captain Martin Duvall 13 episodes
2006 American Dad! Himself Episode: "Tears of a Clooney"
2008–09 Chuck Dr. Woody Woodcomb 2 episodes
2008–09 Heroes Robert Malden 3 episodes
2010–17 NCIS Vice Admiral C. Clifford Chase 2 episodes
2011 CHAOS Ray Bishop Episode: "Glory Days"
2012 GCB Burl Lourd 4 episodes
2012–13 Tron: Uprising Tron
17 episodes
2013–15 Cedar Cove Bob 30 episodes
2018 Fly Captain Nathaniel Price, Sr. 16 episodes
2018 Supergirl Baker
2019 When Calls the Heart Gentleman Johnny Guest Appearance

Video games

Year Title Voice role Notes
2003 Tron 2.0 Alan Bradley
2006 Kingdom Hearts II Tron
2010 Tron: Evolution Tron
2012 Spec Ops: The Line Colonel John Konrad


  1. "Tron Legacy Star Bruce Boxleitner on the Rivalry Between Star Trek and Babylon 5". Archived from the original on March 17, 2010. Retrieved June 5, 2010.
  2. "Bruce Boxleitner Biography". Retrieved June 5, 2010.
  3. "BRUCE BOXLEITNER as Captain John Sheridan - Babylon 5 GENUINE AUTOGRAPH". Retrieved December 14, 2017.
  4. "Exclusive: NCIS Enlists Scarecrow and Mrs. King's Bruce Boxleitner". Retrieved October 13, 2010. He reprised this role in the spring of 2017.
  5. Ernie Estrella (June 9, 2015). "9 reasons more TRON Uprising is the answer to Disney's TRON sequel problem". blastr. Retrieved March 14, 2016. ...the Grid's security program, Tron (Bruce Boxleitner) is slowly dying from a virus.
  6. "Bruce Boxleitner Added to Cast as Series Regular in Hallmark Channel's "Debbie Macomber's Cedar Cove"". The Futon Critic. May 20, 2013.
  7. "Barbara Niven Added to Cast As Series Regular in Hallmark Channel's "Debbie Macomber's Cedar Cove"". The Futon Critic. May 29, 2013.
  8. "'Supergirl's' Brent Spiner Exits as Season 4 Role Recast With Bruce Boxleitner". The Hollywood Reporter. August 21, 2018.
  9. Topel, Fred (July 30, 2015). "Exclusive: Bruce Boxleitner on 'Tron 3′ – "I'm Done With It. I've Moved On"". Slashfilm. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  10. Boxleitner, Bruce (1999). Frontier Earth: HC. Ace Hardcover. ISBN 978-0-441-00589-5.
  11. Boxleitner, Bruce (2001). Frontier Earth: Searcher. New York: Ace Books. ISBN 978-0-441-00799-8.
  12. William H. Keith Jr. bibliography#With Babylon 5 celebrities
  13. "Cover Story: Our Tiny Miracle – Vol. 45 No. 8". February 26, 1996.
  14. "The-Complete-Babylon-5-Double-Autograph-DA1-Bruce-Boxleitner-and-Melissa-Gilbert The-Complete-Babylon-5-Double-Autograph-DA1-Bruce-Boxleitner-and-Melissa-Gilbert Have one to sell? Sell now The Complete Babylon 5 Double Autograph DA1 Bruce Boxleitner and Melissa Gilbert". Retrieved December 15, 2017.
  15. Eng, Joyce. "Melissa Gilbert and Bruce Boxleitner Split". TVGuide.
  16. "Actress Melissa Gilbert Files for Divorce in LA". New York Times. August 25, 2011.
  18. "Bruce Boxleitner interview". Archived from the original on February 12, 2015. Retrieved February 8, 2016.
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