Ron Rifkin

Ron Rifkin (born Saul M. Rifkin; October 31, 1939) is an American actor. He is best known for his roles as Arvin Sloane on the spy drama Alias, Saul Holden on the drama Brothers & Sisters, and District Attorney Ellis Loew in L.A. Confidential.

Ron Rifkin
Rifkin in 2014
Saul M. Rifkin

(1939-10-31) October 31, 1939
Years active1966–present
Iva Rifkin (m. 1966)

Personal life

Rifkin was born Saul M. Rifkin in New York City, New York, to Miriam and Herman Rifkin, who was born in Russia. He is the oldest of three children.[1] He was raised as an Orthodox Jew and remains Jewishly engaged though he left Orthodoxy at the age of 32.[2][3][4][5] His wife, Iva Rifkin, owns a fashion design business.[6]


In 2001, his association with Touchstone Television began when he played a ruthless intelligence agent Arvin Sloane in Alias, opposite Jennifer Garner. Until 2011, he played second-in-command businessman Saul Holden on Brothers & Sisters, opposite Sally Field. He also played Bonnie Franklin's second boyfriend on One Day at a Time.

Rifkin has enjoyed a long and distinguished career in film, on stage, and in television. His association with writer Jon Robin Baitz has been especially fruitful.[7] In 1991, his performance in Baitz's play The Substance of Fire won him the Obie, Drama Desk, Lucille Lortel, and Drama-Logue awards for Best Actor. The following year he performed in Baitz's Three Hotels, for which he received a second Lucille Lortel and Drama Desk nomination. In 1996, he starred in the film version of Substance; in 2002, he appeared in the Baitz play Ten Unknowns at Boston's Huntington Theatre; in 2004, he starred in his play The Paris Letter at the Kirk Douglas Theatre in Los Angeles, a role he reprised the following year at the Laura Pels Theatre in New York City; and appeared in the ABC drama series Brothers & Sisters, which Baitz created, as a character named Saul, Rifkin's real-life name.

Rifkin received a 1998 Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Musical for the Broadway revival of Cabaret. Additional theatre credits include David Hirson's Wrong Mountain, Arthur Miller's Broken Glass, Ivan Turgenev's A Month in the Country, and Neil Simon's Proposals.

Rifkin's extensive film credits include Silent Running (1972), The Sunshine Boys (1975), The Big Fix (1978), JFK (1991), Husbands and Wives (1992), Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993), Wolf (1994), L.A. Confidential (1997), The Negotiator (1998), Boiler Room (2000), Keeping the Faith (2000), The Majestic (2001), Dragonfly (2002), The Sum of All Fears (2002), and Pulse (2006).

On television, Rifkin has appeared in numerous made-for-television movies and miniseries, had regular roles on The Rockford Files, One Day at a Time, Husbands, Wives & Lovers, The Trials of Rosie O'Neill, and Alias, and has made guest appearances on a number of series, including Barnaby Jones in the episode titled, “Counterfall”(02/04/1975).; The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Sex and the City, The Bob Newhart Show, The Good Wife, ER as Doctor Carl Vucelich, Law & Order, A Nero Wolfe Mystery, Falcon Crest as Dr. Hal Lantry, Soap, Hill Street Blues, and The Outer Limits, for which he received a CableACE nomination and SMASH as a Tony Award presenter

Rifkin is the reader for a number of audiobooks including The Giver by Lois Lowry (1993), Sang Spell by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor (1998), and Milkweed by Jerry Spinelli (2003).

He currently portrays Defense Attorney Marvin Stan Exely on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, as a recurring character. He also starred in Limitless as Brian Finch's father Dennis Finch and appears in Gotham as Father Creel.

Partial filmography


  1. "Ron Rifkin TV Listings / Biography".
  2. "Theater; Acting Against Type: The Self-Hating Jew". New York Times. April 24, 1994.
  3. Axelrod, Toby (December 6, 1996). "Haunted By The Holocaust: Brooklyn-born Ron Rifkin lands film role of his career as a Lear-like figure in 'The Substance of Fire'". The Jewish Week. Archived from the original on May 16, 2011.
  4. Elkin, Michael (December 21, 2006). "Jewish Jingle Belles? Chanukah with the 'Brothers & Sisters'". The Jewish Exponent.
  5. "Ron Rifkin's Jewish Journeys | Luke Ford". Retrieved 2019-07-01.
  6. "Ron Rifkin Biography (1939-)".
  7. Green, Jesse (2005-06-05). "The Muse Who Sold Shmattes". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2018-04-13.

8. Demetria Fulton; previewed Rifkin on Barnaby Jones, episode titled “Counterfall”(02/04/1975).

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