Ray Liotta dies at 67
By: Alix Martichoux, Michael Bartiromo, Nexstar Media Wire
(NEXSTAR) – Ray Liotta, the actor best known for his roles in “Goodfellas” and “Field of Dreams,” has died, multiple outlets reported Thursday.
He was 67 years old.
The actor died in his sleep in the Dominican Republic, Deadline reported. He was there filming a new movie, according to the outlet.
Nexstar spoke with a representative for Liotta’s booking agent Thursday, who declined to offer comment.
Liotta was born in Newark, New Jersey, in 1954. He once told Larry King he didn’t aspire to be an actor in his younger years, but began to pursue the craft after starting college at the University of Miami in the mid-1970s.
“When I decided I wanted to do acting in college, it was (those) ’70s-type movies … but the movies of the ’70s were great,” he told King in a 2014 episode of “Larry King Now.” “And I aspired toward that, because that’s what my learning was.”
Starting in musical theater (“I was a dancing waiter in ‘Cabaret,’” he told King), Liotta earned a recurring role on the soap opera “Another World” out of college, but didn’t break into film until years later. At 31, he earned a role in 1986’s “Something Wild” with Melanie Griffith and Jeff Daniels. But Liotta is perhaps best known for his roles in 1989’s “Field of Dreams” and 1990’s “Goodfellas,” portraying “Shoeless” Joe Jackson and mob associate Henry Hill, respectively.
Some of Liotta’s other notable film roles include “Narc,” “Cop Land,” “The Place Beyond the Pines” and “Marriage Story,” the latter of which earned him an Independent Spirit Award alongside the film’s director, casting director and ensemble cast.
The actor also made several guest appearances in popular TV shows, including “Frasier,” “Modern Family,” “The Simpsons,” and even “Spongebob SquarePants.” Liotta also hosted “Saturday Night Live” in 2003, and won a Primetime Emmy Award for his role in a 2004 episode of “ER.”
More recently, Liotta returned to a mobster role in the “Sopranos” prequel “The Many Saints of Newark.” In a 2021 interview with the “Today” show promoting the movie, Liotta downplayed the hype around the prequel and shared his preference for a quiet life.
“I’m not the kind of actor who wants to watch or see what I did, or see what it looks like,” he said. “I just like staying home with my fiancée, watching TV and chilling.”
Still, he said he wasn’t planning to give up his career anytime soon. “To me, I’m just as hungry, just as angry as I was when I first graduated college. … At this stage, I’m 66 and I just still have that burn.”