Harvey Keitel

(1939- )

By: Ariel Scheib


Harvey Johannes Keitel was born on May 13, 1939 in Brooklyn, New York. His parents, Nikonar Keitel and Maritska LeCose, were Jewish immigrants from Poland and Romania. At the age of 16, Keitel joined the U.S. Marine Corps, which landed him in Lebanon during Operation Blue Bat. After his return to the United States, he was a court reporter and was able to support himself before beginning his acting career.

Keitel first began his career as an actor in a few off-Broadway productions. It was during this time that Keitel befriended a struggling film producer, Martin Scorsese, and gained a part in his 1967 student production, Who's That Knocking at My Door. Since then both men have worked together on numerous projects together. As a result of a few rough patches during the 1960s, by the end of the 1970s, Keitel was starring predominately in European films. Throughout the 1980s, Keitel began starring in many stage and screen performances, usually in the role of a thug. In 1992, Keitel starred in Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs as Mr. White relaunching his career in the film industry. Keitel has attempted to select roles in which to highlight his acting range, such as his role in Jane Campion’s The Piano. Keitel also operates his own film production company, The Goatsingers, with partner Peggy Gormley.

From 1982 to 1993, Keitel was in a long-term relationship with actress Lorraine Bracco and has one daughter, Stella (b. 1985), with her. In 2001, he married Israeli actress Daphna Kastner and they had a son, Roman (b. 2004). Keitel has a third child, son Hudson (b. 2001), from his relationship with Lisa Karmazin.

Select Filmography

  • 2011 - So I Say
  • 2011 - Criminal Empire for Dummy's
  • 2010 - The Last Godfather
  • 2010 - Little Fockers
  • 2010 - A Beginner's Guide to Endings
  • 2009 - Wrong Turn at Tahoe
  • 2009 - Inglourious Basterds
  • 2008-2009 - Life on Mars (TV series)
  • 2009 - The Ministers
  • 2007 - National Treasure: Book of Secrets
  • 2007 - My Sexiest Year
  • 2006 - Arthur and the Invisibles
  • 2006 - The Stone Merchant
  • 2006 - The Path to 9/11
  • 2006 - A Crime
  • 2006 - One Last Dance
  • 2005 - Shadows in the Sun
  • 2005 - Be Cool
  • 2004 - The Bridge of San Luis Rey
  • 2004 - National Treasure
  • 2003 - Dreaming of Julia
  • 2003 - Crime Spree
  • 2002 - Red Dragon
  • 2000 - Little Nicky
  • 2000 - U-571
  • 1999 - Holy Smoke!
  • 1999 - Three Seasons
  • 1999 - The Prince of Central Park
  • 1998 - Lulu on the Bridge
  • 1997 - Cop Land
  • 1996 - From Dusk Till Dawn
  • 1995 - Blue in the Face
  • 1995 - Smoke
  • 1994 - Pulp Fiction
  • 1994 - Imaginary Crimes
  • 1993 - Young Americans
  • 1993 - The Piano
  • 1992 - Sister Act
  • 1992 - Reservoir Dogs
  • 1992 - Bad Lieutenant
  • 1991 - Bugsy
  • 1991 - Thelma and Louise
  • 1988 - The Last Temptation of Christ
  • 1981 - Corrupt
  • 1981 - Deathwatch
  • 1980 - Bad Timing
  • 1978 - Fingers
  • 1978 - The Duellists
  • 1978 - Blue Collar
  • 1976 - Mother, Jugs and Speed
  • 1976 - Taxi Driver
  • 1974 - Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore
  • 1973 - Mean Streets
  • 1967 - Who's That Knock at My Door

Sources: Internet Movie Database, Wikipedia