Known for movies

Short Info

Date Of BirthMarch 7, 1947
SpouseTina Knowles, Denise Gordy
FactFather, with Denise Gordy, of actress Bianca Lawson.

Richard Lawson is an American actor. He was born on December 18, 1947 in Los Angeles, California, to American parents. Lawson’s father was an African-American doctor and his mother was a Caucasian social worker. Lawson has two older sisters. He was educated at the prestigious Harvard-Westlake School in Los Angeles and later attended Stanford University, where he studied drama.

Lawson’s acting career began in the early 1970s with guest appearances on such popular television shows as The Mod Squad and The Rookies. He also had a recurring role on the soap opera General Hospital. In 1975, Lawson made his film debut in the blaxploitation flick Three the Hard Way. He went on to appear in such films as The Mack (1976), Car Wash (1976), and Fort Apache the Bronx (1981).

In 1984, Lawson landed the role of Phillip Drummond on the NBC sitcom The Cosby Show. He played the wealthy father of two African-American children who are adopted by his wife, Clair (Phylicia Rashad). The Cosby Show was a huge hit and ran for eight seasons. After the show ended, Lawson appeared in a number of made-for-television movies and guest-starred on such television shows as L.A. Law, Touched by an Angel, and JAG.

In recent years, Lawson has appeared in the films Tyler Perry’s I Can Do Bad All by Myself (2009), For Colored Girls (2010), and Baggage Claim (2013). He also had a recurring role on the television series Revenge.

Lawson has been married three times. His first marriage was to actress Diahann Carroll, which lasted from 1973 to 1982. His second marriage was to actress Tina Andrews, which lasted from 1989 to 1991. Lawson has been married to actress Pam Grier since 1992. He has three children: two from his first marriage and one from his third marriage.

Richard Lawson has a net worth of $5 million. He has earned his wealth through his successful acting career.

General Info

Full NameRichard Lawson
Date Of BirthMarch 7, 1947
Height1.85 m


SpouseTina Knowles, Denise Gordy
ChildrenBianca Lawson


MoviesPoltergeist, For Colored Girls, Scream Blacula Scream, How Stella Got Her Groove Back, Streets of Fire, Blue Hill Avenue, Sugar Hill, The Jericho Mile, Wag the Dog, Black Fist, I'm Through with White Girls, Christmas at Water's Edge, The Main Event, From Zero to I Love You, Black Listed, Stick, Back...
TV ShowsThe Days and Nights of Molly Dodd, V, Chicago Story

Social profile links


1I'm an actor. It's no struggle for me any more than it would be for a marathon champion to train by running 5 to 10 miles a day. I've accepted the process of what it takes to be an artist. Sure, I've been out of work, I've been without money, but it's not a struggle. It's what I do.


1Stepfather of Beyoncé Knowles and Solange Knowles.
2Served in the Vietnam War as a combat medic and was awarded the Purple Heart.
3He graduated from Hayward High School in 1965 and went to Riverside City College for a year and a half before he dropped out and was drafted into the Army three months later.
4He played the father of his real life daughter Bianca Lawson in Saved by the Bell: The New Class (1993).
5Lawson has won two L.A. Drama Critics Awards: one for the play "Streamers" (1977), and another for "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom" (1987). In addition, he won a NAACP Image Award for his role on the TV soap opera All My Children (1970) in 1992.
6After serving a year's duty in Vietnam, he went to Chabot Junior College in Hayward, California and joined the debate team with the intention of pursuing law. His voice was so strong, resonant and authoritative that he decided to become an actor instead.
7Father, with Denise Gordy, of actress Bianca Lawson.
8Survived the crash of USAir flight 405 on March 22, 1992. The plane, which took off from New York's LaGuardia Airport crashed into the waters of the Long Island Sound shortly after take-off.
9He has been a master scene study teacher and director at The Beverly Hills Playhouse with Milton Katselas for over 30 years. In addition, he owns and operates the Richard Lawson Studios (RLS). RLS offers several classes and professional development workshops, including: scene study, on-camera class, audition techniques, filmmaking, and business administration.




From Zero to I Love YoufilmingRon Logsdon
Real Husbands of Hollywood2013-2016TV SeriesDetective Smith
Saints & Sinners2016TV SeriesPastor Evan Johnson
Royal Family Christmas2015TV Movie
A Royal Family Holiday2015TV Movie
Being Mary Jane2015TV SeriesCharles
BFF Ent Variety Comedy2013TV Movie
Video Breakups2011Video short
Angry Boys2011TV SeriesShwayne Snr Shwayne Sr
Massacre2010/IRich Cannon
For Colored Girls2010Frank
The Business of Show2009ShortSpecial Thanks
Love for Sale2008Uncle Mac
Numb3rs2008TV SeriesClay Porter, Sr.
I'm Through with White Girls (The Inevitable Undoing of Jay Brooks)2007James Evans
All of Us2006TV SeriesLuther Brody
The Last Stand2006Winston
E-Ring2005TV Series
Guess Who2005Marcus
Christmas at Water's Edge2004TV MovieMr. Turner
NYPD Blue2004TV SeriesAgent Wycoff
Dead Like Me2004TV SeriesWilliam Garrett
The Division2004TV SeriesLaBon
Half & Half2003TV SeriesBen
Maniac Magee2003TV MovieMr. Beale
Black Listed2003VideoAgent Gordon
Out of the Rain2003Donald
For the People2002TV SeriesClay Portman
The District2002TV SeriesCommander Richard Gray
The Bernie Mac Show2001TV SeriesBishop
Strong Medicine2001TV SeriesAlton Clayborne
Soul Food2001TV SeriesRev. Bobby Baxter
Blue Hill Avenue2001Uncle Rob
Touched by an Angel2001TV SeriesNick
JAG2001TV SeriesSgt. Dan Craig
Mars and Beyond2000ShortMission Flight Director Maynard Nixon
Family Law2000TV SeriesChuck
Judging Amy1999TV SeriesThomas Horne
Jackie's Back!1999TV MovieMilkman Summers (Jackie's Ex-Husband #1)
Sister, Sister1999TV SeriesVictor Sims / Victor
Justice1999/ITV MovieGus
L.A. Doctors1998TV SeriesGary Miller
How Stella Got Her Groove Back1998Jack
The Parent 'Hood1998TV SeriesT.K. Sr.
Wag the Dog1997CIA Agent
Moesha1997TV SeriesMarlon James
The Good News1997TV SeriesPercy Shepperd
Pandora's Clock1996TV Mini-SeriesCapt. Daniel Robb
Picket Fences1995TV SeriesDale 'Sky' Betts
Saved by the Bell: The New Class1993TV SeriesJudge Thurston Jones
All My Children1992-1993TV SeriesLucas Barnes
MacGyver1989-1991TV SeriesJesse Colton
The Cosby Show1991TV SeriesMr. Bostic
The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd1988-1991TV SeriesDet. Nathaniel Hawthorne
Father Dowling Mysteries1991TV SeriesBrad Whitfield
Double Your Pleasure1989TV MovieDash
The Forgotten1989TV MovieSergeant Frank 'Doc' McDermott
1st & Ten: The Championship1989TV SeriesColeman King
2271988TV SeriesRaymond Blake
Wiseguy1988TV SeriesThurman McGill
CBS Summer Playhouse1988TV SeriesNick Scott
Amen1987TV SeriesDr. Jonathan Wallace
Dynasty1986-1987TV SeriesNick Kimball
Johnnie Mae Gibson: FBI1986TV MovieAdam Prentice
Under the Influence1986TV MovieDr. Duran
Comedy Factory1986TV SeriesDr. Julius Pepper
Remington Steele1985TV SeriesMonroe Henderson
St. Elsewhere1985TV Series
Magnum, P.I.1984TV SeriesGerald Calvin
Streets of Fire1984Officer Ed Price
Hardcastle and McCormick1983TV SeriesKid Calico
V1983TV Mini-SeriesDr. Ben Taylor
Chicago Story1982TV SeriesDet. O.Z. Tate
T.J. Hooker1982TV SeriesOfficer David McNeil
The White Shadow1981TV SeriesDavid Mackey
The Golden Moment: An Olympic Love Story1980TV MovieGene Davis
The Main Event1979Hector Mantilla
Buffalo Soldiers1979TV MovieCaleb Holiday
The Jericho Mile1979TV MovieR.C. Stiles
Charleston1979TV MovieJames Harris
What Really Happened to the Class of '65?1978TV SeriesLt. Sawyer
Having Babies1978TV SeriesBert Rollins
Coming Home1978Pat
Good Times1978TV SeriesRaymond
Audrey Rose1977Policeman #1
The Fantastic Journey1977TV SeriesBarker
All in the Family1977TV SeriesAngry Black Man
Hotel Story1977TV Series
Most Wanted1976TV Series
Bert D'Angelo/Superstar1976TV Series
Crossfire1975TV Movie
Medical Center1975TV SeriesAndy Willis
The Streets of San Francisco1975TV SeriesEddie Hill
Get Christie Love!1974TV Series
Sugar Hill1974Valentine
Bogard1974Leroy Fisk
Kojak1973TV Series1st Suspect
Shaft1973TV SeriesDon Lewis
Fox Style1973Little Henry
Scream Blacula Scream1973Willis Daniels
Dirty Harry1971Homosexual (uncredited)


The Show2013/IIIShort associate producer
Living an Uldouz Life2011TV Series consulting producer
Sex and Sensuality2007Short producer


Thunderstruck2012/Iacting instructor
The Kid & I2005acting coach

Music Department

Dangerous: The Short Films1993Video musician: drums

Sound Department

The Sand Angels1996Video sound


Wish Me Luck2015Short very special thanks completed
Bartender's Lament2014Short very special thanks completed
Mike Case in: The Big Kiss Off2013special thanks
Method Acting2010special thanks
Noticed2009Short very special thanks
Behind Blue Eyes2008Short special thanks
They Are Here: The Real World of the Poltergeists2007Video documentary short special thanks
Habanero2007Short special thanks


Beyoncé: Lemonade2016TV Special
Blacula / Scream Blacula Scream: Interview with the Vampire's Assistant2015Video shortHimself
Betye Saar: The Alpha & Omega2014Documentary
They Are Here: The Real World of the Poltergeists2007Video documentary shortHimself
Larry King Live2005TV SeriesHimself
Ebony/Jet Showcase1988-1992TV SeriesHimself
Quiet on the Set: Behind the Scenes of Molly Dodd1990TV Movie documentaryDet. Nathaniel Hawthorne / Himself
The 10th Annual Black Achievement Awards1989TV SpecialHimself
Getting in Shape for the Main Event1979TV Short documentaryHimself - Actor
The Paul Ryan Show1977TV SeriesHimself

Archive Footage

Entertainment Tonight2015TV SeriesHimself


Won Awards

2007Genre AwardNew York International Independent Film & Video FestivalBest Short Film - SuspenseSex and Sensuality (2007)

Nominated Awards

1979Stinker AwardThe Stinkers Bad Movie AwardsWorst Fake Accent: MaleThe Main Event (1979)

Source: IMDb, Wikipedia

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