Roomed with actor Danny DeVito in New York City before landing his first big-screen starring role in 1969 drama Hail, Hero!
Took ownership of the motion-picture rights for the novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest after his father, Kirk, tried unsuccessfully for more than a decade to get the movie made; the film went on to win the Oscar for best picture.
Was injured in a skiing accident in 1980 that left him unable to work for three years.
Named a United Nations Messenger of Peace in 1998, with a mandate to focus worldwide attention on nuclear disarmament and human rights.
Met his second wife, actor Catherine Zeta-Jones, at the 1998 Deauville Film Festival in France, where she was promoting her first major movie, The Mask of Zorro.
Took over as the announcer of NBC Nightly News in 2007.
Underwent successful treatment for tongue cancer in 2010.
2004, Golden Globe — Cecil B. DeMille Award: Winner
1988, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Drama: Winner
1975, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series - Drama: Nominee
1990, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy: Nominee
2001, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Drama: Nominee
1970, Golden Globe — New Star of the Year - Actor: Nominee
1974, Emmy — Best Supporting Actor in Drama: Nominee
1976, Emmy — Outstanding Continuing Performance by a Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Nominee
1987, Oscar — Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role: Winner
2002, Emmy — Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series: Nominee
1975, Oscar — Best Motion Picture of the Year: Winner
2000, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture: Winner