Academy Awards overlook a tribute to Dennis Farina

March 7, 2014 

Obit Dennis Farina

FILE - In this Jan. 25, 2012 file photo, Dennis Farina arrives at the premiere for the HBO television series "Luck" in Los Angeles. Farina died suddenly on Monday, July 22, 2013, in Scottsdale, AZriz., after suffering a blood clot in his lung. He was 69. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles, File)


As I watched the 2014 edition of the Academy Awards on March 2, I was amazed to see the omission of Dennis Farina from their yearly memorial tribute.

Being a retired Chicago Police detective, as was Dennis, I knew him when he worked at Area Three Detective Division as did I.

And I knew for a fact that Dennis was proud of his work in movies and television -- and having his name put together with the likes of Robert De Nero, John Travolta, James Gandolfini, Gene Hackman, Bette Midler, Ed Harris, Tom Hanks and Helen Hunt.

He was extremely honored in the presentation of the American Comedy Award for his portrayal of Ray "Bones" Barboni in "Get Shorty."

Early in his acting career he caught the eye of director Michael Mann, who was instrumental in many of the movies and television parts he was would go on to portray.

He got his big start in the movie "Thief" with James Caan, where he acted with his police partner and life-long friend, Nick Nickeas.

His acting in shows like "Miami Vice," "Law and Order" and the show about his career as a detective in the Criminal Investigation Unit, "Crimes Stories," was not really acting for Dennis; he was just being himself, because that was how he was in real life.

I feel that I lost a friend and the acting community lost a great character actor in the passing of Dennis Farina.

Mark Reiter


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