Ray Liotta is an American actor, film producer, and voice actor known for movies like Escape Plan, The Simpsons, Iceman, and Killing Them Softly, among many others. His acting prowess is often evident on the screen stemming from the fact that he has spent a lot of years honing his skills to build a successful acting career.
Considered one of the best supporting acts of his generation, Ray Liotta has had an eventful Hollywood career. It has seen him star in classic films like Goodfellas, Hannibal, and Field of Dreams. Life has been fulfilling for the veteran actor with many award recognitions although there is a little issue of a failed marriage that he has had to deal with.
His Early Life and Road to Hollywood
Ray was named Raymond Julian Vicimarli when he was born on December 18, 1954, in Newark, New Jersey. He has, however, gained popularity as Raymond Allen Liotta because he was adopted by Mary and Alfred Liotta when he was only six months old. He grew up alongside his adopted sister, Linda Liotta.
The future actor’s adopted father made ends meet as a personnel director, president of a local Democratic club, and the owner of an auto-parts store while his mother was a township clerk. Ray did not know his biological parents, and it was not until the early 2000s that met his biological mom. This meeting further revealed that he has a sister and six half-siblings.
For his education, Ray Liotta was a scholar at the Union High School in Union County, New Jersey. Upon graduation in 1973, he went further to attain a bachelor’s degree in fine arts from the University of Maimi. As a college student, Liotta was active in the school theatre team and contributed to the production of plays like Sound of Music, Oklahoma, and Dames at Sea, among others. He later relocated to New York City with the sole intent of finding greener pastures in his acting career.
Ray Liotta Has Been Acting for Over Four Decades
Ray Liotta started as a bartender at Shubert theatres in New York. He got noticed while there and was given his first set of minor roles onscreen. He made his TV debut in the television drama series, Another World, starring as a recurring character from 1978 till 1981. Two years after, he landed a major role in the blockbuster movie, Sexual Assault.
That role became the platform he used to land roles in action-thriller movies. In 1986, he starred in Something Wild, a film that resulted in his first Golden Globe Award nomination. He then featured in the 1989 sports fantasy drama, Field of Dreams.
Subsequently, Ray began to gain many more roles, and as expected, he excelled in most of them. It started with the Martin Scorsese film, Goodfellas in 1990 where he played real-life mobster Henry Hill to critical and commercial acclaim.
Ray Liotta followed up his Goodfellas role with different roles in films like Unlawful Entry, Cop Land, The Rat Pack, No Escape, and Forever Mine, to mention a few. He continued his heavy onscreen presence in the 2000s, acting in an endless list of movies as he made notable appearances in movies like Blow and Smokin’ Aces.
In the 2010s, he made a significant amount of television appearances, along with multiple film projects. Ray appeared in Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, Kill the Messenger, Suddenly, Texas Rising, and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. He most notably had a leading role in Shades of Blue alongside Jennifer Lopez.
Besides being the center of attraction on screen, Ray has also lent his voice to a few characters in animated movies like Abominable Christmas, The Simpsons, The Making of the Mob, Family Guy, Frasier, and SpongeBob SquarePants.
He is also an accomplished producer, with eight producer credits to his name. He produced his first movie, Phoenix, in 1998, and has produced others like The Line, Slow Burn, and Snowmen.
He Has Won Several Awards in His Career
Staying relevant as an actor for over four decades is an impressive achievement in itself. It is an even more significant achievement when you have over 118 credits in your filmography, with your face in at least one big project in every decade.
But that is just a few of the feathers in Ray Liotta’s acting career. He also has more than eleven award nominations to his name from several organizations and bodies. He has received nominations from the Golden Globes and the Primetime Emmy Awards for Something Wild and ER, respectively.
Other recognitions include 20/20 Awards, CFCA Award, MTV Movie Award, Gold Derby TV Award, and Screen Actors Guild Awards. He also has several awards from the festival circuit, like the Giffoni Film Festival and Faro Island Film Festival.
Ray Liotta Has Made a Fortune For Himself Along the Way
Years of acting has not only populated Ray Liotta’s award shelf, but it has also made him a lot of money. According to Celebrity Net Worth, the Goodfellas actor has an estimated wealth size of $14 million earned primarily from acting. Aside from acting, he has also made money promoting products like Pfizer’s Chantix.
Naturally, a $14 million net worth means access to luxuries and high quality of living. This is exactly the case for Ray who owns at least two homes in California, one in the Pacific Palisades and another in Malibu. He once owned another home in the Palisades before he reportedly sold it to Britney Spears for $7 million.
Ray Liotta Has Only Been Married Once
The actor’s first and only marriage was to another actress, Michelle Grace, the ex-wife of the MLB player Mark Grace. The two met at a baseball game where her ex-husband was playing.
Liotta and Grace exchanged marital vows in 1997, and by 2004, they parted ways. During their marriage, they had one child, Karsen Liotta, who was born in 1998. Now an adult, Karsen has followed in her parent’s acting footsteps. Still a young budding actress, she has starred in several short films and made appearances in a couple of TV shows like Nobodies and Shades of Blue. In the latter, she played Anna Kate Wozniak in four episodes.
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My daughter and I arriving for Muppets Most Wanted. I LOVE working with @themuppets! Most fun I’ve had in a movie. Kermit was stolen by an imposter and thrown into a Russian prison and encounters the tough head prison guard played by Tina Fey. (Tina, her husband and their two little girls were at the premiere too. It's so nice to see a solid, loving family). Anyway, myself and Danny Trejo are in the prison and in every scene we’re doing musical numbers with the rest of the prisoners in lido. My first year in college I did nothing but musicals. It was a blast! Even more so later in life singing and dancing with KERMIT!!!!!!! I love taking my daughter to premieres. She wants to do what I do and has already done 3 movies. One in which she won best actress at a film festival. I couldn't be prouder.
Since his marriage ended, Ray Liotta has kept a relatively quiet love life. Aside from a long-term relationship with Catherine Hickland, which lasted four years, the actor hasn’t been in any notable relationship. He was once linked to Lady Gaga after paparazzi spotted the two of them in a private room at L’Artusi in 2016. But it turned out to be nothing more than a friendly hangout between friends.
Most recently, Ray has been in a relationship with Silvia Lombardo since at least 2017. Despite speculations that the two of them might get married, the actor has ruled out ever walking the aisle again.