William H Macy needs no introduction. The award-winning actor and budding director is one of the most consistent faces in Hollywood and has appeared in several unforgettable projects. He has been active for more than 40 years in the movie industry, a time during which he has starred in more than 130 movies and TV series.
Additionally, Macy is admired for being the husband of distinguished Hollywood actress, Felicity Huffman. The couple made headlines around the world after Huffman garnered some unwanted publicity in 2019 when she was fingered in a college admission scam. This notwithstanding, the couple has remained together and their relationship is regarded as one of the true Hollywood love stories.
How ‘Fargo’ Boosted William H Macy’s Recognizability
William H. Macy kickstarted his onscreen acting career in 1978 by playing the role of Will Beagle in the mini-series, The Awakening Land. He went on to star in other productions before landing a career-boosting role in the thriller film, Fargo.
Macy was cast to play Jerry Lundegaard in Fargo, a black comedy about a disgruntled salesman (Jerry) who hires two lowlifes to kidnap his wife in a bid to extort a hefty ransom from his wealthy father-in-law. Jerry’s well-laid plans, however, turn awry as his goons embark on a bunch of roadside homicides.
Macy’s role in Fargo did an incredible job in boosting his recognizability as the movie was very popular. Fargo premiered at the 1996 Cannes Film Festival to great applause and was nominated for the Palme d’Or, the competition’s highest honor. It was also a commercial success, raking in an amazing $60.6 million from a budget of $7 million. The film then went on to garner seven Academy Award nominations, including for Best Picture. It won two.
The huge critical and commercial success of Fargo helped launch William H. Macy to great bankability. The actor received praise for his work as the leading man in the film. His performance was so good that it also earned him a number of awards and nominations. He won the Independent Spirit Award for Best Male Lead and was nominated for an Academy Award as well as a Satellite Award and a Screen Actors Guild Award.
He Gained More Plaudits For His Role in ‘Boogie Nights’
In 1997, about one year after portraying Jerry Lundegaard in Fargo, William H Macy scored another role that ensured his previous performance was not a fluke. He landed the role of Little Bill Thompson in Boogie Nights, an American period drama film that made quite some waves following its release.
Boogie Nights garnered critical acclaim and won many awards. It notably garnered three Academy Award nominations and won a Golden Globe Award, Golden Satellite Award, Boston Society of Film Critics Award, British Independent Film Award, and many more. The movie’s huge popularity gave its cast, including Macy, a lot of exposure, expanding their fan base.
In Boogie Nights, Macy played Bill Thompson, an assistant adult film director who discovers that his porn-star wife was having sex with another man and then shoots them both before turning around and killing himself. His performance garnered praise from critics and he joined the film’s cast to receive a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture nomination.
After his performance in Fargo and Boogie Nights, William H Macy went on to star on other onscreen productions that were a testament to his acting prowess. He portrayed the character of Leo Lionheart in The Lionhearts in 1998 and played the role of Quiz Kid Donnie Smith in Magnolia in 1999. He then played Sam Donovan in the Sports Night TV series from 1999 to 2000 and then Steven in the mini-series, Out of Order, in 2003.
‘Shameless’ Proved William H Macy’s Enduring Relevance
In 2011, William H Macy was cast to play the main role of Frank Gallagher in Shameless, an American comedy-drama television series which was developed by popular American theater, film, and television producer, John Wells.
Shameless, which debuted on Showtime on January 9, 2011, found immense success and has been running for quite a long time. In fact, it became the longest-running original scripted series in Showtime’s history in 2018 after the ninth season of the show premiered on September 9 that year. Shameless has pulled in generally good reviews from critics and has raked in several awards and nominations.
On the show, Macy leads an ensemble cast made up of some really awesome movie stars, including Emmy Rossum. His performance has received huge praise from critics and he has received huge accolades over the years in the form of awards. For his work on Shameless, Macy has won many awards, including a PRISM Award for Best Performance in a Comedy Series and three Screen Actors Guild Awards for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series.
William H Macy has also had several other nominations proving beyond any reasonable doubt that his relevance is unfading. Having been in the game for more than 40 years, he is showing no sign of retiring from the business and is keeping his head up high. Macy currently continues to star in Shameless. So far, he has appeared in more than 120 episodes of the show.
How Much Money Has He Made From His Career?
There is no doubt that William H Macy has been able to rake in quite a considerable amount of wealth over the years considering how long he has stayed active in the industry and how much effort he has put into his craft. At the moment, the actor’s net worth has been estimated to be an amazing $45 million by trusted sources.
A large chunk of Macy’s worth comes from his acting, however, acting is not the only thing the talented thespian does. The Fargo star is also a director and a writer. He has directed projects like Rudderless (2014) and The Layover (2017) and has written the scripts for several TV movies and series like Thirtysomething (1991), Above Suspicion (1995), A Slight Case of Murder (1999), and Family Man (2008) among many others.
Macy is also a producer and executive producer. He produced the 2004 TV movie, The Wool Cap, and executive produced Rudderless in 2018 among others.
William H Macy was First Married To Carla Santos Shamberg
William H Macy has been married on two occasions. His first marriage was to a woman named Carla Santos Shamberg, a Hollywood film producer known for her work on Erin Brockovich (2000) and Feeling Minnesota (1996) among others. The couple got married in 1980. Unfortunately, this union lasted only for five years and they divorced in 1985.
He Has Since Lived Happily with Felicity Huffman
After parting ways with Carla Santos Shamberg, William H Macy proceeded to find love again in the arms of Felicity Huffman, the illustrious Hollywood actress who is considered to be one of the best actresses of her generation.
The couple first met in an acting class at New York City’s Atlantic Theater Company. While they were there together, they got attracted to each other especially because they found out that they shared the same philosophy for their craft. The two bonded over their shared love of acting and this helped their affection for each other to soar.
Huffman told Closer Weekly that acting was the only language they knew and it was enough to stir a mutual fire within them. They soon began a relationship that was quite rocky as they dated on and off for about for 15 years before deciding to settle down. This was mainly because Huffman was scared of marriage at first and did not want to commit to that kind of life.
Eventually, Felicity Huffman accepted Macy’s proposal and they tied the knot as husband and wife on September 6, 1997. The couple has remained together ever since and has become what some describe as ‘Hollywood’s ideal love story’.
Their marriage has since produced two adorable children. They have two daughters; Sophia Grace and Georgia Grace. Sophia was born on December 1, 2000, and Georgia Grace was born on March 14, 2002.