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John Patrick Mahon (1938–2020), actor in “L.A. Confidential,” “Armageddon”

by Linnea Crowther

John Patrick Mahon was an actor known for roles in films including “L.A. Confidential,” “Zodiac,” and “Armageddon.”

Big screen, TV, and Broadway

Mahon’s earliest credited role was a small part in “The Exorcist” (1973), playing the language lab director. He went on to guest spots on 1970s TV shows including “Police Woman,” “The Rockford Files,” and “Kojak.” As he took more TV and movie roles, he was also acting in stage, appearing on Broadway with Al Pacino in “Richard III” in 1979 and receiving a Best Actor nomination by the New York Critics Circle for his 1971 performance in “Nobody Hears a Broken Drum.” Mahon’s most prominent movie roles came in the 1990s and 2000s as he played the police chief in “L.A. Confidential” (1997), an amateur astronomer who discovers an asteroid in “Armageddon” (1998), and a police captain in “Zodiac” (2007). Mahon’s other notable TV appearances include “Frasier,” “The X-Files,” “Angel,” and a recurring role on “Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip.”

What people said about him

Full obituary: Variety


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