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Thursday, September 18, 2014

Film TV Star Attends MHS 50th Reunion

Posted Online: Sept. 17, 2014, 11:23 pm
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By Jonathan Turner,

Film and TV actor John Getz has a 40-year acting resume, but he never forgets his roots. The 67-year-old Moline High School alum attended his 50th class reunion last weekend.

"It was great, great to see a lot of people," Mr. Getz said by phone Monday, adding that he still has relatives in the Quad-Cities.

The last reunion he attended was his 25th, and the last time he was in the Quad-Cities was in early 2012, for the funeral of his late uncle, Tom Getz, former owner of Moline Forge and a community volunteer.

"I just thought it would be interesting to see people again," Mr. Getz said. "It was an excuse to come back and see Moline, the river and everything, to wander around town, drink it all in. I miss the place. I had a good time growing up there. I like to taste it every once in a while."

The son of William and Kaye Getz, Mr. Getz's father was president of Williams White & Co.

In high school, Mr. Getz was on the swim team, and didn't have a lot of time for theater, but emceed his senior year variety show. He went to the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Wash., where he did some acting.

"I had a great English teacher there who was a Shakespeare fanatic. He just encouraged me," Mr. Getz said.

He graduated from the University of Iowa and studied at the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco, later appearing on Broadway in "M. Butterfly" and "They're Playing Our Song."

While known mainly for an extensive list of TV and film credits, Mr. Getz said he loves theater and wants to do more. "It's a delightful challenge to get in front of an audience every night, the gymnastics you get to do with other people."

Mr. Getz's film roles include the Coen brothers' "Blood Simple," "The Fly," "The Fly II," "Born on the Fourth of July," "Curly Sue," and "Zodiac." In 2010, he portrayed the attorney to Mark Zuckerberg's character in the Oscar-winning film "The Social Network."

He played the adoptive father of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs in the 2013 biopic "Jobs."

"We shot in the house Steve Jobs lived in, in Los Gatos (Calif.), where he built the first (Apple) machine in the garage," Mr. Getz said.

His TV roles include "NCIS," "The Ghost Whisperer," "Criminal Minds," "Mad Men," "How I Met Your Mother," and in the past year alone "Bones," "Castle," "CSI," and the AMC series "Halt and Catch Fire."

Mr. Getz filmed one episode for new ABC legal thriller, "How to Get Away With Murder" from Shonda Rhimes, creator of "Scandal" and "Grey's Anatomy." Now he's appeared in all of her shows, including "Private Practice."

"She just throws together good pot-boilers," he said. "She gets a lot going on, with interesting actors."

In Mr. Getz's latest film, "Trumbo," which he'll shoot in October in New Orleans, he plays a director in the McCarthy-era biopic of screenwriter Dalton Trumbo. It will co-star Louis C.K., Bryan Cranston, Helen Mirren and John Goodman.