Nick Tate Space:1999 star NICK TATE was born in Sydney, Australia on June 18th, 1942 to the well-known Australian theatrical couple John Tate and Neva Carr-Glyn. With grandparents who had also worked in showbusiness, it was only natural that the young Nick was drawn to the stage and he made his professional acting debut at the age of 14 as the title character in the Sydney Opera Company's 1956 production of Amahl And The Night Visitors.

Radio and television roles followed - in series such as Long John Silver and The Skin Of Our Teeth - but Nick was increasingly drawn behind the camera and became interested in directing. After leaving school at 17, he joined the Australian Broadcasting Commission as a studio hand and spent the next six years learning about different aspects of television production, becoming an assistant director and then production manager on ABC's 1964 serial The Purple Jacaranda. This seven-part adaptation of Nancy Graham's mystery thriller required a 'surfie' type for the juvenile lead and the director invited Nick to audition for the role.

The audition won Nick the part and proved a personal success, but he was still unsure whether he wanted to make acting his career. Instead, he joined the army for a year before returning to acting with a leading role in the original 1965 television dramatisation of George Johnston's My Brother Jack, co-starring with John Armstrong and Ed Devereaux. The production was highly-acclaimed and on the strength of it, Nick decided to try his luck in England where his father had relocated following his parents' separation some ten years before.

John Tate had become a familiar face on British television in the early 1960s. Recognised from his important role in Stanley Kramer's On The Beach (1959), he had appeared in Associated-Rediffusion's ambitious 1961 production Countdown At Woomera, the feature adaptation of John Wyndham's The Day Of The Triffids (1962), and numerous episodes of series such as Z Cars, The Avengers, Man Of The World, Dixon Of Dock Green, The Saint and The Troubleshooters. He had also made uncredited vocal appearances in Gerry Anderson's Thunderbirds series, as the Captain of Ocean Pioneer II in Danger At Ocean Deep, Blackmer in Attack Of The Alligators! and Frank Hooper in Atlantic Inferno among others.

Despite John Tate's theatrical connections, the next five years proved hard for his son who was forced to take on other work in order to make a living: Nick became a demonstrator at the Ideal Home Exhibition, a thermal insulation salesman, a lifeguard at the Oasis swimming baths and stage manager at a Soho strip club. Film and television roles intermittently came his way. He made his British television debut as the title character in the 1966 Wednesday Play production A Pyre For Private James, directed by Gilchrist Calder from a script by Simon Ravens, and the same year he made his feature film debut, an uncredited walk-on part in Fred Zinneman's A Man For All Seasons (1966). Early in 1967 he filmed an uncredited appearance as a sailor in The Champions episode The Dark Island - he is shot by Vladek Sheybal's men in the pre-credit sequence.

Nick Tate Better roles followed: the leading seaman aboard Submarine X-1 (1967) in William Graham's tense WW2 drama, guest roles in episodes of Detective, Dixon Of Dock Green and The Troubleshooters, and playing opposite his father in The Boscombe Valley Mystery, an episode of the BBC's Sherlock Holmes series. He also made an uncredited appearance alongside his former Sydney surf club captain Rod Taylor in Nobody Runs Forever (1968) and was seen as an RAF pilot in Battle Of Britain (1969).

In 1969, he was offered the role of Nicholas the Gallant in an Australian production of The Canterbury Tales. Returning to Oz for what he expected to be an eleven week run, Nick had what he describes as "the most enjoyable 18 months of my life" when the run was extended to tour the country. He was subsequently invited to stay on in Australia and join his father as co-stars in a television series called Dynasty (no relation to the later US series) ­ Nick was Peter Mason, the youngest of three brothers, with John Tate as their father Jack. Between Dynasty's two seasons, Nick appeared as Simon in the Tasmanian National Theatre production of Tom Stoppard's The Real Inspector Hound and then, when the series ended, he guested in episodes of Matlock Police, Over There, Homicide, Division 4 and Ryan. He also appeared in recurring roles in Spyforce (three episodes as Matt Parsons) and Boney (two episodes as Sergeant Peter Irwin).

More theatre work involved Nick in two productions at the Old Tote Theatre in Sydney, Thomas Keneally's An Awful Rose and David Williamson's black comedy Don's Party. Nick played the title character in the latter, schoolteacher and failed novelist Don Henderson, a role later played by John Hargreaves in Bruce Beresford's 1976 film version. Don's Party was so successful that it went on to tour Australia for more than a year, but Nick left the production to play lead roles in a pair of pilot films, The Racing Game amd The Chaser. Neither pilot was picked up for a full series and, prompted by the possibility of a London production of Don's Party, Nick decided to resume his career in England.

The West End production of Don's Party was delayed until 1975, by which time Nick was already involved in the role for which he has become best known - Alan Carter in Space:1999. He had received an introduction to producers Gerry and Sylvia Anderson via Australian TV executive Bruce Gyngell who had become managing director of ATV and deputy managing director of ITC in 1971. Nick had a meeting with the Andersons and director Lee H Katzin and was offered the role of pilot Collins in Breakaway, the opening episode of Gerry Anderson's lavish new science-fiction series.

Then it was discovered that Giancarlo Prete, the Italian actor lined up to play the regular role of chief Eagle pilot Alphonso Catini in the series, was unable to commit to 15 months of filming in England. Other Italian actors were tested for the role, but Lee Katzin had warmed to Nick and invited him to read for the part. However, Nick's Italian accent proved unconvincing so Katzin encouraged the Andersons to re-work the role as an Australian character, Captain Alan Carter, and Nick was contracted for the first six episodes. (Giancarlo Prete later guested in the series as Dr Dan Mateo in The Troubled Spirit.)

Nick Tate Series writers Christopher Penfold and Johnny Byrne were so impressed by Nick's performances in the initial episodes that they enlarged the character's role in Black Sun and made him the focus of the episode which would have been the actor's last, Another Time, Another Place. By this time he had become an integral part of the series' supporting cast and he was invited to stay on for all of the remaining episodes. Alan Carter continued to be favoured by the writers, playing a pivotal role in episodes such as Alpha Child, The Last Sunset, Collision Course, The Full Circle and Mission Of The Darians.

After filming was completed on Space:1999's first season at the end of February 1975, Nick was invited back to Australia by director Fred Schepisi to take the lead role of the alcoholic priest Brother Victor in the film The Devil's Playground (1976), a performance which won him the 1976 Australian Actor Award. Returning the England, he starred as Captain Harry Masters in Gerry Anderson's The Day After Tomorrow pilot episode Into Infinity (with Space:1999 guest stars Brian Blessed and Joanna Dunham) before reprising his role as Alan Carter in the second season of Space:1999.

With the series now being produced by Fred Freiberger, who was unaware of Alan Carter's popularity with viewers, Nick was not contracted for Space:1999's second season - like the other members of the supporting cast he was hired only on an episode-by-episode basis, ultimately appearing in 18 of the 24 episodes. Nonetheless, Carter continued to take a prominent role in episodes such as Journey To Where, The Mark Of Archanon, The AB Chrysalis, Space Warp, The Bringers Of Wonder and Dorzak. Nick also managed to squeeze some stage work into his schedule, appearing as Sir Ernest in a production of Number One Rooster at the Royal Court Theatre.

When filming on Space:1999 finally came to an end in December 1976, Nick began to commute regularly between England and Australia, starring as schoolteacher Simon Robinson in Ken Hannam's atmospheric Australian thriller Summerfield (1977) before returning to London to film a brief appearance in John Cleese's The Strange Case Of The End Of Civilisation As We Know It. Nick also appeared on stage as Victor in Duty Free, initially at the Victoria Palace Theatre and then on tour.

It was while touring in Duty Free that Nick married Hazel Butterfield at Dulwich College Chapel and when the tour came to an end they went back to Australia. There, Nick guested in episodes of Men Of Action and Chopper Squad (The Other Man's Grass), and starred as Kenneth Reissel in the highly-acclaimed six-part ABC serial A Place In The World. In London again, Nick guested in an episode of Danger UXB (as Lieutenant Chris Craik in Seventeen Seconds To Glory), co-starred with Gareth Hunt in the little-seen Bond spoof Licensed To Love And Kill (1979), and appeared on stage as Bernie in Clifford Odets's Winter Journey at the Cambridge Theatre and then on tour. On November 10th, 1979, Hazel gave birth to their son Thomas Chevral.

Nick Tate At this time, Nick was diagnosed as having developed a serious skin cancer but with treatment he was able to make a full recovery. He subsequently starred as documentary film-maker Steve Jackson in Gordon Flemyng's BBC thriller Number On End and guested in episodes of West End Tales (The Wagga Wagga Handicap), Spearhead In Hong Kong, Churchill: The Wilderness Years and The Gentle Touch (The Hit).

In 1981, Nick was offered the leading role of Neil Scott in the Australian soap opera Holiday Island and he decided that this was the opportunity to give his family a proper home base in Sydney during Tom's early years. Re-establishing himself in Australia, Nick went on from Holiday Island to television appearances in Patrol Boat, Special Squad, Scales Of Justice and Too Many People Are Disappearing, followed by two years as James Hamilton in the long-running Sons & Daughters. He also played feature leads in The Coolangatta Gold (1984, aka The Gold And The Glory) and The Empty Beach (1985), and took to the stage in Caravan (1984, Sydney Opera House) and Foreigner (1986, Elizabethan Theatre, Sydney). Hazel gave birth to a second child, Jessica Josephine, in 1986.

The late 1980s proved to be a busy time for Nick. He directed and appeared in episodes of A Country Practice, guested in episodes of The Flying Doctors and Butterfly Island, took feature roles in Olive (1987), The Year My Voice Broke (1987), Richard Attenborough's Cry Freedom (1987), Return From The River Kwai (1988) and A Cry In The Dark (1988), appeared in the mini-series The Alien Years and True Believers, and even guested in an episode of Boon (Have A Nice Day) during a trip to London. In 1989, he landed a starring role as Baron Trent in Dolphin Cove, a short-lived CBS television series filmed in Australia, and was then offered the part of Roger McSwain in the Fox Network sit-com Open House. The latter prompted another move for the Tate family, this time to Los Angeles where they resided for the next decade.

Nick's career flourished in Hollywood with roles in Steel And Lace, Steven Spielberg's Hook (1991), The Public Eye (1992), Silent Cries (1993) and Bed Of Roses (1996). He was frequently seen on American television guesting in episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation (as Captain Dirgo in Final Mission), Night Court, Matlock, Murder, She Wrote (twice), Steven Bochco's Civil Wars, Party Of Five, FX: The Series, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (as Bilby in Honor Among Thieves), Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman (twice), JAG (twice), The X Files (as Dr Openshaw in Two Fathers) and Diagnosis Murder. He also appeared in the TV movies Jackie Collins' Lady Boss, The President's Child and Attack Of The Queen, provided voices for the animated series The Red Planet and The Real Adventures Of Jonny Quest, and was seen on stage with Helen Mirren in Woman In Mind (1995, Tiffany Theatre, LA) and with Perry King in Seven Out (1998, Globe Theatre, LA).

Nick Tate Throughout the 1990s, Nick developed a successful second career as one of Hollywood's top voice-over artists on trailers for major motion pictures. Adopting an American accent, he was heard on the trailers for films such as Shattered (1991), Rush (1991), 1492: Conquest Of Paradise (1992), Whispers In The Dark (1992), Schindler's List (1993), Jurassic Park (1993), Free Willy (1993), Last Action Hero (1993), Searching For Bobby Fischer (1993), Clear And Present Danger (1994), Stargate (1994), Miracle On 34th Street (1994), The Shadow (1994), Apollo 13 (1995), GoldenEye (1995), Braveheart (1995), 12 Monkeys (1995), Richard III (1995), Losing Isiah (1995), The Net (1995), Nick Of Time (1995), Nixon (1995), Rob Roy (1995), Species (1995), Village Of The Damned (1995), Mission: Impossible (1996), Independence Day (1996), James And The Giant Peach (1996), Jane Eyre (1996), The Fan (1996), Fargo (1996), Unforgettable (1996), The Phantom (1996), Primal Fear (1996), G.I. Jane (1997), The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997), The Peacemaker (1997), Relic (1997), Tomorrow Never Dies (1997), The Edge (1997), Deep Impact (1998), The Thin Red Line (1998), Snake Eyes (1998), Small Soldiers (1998), Double Jeopardy (1999), The General's Daughter (1999), The Thomas Crown Affair (1999), Lake Placid (1999) and The World Is Not Enough (1999).

Nick remains much in demand for voice-over work despite having returned to live in Australia once again in 2000. He has been heard on commercials for ITT, Honda, HP, Kodak, Lexus, Ping, Acura, Weight Watchers and South Western Bell, on the video games Star Wars: Shadow Of The Empire and Escape From Monkey Island, and his most recent trailer voice-overs have included The Day After Tomorrow (2004), Being Julia (2004), Taxi (2004), Catwoman (2004), Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason (2004), Troy (2004) and The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie (2005).

In recent years, Nick has been seen on television in Seconds To Spare, The Junction Boys and Counterstrike, as well as guesting in episodes of Water Rats, The Lost World, Farscape (as television presenter R. Wilson Munroe in A Constellation Of Doubt) and Lost (as Ray in Tabula Rasa). In 2005, he filmed a role as a surgeon in Pearry Reginald Tao's The Gene Generation (2006), a film in which his son Tom, also an actor, appears as a news reporter.

Nick has also turned his hand to writing and has completed a feature film script, The Legend Of The Black Fire Opal. He is now working on several other writing projects.


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