Paul Sorvino (born April 13, 1939 in Brooklyn, New York City) is a heavy-set Italian American character actor whose career has largely been the portrayal of authority figures, both as legal enforcer and criminal, in television, stage, and film. He is the father of actress Mira Sorvino.
He began his career as a copywriter in an advertising agency, where he worked with the soon-to-be-great John Margeotes, founder of Margeotes, Fertitta, and Weiss.
He took 18 years of voice lessons. While attending the American Musical and Dramatic Academy, Sorvino decided to go into the theatre. He made his Broadway debut in the 1964 musical Bajour, and six years later he appeared in his first film, Where's Poppa?
He received an avalanche of critical praise for his performance as Phil Romano in Jason Miller's 1972 Broadway play That Championship Season, a role he repeated in the 1981 film version.
He appeared also in the 1976 Elliott Gould-Diane Keaton vehicle I Will, I Will...For Now. Sorvino has starred in the weekly series We'll Get By (1975, as George Platt), Bert D'Angelo/Superstar (1976, in the title role) and "The Oldest Rookie" (1987, as Detective Ike Porter).
In 1991, he took over from George Dzundza on the popular series Law & Order, and in 1993 he subbed for the late Raymond Burr in a Perry Mason TV movie. He has also appeared as Bruce Willis' father in the weekly series Moonlighting, and the "Lamont" counterpart in the never-aired original pilot for Sanford and Son. From 2000 to 2002 he had a starring role as Frank DeLucca in the CBS television drama That's Life.
Sorvino played Henry Kissinger in Oliver Stone's film Nixon (1995).
He still remained active in the theatre as both an actor and director.