LADY IN THE WATER
BOB BALABAN (Harry Farber) is an acclaimed actor, writer and producer. Most
notably, he conceived the original idea of Robert Altman's Gosford Park and went on to
produce and act in the film, which garnered seven Academy Award nominations.
After small roles in Midnight Cowboy and Catch-22, Balaban became more widely
recognized for his role as the interpreter/cartographer in Spielberg's Close Encounters of the
Third Kind (he later penned the memoir Spielberg, Truffaut & Me: An Actor's Diary, a
humorous recount of the filmmaking experience). Balaban has also been a memorable
presence in the Christopher Guest comedies Waiting for Guffman, Best in Show and A Mighty
Additional film appearances include Altered States, Prince of the City, Absence of Malice,
2010, Alice, City Slickers II, Deconstructing Harry, Jakob the Liar, Ghost World and Marie and Bruce.
On television, he is probably best known for his recurring role as the head of NBC on
Balaban made his directorial debut with Parents (1989), and followed up with My
Boyfriend's Back and The Last Good Time. He recently completed directing and producing
Bernard and Doris, starring Ralph Fiennes and Susan Sarandon, about Doris Duke and her
butler. For TV, his directing credits include episodes of Oz; SUBWAYStories: Tales from the
Underground Gary, Indiana; Strangers With Candy; The Twilight Zone and the made-for-TV film
The Exonerated, based on the hit play of the same name which Balaban produced and directed
originally in New York.
He is also author of McGrowl, a best-selling series of children's books for Scholastic.
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