Ray Liotta, the intense actor from New Jersey perhaps best known for his turn as the hustler turned mob rat Henry Hill in Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas, has died. He was 67.
His rep Jennifer Craig at Gersh confirmed the news to The Hollywood Reporter, saying the actor died in his sleep while on location shooting a movie. She was unable to provide any other details.
Liotta also was memorable as Ray Sinclair, the violent ex-convict husband of Melanie Griffith ‘s character, in Jonathan Demme’s Something Wild (1986), as the disgraced baseball player Shoeless Joe Jackson in the Kevin Costner-starrer Field of Dreams (1989) and as the corrupt cop Matt Wozniak on the 2016-18 NBC cop drama Shades of Blues, opposite Jennifer Lopez.
He won an Emmy Award in 2005 for a guest turn on the NBC drama ER.
Goodfellas (1990) was based on Nicholas Pileggi’s first book, 1985’s Wiseguy: Life in a Mafia Family, which revolved around Hill, a street-level hustler in New York City who decided that the only way to get out of the mob alive was to rat on his cohorts in the Lucchese crime family.
THR reviewer Kirk Honeycutt noted in his review of that Liotta “fulfills the promise of his film debut in Something Wild. His choir-boy face perfectly masks the character’s dark behavior. As portrayed by Liotta, though, Henry never entirely loses the ‘good’ in the goodfella handle.”
Raymond Allen Liotta was born on Dec. 18, 1954 in Newark. He attended Union High School and graduated from the University of Miami, where he studied acting, in 1978. That same year, he landed the role of Joey Perrini onAnother World, and he remained on the NBC soap through 1981.