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Thomas E. Sanders

Thomas E. Sanders

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Also Known As: Tom Sanders Died:
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Buttoned-down prigs and ineffectual milquetoasts have not always been actor Richard Sanders's bread and butter. He first studied acting at Carnegie Mellon University in the late 1950s and subsequently went to England to learn Shakespearean theater on a Fulbright Scholarship. But his nerdy looks and diminutive stature pigeonholed him into roles of docility and weakness. He's had brief success in feature films with small roles in such hits as the war epic "Midway," the teen comedy "Valley Girl," and "Men of Honor" in 2000, but it has been television where he has made his mark. He made numerous appearances on various hit shows of the 1970s, including "Lou Grant," "Kojak," "The Rockford Files," and "Fantasy Island." His break came as bungling dweeb radio newsman Les Nessman on the highly popular "WKRP in Cincinnati" (he also penned five episodes) where his nebbishy oddness played well opposite hipster DJs Tim Reid and Howard Hesseman and the cartoon sensuality of Loni Anderson. Sanders landed a few more recurring roles in the 1980s on "Berrenger's" and "Spencer" and reprised the Nessman role from 1991 to 1993 on "The New WKRP in Cincinnati." He has also lent his voice to the animated series "Batman...

Buttoned-down prigs and ineffectual milquetoasts have not always been actor Richard Sanders's bread and butter. He first studied acting at Carnegie Mellon University in the late 1950s and subsequently went to England to learn Shakespearean theater on a Fulbright Scholarship. But his nerdy looks and diminutive stature pigeonholed him into roles of docility and weakness. He's had brief success in feature films with small roles in such hits as the war epic "Midway," the teen comedy "Valley Girl," and "Men of Honor" in 2000, but it has been television where he has made his mark. He made numerous appearances on various hit shows of the 1970s, including "Lou Grant," "Kojak," "The Rockford Files," and "Fantasy Island." His break came as bungling dweeb radio newsman Les Nessman on the highly popular "WKRP in Cincinnati" (he also penned five episodes) where his nebbishy oddness played well opposite hipster DJs Tim Reid and Howard Hesseman and the cartoon sensuality of Loni Anderson. Sanders landed a few more recurring roles in the 1980s on "Berrenger's" and "Spencer" and reprised the Nessman role from 1991 to 1993 on "The New WKRP in Cincinnati." He has also lent his voice to the animated series "Batman Beyond" and the video game "Day of the Tentacle."

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