Field of Dreams and Goodfellas
In 1989, Ray Liotta costarred alongside Kevin Costner in the fantasy/drama film Field of Dreams— Liotta portrayed Shoeless Joe Jackson, the ghost of the famed baseball player. His voice over line, “If you build it, he will come,” is #39 on the American Film Institute‘s list of100 movie quotes. In 1990, Liotta portrayed real-life mobster Henry Hill in Martin Scorsese‘s film Goodfellas. On this early period in his career, Liotta said that after such strong first few movies, he thinks the representatives he had let him flounder; inspired by the films of the 1970s, he wanted to play different types of roles. In 1992, he costarred as a psychopathic cop alongside Kurt Russell and Madeleine Stowe in the thriller Unlawful Entry. He also appeared in a leading role in the sci-fi/action film No Escape. Liotta would earn more critical praise for his turn inJames Mangold‘s film Cop Land, starring alongside Sylvester Stallone, Robert De Niro, and Harvey Keitel. In 1998, he received critical praise for his performance in the crime filmPhoenix, in which he plays decent policeman Harry Collins who is also a compulsive gambler. In addition to his film roles, Liotta portrayed singerFrank Sinatra in the 1998 TV movie The Rat Pack (for which he received a Screen Actors Guild Award nomination), he provided the voice ofTommy Vercetti for the 2002 video gameGrand Theft Auto: Vice City, and appeared in the television drama ERin 2004, playing Charlie Metcalf in the episode “Time of Death“. The ER role earned Liotta anEmmy for “Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series” (Liotta would later spoof himself and his Emmy win in Bee Movie). Liotta starred in the 2006 CBS television seriesSmith, which was pulled from the schedule after only three episodes had aired, and, in 2012, Liotta appeared as himself in a purely vocal role for the “What a Croc!” episode of the Disney Channel comedy series Phineas & Ferb.
Gang of Seven and Contract with America