5 Things You Didn't Know About Jason Beghe, Who Plays 'Chicago P.D.'s' Hank Voight
From nearly dying an accident to being BFF's with David Duchovny, Jason Beghe has lived a fascinating life.
If you're a fan of crime procedurals, then you most likely know actor Jason Beghe as "Chicago P.D.'s" Hank Voight, the gravely-voiced head honcho of the city's elite Intelligence Unit. Whether the case is a high-profile murder or organized crime, Voight stops at nothing to bring Chicago's worst offenders to justice — even if he has to bend the rules.
But how well do you know Jason Beghe, the actor who plays Voight? Dive in to little-known facts about Beghe ahead of Oxygen's "Chicago P.D." marathon airing all day on Tuesday, September 17. Bonus: you'll get the inside scoop during the marathon on NBC's new show "Bluff City Law," premiering Monday, September 23 at 10/9c.
1. Beghe had a role in "Thelma and Louise"
Being a Detective Sergeant on "Chicago P.D." was not Beghe's first time playing a member of law enforcement. The actor played a state trooper in the 1991 hit "Thelma & Louise," starring Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon. After pulling over the two outlaw heroines for driving "about 110" miles per hour, Thelma (Geena Davis) pulls a gun on Beghe's character. Unlike his tough-as-nails persona on "Chicago P.D.," the State Trooper begs for his life, saying "Please! I have a wife and kids. Please!" Beghe's first landed a role in a movie called "Compromising Positions," which also starred Susan Sarandon.
Another fun tidbit: Before acting, Beghe was a model in Europe.
2. Beghe has spoken out against Scientology
Beghe began studying Scientology in 1994 and rose to the high-ranking level of "Operating Thetan" before quitting the church in 2007. “One of the things I realized when I was extricating myself is there are many, many steps when you’re in this thing, and then I realized, Holy shit, that’s a f--king cult," Beghe told The Daily Beast. "Wow! I was in a cult? I don’t strike me as someone who would be in a cult." After he left the church, Beghe opened up about Scientology in a two-hour interview that went viral and then appeared in the documentary "Going Clear."
3. The actor nearly lost his life in a car accident
"In 1999 I was in a serious car accident," Beghe told The New York Daily News. "I was intubated, and I kept pulling this tube out of my throat. That's how I got the voice." While Beghe's gravelly voice may have helped his acting career as a hard-boiled detective, he nearly lost his life in the accident. "Broke my neck, my back in a couple of places, all of my ribs, both of my lungs. I was in a coma for three and a half weeks," he told The Daily Beast.
4. Beghe's best friend is David Duchovny
Having attended one of the best-ranked private high schools in the country (Collegiate School in Manhattan), Beghe made some notable friends growing up, including his classmate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. But his BFF is actor David Duchovny.
"David and I have been best friends since ninth grade," Beghe told the Sioux City Journal. "When we get together, we talk about high school highjinks. We never talk about careers.” Beghe was the best man at Duchovny's wedding to actress Tea Leoni and starred in 13 episodes of Duchovny's Showtime series, "Californication."
5. The character Hank Voight has appeared in many Dick Wolf procedurals
Beghe's character Hank Voight was first introduced in 2012 as a dirty cop in "Chicago Fire," and has repeatedly appeared in that television series by super producer Dick Wolf ever since. The same character has also appeared on "Chicago Med," "Chicago Justice," and "Law & Ordeer: Special Victims Unit."