In 1983, Davison was cast by Joseph Papp in the Public Theater/New York Shakespeare Festival production of King Richard III. Additional off-Broadway credits include Love Letters, The Cocktail Hour, and Paula Vogel's Pulitzer Prize-winning play How I Learned To Drive.
His breakthrough role was the portrayal of a gay man whose lover is dying of AIDS in Longtime Companion (1990). This film was the first feature film to put a human face on AIDS and people affected by it, which at that time were mostly gay men. The role earned Davison a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. Davison went on to appear in other movies addressing AIDS: in 1995's The Cure, he portrayed a physician sought by a young boy with AIDS in search of medical help. In 1996, Davison appeared in the film It's My Party, which chronicled the true events of a man dying with AIDS who decides to hold a farewell party for family and friends before taking his own life. Davison's website states he is a spokesperson for many AIDS-related groups and is a board member of the industry AIDS organization Hollywood Supports.
In Los Angeles, Davison has appeared on stage in Streamers and The Normal Heart, winning the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award and Drama-Logue Award for his performances. Other LA theatre credits include The Caine Mutiny Court Martial (directed by Henry Fonda) and a stage adaptation of To Kill a Mockingbird.
He is familiar to movie audiences for Runaway Jury, Apt Pupil, and his role as Senator Robert Kelly in the X-Men movie franchise. Though his character died in the first film, Davison appeared in X2 as a shapeshifting impostor of Kelly. Davison's many television credits include Marcus Welby, M.D., Love, American Style, The Waltons, Lou Grant, Murder, She Wrote, Designing Women, Seinfeld, Chicago Hope, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, V: The Series, Star Trek: Voyager, Star Trek: Enterprise, Battlestar Galactica, Lost, CSI: Miami, the Stephen King mini-series Kingdom Hospital, and a recurring role on The Practice. Davison also had the recurring role of defense attorney Doug Hellman in the CBS drama Close to Home.
In 2001, Davison directed the TV film Off Season, which starred his Lovelife co-star Sherilyn Fenn, Rory Culkin, Hume Cronyn, and Adam Arkin. In 2007, Davidson returned to the big screen, playing Eric O'Neill's father in Breach. Also in that year, Davison was cast in the role of Charles Graiman; an eccentric physicist who creates the Knight Industries Three Thousand, the second generation KITT in NBC's revival of the television series Knight Rider.
Bruce Davison, Beau Bridges and Richard Crenna have been added to the cast of the Showtime biopic "Gisella Perl.". (Players).(Brief Article)
May 09, 2002; Bruce Davison, Beau Bridges and Richard Crenna have been added to the cast of the Showtime biopic "Gisella Perl." They join...
The Arts: Film - the Big Picture - Mutants with an Unconvincing Message ; X-MEN (12) DIRECTOR: BRYAN SINGER STARRING: PATRICK STEWART, IAN MCKELLEN, BRUCE DAVISON, HALLE BERRY, JAMES MARSDEN, HUGH JACKMAN, ANNA PAQUIN 104 MINS
Aug 18, 2000; After three weeks of strictly local difficulties at the cinema - fishermen on the Atlantic, car thieves in LA, Marines in Yemen -...