Published On: Jun 26 2013 01:22:51 PM CDTUpdated On: Jun 14 2016 11:55:57 AM CDT
After college he landed his first speaking part (only one line) in the Goldie Hawn-film “Wildcats.”
In 1985, Harrelson was cast as the kindhearted, unaware bartender Woody Boyd on the TV sitcom “Cheers”, which wound up being one of the most-popular TV shows of all time.
In 1988, Harrelson won an Emmy for his role in “Cheers,” which he played until the series’ 1993 conclusion.
In his first widely-seen movie role, Harrelson was cast alongside Michael J. Fox as Hank Gordon in “Doc Hollywood” in 1991.
The following year, Harrelson starred in “White Men Can’t Jump” with Wesley Snipes.
In 1993, Harrelson starred in “Indecent Proposal,” which won Demi Moore and him MTV Movie Award’s Best Kiss.
In 1994, Harrelson starred in the Oliver Stone’s “Natural Born Killers.”
In 1996, Harrelson played pornography mogul Larry Flynt in “The People vs. Larry Flynt.” The performance earned him an Oscar nomination for Best Actor in a Leading Role.
In 1998, alongside an all-star lineup, Harrelson appeared in Terrence Malick’s “The Thin Red Line.”
In 1999, Harrelson gave a comical performance as Mathew McConaughey’s airhead brother in “EdTV.”
In 2003, Harrelson made a cameo appearance in “Anger Management,” starring Jack Nicholson and Adam Sandler.
He joined the cast of the comedy-drama “A Prairie Home Companion” in 2006.
Harrelson starred in Will Ferrel’s basketball comedy “Semi-Pro” in 2008.
Alongside Emma Stone and Jesse Eisenberg, he starred in “Zombieland,” a horror comedy released in 2009.
Also in 2009, he starred in the war drama “The Messenger,” earning a nomination for an Academy Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role.
In 2012, he appeared as the flawed but devoted mentor, Haymitch Abernathy, in Suzanne Collins’ “The Hunger Games.” He returned to the role in the sequels, "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" and "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1."
In 2014, Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey received praise and award nominations for their roles in the HBO series "True Detective."
Wrapping up the trilogy in a two-movie finale, Harrelson rejoined the team for "Hunger Games: Mockingjay Parts 1 and 2" in 2014 and 2015.
Returning to his gritty side, Harrelson starred in 2016's "Triple 9."
In 2016, Woody reprised his role of Merritt McKinney in the sequel to his 2013 hit, "Now You See Me 2."