"My dad always told me, if you see an opportunity, you have to get in front of it... like the path of a storm... it will eventually find you." ~ william shockley
William Shockley knew in the 9th grade that he wanted to be an actor, trading his dream of playing professional baseball for a shot at prominence in Hollywood. He had one idea... get in the path of the storm.
In 1986, while doing theatre in Dallas, Texas, Shockley was cast by Paul Verhoeven in the genre defining classic, ROBOCOP. His next decision was simple. Sell everything and make the move. With a SAG card in his pocket, a few dollars in his wallet, and three boxes and a suitcase in his car, Shockley drove the long and winding road from Texas to California, arriving in Los Angeles the night before the ROBOCOP premiere. The journey had begun.
Within a month, Shockley landed an agent and was soon cast in his first TV guest role on "Houston Knights". His work burgeoned, amassing a career defined by an array of sui generis characters. With standout performances in SHOWGIRLS, DREAM LOVER and MADISON, Shockley also won over audiences for six years as 'Hank Lawson', the antihero saloonkeeper in CBS' highly regarded drama, "Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman", starring Jane Seymour. As evidence to his character's popularity, Shockley was given a development deal by CBS and starred in his own series, a "Dr. Quinn" spin-off series, "California".
Having spent his youth writing poetry and lyrics, Shockley's appreciation for the written word evolved. After reading countless scripts as an actor, he began focusing on scriptwriting. His first feature script to get made was WELCOME TO PARADISE (2007), co-written with Brent Huff, a family film about a 'left of center' female preacher with a struggling congregation, needing her help as much as she needed them, starring Crystal Bernard and Brian Dennehy.
He followed that effort with CAT CITY (2008), co-written with Brent Huff, a film noir thriller about the underbelly of greed, passion and revenge in a Palm Springs real estate investment scam gone terribly wrong, starring Rebecca Pidgeon and Julian Sands.
Momentum grew when Shockley met writer/director Dustin Rikert. To date, they have co-written and produced six films together, starting with THE GUNDOWN (2011), a western about one man's quest to exact revenge for the death of his family, starring Peter Coyote and Sheree J. Wilson.
The duo then wrote DUG UP (2015), a redneck-stoner-zombie-comedy about three small town dimwits on a mission to find hidden gold, but instead unleash the undead.
Shockley and Rikert then scripted BORN WILD (2014), a story about a man from a broken family with a troubled past, and the path leading to reconciliation, starring Shockley, Barry Corbin and Tanya Clarke. Additional firepower was added when Kix Brooks was cast in his acting debut. Brooks had recently left the iconic country music duo, "Brooks & Dunn", and the timing was perfect.
Shockley, Rikert and Brooks enjoyed working together, so they teamed up again on the Rikert-Shockley project, AMBUSH AT DARK CANYON (2014), a western about a lawman falsely accused of murder and his journey to find the killer, starring Kix Brooks and Ernie Hudson.
Shockley, Rikert and Brooks then decided to create a film production company together, bringing Kix's son, Eric Brooks, into the company, and the four founded, Team Two Entertainment.
Shockley, Rikert and Eric Brooks then wrote A COUNTRY CHRISTMAS (2013), a family story about Santa Claus losing his magical powers, and how two little kids help save him before Christmas is abandoned altogether, starring Joey Lauren Adams, Abraham Benrubi and Kevin Pollack, with Kix Brooks serving as Executive Producer.
Shockley and Rikert were then hired to write HOT BATH 'AN A STIFF DRINK (2015) along with Matthew Gratzner, a western about identical twins separated at birth and their unlikely reunion 30-years later, starring Rex Linn, Ronnie Blevins and Grainger Hines.
In addition to writing and producing, Shockley will appear in several more upcoming films, YOU CAN'T SAY NO (2017) starring Peter Fonda, LAST RAMPAGE (2017) starring Heather Graham, Robert Patrick Bruce Davison, MISTRUST (2017) starring Jane Seymour, YOU'RE GONNA MISS ME WHEN I'M GONE (2016) starring John Schneider, Morgan Fairchild, and Mindy Robinson, REAPER (2014), a horror film about a man who survives a prison electric chair, escapes, and then organizes a massive killing spree, starring Danny Trejo, Vinnie Jones and Jake Busey, FINDING HARMONY (2015), a tale about a famous country singer separated from his family and how tragedy brings them back together, starring Billy Zane and Allison Eastwood, and LEMONHEADS (2015).
Born in Lawrence, Kansas, Shockley was raised in a gypsy lifestyle, moving twenty times in nearly as many years. Settling in Texas, he attended the University of Texas in Austin and graduated from Texas Tech University.
After moving to Los Angeles and landing a slew of episodic and movie-of-the-week roles, Shockley won a lead role in the feature film HOWLING: REBIRTH (1989), then appeared in THE ADVENTURES OF FORD FAIRLANE (1990), starring Andrew 'Dice' Clay, STREET ASYLUM (1990), SWITCH (1991), starring Ellen Barkin, GIRL IN THE CADILLAC (1995), starring Erika Elaniak, and THE JOYRIDERS (1999), starring Martin Landau and Kris Kristofferson.
Other past films include LAST WILL (2011), starring Tatum O’Neal and James Brolin, TREASURE RAIDERS (2007), filmed on location in Moscow, Russia, starring David Carradine and Sherilyn Fenn, MADISON (2005), starring Jim Caviezel and Bruce Dern, and SUCKERS (2001), starring Lori Loughlin.
Having first worked with Paul Verhoeven on ROBOCOP (1987), Shockley was cast again by Verhoeven in the controversial film, SHOWGIRLS (1995), starring Elizabeth Berkley and Gina Gershon. Shockley played rock star 'Andrew Carver', described by British Premiere magazine as "a prince of darkness", and lauded by The New York Times as "breathtakingly crude".
He also appeared in the Nicholas Kazan film, DREAM LOVER (1993), starring James Spader and Madchen Amick. Shockley's memorable performance was singled out by Janet Maslin of The New York Times as "scene stealing".
In television, Shockley starred opposite Whoopi Goldberg in the CBS sitcom, "Bagdad Cafe", and then starred opposite Teri Garr in the critically acclaimed ABC series, "Good & Evil".
Jackie Collins cast him back to back in two of her popular NBC mini-series, "Lucky Chances" with Nicolette Sheridan and "Lady Boss" with Kim Delaney. Shockley also starred with Janine Turner in the CBS telefilm, "Stolen Women", playing 'General George Custer'. Charleston's The Post & Courier wrote, "William Shockley threatens to steal this show with a convincing, condemning portrayal of that narcissistic scourge of the plains."
In additon to producing films, Shockley and Team Two Entertainment have produced three music videos for Kix Brooks, "New To This Town", "Moonshine Road" and "Bring It On Home", and Randy Houser's "Like A Cowboy". Prior to this, Shockley produced music videos for Megan Mullins "Long Past Gone", Ash Bowers "Stuck" and David St. Romaine "That's Love".
Shockley sums it up like this, "My mother always told me, 'to thine own self be true', and 'this too shall pass'. I took those words to heart. I owe a lot to both my parents. Confidence and passion can't be taught, but they sure can be nurtured."
Aside from acting, Shockley does extensive 'voice over' work in television and radio advertising. He has been the voice on campaigns for Enterprise, Sony, Sprint, Bausch & Lomb, AT&T, Toyota, Siemens, Cisco Systems, Isuzu, Fruit of the Loom and XM Satellite Radio, to name a few.
In the world of "on air" radio, Shockley hosted 52 weeks of THE ROAD, a syndicated country music program airing in 200 cities. The program featured "live" country music concert tracks mixed with interviews with the artists. THE ROAD was nominated by Billboard Magazine as "Best Syndicated Radio Program".