above�the neon glow of Sunset Boulevard sits Ed Marinaro's
multimillion-dollar spread. It's a sweet perch in an �ber-exclusive zip code,
but Marinaro sees little of neighbors Leonardo DiCaprio and Keanu Reeves. While
they're off making block-busters, Marinaro, once one of TV's heartthrobs, is
working to break into Hollywood all over again.
The man who made
it look so easy--from running the ball at Cornell, where he finished second in
the '71 Heisman race, to becoming an actor after his NFL career ended in
'77--has been mostly out of the spotlight since he played hot-blooded officer
Joe Coffey from 1981 to '86 on Hill Street Blues. Marinaro, now 57, realized a
hard truth: Good parts for older actors are scarce. "Television is looking
for viewers in the 18-to-39 audience, and they use actors who fall into that
group," says Marinaro, who has a four-year-old son, Eddie, with his wife,
fitness expert Tracy York. "The irony is, when you are capable of doing
your best work, it's hardest to get work."
So he and
colleague Tony Masucci are forming M&M Productions, which will make movies
appealing to audiences--and using talent--closer to Marinaro's demographic. The
two are now raising money and reading scripts. They hope to begin shooting
later this year. Says Marinaro, "This is a great opportunity to see some of
the most talented actors and writers in the country plying their trade."
Including himself? "Oh," he says, "I'm not done�yet."