Bo Duke in the 1980s American television series The Dukes of Hazzard, and as Jonathan Kent on Smallville, a 2001 television adaptation of Superman.
Alongside his acting career, Schneider performed as a country music singer in the 1980s, releasing nine studio albums and a greatest hits package, as well as eighteen singles. This total includes "I've Been Around Enough to Know", "Country Girls", "What's a Memory Like You (Doing in a Love Like This)" and "You're the Last Thing I Needed Tonight", all of which reached the top of the Billboard country singles charts.
Schneider was born in Mount Kisco, New York. His family included a younger brother, Robert, and an older brother, John "Johnnie" Michael, who died at the age of three. John's life as an entertainer began at the age of eight, when he put on magic shows for his peers and their families. This once got him into trouble, when he had himself chained up and tossed into a swimming pool with the intention of re-creating Harry Houdini's legendary escape act. John graduated from North Springs High School in Sandy Springs, Georgia.
Acting careerSchneider can be seen on several episodes of the FX Network show Nip/Tuck as "Ram Peters", the owner of a pornographic film company. Also, from February to March 2008, he performed as Billy Flynn in the Musical Chicago on Broadway.
Schneider is also known to television audiences as Jonathan Kent, the adoptive father of Clark Kent on the hit show Smallville, starring in 100 episodes before his character was killed off. Schneider also directed episodes of Smallville, including S3E20 and Talisman, which received a respectable 8.8 rating out of 10 on TV.com. Some Smallville episodes contain references to Schneider's other work in The Dukes of Hazzard. Schneider also guest starred for the latter half of Smallville: Season 5 appearing in the episodes 'Void' and 'Oracle'.
Schneider has appeared in many films and TV series, including 5 guest spots on Hee Haw and the miniseries 10.5. He had a recurring role on Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman and guest-starred on such shows as Diagnosis: Murder, Touched by an Angel, JAG and Walker, Texas Ranger. He also appeared in the national tour of the Broadway musical The Civil War as a Confederate soldier. John's other stage-work includes Oklahoma!; he auditioned for, but did not get, the role of Erik in The Phantom of the Opera.
Schneider has also been mentioned in other media such as the South Park episode "Terrance and Phillip: Behind the Blow", in which an episode of Terrance and Phillip was aired in place of the popular fictitious show The John Schneider Variety Hour, causing outrage.
In 2007, he was among a series of celebrities involved in television ads for the Zaxby's restaurant chain.
In 2008, Schneider portrayed a villain (a rarity for him) on the series CSI: Miami, in the episode "Tunnel Vision".
In 2009, he made an appearance on the series CSI in an episode titled "Kill Me If You Can". He played the spouse of a murder victim; the murder was later confirmed as a suicide.
On November 9, 2009, Schneider appeared briefly in an episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm. He played half of a couple whom Larry David meets, in the episode "Officer Krupke".
Schneider appeared in the first season of The Secret Life of the American Teenager, in which his real-life son Chasen Schneider had a recurring role. During the summer of 2008 and early 2009, John portrayed "Marshall Bowman". He declined to continue through the second season, so in one episode, his character would die in a plane crash.
As of November 6, 2009, Schneider is set to play the lead in the new Australian action film, The Ninja, also starring Roger Cross, John Wesley Shipp, Tania Zaetta, Jeremy Kewley and Rob Baard.
On July 20, 2009, it was announced he would have a recurring role on 90210 as Liam's plastic surgeon stepfather.
Schneider appeared on June 16, 2010, on the pilot of the TV Land sitcom Hot in Cleveland as Melanie's date, Hank.
He will return for the season 10 premiere of Smallville, reprising his role as Jonathan Kent and may be in one other episode later in the season.
In 2010, Schneider appears as a corrupt music executive in Season 3 Episode 6 of the TV show Leverage.
In 2010, he voices Preston Stormer in the HERO Factory TV series.
In 2010, he appears in several episodes of Desperate Housewives as a retired military man and father of the love interest of a main character.
In November 2010, he began to appear in a series of UK adverts for Little Chef, where he plays a centaur who refuses to buy into the great value of Little Chef breakfasts.
In Spring 2011, he will star in the film Doonby, as a drifter who comes into a small town and makes it better. However, a menacing force stalks him. "It's It's a Wonderful Life without the wonderful part," Schneider explains. "'Reach down into the throat of It's a Wonderful Life, pull it inside out and make a movie out of it."
Schneider has recorded 10 albums to date, including works on Scotti Brothers Records and MCA Nashville. His co-star (on The Dukes of Hazzard), Tom Wopat, also enjoyed success on the country music charts. Schneider and Wopat sang several duets on the TV series, sometimes with co-star Catherine Bach. In fact, in the season 7 DVD boxset, the trio performed a remake of the show's theme song "Good Ol' Boys" in a music video as a tribute to their friend Waylon Jennings.
Personal lifeSchneider became a born-again Christian while living with Johnny and June Carter Cash for a short time and speaking with Johnny about Christianity. In 1982, he co-founded, with Marie Osmond, the Children's Miracle Network to help suffering children. In 1995, he founded FaithWorks Productions in order to produce family-oriented videos and recordings.
Schneider has recently become involved in animal advocacy. He read from Karen Dawn's book Thanking the Monkey: Rethinking The Way We Treat Animals at its New York book launch. In a Washington Post Article he discussed the effects of the book and the people he met through the event on his life. He was moved to record a personal video, which is available on YouTube and on the book's website, in which he talks of his shock upon learning about the way animals are treated by human society, and mentions the award winning documentary Earthlings, which is about the human dependence on animals for a variety of resources.
Both of John's parents are from a German-American background.[ John was married to former Miss America Tawny Elaine Godin from 1983 to 1986; they have no children. John married his second wife, Elly Castle, on July 11, 1993. They have three children: daughters Leah and Karis, and son Chasen, who has been diagnosed with Asperger syndrome.
Schneider recently sold his "General Lee" (Dodge Charger on Barrett-Jackson car auction) to a Markwood car dealer and collector in Hardy County, West Virginia. On March 12, 2008, John was present in Moorefield, West Virginia to sign over the car and give autographs to fans. Schneider has recently written, produced, directed, and starred in his own film series, John Schneider's Collier & Co. – Hot Pursuit.
Year Title Role Notes
1981 Dream House Charley Cross
1983 The Raccoons and the Lost Star Dan the Forest Ranger (voice)
Happy Endings[disambiguation needed] Nick Callohan
Eddie Macon's Run Eddie Macon
1985 Gus Brown and Midnight Brewster Gus Brown
Cocaine Wars DEA Agent Cliff Adams
1986 Stagecoach Buck Overland Stage Driver
1987 The Curse Carl Willis
Christmas Comes to Willow Creek Ray
1989 Outback Bound Jim Tully
Speed Zone! Donato
Ministry of Vengeance David Miller
1990 Grand Slam Dennis 'Hardball' Bakelenekoff
1992 Highway Heartbreaker Mickey
1993 Come the Morning Name unknown
Desperate Journey: The Allison Wilcox Story Eddie
1994 Texas Davy Crockett
Bandit: Bandit Bandit Sheriff Enright
Heaven Help Us Doug Monroe
Exit to Eden Prof. Collins
1995 The Little CHP Jack Sr.
1996 The Legend of the Ruby Silver Tommy Towne
Night of the Twisters Jack Hatch
1997 True Women Sam Houston
1999 Michael Landon, the Father I Knew Michael Landon TV movie
Sam Churchill: Search for a Homeless Man Sam Churchill
2000 Snow Day Chad Symmonz
The Dukes of Hazzard: Hazzard in Hollywood Bo Duke TV movie
2001 Lightning: Fire from the Sky Tom Dobbs
2002 Mary Christmas Joel Wallace
2003 The Nick at Nite Holiday Special Mr. Schneider, The Ski Instructor
2004 10.5 Clark Williams Miniseries
2005 Felicity: An American Girl Adventure Mr. Merriman TV movie
2006 Hidden Secrets Gary Zimmerman
John Schneider's Collier & Co. – Hot Pursuit J.R. Collier limited theatrical
2007 Lake Placid 2 Sheriff Riley
You've Got a Friend Jim Klecan
Sydney White Paul White
2008 Ogre Henry Bartlett
Shark Swarm Daniel Wilder TV movie
2009 The Ninja Unknown role
The Rebound Trevor
Come Dance at My Wedding Tanner Gray
Holyman Undercover Satan
Set Apart Pastor John Gunn
The Gods of Circumstance Mick Jeremiah Post-production
2010 What Would Jesus Do? The Drifter
2011 Doonby Doonby Post-production
Year Title Role Notes
1981 The Midnight Special Guest host Season 9 Episode 23, March 13, 1981
1983 The Dukes Bo Duke (voice) Season 2 Episodes 1-7
1979–1982, 1983–1985 The Dukes of Hazzard Bo Duke Last Ep April '82, Return Feb '83
1989 Wild Jack Jack McCall Mini series
Guns of Paradise Sheriff Pat Garrett Season 2 Episode 1
1993 Sisters McGreevy/McGrady/McGruder Season 3 Episode 17
1993, 1997–1998 Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman Daniel Simon Seasons 5 & 6, '93 played Red McCall
1994 Second Chances Richard McGill Season 1 Episodes 8-10
Burke's Law Brett Scanlon Season 1 Episode 7
Christy Theodore Harland Season 1 Episode 8
1995, 2000–2001 Touched by an Angel Joshua Winslow Season 7 Episodes 24-25, '95 played Satan
1996 Kung Fu: The Legend Continues Latrodect Season 4 Episode 5
1996, 2000 Diagnosis: Murder Brett Hayward/Eddie Dagabosian Played Michael Dern in '96, Season 7 Episodes 24-25
1997 The Dukes of Hazzard: Reunion! Bo Duke
1998 JAG Sgt. Clyde Morrison Season 4 Episode 8
Walker, Texas Ranger Jacob Crossland Season 7 Episode 22
1999–2000 Veronica's Closet Tom Season 3 Episodes 13-15
2000 Twice in a Lifetime Captain Luke Sellars/Willie Season 2 Episode 21
2000, 2001 Relic Hunter Dallas Carter Season 1 Episode 12 & Season 2 Episode 12
2001–2006, 2010–2011 Smallville Jonathan Kent Series Regular Seasons 1-5, Season 10 Recurring
2001–2003 The Mummy: The Animated Series Rick O'Connell Series Regular
2005 Living with Fran Tom Martin Season 1 Episode 2
2006 King of the Hill The Ace (voice) Season 10 Episode 7
Model Family John
Hi-Jinks Himself Guest host
Shorty McShorts' Shorts Hunky-D Short animation on Disney Channel
2007 Nip/Tuck Ram Peters Season 5 Episodes 5,7,8,12,22
Journeyman Dennis Armstrong Season 1 Episode 8
2008 Davie & Golimyr Cartoon
CSI: Miami Charles Brighton Season 6 Episode 18
2008–2009 The Secret Life of the American Teenager Marshall Bowman Season 1 Regular
2009 Red Eye with Greg Gutfeld Fox News Channel program
Dirty Sexy Money Congressman Skip Whatley Season 2 Episodes 11-13
Twentysixmiles Jack Kinkaid Six-Episode TV Series
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Mickey Ross Season 09 Episode 17 - "Kill Me If You Can"
Curb Your Enthusiasm Dennis Season 07 Episode 08 - "Officer Krupke"
2009–2010 90210 Jeffrey Sarkossian Recurring Season 2
2010 Phineas and Ferb Wilkins Brother #1 Voice
Leverage Mitchell Kirkwood Season 3 Episode 6
LEGO Hero Factory Preston Stormer TV Series, Voice, continuing in 2011
Desperate Housewives Richard Watson Season 7, Episodes 7-10
2010 Hot in Cleveland Henry 'Hank' Szymborska Season 1 "Pilot", Season 2 "Bad Bromance"
2011 Working Class Glen Season 1 Episode 3
Year Album Chart Positions Label
US Country US
1981 Now or Never 8 37 Scotti Brothers
White Christmas 39 155
1982 Quiet Man — —
1983 If You Believe — —
1984 Too Good to Stop Now 4 133 MCA
1985 Tryin' to Outrun the Wind 15 —
A Memory Like You 1 —
1986 Take the Long Way Home 17 —
1987 You Ain't Seen the Last of Me 41 —
Greatest Hits 22 —
1996 Worth the Wait — — FaithWorks
2009 John's Acoustic Christmas — — self-released
2010 The Promise — —
Year Title Chart Positions Album
US Country US CAN Country CAN AC
1981 "It's Now or Never"A 4 14 7 5 Now or Never
"Them Good Ol' Boys Are Bad" 13 — 12 —
"Still"B — 69 — —
1982 "Dreamin'" 32 45 28 19 Quiet Man
"In the Driver's Seat" 56 72 36 —
1983 "Are You Lonesome Tonight" (w/ Jill Michaels) 57 — — — If You Believe
"If You Believe" 81 — — —
1984 "I've Been Around Enough to Know" 1 — 1 — Too Good to Stop Now
1985 "Country Girls" 1 — 1 —
"It's a Short Walk from Heaven to Hell" 10 — 6 — Tryin' to Outrun the Wind
"I'm Gonna Leave You Tomorrow" 10 — 7 —
"What's a Memory Like You (Doing in a Love Like This)" 1 — 1 — A Memory Like You
1986 "You're the Last Thing I Needed Tonight" 1 — 1 —
"At the Sound of the Tone" 5 — 16 — Take the Long Way Home
"Take the Long Way Home" 10 — 7 —
1987 "Love, You Ain't Seen the Last of Me" 6 — 4 — You Ain't Seen the Last of Me
"When the Right One Comes Along" 32 — 35 —
"If It Was Anyone But You" 59 — — —
2010 "The Promise" — — — — The Promise