Burt Young made his name playing rough-edged working class Italian-American characters, the best-known example being his signature role as Sylvester Stallone’s brother-in-law Paulie in “Rocky” (1976), for which he received an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor. He is one of three actors (the other two being Stallone and
Tony Burton) who have appeared in every Rocky film.
He has played similar roles in “Chinatown”, “Convoy”, “Back to School”, “The Pope of Greenwich Village”, “Once Upon a Time in America”, “Last Exit to Brooklyn”, “Downtown: A Street Tale”, and even a brutal and darker role in "Amityville II: The Possession”. Young has also appeared in many television programs, including “The Rockford Files”, “Baretta”, “Law & Order”, “Walker, Texas Ranger”, “M*A*S*H”, guest-starred in a “Miami Vice” episode, and made an appearance on “The Sopranos”.
Young has written two stage plays: “SOS” and “A Letter to Alicia and the New York City Government From a Man With a Bullet in His Head”. He is also a published author whose works include two filmed screenplays and 400-page historically based novel called “Endings”.