Richard Venture came late to acting, making his television debut at the age of 41 as a detective on "Kraft Suspense Theatre" in 1964. He continued portraying policemen, inspectors, and detectives or showed up in small roles on cop shows throughout the 1970s including the action series "Harry O", "The Rockford Files", and the made-for-TV film about the Manson murders, "Helter Skelter". His accompanying feature film career was more diverse. Venture had a solid part in the drama "The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds", directed by Paul Newman, with his wife, Joanne Woodward, in the lead. He kept showing up in some of the bigger movies of the decade: as a newspaperman in the political thriller "All the President's Men" and a pilot in the disaster film "Airport '77",. His film career slowed in the 1980s as his TV work heated up. Venture was seen in two parts of the very popular miniseries "The Thorn Birds" in 1983 and had recurring roles on the soap opera "Falcon Crest" and sitcom "Newhart". He had a starring gig as a police chief in 1985's short-lived "Street Hawk" and continued his television success in the '90s with more patriarchal roles on sitcoms "The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd", "The Boys", and the crime drama "Law & Order". Venture also had a role in the Al Pacino starring drama "Scent of a Woman", and a meaty part in the cult reality show satire "Series 7: The Contenders" in 2001.