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Paging All Medical Drama Lovers: Catch Up With the ‘St. Elsewhere’ Cast 40+ Years Later

Find out what Denzel Washington and Howie Mandel are up to 40 years later!


The St. Elsewhere cast graced television screens from 1982 to 1988 and was one of the first groundbreaking medical dramas on television. It drew a loyal audience in part because of its intricate storytelling and compelling characters.

The setting of the show was St. Eligius Hospital, a decaying urban teaching hospital in Boston. The series lasted for 137 episodes and was instantly a fan favorite. It was nominated for over 60 Emmy awards over the six seasons.

The show celebrated its 40th Anniversary in 2022. Howie Mandel, one of the stars of the show, said he strongly felt like he was a part of television history. “I have no idea what I was doing when I was doing it,” Mandel told People. “But when you think back and look at it from that perspective, the kids that I was playing with, including Denzel Washington, went on to much bigger and amazing things. I’m a part of television history, which makes me thrilled to be a small part.”

Here, a look back at the St. Elsewhere cast and where the medical staff from St. Eligius Hospital are today.

Denzel Washington as Dr. Philip Chandler 

Denzel Washington as Dr. Philip Chandler St. Elsewhere Cast (then and now))
1982/2023 Michael Ochs Archives / Handout/Getty; Eric Charbonneau / Contributor/Getty

Washington rose to fame and got his start as Dr. Philip Chandler on St. Elsewhere. He was on the show all six seasons from 1982-1988.

After the series, Washington went on to star in a variety of films including Glory (1989), Malcolm X (1992), The Hurricane (1999), Remember the Titans (2000), Training Day (2001), American Gangster (2007) and Flight (2012).

Washington has long since been recognized for his acting chops. He was nominated for nine Academy Awards and won twice—for Best Supporting Actor in Glory and Best Actor in Training Day.

He also has appeared on stage throughout his career. His performance in Broadway’s Fences won him a Tony Award in 2010.

Beyond acting, Washington was named a Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient (2022). He is married to Pauletta Washington and has four kids.

Did you know? Denzel Washington was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania in 2011.

Howie Mandel as Dr. Wayne Fiscus

Howie Mandel as Dr. Wayne Fiscus (St. Elsewhere Cast (then and now))
1985/2023Donaldson Collection / Contributor/Getty; Michael S. Schwartz / Contributor/Getty

Howie Mandel, known for his comedic talents, took on the role of Dr. Wayne Fiscus in St. Elsewhere. Before the medical drama, Mandel had established himself as a stand-up comedian. In terms of films, he was best known for the 1981 comedy Gas.

Being a part of the St. Elsewhere cast almost didn’t happen. Originally Mandel was not picked for the show. He told People, “They had done the pilot and a few other episodes and then they made a casting change. I replaced the guy by the name of David Paymer who went on to get nominated for an Academy Award for Mr. Saturday Night. So he did fine,” Mandel explains. “But I’m lucky, and I came in at the last minute and auditioned. I don’t think they knew me, knew what I did. I think had they, they probably wouldn’t have cast me. But I’m glad about the breadth that I’ve been able to experience in my career.”

After, the show, Mandel continued to excel in comedy, achieving widespread fame as the host of Deal or No Deal. He also became a judge on America’s Got Talent and voiced the character of Bobby Generic in the animated series Bobby’s World.

Personally, Mandel has been open about living with severe anxiety and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) for nearly his entire life. He told People, “I’m living in a nightmare. I try to anchor myself. I have a beautiful family and I love what I do. But at the same time, I can fall into a dark depression I can’t get out of.”

He credits his wife (Terry, who he has been married to since 1980) and kids (he has a son and two daughters) for helping him get through. He says the pandemic was especially triggering for his mental health, but has found coping skills in finding humor to get through the tough times.

Did you know: Mandel is still good friends with St. Elsewhere costars Ed Begley Jr.

Ed Begley Jr. as Dr. Victor Ehrlich in the St. Elsewhere cast

Ed Begley Jr. as Dr. Victor Ehrlich St. Elsewhere Cast (then and now))
1986/2023Bob Riha Jr / Contributor/Getty; Rodin Eckenroth / Stringer/Getty

Begley was born in 1949 in Los Angeles, California and is best known for his role as Dr. Victor Ehrlich on St. Elsewhere (1982). In fact, he was nominated for an Emmy for his role.

Before becoming an actor, Begley worked for eight years as a stand-up comedian. He also worked on TV commercials and as an assistant cameraman.

After St. Elsewhere he acted and produced a variety of films including A Mighty Wind (2003), Pineapple Express (2008) and Whatever Works (2009).

In his personal life, Begley Jr. is a big environmentalist and quit his job as the Los Angeles Environmental Commissioner when he realized how many trees were being destroyed from all the paper the commission was using. His home is solar powered and he primarily uses his bike and public transportation to get around. He also produces and sells an all-natural household cleaning product called Begley’s Best.

He’s been married to Rachelle Carson-Begley since August 23, 2000 and they have one child. He was previously married to Ingrid Taylor and they had two children together.

Did you know: He father, Ed Begley, won an Oscar for Sweet Bird of Youth (1962). Begley Jr. proudly displays the trophy in his home.

David Morse as Dr. Jack Morrison in the St. Elsewhere cast

David Morse as Dr. Jack Morrison St. Elsewhere Cast (then and now))
1983/2022MediaPunch / Contributor/Getty; Dia Dipasupil / Staff/Getty

David Morse was a fan favorite as Dr. Jack Morrison, garnered attention for his compelling performance in St. Elsewhere.

Morse was born in 1953 in Massachusetts. He performed on the stage for ten years before breaking into television and film. He appeared in Inside Moves (1980) before getting his most famous role in St. Elsewhere. As a 6′ 4″ blue-eyed blond-haired actor, he drew a loyal following.

After the show, he starred in the sci-fi movie Contact (1997), Proof of Life (2002) and Double Vision (2002). He also had a recurring role in the TV series House.

In his persona life, Morse married Susan Wheeler Duff and has three children.

Did you know? Morse appeared in three movies based on books by Stephen King: The Langoliers (1996) The Green Mile (1999), and Hearts in Atlantis (2001). Ironically, he also appeared in the movie Horns (2013), based on a novel by King’s son, Joe Hill.

Ed Flanders as Dr. Donald Westphall in the St. Elsewhere cast

Ed Flanders as Dr. Donald Westphall
1983 Joan Adlen/Getty

At the heart of the St. Elsewhere cast was the esteemed Ed Flanders, who portrayed Dr. Donald Westphall, a compassionate docotor at St. Eligius.

Born in 1934 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Flanders had several roles before Dr. Westphall, most notably on the stage. He earned a Tony award for his performance in the play A Moon for the Misbegotten. He also had guest appearances on many TV shows including Barnaby Jones, Hawaii Five-O, and M*A*S*H.

After St. Elsewhere, Flanders appeared in The Exorcist III (1990), The Road to Home (1994) and  Bye Bye Love (1995)  

Tragically, Flanders battled personal demons and suffered from depression for most of his life. He died of 1995.

Did you know? One of Flanders first roles was in the 1967 western series Cimarron Strip.

Christina Pickles as Nurse Helen Rosenthal

Christina Pickles as Nurse Helen Rosenthal
1982/; Unique Nicole / Stringer/Getty

Christina Pickles, who portrayed the dedicated Nurse Helen Rosenthal, was one of the few main female characters in the chaotic world of St. Eligius.

Born in 1935 in Yorkshire, England, Pickles had a long and famed career in both stage, television and film. She trained at The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London before moving to New York where she was a member of The APA Repertory Company. There she appeared in many Broadway plays. She moved to Los Angeles for St. Elsewhere and found additional success there.

After her St. Elsewhere role, Pickles appeared in the The Wedding Singer, Romeo + Juliet, Grace of My Heart, and Legends of the Fall. As a voice-over artist, Christina can be heard in episodes of The Family Guy. However, she’s perhaps most famous for her guest appearances on Friends, as Ross and Monica’s mother.

Personally, Pickles has been married to Ian Masters since 2005. She has two children (a son and daughter) from her previous marriage.

Did you know? Pickles was Emmy-nominated five times for St. Elsewhere and once for her role on Friends.

Related: 10 Surprising Behind-the-Scenes Secrets About Matthew Perry’s Time on ‘Friends’

William Daniels as Dr. Mark Craig in the St. Elsewhere cast

William Daniels as Dr. Mark Craig
1986/2022Bob Riha Jr / Contributor/Getty; Albert L. Ortega / Contributor/Getty

William Daniels played Dr. Mark Craig the no-nonsense surgeon.

Daniels was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1927. For several decades he was a stage actor appearing in plays such as Life With Father and The Zoo Story (for which he won an Obie Award).

He made his film debut in 1963, at the age of 36, in the thriller Ladybug Ladybug (1963). He had a supporting role in The Graduate (1967); he played the father of the main character, Benjamin Braddock (played by Dustin Hoffman).

He also had many television roles including parts in the series The Adams Chronicles (1976) and the sitcom The Nancy Walker Show (1976). He also was the voice of KITT in the crime drama series Knight Rider (1982-1986).

After St. Elsewhere Daniels provided voice roles for animated television series including The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy. Most recently he appeared in the sitcom series Girl Meets World.

Did you know? Daniels considered Ed Flanders one of his best friends.

Related: ‘Boy Meets World’ Cast Then And Now

For more 80’s TV click through the links below!

‘Life Goes On’ Cast Then and Now, Plus The Latest News on a Reboot!

Party of Five’ Cast Then & Now: Catch Up With the Salinger Siblings Today

‘Married…with Children’ Cast Then and Now: Catch Up With The Bundy Clan

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