American actor Richard Hatch was born on May 21, 1945 in Santa Monica, California. He was inclined with performing at an early age, training in classical piano when he was eight years old and already dreaming of pursuing a career as such. After graduating from Harbor College in nearby San Pedro, he joined the Los Angeles Repertory Company and appeared in several of its productions, eventually performing in several venues in Los Angeles as well as in New York.
Hatch made his screen debut in 1971, when he appeared on the daytime soap All My Children. His first major television role came in 1976, when he joined the cast of the police drama The Streets of San Francisco, replacing Michael Douglas; he took on the role of police detective Dan Robbins. The move was not popular, and the show was eventually cancelled because of low ratings. Hatch moved on to play a role in the original Battlestar Galactica, playing the role of Captain Apollo, a Viper pilot whose history has been marred by tragedy. He played the role from 1978 to 1979.
Hatch appeared in many other television shows, with roles in the likes of Fantasy Island, The Love Boat, MacGyver, Dynasty and Baywatch. He also had roles in films such as Party Line, The Hitch-Hikers, Renaissance, Iron Thunder and The Ghost. In 2004, he joined the cast of the second version of Battlestar Galactica, which was in ways a revision of the original. This time, he played a different character: Tom Zarek, the charismatic leader of the Sagittaron colony, who was incarcerated for spurring political unrest and supporting terrorism. After the Cylons’ attack on the Twelve Colonies, he finds himself (still as a prisoner) with the Galactica, and becomes both an ally and adversary to the ship’s officers and inhabitants.
After his stint on Battlestar Galactica, he was cast in films such as The Pod, Dead by Friday and Who the Frak.