When he was 16, Richard Dean Anderson broke both of his arms in separate accidents on the ice. He broke his left arm first, and while skating 3 weeks later he broke his right arm so badly he was in the hospital for 3 months. His elbow snapped backwards and he's still got pins in there.
Has appeared in the pilots of seven different series: Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1982), Emerald Point N.A.S. (1983), MacGyver (1985), Legend (1995), Stargate SG-1 (1997), Stargate: Atlantis (2004) and SGU Stargate Universe (2009). The latter two are the only ones on which he was not a regular.
His Stargate SG-1 (1997) character Colonel/Brigadier General Jack O'Neill was ranked #10 in TV Guide's list of the "25 Greatest Sci-Fi Legends" (1 August 2004 issue).
Shares his birthday with Charles Correll, who directed him in 19 episodes of MacGyver (1985), MacGyver: Trail to Doomsday (1994), four episodes of Legend (1995) and two episodes of Stargate SG-1 (1997).
Reprised his role of "MacGyver" on The Simpsons (1989) in April 2006. He played himself, Richard Dean Anderson, who is desperately fanned by Patty and Selma (who have been obsessive MacGyver fans throughout The Simpsons series). Anderson disappoints the women by saying that he only did MacGyver (1985) for money and is more interested in Stargate SG-1 (1997), after which Patty and Selma kidnap him and force him to play "MacGyver" again and to escape from traps. After a while, Anderson gets so keen about actually trying to be MacGyver that he starts to harass Patty and Selma. Finally, Patty and Selma get sick of "that nut-case" and get rid of him by boring him with their holiday slide shows.