Known for movies

Short Info

DiedJanuary 24, 2006, Santa Monica, California, United States
MarkOften played violent criminals with short fuses (examples include 'Nice Guy' Eddie in Reservoir Dogs (1992), Chez in The Funeral (1996), David Loach in Stealing Harvard (2002), Peter Romano in Corky Romano (2001), and Clive in Rush Hour (1998)) or law enforcement officials (such as Detective Phillip Braxton in Deceiver (1997), Sheriff Dolard in To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar (1995), FBI Agent Jason Enola in Papertrail (1998), and Manetti in Starsky & Hutch (2004))
FactHad a black belt in karate.

Chris Penn was an American actor and musician.

He was born on October 10, 1965 in Los Angeles, California, to Leo Penn, an actor and director, and Eileen Ryan, an actress. His older brother, Sean Penn, is also an actor.

Penn began his acting career in the early 1980s with small roles in films such as “Fast Times at Ridgemont High” (1982) and “Footloose” (1984). He had his first major role in the 1986 film “At Close Range” starring his brother Sean.

Penn’s other notable film roles include “Reservoir Dogs” (1992), “True Romance” (1993), “Mulholland Falls” (1996), and “Starsky & Hutch” (2004).

Penn’s final film role was in the 2006 film “Flags of Our Fathers.”

Penn died of a heart attack on January 24, 2006 at the age of 40.

General Info

Full NameChris Penn
DiedJanuary 24, 2006, Santa Monica, California, United States
Height1.78 m
ProfessionFilm producer, Voice Actor
EducationSanta Monica High School


ParentsLeo Penn, Eileen Ryan Penn
SiblingsSean Penn, Michael Penn


AwardsVolpi Cup for Best Supporting Performer
NominationsIndependent Spirit Award for Best Male Lead, Genie Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role
MoviesReservoir Dogs, Footloose, At Close Range, Rush Hour, Rumble Fish, True Romance, Pale Rider, Best of the Best, All the Right Moves, Mulholland Falls, The Funeral, Short Cuts, Starsky & Hutch, Murder by Numbers, The Wild Life, To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar, Corky Romano, Beethoven'...
TV ShowsThe Brotherhood of Poland, New Hampshire, AFP: American Fighter Pilot

Social profile links


#Marks / Signs
1Gravelly smoke burnished voice
2Often played violent criminals with short fuses (examples include 'Nice Guy' Eddie in Reservoir Dogs (1992), Chez in The Funeral (1996), David Loach in Stealing Harvard (2002), Peter Romano in Corky Romano (2001), and Clive in Rush Hour (1998)) or law enforcement officials (such as Detective Phillip Braxton in Deceiver (1997), Sheriff Dolard in To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar (1995), FBI Agent Jason Enola in Papertrail (1998), and Manetti in Starsky & Hutch (2004))


1They offer me a lot more money to do something that was successful before than to take a risk. More power to the people who get to choose their roles. I don't.
2You have to believe that you are the character or the thing or whatever the hell you're playing.


1Aftermath (2013), Penn's final movie, was released seven years after his death.
2At the time of his death, he lived in condo #104 at 1033 Ocean Avenue in Santa Monica, California.
3Had appeared with Christopher Walken in three movies: At Close Range (1986), True Romance (1993) and The Funeral (1996).
4Chris and his brother Sean were high school friends with Rob Lowe, Chad Lowe, Emilio Estevez and Charlie Sheen. They would frequently make short films together.
5Had been slated to play the role of Danno Hanks in the WB series "Vermin & Pestilence" before the project was canceled when AOL/Time Warner stock tanked.
6Was good friends with Adrian Pasdar and Don Wilson.
7Vicki Roberts hosted a private screening of the movie Vice (2008), which was dedicated to the memory of Chris Penn and which was attended by his mother, Eileen Ryan.
8Former brother-in-law of Madonna.
9Drank only Bookers bourbon. Liked to drink in the afternoon at burlesque great Betty Rowland's 217 bar in Santa Monica, California.
10In attendance at his funeral were Robin Wright, Sean Penn, Mark Ruffalo, Adrian Pasdar, Jack Nicholson, James Gandolfini, Charlie Sheen, Tim Robbins, Tom Sizemore, Robert Downey Jr. and Michael Madsen.
11Buried at Holy Cross Cemetery, 5835 Slauson Avenue, Culver City, California (Los Angeles County). Section CC Tier 54 near father Leo Penn's site.
12Had a black belt in karate.
13Started acting at age 12 at the Loft Studio in Los Angeles and training under acting guru Peggy Feury.
14Originally had role in American Pie 2 (2001) as Stiffler's dad but the scenes were cut since they were not deemed to fit in with the original movie (Source: Beneath the Crust: American Pie 2 (2001)).
15Had appeared in three movies with close-range shootout scenes at the end: Reservoir Dogs (1992), True Romance (1993) and Corky Romano (2001).
16Uncle of Dylan Penn and Hopper Penn.
17Brother-in-law of Robin Wright and Aimee Mann.
18He and his brother Sean Penn also appeared as brothers in At Close Range (1986). In addition to that, their actress mother, Eileen Ryan, played their grandmother.
19Son of director Leo Penn and actress Eileen Ryan.
20Younger brother of Sean Penn and Michael Penn.




Pale Rider1985Josh LaHood (as Christopher Penn)
The Wild Life1984Tom Drake (as Christopher Penn)
Footloose1984Willard (as Christopher Penn)
All the Right Moves1983Brian (as Christopher Penn)
Rumble Fish1983B.J. Jackson (as Christopher Penn)
Nobody's Heroes1983
Magnum, P.I.1982TV SeriesWounded Soldier, in Vietnam
Charlie and the Talking Buzzard1979Pete (as Christopher Penn)
Aftermath2013/ITony Bricker
King of Sorrow2007Detective Enola
Best of Chris Isaak2006Video segment "Somebody's Crying" uncredited
The Darwin Awards2006Tom
Juarez: Stages of Fear2005Video
Entourage2005TV SeriesChris Penn
Everwood2005TV SeriesFrank Sullivan
Law & Order: Criminal Intent2005TV SeriesTommy Onerato
After the Sunset2004Rowdy Fan
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas2004Video GameOfficer Pulaski (voice)
Starsky & Hutch2004Manetti
Will & Grace2003TV SeriesRudy
The Brotherhood of Poland, New Hampshire2003TV SeriesWaylon Shaw
Shelter Island2003Sheriff Deluca
CSI: Miami2003TV SeriesPete Wilton
Masked and Anonymous2003Crew Guy #2
Stealing Harvard2002David Loach
Redemption2002VideoTony Leggio
Murder by Numbers2002Ray Feathers
AFP: American Fighter Pilot2002TV SeriesNarrator (voice)
Corky Romano2001Peter Romano
Kiss Kiss (Bang Bang)2001Bubba
Cement2000Bill Holt
The Florentine1999Bobby
Family Attraction1998ShortFather
Rush Hour1998Clive
One Tough Cop1998Duke Finnerly
Flagpole Special1998Video short
Papertrail1998FBI Agent Jason Enola
Deceiver1997Det. Phillip Braxton
The Boys Club1996Luke
The Funeral1996Chez
Dead Man's Walk1996TV Mini-SeriesGoodnight
Mulholland Falls1996Arthur Relyea
Sacred Cargo1995Vince Kanevsky
Under the Hula Moon1995Turk Dickson
To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar1995Sheriff Dollard
Fist of the North Star1995Jackal
Chicago Hope1995TV SeriesKevin Fitzpatrick
Imaginary Crimes1994Jarvis
Beethoven's 2nd1993Floyd
Josh and S.A.M.1993Derek Baxter
True Romance1993Nicky Dimes
Short Cuts1993Jerry Kaiser
The Pickle1993Gregory Stone
The Music of Chance1993Floyd
Best of the Best II1993Travis Brickley (as Christopher Penn)
Leather Jackets1992Big Steve (as Christopher Penn)
Reservoir Dogs1992Nice Guy Eddie Cabot
Future Kick1991Bang
Mobsters1991Tommy Reina (as Christopher Penn)
The Young Riders1990TV SeriesBrad
Best of the Best1989Travis Brickley (as Christopher Penn)
Return from the River Kwai1989Lieutenant Crawford (as Christopher Penn)
Made in U.S.A.1987Tuck
Faerie Tale Theatre1987TV SeriesWill Tussenbrook
At Close Range1986Tommy (as Christopher Penn)
North Beach and Rawhide1985TV MovieDan Donnelly


Juarez: Stages of Fear2005Video executive producer
Nobody's Heroes1983producer


Nobody's Heroes1983


Nobody's Heroes1983


The Funeral1996performer: "Tonight Will Be The Night"


Vice2008in memory of
Jump!2008dedicatee - as Christopher Penn
Rush Hour 32007in memory of
The Last Sentinel2007in loving memory of
Bread and Roses2000special thanks


Gomorron2006TV SeriesHimself - Bilder Från Hans Liv
The Contender2005TV SeriesHimself
VH1 Goes Inside2003TV Series documentaryHimself
'Masked & Anonymous' Exposed2003Video documentary shortHimself
Revealed with Jules Asner2002TV SeriesHimself
Bread and Roses2000Himself - Party Guest (uncredited)
CBS Cares2000TV SeriesHimself
Cannes Man1997Himself
Late Night with Conan O'Brien1993-1996TV SeriesHimself
Luck, Trust & Ketchup: Robert Altman in Carver Country1993DocumentaryHimself

Archive Footage

Remembering Willard2011Video documentary shortHimself
E! True Hollywood Story2010TV Series documentaryHimself
Hollywood Lives2009TV Series documentaryHimself
13th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards2007TV SpecialHimself - In Memoriam
Boulevard of Broken Dreams2007TV Series documentaryHimself
The 78th Annual Academy Awards2006TV SpecialHimself - Memorial sequence
Corazón de...2006TV SeriesHimself
On Location in Tulsa: The Making of 'Rumble Fish'2005Video shortHimself
Empire of the Censors1995TV Movie documentaryHimself
Who Do You Think You're Fooling?1994Short documentaryNice Guy Eddie (uncredited)


Won Awards

1996Volpi CupVenice Film FestivalBest Supporting PerformerThe Funeral (1996)
1994Special AwardGolden Globes, USAShort Cuts (1993)
1993Special Volpi CupVenice Film FestivalShort Cuts (1993)

Nominated Awards

1997Independent Spirit AwardIndependent Spirit AwardsBest Male LeadThe Funeral (1996)
1996GenieGenie AwardsBest Performance by an Actor in a Leading RoleThe Boys Club (1996)

Source: IMDb, Wikipedia

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