Billy Bob Thornton - Rotten Tomatoes

Billy Bob Thornton

Lowest Rated:   0% London Fields (2015)
Birthday:  
Birthplace:   Hot Springs, Arkansas, USA
One of Hollywood's few celebrators of the "Southern bad boy" image, country musician turned actor-screenwriter-director Billy Bob Thornton consistently engenders a reputation -- via chosen onscreen parts and fervent tabloid reports of his allegedly wild off-camera life -- as an iconoclastic American hellraiser with lightning in his veins. But appearances can deceive, for Thornton also reveals depth and complexity as one Hollywood's most articulate interviewees, graced with intelligent, sensitive observations, cultural allusions, and poignant reflections on his experiences as a thespian and film artist. Moreover, this acute insight evidences itself equally in Thornton's craftsmanship as a screenwriter and director. Though his behind-the-camera projects have become increasingly rare over time, his few directorial outings evince surprising control, refinement, insight, and taste. Born in Hot Springs, AR, on August 4, 1955, Thornton grew up dirt poor in the nearby backwoods community of Alpine. Despite his father's gainful employment as a history teacher, Thornton was forced to live with his parents and grandparents in a house without electricity or indoor plumbing. After high-school graduation, Thornton landed a steady job and got married; neither the job nor the marriage lasted, as Thornton divorced two years later and returned to college to study psychology; however, that didn't last, either -- he decided that his heart lay in rock & roll, and tried and failed to make it in New York. So Thornton returned to his job for awhile until he and Epperson renewed their dedication to a music career. Eventually, he would travel to California to write screenplays. It was a difficult time for Thornton who, in addition to living in poverty, also suffered a near-fatal heart attack. Thornton eventually turned to acting, making his screen debut in the straight-to-video Hunter's Blood in 1987. Subsequent roles in many forgettable movies followed (including Troma's Chopper Chicks in Zombietown), as did an appearance on the Burt Reynolds sitcom Evening Shade; the actor simultaneously weathered several marriages through the '80s and '90s, to Toni Lawrence, Cynda Williams, and Pietra Dawn Cherniak. Then, in 1990, Thornton caught the attention of critics when he wrote and appeared in Carl Franklin's critically acclaimed directorial debut, One False Move (1991). A dark crime drama set in a small Arkansas town, the film provided a suitable antecedent to Some Folks Call It a Sling Blade, a 1993 short that Thornton scripted. The George Hickenlooper-directed piece stars Thornton as Karl Childers, a mentally retarded, soft-spoken man, institutionalized for murder, who delivers a reflective monologue to a reporter (Molly Ringwald) just prior to his release from the psychiatric institution where he resides. (Thornton allegedly invented the Childers character years prior, while shaving and talking to himself in the mirror.) The effort won a number of positive notices and Thornton subsequently appeared in Jim Jarmusch's Dead Man in 1995 and (with Epperson), co-authored the screenplay for A Family Thing (1996), a gentle Southern drama starring Robert Duvall as a Caucasian man who discovers that he is half black.After years of relative obscurity as an actor and screenwriter, Thornton made a great cultural impact with the low-budget, independent drama Sling Blade. A feature-length expansion of the Hickenlooper short, and a sequel of sorts to that work, the picture finds Karl Childers returning to the outside world for the first occasion in decades, and attempting to begin a new, quiet life in a small Southern town. In the story, Karl befriends a local woman, her little boy, and a gay storekeeper (John Ritter), and finds lodging and steady income, but runs headfirst into Doyle Hargraves (Dwight Yoakam), a psychotically abusive lout who turns life for the mother and son into a waking nightmare. Bit by bit, Karl's old demons awaken and he feels himself being drawn

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Highest Rated Movies

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT BOX OFFICE YEAR
23% Bad Santa 2
  • Willie Soke
$17.7M 2016
67% Whiskey Tango Foxtrot
  • General Hollanek
$18.4M 2016
35% Our Brand is Crisis
  • Pat Candy
$4.9M 2015
36% Into The Grizzly Maze
  • Douglas
2015
33% Entourage
  • Larsen McCredle
2015
33% Cut Bank
  • Big Stan Steeley
2015
0% London Fields
  • Samson Young
2015
No Score Yet
  • Actor
2015
40% 21 Years: Richard Linklater
  • Actor
2014
47% The Judge
  • Dwight Dickham
$35.7M 2014
50% Parkland
  • Forrest Sorrels
$0.7M 2013
83% Dislecksia: The Movie
  • Actor
$2.7k 2013
34% Jayne Mansfield's Car
  • Director
  • Skip Caldwell
  • Screenwriter
$14.8k 2013
93% Ain't In It For My Health: A Film About Levon Helm
  • Actor
$99.6k 2013
22% The Baytown Outlaws
  • Carlos
2013
84% Puss in Boots
  • Jack
$149.3M 2011
No Score Yet The Smell of Success
  • Patrick Fitzpatrick
2011
No Score Yet My Run
  • Narrator
2011
84% Lemmy
  • Actor
2011
No Score Yet Nashville Rises
  • Actor
2011
43% Faster
  • Cop
$23.3M 2010
13% The Informers
  • William Sloan
2009
26% Eagle Eye
  • Morgan
$101.2M 2008
13% Mr. Woodcock
  • Mr. Woodcock
$25.8M 2007
57% The Astronaut Farmer
  • Producer
  • Charles Farmer
$11M 2006
25% School for Scoundrels
  • Dr. P
$17.8M 2006
No Score Yet NFL Brett Favre Forever
  • Actor
2006
46% The Ice Harvest
  • Vic Cavanaugh
$8.9M 2005
48% Bad News Bears
  • Morris Buttermaker
$32.8M 2005
No Score Yet Unforgivable Blackness: The Rise and Fall of Jack Johnson
  • Actor
2005
81% Friday Night Lights
  • Coach Gaines
$60.6M 2004
29% The Alamo
  • Davy Crockett
$22.4M 2004
80% Chrystal
  • Joe
2004
100% Unforgivable Blackness: The Rise and Fall of Jack Johnson
  • Actor
2004
78% Bad Santa
  • Willie T. Stokes
2003
63% Love Actually
  • President of the United States of America
$59.4M 2003
75% Intolerable Cruelty
  • Howard D. Doyle
$35.1M 2003
35% Levity
  • Manual Jordan
2003
13% Waking Up in Reno
  • Lonnie Earl Dodd
2002
33% The Badge
  • Sheriff Darl Hardwick
2002
85% Monster's Ball
  • Hank
$31.3M 2002
81% The Man Who Wasn't There
  • Ed
$7.5M 2001
64% Bandits
  • Terry Collins
$41.2M 2001
97% Down from the Mountain
  • Actor
2001
86% Daddy and Them
  • Claude Montgomery
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
2001
No Score Yet CatDog: The Great Parent Mystery
  • Actor
2001
32% All the Pretty Horses
  • Producer
  • Director
$14.8M 2000
57% The Gift
  • Screenwriter
$11.2M 2000
14% South of Heaven, West of Hell
  • Brigadier Smalls
2000
No Score Yet Camouflage
  • Screenwriter
2000
92% Princess Mononoke (Mononoke-hime)
  • Jiko [English Version]
1999
48% Pushing Tin
  • Russell Bell
1999
90% A Simple Plan
  • Jacob Mitchell
1998
39% Armageddon
  • Dan Truman
1998
80% Primary Colors
  • Richard Jemmons
1998
8% An Alan Smithee Film: Burn, Hollywood, Burn
  • Himself
1998
89% The Apostle
  • Troublemaker
1998
47% Homegrown
  • Jack
1998
85% Wag the Dog
  • Actor
1997
59% U-Turn
  • Darrell
1997
17% The Winner
  • Jack
1997
No Score Yet A Gun, a Car, a Blonde
  • Syd/Monk
1997
96% Sling Blade
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
  • Karl Childers
1996
No Score Yet Don't Look Back
  • Marshall
  • Screenwriter
1996
73% A Family Thing
  • Screenwriter
1996
71% Dead Man
  • Big George
1995
No Score Yet Out There
  • Biker
1995
No Score Yet Going Overboard
  • Actor
1994
10% On Deadly Ground
  • Homer Carlton
1994
No Score Yet Some Folks Call It a Sling Blade
  • Karl Childers
  • Screenwriter
1994
67% Floundering
  • Gun Clerk
1994
73% Tombstone
  • Johnny Tyler
1993
55% Blood In, Blood Out (Bound by Honor)
  • Lighting
1993
38% Indecent Proposal
  • Day Tripper
1993
No Score Yet The Lost Brigade
  • Actor
1993
No Score Yet The Killing Box
  • Langston
1993
98% One False Move
  • Ray
  • Screenwriter
1992
No Score Yet Trouble Bound
  • Coldface
1992
38% For the Boys
  • Marine Sergeant
1991
No Score Yet Chopper Chicks in Zombietown
  • Bobby
1989
No Score Yet South of Reno
  • Counterman
1988
No Score Yet Hunter's Blood
  • Billy Bob
1987

TV

RATING TITLE CREDIT YEAR
77% Goliath
2016
  • Billy McBride
  • 2016
No Score Yet Late Night With Seth Meyers
2014
  • Guest
  • 2016
No Score Yet Sunday Morning
2011
  • Appearing
  • 2016
No Score Yet The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
2014
  • Guest
  • 2016
No Score Yet The View
1997
  • Guest
  • 2016
No Score Yet Jimmy Kimmel Live
2003
  • Guest
  • 2016
  • 2014
No Score Yet The Late Late Show With James Corden
2015
  • Guest
  • 2015
No Score Yet The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson
2005-2014
  • Guest
  • 2015
  • 2014
96% Fargo
2014
  • Lorne Malvo
  • 2014
82% The Big Bang Theory
2007
  • Dr. Oliver Lorvis
  • 2014
100% The Roosevelts: An Intimate History
2014
  • Voice
  • 2014
No Score Yet Real Time With Bill Maher
2003
  • Guest
  • 2009
No Score Yet The Daily Show With Jon Stewart
1999-2015
  • Guest
  • 2005
  • 2004
  • 2003
No Score Yet The Tonight Show With Jay Leno
1992-2014
  • Guest
  • Performer
  • 2004
  • 2002
  • 2001
No Score Yet Saturday Night Live
1975
  • Guest
  • Host
  • 2001

Quotes from Billy Bob Thornton's Characters