Kevin Bacon is one of the foremost actors of his generation. His talent for balancing starring roles with powerful supporting characters on both film and stage has allowed him to build a varied and critically acclaimed body of work.
With the support of his parents, Bacon left his native Philadelphia to become the youngest student at Circle in the Square Theatre in New York, where he studied until he made his film debut as “Chip” in National Lampoon’s Animal House. This led to roles in Diner and Footloose, the latter of which propelled him to stardom.
Bacon has proven his talents in a wide range of film genres from action thrillers to romantic comedies to heavy dramas, and even the occasional musical. Just some of Bacon’s film credits include John Hughes’ She's Having a Baby, The Big Picture, Tremors, Flatliners, Oliver Stone’s JFK, Rob Reiner’s A Few Good Men, The River Wild (Golden Globe Award nomination), Murder in the First (Best Actor by The Broadcast Film Critics Association and Best Supporting Actor nominations by The Screen Actors Guild and the London Film Critics Circle), Ron Howard’s award-winning Apollo 13 and Balto.
Additional film credits include Barry Levinson’s Sleepers, with Brad Pitt and Robert De Niro; Picture Perfect, with Jennifer Aniston; Telling Lies in America; Wild Things; David Koepp’s Stir of Echoes; the sleeper hit My Dog Skip; Hollow Man; Trapped, with Charlize Theron; Clint Eastwood’s Mystic River (Academy Award® and Golden Globe Award nominations for Best Picture); Beauty Shop; Atom Egoyan’s Where the Truth Lies; The Air I Breathe; Death Sentence; Rails & Ties; My One and Only, with Renée Zellweger; James Gunn’s Super; and Frost/Nixon, which reunited him with Apollo 13 director Ron Howard.
In 2004, Bacon starred in The Woodsman, a compelling drama that premiered to critical acclaim at the Sundance and Cannes Film Festivals, and for which Bacon received an IFP Spirit Award nomination. Most recently, Bacon was seen on the big screen alongside Ryan Gosling and Steve Carell in Crazy, Stupid, Love., and as the villainous “Sebastian Shaw” in director Matthew Vaughn’s X-Men: First Class. Up next, Bacon stars in Jayne Mansfield’s Car, by director Billy Bob Thornton; and in the action-comedy R.I.P.D., opposite Ryan Reynolds.
In 2009, Bacon starred in the cable movie Taking Chance, for which he earned a Golden Globe Award and a SAG Award. Also, he recently appeared in an episode of the cable comedy Bored To Death, in which he played a hilariously exaggerated version of himself.
Bacon’s other television credits include the public television staging of Lanford Wilson’s play, Lemon Sky, a production that teamed him with his then-future wife Kyra Sedgwick. Additional television credits include the The Gift and the cable film Enormous Changes at the Last Minute.
In 1996, Bacon made his directorial debut with Losing Chase, starring Sedgwick, Beau Bridges and Helen Mirren. Losing Chase was honored with three Golden Globe Award nominations, and Mirren won a Golden Globe Award for her performance. Bacon directed his second film, Loverboy, which he also produced. Bacon’s most recent project as director has been for several episodes of Sedgwick’s hit show The Closer.
In addition to his film and television credits, Bacon’s stage work includes such Off- Broadway productions as Album, Poor Little Lambs and Getting Out. He made his Broadway debut in 1983 with Sean Penn in Slab Boys, and starred in the 1986 production of Joe Orton’s Loot. He also starred in Theresa Rebeck’s comedy Spike Heels. In 2002, he starred in the one-man show An Almost Holy Picture, written by Heather McDonald.
Bacon was most recently seen onstage in the celebrated Los Angeles reading of Oscar winner Dustin Lance Black’s play, 8. The reading was a benefit for the American Foundation for Equal Rights and Broadway Impact, in order to raise funds to overturn California’s Proposition 8, which bans same-sex marriage. Bacon starred alongside George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Martin Sheen, Jane Lynch, John C. Reilly and many others.
With his musician brother Michael, Bacon is the other half of The Bacon Brothers, a successful band with a sound that he describes as “Forosoco” (which is the title of their first album) – Folk, Rock, Soul and Country. Already highly regarded and hugely successful on the national club circuit, they have recorded six CD’s and a concert DVD.
At the 2007 Sundance Film Festival, Bacon launched SixDegrees.org, a web site that builds on the popularity of the “small world phenomenon” to create a charitable social network and to inspire giving to charities online. He started the network with other celebrities by highlighting their favorite charities, and he encourages everyone to be celebrities for their own causes by joining the Six Degrees movement. To date, the site has succeeded in raising nearly four million dollars for charities around the world.
Bacon received the 2010 Joel Siegel Award from the Broadcast Film Critics Association in recognition of his outstanding film career and his charitable work with SixDegrees.org. In 2000, the Film Society of Lincoln Center honored Bacon for his extraordinary career in the film industry.
Bacon resides in New York City.