Timothy Francis Robbins (born October 16, 1958) is an American actor, screenwriter, director, producer, and musician. He is well known for his portrayal of Andy Dufresne in the prison drama film The Shawshank Redemption (1994).
His other roles include Nuke LaLoosh in Bull Durham, Jacob Singer in Jacob's Ladder, Griffin Mill in The Player, and Dave Boyle in Mystic River, for which he won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. He also directed the films Dead Man Walking and Bob Roberts, both of which received critical acclaim. He received a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Director for Dead Man Walking.
Robbins at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival
Timothy Francis Robbins
October 16, 1958
|Residence||Pound Ridge, New York, U.S.|
|Alma mater||University of California, Los Angeles (BA)|
|Occupation||Actor, screenwriter, director, producer, musician|
|Height||6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)|
|Partner(s)||Susan Sarandon (1988–2009)|
Robbins was born in West Covina, California, and raised in New York City. His parents were Mary Cecelia (née Bledsoe), an actress, and Gilbert Lee Robbins, a singer, actor, and manager of The Gaslight Cafe. Robbins has two sisters, Adele and Gabrielle, and a brother, David. He was raised Catholic.
He moved to Greenwich Village with his family at a young age, while his father pursued a career as a member of the folk music group, The Highwaymen. Robbins started performing in theater at age twelve and joined the drama club at Stuyvesant High School (Class of 1976). He spent two years at SUNY Plattsburgh and then returned to California to study at the UCLA Film School, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Drama in 1981.
Robbins's acting career began at Theater for the New City, where he spent his teenage years in their Annual Summer Street Theater and also played the title role in a musical adaptation of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's The Little Prince. After graduation from college in 1981, Robbins founded the Actors' Gang, an experimental theater group, in Los Angeles with actor friends from his college softball team (including John Cusack).
In 1982, he appeared as domestic terrorist Andrew Reinhardt in three episodes of the television program St. Elsewhere. In 1985, he guest-starred in the second episode of the television series Moonlighting, "Gunfight at the So-So Corral". He also took small parts in films, such as the role of frat animal "Mother" in Fraternity Vacation (1985) and Lt Sam "Merlin" Wells in the fighter pilot film Top Gun (1986). He appeared on The Love Boat, as a young version of one of the characters in retrospection about the Second World War. His breakthrough role was as pitcher Ebby Calvin "Nuke" LaLoosh in the 1988 baseball film Bull Durham, in which he co-starred with Susan Sarandon and Kevin Costner.
He received critical acclaim and won the Best Actor Award at Cannes for his starring role as an amoral film executive in Robert Altman's 1992 film The Player. He made his directorial and screenwriting debut with 1992's Bob Roberts, a mockumentary about a right-wing senatorial candidate. Robbins then starred alongside Morgan Freeman in the critically acclaimed The Shawshank Redemption (1994), which was based on Stephen King's novella.
Robbins has written, produced, and directed several films with strong social content, such as the critically acclaimed capital punishment saga Dead Man Walking (1995), starring Sarandon and Sean Penn. The film earned him an Oscar nomination for Best Director. His next directorial effort was 1999's Depression-era musical Cradle Will Rock. Robbins has also appeared in mainstream Hollywood thrillers, such as 1999's Arlington Road (as a suspected terrorist) and 2001's Antitrust (as a malicious computer tycoon), and in comical films such as The Hudsucker Proxy, Nothing to Lose, and High Fidelity. Robbins has also acted in and directed several Actors' Gang theater productions.
Robbins won the Best Supporting Actor Oscar and the SAG Award for his work in Mystic River (2003), as a man traumatized from having been molested as a child. In 2005, he won the 39th annual Man of the Year Pudding Pot Award given by the Hasty Pudding Theatricals of Harvard.
His recent acting roles include a temporarily blind man who is nursed to health by a psychologically wounded young woman in The Secret Life of Words and an apartheid torturer in Catch a Fire. As of 2006, he was the tallest Academy Award-winning actor at 6 feet 5 inches (1.96 m).
In early 2006, Robbins directed an adaptation of George Orwell's novel 1984, written by Michael Gene Sullivan of the Tony Award-winning San Francisco Mime Troupe. The show opened at Actors' Gang, at their new location at The Ivy Substation in Culver City, California. In addition to venues around the United States, it has played in Athens, Greece, the Melbourne International Festival in Australia and the Hong Kong Arts Festival. Robbins is considering adapting the play into a film version.
In 2008, Robbins appeared in The Lucky Ones, with co-star Rachel McAdams as well as City Of Ember. Robbins next film role was as Senator Hammond, the disapproving father of the film's villain Hector Hammond, in the 2011 superhero film Green Lantern.
In 2010 Robbins released the album Tim Robbins & The Rogues Gallery Band, a collection of songs written over the course of 25 years that he ultimately took on a world tour. He was originally offered the chance to record an album in 1992 after the success of his film Bob Roberts, but he declined because he had "too much respect for the process", having seen his father work so hard as a musician, and because he felt he had nothing to say at the time.
Robbins directed two episodes of the HBO series Treme. The series follows the interconnected lives of a group of New Orleanians in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. He helmed the episodes "Everything I Do Gonh Be Funky" in Season 2 (2011) and "Promised Land" in Season 3 (2012). Robbins became interested in the show while staying in New Orleans during the filming of Green Lantern. "I had the unique experience of watching Treme with locals. It resonated for me immediately, and it resonated for them as well, because they have seen their town get misinterpreted and represented in ridiculous ways," he told The Times-Picayune in 2011. "Something about this show was different for them. I appreciated that. I loved the writing and the actors. I loved the environment it's set in. I watched the whole first season in New Orleans, and got in touch with David Simon and said, 'If you guys need a director next year, I'd be happy to do an episode.'"
In 1988, Robbins entered into a relationship with actress Susan Sarandon, whom he met on the set of Bull Durham. They have two sons: John "Jack" Henry (born May 15, 1989) and Miles Guthrie (born May 4, 1992). Robbins, like Sarandon, is a lapsed Catholic, and they share liberal political views. The end of Robbins' relationship with Sarandon was announced in late December 2009.
Robbins supported Ralph Nader's 2000 presidential campaign and appeared on stage in character as Bob Roberts during the "Nader Rocks the Garden" rally at Madison Square Garden. In December 2007, Robbins campaigned for Senator John Edwards in the 2008 U.S. presidential election. He delivered a speech critical of Hillary Clinton and the DLC while introducing Bernie Sanders at a 2016 campaign stop.
He publicly opposed the 2003 invasion of Iraq. In 2003, a 15th anniversary celebration of Bull Durham at the National Baseball Hall of Fame was canceled by Hall of Fame President Dale Petroskey. Petroskey told Robbins that his stance helped to "undermine the U.S. position, which could put our troops in even more danger." Durham co-star Kevin Costner defended Robbins and Sarandon, saying, "I think Tim and Susan's courage is the type of courage that makes our democracy work. Pulling back this invite is against the whole principle about what we fight for and profess to be about."
Robbins is an avid baseball and ice hockey fan. He supports the New York Mets and the New York Rangers and frequently attends games. In 1995 Robbins did a series of promos for MSG Network advertising upcoming Rangers games, and has narrated a documentary on the 1969 Mets for SNY.
Arlington Road is a 1999 American drama mystery thriller film which tells the story of a widowed George Washington University professor who suspects his new neighbors are involved in terrorism and becomes obsessed with foiling their terrorist plot. The film was heavily inspired by the paranoid culture of the 1990s concerning the right-wing militia movement, Ruby Ridge, the Waco siege and Oklahoma City Bombing. The film stars Jeff Bridges, Tim Robbins, Joan Cusack, and Hope Davis and is directed by Mark Pellington.
Ehren Kruger wrote the script, which won the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' (AMPAS) Nicholl Fellowship in 1996. The film was to have been originally released by PolyGram Filmed Entertainment, but the film's United States distribution rights was sold to Sony Pictures Entertainment for $6 million. The eventual release was the second title for Screen Gems while PolyGram (now part of Universal Studios) handled foreign rights. Tomandandy composed additional music in the film.Bob Roberts
Bob Roberts is a 1992 American-British satirical mockumentary film written, directed by, and starring Tim Robbins. It depicts the rise of Robert "Bob" Roberts Jr., a right-wing politician who is a candidate for an upcoming United States Senate election. Roberts is well financed, due mainly to past business dealings, and is well known for his music, which presents conservative ideas with gusto.
The film is Robbins's directorial debut, and is based on a short segment of the same title and featuring the same character that Robbins portrayed on Saturday Night Live.Bull Durham
Bull Durham is a 1988 American romantic comedy sports film. It is partly based upon the minor-league baseball experiences of writer/director Ron Shelton and depicts the players and fans of the Durham Bulls, a minor-league baseball team in Durham, North Carolina.
The film stars Kevin Costner as "Crash" Davis, a veteran catcher brought in to teach rookie pitcher Ebby Calvin "Nuke" LaLoosh (Tim Robbins) about the game in preparation for reaching the major leagues. Baseball groupie Annie Savoy (Susan Sarandon) romances Nuke but finds herself increasingly attracted to Crash. Also featured are Robert Wuhl and Trey Wilson, as well as popular baseball "clown" Max Patkin.
Bull Durham was a commercial success, grossing over $50 million in North America, well above its estimated budget, and was a critical success as well. Sports Illustrated ranked it the #1 Greatest Sports Movie of all time. The Moving Arts Film Journal ranked it #3 on its list of the 25 Greatest Sports Movies of All-Time. In addition, the film is ranked #55 on Bravo's "100 Funniest Movies." It is also ranked #97 on the American Film Institute's "100 Years...100 Laughs" list, and #1 on Rotten Tomatoes' list of the 53 best-reviewed sports movies of all time.Cadillac Man
Cadillac Man is a 1990 American comedy film directed by Roger Donaldson, starring Robin Williams and Tim Robbins.
The plot of the film centers around car salesman Joey O'Brien (Williams) whose life is consumed by turmoil, which all comes to a head when his dealership is taken hostage by Larry (Robbins), a crazed motorcyclist.
The film received mixed reviews from critics and performed poorly at the box office, grossing $27.6 million against its $15 million budget.Cinema Verite (2011 film)
Cinema Verite is a 2011 HBO drama film directed by Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini. The film's main ensemble cast starred Diane Lane, Tim Robbins, James Gandolfini and Patrick Fugit. The film follows a fictionalized account of the production of An American Family, a 1973 PBS documentary television series that is said to be one of the earliest examples of the reality television genre. Principal photography was completed in Southern California. The film premiered on April 23, 2011.City of Ember
City of Ember is a 2008 American science fiction adventure film based on the 2003 novel The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau. Directed by Gil Kenan, the film stars Saoirse Ronan, Harry Treadaway, Bill Murray, Mackenzie Crook, Martin Landau, Mary Kay Place, Toby Jones and Tim Robbins.
Produced by Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman's Playtone and Walden Media, City of Ember was theatrically released on October 10, 2008 by 20th Century Fox, two months after the release of the final book in the series, The Diamond of Darkhold. The film received mixed reviews from critics and was a box office bomb, grossing only $17.9 million against a budget of $55 million.Cradle Will Rock
Cradle Will Rock is a 1999 American historical drama film written, produced and directed by Tim Robbins. The story fictionalizes the true events that surrounded the development of the 1937 musical The Cradle Will Rock by Marc Blitzstein; it adapts history to create an account of the original production, bringing in other stories of the time to produce a social commentary on the role of art and power in the 1930s, particularly amidst the struggles of the labor movement at the time and the corresponding appeal of socialism and communism among many intellectuals, artists and working-class people in the same period.
The film is not based on Orson Welles's script The Cradle Will Rock, which was to be an autobiographical account of the play's production. It went into pre-production in 1983 with Rupert Everett on board to play Welles before the backers pulled out and the production collapsed.Dead Man Walking (film)
Dead Man Walking is a 1995 American crime drama film starring Susan Sarandon and Sean Penn, and co-produced and directed by Tim Robbins, who adapted the screenplay from the non-fiction book of the same name.
Sister Helen Prejean (Sarandon) establishes a special relationship with Matthew Poncelet (Penn), a character based on convicted murderers Elmo Patrick Sonnier and Robert Lee Willie. He is a prisoner on death row in Louisiana, and she visits him as his spiritual adviser after having corresponded with him.Dry Run (film)
Dry Run is an upcoming American drama film, directed by Todd Haynes, from a screenplay by Matthew Carnahan and Mario Correra. It stars Mark Ruffalo, Anne Hathaway, Tim Robbins, Victor Garber, Mare Winningham, William Jackson Harper, and Bill Pullman.Five Corners (film)
Five Corners is a 1987 American independent crime drama film, directed by Tony Bill from a screenplay written by John Patrick Shanley. The film stars Jodie Foster, Tim Robbins, John Turturro, and Rodney Harvey. It depicts 48 hours in the lives of a group of young New Yorkers in the 1960s.
Five Corners was released domestically in limited theatres on January 22, 1987. The film received generally positive reviews from critics but was a commercial failure grossing a mere $969,205 against a budget of $5.5 million. Foster received the Independent Spirit Award for Best Female Lead for her performance.Here and Now (2018 TV series)
Here and Now is an American drama television series created by Alan Ball. The series consists of ten episodes and premiered on HBO on February 11, 2018. Starring Holly Hunter and Tim Robbins, the series focuses on a contemporary multiracial family in the Portland area. The show's plot involves many issues including race, identity and mental illness.
On April 25, 2018, HBO canceled the series after one season.I.Q. (film)
I.Q. is a 1994 American romantic comedy film directed by Fred Schepisi and starring Tim Robbins, Meg Ryan, and Walter Matthau. The original music score was composed by Jerry Goldsmith. The film centers on a mechanic and a Princeton doctoral candidate who fall in love, thanks to the candidate's uncle, Albert Einstein.Miss Firecracker
Miss Firecracker is a 1989 comedy film directed by Thomas Schlamme. It stars Holly Hunter, Mary Steenburgen, Tim Robbins, Alfre Woodard, and Scott Glenn. The film, set in Yazoo City, Mississippi, was written by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Beth Henley and is based on her 1984 play, The Miss Firecracker Contest.Mystic River (film)
Mystic River is a 2003 American mystery crime thriller drama film directed and scored by Clint Eastwood. It stars Sean Penn, Tim Robbins, Kevin Bacon, Laurence Fishburne, Marcia Gay Harden, and Laura Linney. The screenplay, written by Brian Helgeland, was based on the novel of the same name by Dennis Lehane. The film was produced by Robert Lorenz, Judie G. Hoyt, and Eastwood. It is the first film on which Eastwood was credited as composer of the score.
The film opened to widespread critical acclaim. It was nominated for Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Supporting Actress, and Best Supporting Actor. Penn won Best Actor and Robbins won Best Supporting Actor, making Mystic River the first film to win both awards since Ben-Hur in 1959.No Small Affair
No Small Affair is a 1984 American comedy-drama film directed by Jerry Schatzberg and starring Jon Cryer and Demi Moore. Cryer, Jennifer Tilly and Tim Robbins make their film debuts.Tapeheads
Tapeheads is a 1988 comedy film directed by Bill Fishman and starring John Cusack, Tim Robbins, Sam Moore and Junior Walker. The film was produced by Michael Nesmith, who briefly appears as a bottled water delivery man.The Player (film)
The Player is a 1992 American satirical black comedy film directed by Robert Altman and written by Michael Tolkin, based on his own 1988 novel of the same name. The film stars Tim Robbins, Greta Scacchi, Fred Ward, Whoopi Goldberg, Peter Gallagher, Brion James, Cynthia Stevenson and is the story of a Hollywood film studio executive who murders an aspiring screenwriter he believes is sending him death threats.
The Player has many film references and Hollywood in-jokes, with 65 celebrities making cameo appearances in the film. Altman once stated that the film "is a very mild satire," offending no one. The film received three nominations at the 65th Academy Awards: Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Editing. The film also won two Golden Globes, Best Motion Picture – Comedy or Musical and Best Actor – Comedy or Musical for Robbins.The Secret Life of Words
The Secret Life of Words is a 2005 English-speaking Spanish-Irish drama film written and directed by Isabel Coixet and starring Sarah Polley, Tim Robbins, Javier Cámara and Julie Christie. It was released on December 15, 2006.The Spoils of Babylon
The Spoils of Babylon is an American comedy miniseries written by Matt Piedmont and Andrew Steele, directed by Piedmont, and starring Tobey Maguire, Kristen Wiig, Tim Robbins, Jessica Alba, Val Kilmer, Haley Joel Osment, Michael Sheen, and Will Ferrell. It is intended to be a spoof of the epic-scale "TV event" miniseries adapted from bestselling novels (such as Shogun, The Thorn Birds and Rich Man, Poor Man) prevalent on American network television in the 1970s and 1980s. The miniseries premiered on IFC on January 9, 2014. For her performance as Cynthia Morehouse, Kristen Wiig was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie.
Films directed by Tim Robbins
Awards for Tim Robbins