Henry Jackson Thomas Jr. (born September 9, 1971) is an American actor and musician.

Personal life

Thomas was born in San Antonio, Texas. His mother, Carolyn L. (née Davis), is a homemaker and his father, Henry Jackson Thomas Sr., is a hydraulic machinist. He attended East Central High School and Blinn College.[1]



Thomas began acting at age eight and made his film debut Raggedy Man (1981). Steven Spielberg auditioned Thomas for his breakout role in E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982). Thomas suffers with mental trauma, after his pet dog was killed by a neighbor's. He was troubled by the reaction of the public.[2]


Thomas wrote songs, sang and played guitar for the San Antonio, Texas band, The Blue Heelers (named for the breed of dog) from the mid to late 1990s. Although the band was never signed to a record label, its self-produced album Twister was warmly received and enjoyed statewide radio play.[citation needed] In Los Angeles, the band dissolved, but Thomas continued to write and record songs. In 1998, his song "Truckstop Coffee" (recorded with the Blue Heelers) appeared on V2's soundtrack to the film Niagara, Niagara.[3] In 2003, Thomas and Nikki Sudden work on the music for Mika Kaurismäki's film Honey Baby, which featured four original songs written and performed by Thomas as the fictional musician Tom Brackett.[4] An album was in the works, but Sudden died in 2006.[5]


Year Title Role Notes
1981 Raggedy Man Harry Jr.
1982 E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial Elliott
1984 Misunderstood Andrew
1984 Cloak & Dagger Davey Osborne
1986 Frog Dreaming Cody
1989 Valmont Raphael Danceny
1993 Fire in the Sky Greg Hayes
1994 Curse of the Starving Class Wesley Tate
1994 Legends of the Fall Samuel Ludlow
1997 Niagara, Niagara Seth
1997 Suicide Kings Avery Chasten
1997 Bombshell Buck Hogan
1999 Fever Nick Parker
2000 The House That Screamed Jack Gillton Direct-to-video
2000 A Good Baby Raymond Toker
2000 All the Pretty Horses Lacey Rawlins
2001 The Quickie Alex
2002 Dead in the Water Jeff
2002 I'm with Lucy Barry
2002 Gangs of New York Johnny Sirocco
2003 I Capture the Castle Simon Cotton
2003 11:14 Jack
2004 Dead Birds William
2006 The Hard Easy Paul Weston
2007 The Last Sin Eater Man of God
2007 Suffering Man's Charity Eric Rykell
2008 Red Velvet Aaron
2010 Dear John Tim
2011 The Last Ride Hank Williams Sr.
2013 Big Sur Philip Whalen
2016 Ouija: Origin of Evil Father Tom Hogan
2017 Gerald's Game Tom
Year Title Role Notes
1990 Psycho IV: The Beginning Young Norman Bates Movie
1992 A Taste for Killing Cary Sloan Movie
1995 Indictment: The McMartin Trial Ray Buckey Movie
1996 Riders of the Purple Sage Bern Venters Movie
1998 Moby Dick Ishmael Miniseries
1999 Happy Face Murders Dylan McCarthy Movie
2005 Masters of Horror Jamie Episode: "Chocolate"
2006 Desperation Peter Jackson Movie
2006 Nightmares & Dreamscapes: From the Stories of Stephen King Robert Fornoy Episode: "The End of the Whole Mess"
2007–2008 Without a Trace Franklin Romar 2 episodes
2009 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Jeremy Kent Episode: "If I Had a Hammer"
2011 The Mentalist Thomas Lisbon Episode: "Where in the World is Carmine O'Brien?"
2013–14 Betrayal T.J. Karsten 13 episodes
2015 Sons of Liberty John Adams Miniseries
2016 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Sean Roberts Episode: "Making a Rapist"
2017 Better Things Robin 4 episodes
2018 The Haunting of Hill House


Awards and nominations for acting
Year Association Category Nominated work Result
1982 Young Artist Award Best Actor Raggedy Man Nominated
1983 Young Artist Award Best Actor E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial Won
British Academy Film Awards Most Promising Newcomer to Leading Film Roles Nominated
Golden Globe Awards Best Actor Nominated
Saturn Award Best Actor Nominated
1985 Young Artist Award Best Actor Cloak & Dagger Nominated
1996 Golden Globe Awards Best Supporting Actor – Series, Miniseries or Television Film Indictment: The McMartin Trial Nominated

Other honors

  • VH1's "100 Greatest Kid Stars"
  • 2005, ranked #4, E!'s "50 Cutest Child Stars All Grown-up"


  1. ^ "Henry Thomas Biography (1971-)". Filmreference.com. 1971-09-08. Retrieved 2016-09-10. 
  2. ^ "E.T actor Henry Thomas on how hit film changed his life - Mirror Online". Mirror.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-09-10. 
  3. ^ Stephen Thomas Erlewine (1998-04-07). "Niagara, Niagara - Original Soundtrack Songs, Reviews, Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved 2016-09-10. 
  4. ^ Leslie Felperin (2004-07-09). "Review: 'Honey Baby'". Variety. Retrieved 2016-12-25. 
  5. ^ Cartwright, Garth (2006-04-02). "Obituary: Nikki Sudden". the Guardian. Retrieved 2018-01-17. 


  • Holmstrom, John. The Moving Picture Boy: An International Encyclopaedia from 1895 to 1995, Norwich, Michael Russell, 1996, p. 387-388.

External links