Sean Patrick Astin (né Duke; February 25, 1971) is an American actor, voice actor, director and producer. He portrayed the roles of Samwise Gamgee in The Lord of the Rings trilogy (2001–2003), Mikey Walsh in The Goonies (1985), the title character of Rudy (1993), Doug in 50 First Dates (2004), Jim Kent in the first season of The Strain (2014), and Bob Newby in the second season of Stranger Things (2017).
Astin was born in Santa Monica, California, the son of actress Patty Duke (1946–2016). At the time, it was erroneously reported that entertainer Desi Arnaz Jr. was his biological father. When Michael Tell, a writer, music promoter and publisher of the newspaper The Las Vegas Israelite, came to sublet her apartment and offered to marry her as a way out of the scandal, Duke agreed. The marriage lasted only 13 days in 1970, and ended long before Astin was born.
On August 5, 1972, Duke married actor John Astin, after having been in a relationship with him for two years. When the wedding guests were invited to speak, 18-month-old Sean looked at John and cried, "Daddy!", to which the Episcopal priest performing the ceremony remarked, "Well, that about does it!" Astin subsequently adopted Sean. In 1973, Duke gave birth to Astin's brother, Mackenzie Astin, who also became an actor. Duke and John Astin divorced in 1985. Duke married Mike Pearce in 1986, and they adopted a son, Kevin, in 1989.
When he was 14, Duke told Astin that Arnaz was his father, and the two developed a relationship. However, in his mid-20s, Astin met a relative of Michael Tell who suggested they were related. Sean set out to find the truth about his biological father, and underwent genetic tests which showed Tell was his biological father. Astin has maintained close relationships with all three, saying, "Desi Arnaz Jr. loves me, and I love him. We are so close...Science tells me...that he's not my biological father. Science tells me that Mike Tell is." Astin considers John his father, as John was the one who raised him. Astin is also close to his stepfather, Mike Pearce, saying, "I can call any of them on the phone any time I want to," says Sean. "John, Desi, Mike or Papa Mike...my four dads."
Astin is of German and Irish ancestry through his mother, and Austrian-Jewish and Polish-Jewish through his biological father. He attended Catholic school and later became a Protestant, attending a Presbyterian church in Bel Air, Los Angeles.
Astin attended the Crossroads High School for the Arts and undertook master classes at the Stella Adler Conservatory in Los Angeles. He graduated from UCLA with a B.A. in History and English (American literature and culture). An alumnus of Los Angeles Valley College, Astin served on the school's board of directors of the Patrons Association and the Arts Council.
Astin's first acting role was in a 1981 television movie titled Please Don't Hit Me, Mom, in which he played an 8-year-old child with an abusive mother (portrayed by his real-life mother Patty Duke). He made his film debut at age 13 as Mikey in The Goonies (1985).
After The Goonies, Astin appeared in several more films, including the Disney made-for-TV movie, The B.R.A.T. Patrol, opposite Nia Long, Tim Thomerson and Brian Keith; Like Father Like Son (1987); White Water Summer with Kevin Bacon (1987), The War of the Roses (1989); the World War II film Memphis Belle (1990); Toy Soldiers (1991); Encino Man (1992); and the college football biopic Rudy (1993), about the life-changing struggles and rewards of the titular character, Daniel Ruettiger.
In 1994, Astin directed and co-produced (with his wife, Christine Astin) the short film Kangaroo Court, which received an Academy Award nomination for Best Live Action Short Film. Astin continued to appear in films throughout the 1990s, including the Showtime science fiction film Harrison Bergeron (1995), the Gulf War film Courage Under Fire (1996), and the Warren Beatty political satire Bulworth (1998).
In the early 2000s, Astin played Samwise Gamgee in Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings film trilogy, consisting of The Fellowship of the Ring (2001), The Two Towers (2002), and The Return of the King (2003). Many awards were bestowed upon the trilogy, particularly its final installment, which earned eleven (11) Academy Awards, including Best Picture. Astin received seven award nominations for his own performance, and won five, including the Saturn Award, the Sierra Award, the Seattle Film Critics Award, and the Utah Film Critics Award (all for Best Supporting Actor), and the Visual Effects Society Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male or Female in an Effects Film. The Return of the King cast as an ensemble received awards from the National Board of Review of Motion Pictures, the Screen Actors Guild, the Broadcast Film Critics Association, and received a Gold Derby Award.
Throughout the filming process, Astin became close friends with several cast members, and became particularly good friends with costar Elijah Wood. Astin's daughter, Alexandra, is in the closing scene of The Return of the King. She plays his onscreen daughter, Elanor Gamgee, who runs out to him as he returns from the harbor (where he said goodbye to Frodo, Bilbo and Gandalf).
While working on The Lord of the Rings, Astin persuaded a number of fellow cast and crew members, including director Peter Jackson, to assist him in making his second short film, The Long and Short of It. The film, which takes place on a street in Wellington, New Zealand, premiered at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival and can be found on the DVD for The Two Towers, along with a "making of" video.
In 2004, Astin released There and Back Again (ISBN 0-312-33146-0), a memoir (co-written with Joe Layden) of his film career with emphasis on his experiences during production of The Lord of the Rings trilogy. The title is derived from the title of J. R. R. Tolkien's novel The Hobbit, as well as the fictional book written by Bilbo Baggins in The Lord of the Rings.
Since Lord of the Rings, Astin has continued to work in film and television. His film roles have included the Adam Sandler comedies 50 First Dates and Click. Astin played the role of Malibu High School principal Mike Matthews in the movie Smile.
In television, Astin guest-starred as Lynn McGill throughout the fifth season of the Fox drama 24. He also appeared in the made-for-TV films Hercules and The Colour of Magic and in episodes of Monk, Las Vegas, My Name is Earl (in which he parodied his 1993 film Rudy with co-stars Charles S. Dutton and Chelcie Ross), and Law & Order, among other shows. He directed a 2003 episode of the TV series Angel, titled "Soulless". He played the enigmatic Mr. Smith on the second season of the Showtime series Jeremiah.
Astin's career has also expanded to include voice-over roles. He narrated the American version of the Animal Planet series Meerkat Manor, and voices the title character in the animated Disney Channel series Special Agent Oso. His other voice work includes Balto III: Wings of Change, in which he voiced Kodi, a teenage husky who is the son of the titular character, and the video game Kingdom Hearts, in the latter of which he provided the voice of Hercules, replacing actor Tate Donovan, who was unavailable but would return for Kingdom Hearts II. Astin voiced Raphael in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles animated series on Nickelodeon, which premiered on September 29, 2012.
In 2010, he joined the Stella Adler Los Angeles Theatre Collective acting company. He and his wife, Christine, are making a movie based on Lois Lowry's Newbery Medal-winning novel Number the Stars.
Astin portrays the role of Matthew in The Truth & Life Dramatized audio New Testament Bible, a 22-hour, celebrity-voiced, fully dramatized audio version of the New Testament, which uses the RSV-CE.
In March 2012, Astin played a cosmetic surgeon named Takin Mastuhmik in a fake movie trailer entitled Boobathon which appeared on Funny or Die. In March 2014, Astin played a soldier in Boys of Abu Ghraib, a military thriller inspired by the events that made worldwide news in 2004. In June of that year, he began playing the role of Jim Kent on the FX drama The Strain.
In 2017, Astin had the role of Bob Newby in the second season of the television series Stranger Things.
Astin married Christine Harrell on July 11, 1992. They have three daughters: Alexandra (born November 27, 1996), Elizabeth (born August 6, 2002), and Isabella (born July 22, 2005), all having the middle name Louise. His wife held the Miss Indiana Teen USA title in 1984. Alexandra had a small cameo role in Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King as Elanor Gardner, Astin's character's daughter, and appears in Bad Kids of Crestview Academy as Ethel Balducci.
Astin has a tattoo on his ankle of the word "nine" written with the Tengwar script, commemorating his Lord of the Rings involvement and his character's membership in the Fellowship of the Ring. Seven of the eight other actors (Elijah Wood, Sean Bean, Billy Boyd, Ian McKellen, Dominic Monaghan, Viggo Mortensen and Orlando Bloom) all have the same tattoo. John Rhys-Davies' stunt double, Brett Beattie, has the tattoo as well.
In the 2008 presidential election, Astin lent his support to then-Senator Hillary Clinton for the first of her two Presidential campaigns and made multiple campaign appearances on her behalf, including joining Clinton's daughter, Chelsea, at some stops.
Astin served as the campaign manager for Democrat Dan Adler, a businessman friend in the entertainment industry, for California's 36th congressional district special election, 2011.
|1985||Goonies, TheThe Goonies||Mikey Walsh|
|1987||Like Father Like Son||Clarence / Trigger|
|White Water Summer||Alan|
|1989||War of the Roses, TheThe War of the Roses||Josh Rose (age 17)|
|Staying Together||Duncan McDermott
1989 Lonesome Dove
|1990||Memphis Belle||Sergeant Richard "Rascal" Moore|
|1991||Toy Soldiers||William Tepper|
|1992||Where the Day Takes You||Greg|
|Encino Man||Dave Morgan|
|1994||Safe Passage||Izzy Singer|
|1995||Low Life, TheThe Low Life||Andrew|
|Harrison Bergeron||Harrison Bergeron|
|1996||Courage Under Fire||Patella|
|1997||Wag the Dog||Singer||uncredited role|
|1998||Boy Meets Girl||Mike|
|Last Producer, TheThe Last Producer||Bo Pomerantz|
|Sky is Falling, TheThe Sky is Falling||Mr. Schwartz|
|2001||Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, TheThe Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring||Samwise Gamgee|
|2002||Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, TheThe Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers||Samwise Gamgee|
|2003||Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, TheThe Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King||Samwise Gamgee|
|2004||Balto III: Wings of Change||Kodi||Voice|
|Elvis Has Left the Building||Aaron|
|50 First Dates||Doug Whitmore|
|Bigger Than the Sky||Ken Zorbell|
|Marilyn Hotchkiss Ballroom Dancing & Charm School||Kip Kipling|
|Thanks to Gravity||Coach Amal||Direct-to-DVD|
|2006||What Love Is||George||Direct-to-VOD|
|Asterix and the Vikings||Justforkix||English voice|
|2007||Final Season, TheThe Final Season||Kent Stock|
|Spirit of the Forest||Furi||Voice role|
|2009||Stay Cool||Big Girl||Direct-to-VOD|
|Amazing Love: The Story of Hosea||Stuart||Direct-to-DVD|
|2013||The Freemason||Leon Weed||Direct-to-DVD|
|2014||Justice League: War||Shazam||Voice role|
|Boys of Abu Ghraib||Staff Sergeant Tanner||Direct-to-VOD|
|Cabin Fever: Patient Zero||Porter|| Direct-to-DVD|
|Moms' Night Out||Sean|
|Video Games: The Movie||Narrator||Documentary|
|The Hero of Color City||Horatio||Voice role|
|2015||Justice League: Throne of Atlantis||Shazam||Voice role|
|Do You Believe?||Dr. Farell|
|2017||Bad Kids of Crestview Academy||Headmaster Nash|
|Espionage Tonight||Sam Jacobson|
|The Lears||Tom Cornwall|
|1981||Please Don't Hit Me, Mom||Brian Reynolds|
|1982||The Rules of Marriage||Charlie Hagen|
|1985||The O'Briens||The Son|
|1986||B.R.A.T. Patrol, TheThe B.R.A.T. Patrol||Leonard Kinsey|
|2003||Angel||N/A||Director (episode: "Soulless")|
|2003–2004||Jeremiah||Mister Smith||Main role (Season 2)|
|Into The West||Martin Jarrett||Miniseries|
|2005–2007||Meerkat Manor||Narrator||Seasons 1–3|
|2006||24||Lynn McGill||Main role (Season 5)|
|2007||Masters of Science Fiction||Charlie Kramer||Episode: "Watchbird" (unaired in U.S.)|
|Monk||Paul Buchanan||Episode: "Mr. Monk Is At Your Service"|
|My Name Is Earl||Salesman||Episode: "Get a Real Job"|
|2008||Terry Pratchett's The Colour of Magic||Twoflower||Movie|
|Law & Order||Pastor Hensley||Episode: "Angelgrove"|
|2009–2012||Special Agent Oso||Agent Oso||Voice role (22 episodes)|
|2011||Love's Christmas Journey||Mayor Wayne||Movie|
|2012||NCIS||Tyler Elliot||Episode: "The Tell"|
|Dorothy and the Witches of Oz||Frack||Miniseries|
|Hollywood Treasure||Himself||Episode: "Riddler Rudy and the Ruby Slippers"|
|Franklin and Bash||Viper||Episode: "Viper"|
|2012–2017||Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles||Raphael||Voice role|
|2014||The Strain||Jim Kent||Main role (9 episodes)|
|2015, 2017||Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero||Blaze||Voice role (4 episodes)|
|2016||The Loud House||Loni||Voice role (episode: "One of the Boys")|
|The Librarians||Kirby Goulding||Episode: "And the Tears of a Clown"|
|2016–present||Justice League Action||Billy Batson / Shazam||Voice role|
|2017||Stranger Things||Bob Newby||Main role (7 episodes)|
|2002||Kingdom Hearts||Hercules||English version|
|2003||The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King||Samwise Gamgee|
|2004||Men of Valor||Pat 'Mouth' Hodges|
|2006||The Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle-earth II - The Rise of the Witch-king||Samwise Gamgee|
|2010||The Lord of the Rings: Aragorn's Quest|
|2012||Lego The Lord of the Rings||Archive recordings|
|2013||Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles||Raphael|
|2015||Lego Dimensions||Samwise Gamgee|
|2016||Minecraft: Story Mode||Reginald|
|1985||Young Artist Awards||Best Starring Performance by a Young Actor – Motion Picture||The Goonies||Won|
|1989||Best Young Actor Starring in a Motion Picture||Staying Together||Won|
|1991||Outstanding Young Ensemble Cast in a Motion Picture||Toy Soldiers||Nominated|
|1994||Academy Awards||Best Live Action Short Film||Kangaroo Court||Nominated|
|2001||Online Film & Television Association||Best Ensemble||The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring||Won|
|Screen Actors Guild||Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture||Nominated|
|2002||MTV Movie Awards||MTV Movie Award for Best On-Screen Team (shared with Elijah Wood and Gollum/Andy Serkis)||The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers||Won|
|Visual Effects Society||Best Performance by an Actor in an Effects Film (shared with Elijah Wood and Andy Serkis)||Won|
|Screen Actors Guild||Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture||Nominated|
|2003||Chicago Film Critics Association||Best Supporting Actor||The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King||Won|
|National Board of Review||Best Cast||Won|
|Online Film & Television Association||Best Ensemble||Won|
|Saturn Awards||Best Supporting Actor||Won|
|Screen Actors Guild||Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture||Won|
|Visual Effects Society||Outstanding Male or Female Actor||Won|
|Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association||Best Ensemble||Nominated|
|2014||Utah Film Awards||Best Actor||The Freemason||Won|
DNA tests ... proved Tell to be his father.
JWK: I understand that you're a Presbyterian now. SA: Lutheran, technically now, I think...
Disney's 48.6-mile Dopey Challenge [... i]s no easy feat. While plenty of runners have finished 5Ks, 10Ks, half marathons, and marathons, few have done them back-to-back over the course of four days.
Sean Astin steps into the role of Mr. Porter
... a wife and her husband, played by Grey's Anatomy's Sarah Drew as Allyson and Sean Astin as Sean
Astin will play Jeremy
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