June 8, 1986
The "Brat Packers" simply do not merit the attention they are getting. Merit is the central issue here. The only dues Sean Penn ever paid was to have actor/director Leo Penn as his father. Ditto Timothy Hutton, Nicolas Cage (Francis Coppola's nephew, I believe) and Emilio-I-did-it-all-on-my-own-Estevez-Sheen and scores of other snotty-nosed, no-talent don't-take-my-picture-jerks who make it because of nepotism. The Robert Duvalls and Rip Torns of today have little chance to prove their worth in a market filled with industry brats.
July 12, 1987 |
So what's this big role that got Sean Penn a temporary reprieve (until Aug. 1) from a 32-day jail sentence? A starring part in a major picture? Nope. Penn will be giving testimony--in a supporting role of a trial witness--in "Judgment in Berlin." The American-West German co-production, to start shooting Wednesday, is directed and co-written by dad Leo Penn.
May 14, 2000 |
It's a sunny afternoon in Laurel Canyon, but things are a little stormy inside the home of singer-songwriters Aimee Mann and Michael Penn. The stress of a photo session has sent Penn out the front door in pursuit of a nicotine fix as his wife mildly objects. He returns almost immediately. "I only had one puff," he says. That's not so bad, he's told. "It is when it's your first day quitting," he replies sharply, clearly annoyed with himself.
December 25, 1998 |
A night in the recent life of Sean Penn, actor, son, director, husband, movie star, father, celebrity: The students file in with first-night expectation, squinting into the television lights, shifting seats to find the best sight line and the best chance of appearing on camera. Offstage, Sean Penn is reported calm, his wife and frequent co-star, actress Robin Wright Penn, nervous. She'll sit with the audience for that night's taping of the Bravo series "Inside the Actors Studio."
February 27, 2005 |
Back in 1986, when the Iran-Contra scandal became news, Rhino Records reissued a Phil Ochs CD titled "A Toast to Those Who Are Gone." A fiery troubadour of the 1960s best known for "I Ain't Marchin' Anymore," Ochs was also a political activist who not only had denounced the Vietnam War at home but had traveled to Chile, South Africa and Tanzania to promote world peace, inspiring the FBI to amass a 410-page file on his six-string dissent.
January 6, 2002 |
Sean Penn doesn't believe in film preservation. He hates those hallowed classics like "The Grapes of Wrath" and " Gone With the Wind," a film he describes as "an abominable fraud of a movie." "I sometimes feel that they should just burn them all and start anew," he says. Penn giggles wickedly--a hoarse, breathy, gasping chortle. It's the first time in the last hour that a flash of mischievousness has animated his rough-hewn features.