Photo Details

A photo of Rip Torn taken early in his acting career.

Born in Temple TX in 1931, Elmore Rual Torn Jr was the son of "Tiger" Torn Sr. and Thelma Mary (Spacek) Torn (aunt of Sissy Spacek). His nickname Rip was a traditional family nickname.

Rip studied acting at the University of Texas in Austin and went on to be an MP in the Army. After the Army, he moved to Hollywood and in 1956 had a part in his first movie, "Baby Doll."

Moving to New York, he began his stage career - studying at the Actors Studio. (While he was there, he helped his cousin Sissy enroll at the Actors Studio.)

A very long career on stage, in films, and on television followed. (Remember him as "Zed" in Men in Black?) But many conflicts were also involved - he, himself, said: ""I have certain flaws in my make-up. Something called irascibility. I get angry easily. I get saddened by things easily." These conflicts went beyond just the set - in 2010 he was arrested in Lakeport CT (his hometown) for trying to break into a bank while intoxicated and carrying a gun (he claimed that he thought it was his house). He plead guilty and was sentenced to 3 yrs probation.

Rip may have had some personal demons, but his talent provided us all with many hours of entertainment (and often laughter). He died at home at the age of 88, survived by his wife, 6 children (from 3 marriages), 4 grandchildren, and his sister.

RIP Elmore Rual Torn Jr.


AncientFaces RIP Elmore Rual Torn Jr - actor Rip Torn.
Jul 10 · Reply
Write a comment
Johannes Sundvor
Born: 1871
Herbert John Prouten Jr
around 1910 - Feb 29, 1944
Edith Mary Prouten
1873 - 1938
Saul Henkin
Born: around 1911
Maryland, United States
Donald Noe Knapp
Oct 20, 1937 - Mar 18, 1981
Eileen Constance (Tasker) Benning
Feb 2, 1908 - Jan 28, 1987
San Jose, CA, United States
Bill Tasker
Mar 24, 1906 - around 1932
Eileen Constance (Tasker) Benning
Feb 2, 1908 - January 1987
San Jose, CA, United States
View all Kathy's biographies...