1955 – Born on the 4th of August in Alpine, Arkansas. Raised in Malvern, Arkansas.
1977 - Moved to L.A. with Epperson
1983 - Began taking acting classes
1984 - Suffered heart failure brought on by malnutrition; Thornton's diet had consisted only of eating potatoes
1986 - Film acting debut in "Hunter's Blood"
1987 - Appeared onstage in various productions as Karl Childers, refining the monologues and story. Early TV credits, an episode of "Matlock" and the TV-movies "Circus" (CBS) and "The Man Who Broke 1,000 Chains" (HBO)
1989 - TV series debut as actor, "The Outsiders" (Fox); played Buck Merrill
1990 - Began making guest appearances on "Evening Shade", produced by Harry Thomason
1992 - First produced script, "One False Move"; co-wrote with Epperson; also co-starred with Bill Paxton
1994 - Wrote and starred in short film "Some Folks Call It a Sling Blade", the forerunner of the feature "Sling Blade"
1995 - First asociation with Robert Duvall, "The Stars Fell on Henrietta"
1996 - Feature directorial debut, "Sling Blade"; also wrote and starred
1997 - Played a psychotic mechanic in Oliver Stone's "U-Turn" and a reluctant religious convert in Duvall's
1998 - Portrayed a wily political advisor in "Primary Colors", the Mission Control leader in "Armageddon" and a would-be marijuana magnate in "Homegrown"
2000 - Directed "All the Pretty Horses", starring Matt Damon. With Epperson, scripted the Southern Gothic thriller "The Gift", starring Cate Blanchett; character played by Blanchett was loosely based on Thornton's mother
2001 - Had lead role in the Coen brothers' film noir "The Man Who Wasn't There"; screened at Cannes. Helmed feature "Daddy and Them" (filmed in 1998); also scripted and starred; screened at Montreal Film Festival
- Released first solo record "Private Radio" and starred in the drama "Monster's Ball" as a racist prison guard who falls in love with the widow of a black man whom he put to death
2002 - Starred in comedy "Waking Up in Reno" about a pair of couples who travel to see a Monster Truck Show
2003 - Played a chain smoking, criminal minded santa clause in "Bad Santa"; received a golden globe nomination for best actor in a comedy or musical and starred as a parolee who returns back to the town for which he committed his crime in "Levity"
2004 - Portrayed Coach Gaines in "Friday Night Lights" based on the book by Pulitzer Prize winning H.G. Buzz Bissinger and starred as Davy Crockett in the film "The Alamo," based on true events
2005 - Cast in the Walter Matthau role in Richard Linklater's remake of "The Bad News Bears"
2006 - Played a teacher of a confidence-building class in Todd Phillips' "School For Scoundrels"
2007 - Played a NASA astronaut who gives up his dream job to try and save his family farm in "The Astronaut Farmer". Will play "Mr. Woodcock," the titular evil high school gym teacher who is dating the mother of one of his former students
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