Judd Nelson
Birth Date:
November 28, 1959
Birth Place:
Portland, Maine, USA
Famous for:
Named by the media as part of the Brat Pack, playing smugly contentious, troubled young men in 'The Breakfast Club' and 'St. Elmo's Fire'
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The Breakfast Club


“I think that there's room for everyone. I don't think that if one person succeeds then another must fail. That's lunacy. I'm not sure what the reasons are for my philosophy, maybe it's the fact that if there are ten people doing the same job, we all know how we feel and what our high points and low points are.” Jud Nelson

An American actor of film and television since the 1980s and a writer, Judd Nelson is known as one of the nine original members of the 1980s “Brat Pack," which also includes Emilio Estevez, Demi Moore, Rob Lowe, Molly Ringwald, Andrew McCarthy, Mare Winningham, Anthony Michael Hall and Ally Sheedy. Making his feature acting debut in 1984's “Making the Grade,” he rose to prominence with the 1985 films “The Breakfast Club,” as the rebellious John Bender, and “St. Elmo's Fire,” as an ambitious yuppie politician wannabe. His screen career, however, soon floundered. Despite a role in Mario Van Peebles' popular action film “New Jack City” (1991), the actor's wide screen activities have been limited to second-rate projects, including “Primary Motive” (1992), “Entangled” (1993), “Every Breath” (1993, also co-wrote the script), “Hail Caesar” (1994) and others. He even took home Razzie nominations for his roles in “Blue City” (1986) and “From the Hip” (1987). Nelson fared better on the small screen. He was handed a Golden Globe nomination for his role as a killer in the NBC film “Billionaire Boy's Club” (1987) and was seen in such television films as “Hiroshima: Out of the Ashes” (1990), “Blindfold: Acts of Obsession” (1994) and “Circumstances Unknown” (1995). He also experienced a career renaissance with his first regular gig on the NBC sitcom “Suddenly Susan.” He played the sports-crazy editor of Brooke Shields from September 1996 to May 1999. The Golden Globe nominee's more recent and upcoming film credits include “Dark Asylum” (2001), “Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back”(2001), “The Freediver” (2004), “Lethal Eviction” (2005), “Sideliners” (2006, TV), “The Black Hole” (2006, TV), “Little Hercules in 3-D” (2007), “A Single Woman” (2007), “Nevermore” (2007), “The Caretaker” (2007), “Black Friday” (2007, TV), “The Hatching” (2008, TV) and “The I Scream Man” (2008).

“Don't do what I did. My Brat Pack buddies and I didn't exactly handle celebrity very well. Success at an early age is far more difficult to handle than failure.” Judd Nelson

As for his romantic life, Nelson was once engaged to actress Shannen Doherty. He dated Kelly Stafford, who appeared in the direct-to-video-release “The ButterCream Gang” (1992), from 1997 to 1999, and had a brief relationship with Faye Resnick. He also was once linked to a woman named Tawny Cable.

Boston Red Sox Fan

Childhood and Family:

Judd Asher Nelson was born on November 28, 1959, in Portland, Maine. His father, Leonard Nelson, was an attorney who became the first Jewish president of the Portland Symphony Orchestra, and his mother, Merle, was a court mediator and ex-member of the Maine state legislator. Judd has two younger sisters, Julie and Eve. He was educated at St. Paul's Preparatory School in Concord, New Hampshire, and then at the reputable Haverford College in Pennsylvania, where he majored in philosophy. After college, he moved to New York City and trained at the Stella Adler Conservatory.

The 5' 10” actor is currently living in Los Angeles with his Staffordshire bull terrier named Talluah Bighead. His favorite baseball team is the Boston Red Sox. He is also a fan of The Boston Celtics (basketball), The New England Patriots (football) and The Boston Bruins (hockey). Judd loves to write, read and play golf. He also enjoys riding his motorbike.

Suddenly Susan


“I did a play in college. A friend of mine was going to audition and asked me if I wanted to join him. I said no, but he said that's where all the girls are so I said, ”Uh, ok.” And I ended up doing the play and ended up catching the fever. I pretty much thought I was going to stay doing theater the whole time and not film, as film is far more lucrative.” Judd Nelson

Portland, Maine, native Judd Nelson went to see an audition of a friend and was compelled to audition in order to stay. He ended up winning the role. It was a time when Nelson, who had acted with the Shoestring Shakespeare Company, became interested in the profession. After college, Nelson subsequently headed to New York City and landed his first film role while still at the Stella Adler Conservatory. Nelson was cast in the starring role of the “street-smart Eddie Keaton” in the comedy “Making the Grade” (1984), directed by Dorian Walker.

Nelson's next film role arrived the following year when he costarred with Kevin Costner in the ensemble comedy “Fandago” (1985). However, it was not until he portrayed trouble making rocker John Bender in John Hughes' teen classic, “The Breakfast Club” (1985) that the actor became a member of the 1980s “Brat Pack.” He gained further attention for playing a driven yuppie politico wannabe, Alec Newbary, in Joel Schumacher's “St. Elmo's Fire” (1985), opposite Emilio Estevez, Demi Moore, Rob Lowe, Andrew McCarthy and Mare Winningham.

Judd next starred as Billy Turner in the based-on-novel “Blue City” (1986) and apprentice lawyer Robin Weathers in the comedy “From the Hip” (1987). Unfortunately for Nelson, both roles brought him Razzie nominations for Worst Actor. He branched out to the small screen in 1987 when he appeared as a Vietnam soldier in the ABC variety show “Funny, You Don't Look 200.” Thanks to a Golden Globe nominated turn as Joseph 'Joe' Hunt on the Courtroom made-for-TV “Billionaire Boys Club” (1987), he was kept in the public eye. Judd closed out the decade by playing cop-turned-serial killer Arthur 'Buck' Taylor in the thriller film “Relentless” (1989).

Nelson was still busy throughout the 1990s although much of his work was marked with under-promoted films and poorly-written TV appearances. He supported Wesley Snipes, Ice-T, Allen Payne and Chris Rock in the hit “New York City,” a crime movie helmed by Mario Van Peebles, starred as Andrew Blumenthal in Daniel Adams' “Primary Motive” (1992), acted alongside Christopher McDonald and Joey Katz in Gary Davis' “Conflict of Interest” (1993), joined Anthony Michael Hall for a part in the indie comedy “Hail Caesar” (1994) and made his screen-writing debut with the horrible film “Every Breath” (1993), in which he also starred as Jimmy. He also had roles in such TV movies as “Hiroshima: Out of the Ashes” (1990), “Blindfold: Acts of Obsession” (1994) and “Circumstances Unknown” (1995).

It was in 1996 that Nelson's career gained another boost when he landed a regular role on the vehicle of Brook Shields, “Suddenly Susan” (1996-2000). In 1999, after three seasons, Nelson eventually decided to leave the show and planned to make a return to film. He starred in the NBC-TV biopic “Mr. Rock 'n' Roll: The Alan Freed Story” and the Craig Bolotin directed/written drama “Light It Up” (both 1999).

A small role as Rufus The Buck-Toothed Sluggard in the independent film “Endsville” became Nelson's opening work in 2000. He continued to work in movies like “Falcon Down” (2000), “The Cure for Boredom” (2000), “Dark Asylum” (2001), “Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back” (2001), “White Rush” (2003), “The Lost Angel” (2004), “The Freediver” (2004), “Lethal Eviction” (2005), and was seen in such TV-films as “Cabin by the Lake” (2000), “Return to Cabin by the Lake” (2001), “Strange Frequency” (2001), “Cybermutt” (2002), “Santa, Jr” (2002), “Three Wise Guys” (2005), “Sideliners” (2006) and “The Black Hole” (2006). He also made guest appearances in TV series like “The Outer Limits” (2000), “Strange Frequency” (2001) and “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation” (2006).

On January 12, 2007, Nelson guest starred as Ollie in the “Las Vegas” episode of “Fleeting Cheating Meeting” and appeared in an episode of “CSI: NY” on February 21, 2007. Returning to the big screen, Nelson took on the costarring role of Steven P.D. Landry in the comedy/horror “Netherbeast Incorporated” (2007), opposite Darrell Hammond.

Currently, the 48-year-old performer has completed filming three films; “Little Hercules in 3-D” (2007) for director Mohamed Khashoggi, the biopic “A Single Woman” (2007), and Thomas Zambeck's “Nevermore” (2007), with Vincent Spano and Jennifer O'Dell. He is also scheduled to play roles in Bryce Olson's “The Caretaker” (2007) and “The I Scream Man” (2008), starring Crispin Glover in the title role. On television, Nelson will play Glen in the drama/thriller “Black Friday” (2007), opposite Amy Carlson, and star with Isabella Rossellini and Gil Bellows in the adventure “The Hatching” (2008).


  • MTV Movie: Silver Bucket of Excellence, “The Breakfast Club” (1985) reunion, 2005

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