Brad Renfro Dies At 25
by Fred T. Beeman
We are saddened to note the passing of former child actor Bradley Barron Renfro, 25, who was found dead in his Wilshire-area home by his girlfriend, on Tuesday morning, January 15, 2008. The cause of his death hasn’t been determined, but the Los Angeles Police Dept. has already ruled out foul play.
He was born in Knoxville, Tennessee on July 25, 1982, and was reared by a grandmother, shortly after his parents divorced. It was there that he was first noticed by an audience member, when, at age 10 he played the part of a drug-dealer in a D.A.R.E. (a national anti-drug organization sponsored by the Knoxville Police Department) stage presentation.
That never-identified person contacted a talent scout friend, who in turn suggested Brad Renfro for the role of Mark Sway in Joel Schumacher's “The Client” (1994). He was cast, based only on his audition, as he had never had an acting lesson, nor any professional credits.
It was no secret that he battled alcohol and drug addictions for the majority of his short adult life (his arrests were widely publicized), but his friends had noted that he was very serious about getting/staying clean, and had just finished shooting his scenes for “The Informers” (in post production) and “Joe The Engineer” (still filming, as this goes to Press).
We mourn the loss of this highly talented performer, who was taken from our ranks, much too soon. Our deepest condolences go out to everyone who knew, loved and admired him.