Kris Kristofferson Biography

Kris Kristofferson photo

Born: June 22, 1936


Date of Birth: June 22, 1936

Writer, actor, singer, janitor, Rhodes Scholar, political activist, helicopter pilot, bartender. All of these achievements apply to Kris Kristofferson, son of an Air Force Major General. Born in Brownsville, Texas, close to the Mexican border, his first language was Spanish. He finished high school in California and moved went on to Pomona College where he majored in Creative Literature.

After being awarded a Rhodes Scholarship to study at Oxford in England, he delved into the works of Romantic poet William Blake. At the same time, he was studying the country music of Hank Williams. After university, Kristofferson worked as an Army pilot, turned down a teaching position at West Point and moved to Nashville to write. During that time, he worked a variety of jobs including janitor for Columbia Studios, helicopter pilot and bartender.

A few years later, he won the Country Music Song of the Year Award for "Sunday Morning Coming Down." That was in 1970. He went on to pen "Me and Bobby McGee," "Help Me Make It Through The Night," "For The Good Times," "Loving Her Was Easier," and "Why Me," songs that would be sought by major artists and catapult him to the Songwriter's Hall of Fame.

While writing songs and touring with Waylon Jennings, Johnny Cash and Willie Nelson, Kristofferson was also spreading out into acting. He made his film debut in 1971 but is best known for playing opposite Barbra Streisand in A Star is Born (1976), winning a Golden Globe for Best Actor. Since then, he has been nominated for an Oscar for writing the score for the feature Songwriter (1984), and was nominated for a Blockbuster Entertainment Award as Favorite Supporting Actor in Blade (1998). He has since appeared in two Blade sequels, the truth-based film Dolphin Tale (2011), the musical comedy Joyful Noise (2012) and the thriller Deadfall (2012).

How does a man of so many talents list his occupation on his passport? Simply as "writer." "I've always been the most confident in my writing," he says. "It's where the stuff you feel in your heart is expressed. It's the closest thing to your soul."

Divorced twice, Kristofferson has been married to Lisa Meyers since 1983 and they have five children. Kristofferson also has three children from his first two marriages.


Joyful Noise(2012)
The Greening of Whitney Brown(2011)
Dolphin Tale(2011)
Provinces of Night (2010)
He's Just Not That Into You(2009)
I'm Not There. (2007) voice
Fast Food Nation(2006)
Blade II(2002)
D-Tox (2002)
Wooly Boys (2011)
Chelsea Walls (2001)
Planet of the Apes(2001)
Comanche (2000)
The Joyriders (1999)
Molokai (1999)
Dance with Me(1998)
Girls' Night (1998)
Fire Down Below (1997)
Lone Star (1996)
Pharaoh's Army (1995)
Knights (1993)
Paper Hearts (1993)
No Place to Hide (1993)
Night of the Cyclone (1991)
Sandino (1990)

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