- 11:57 AM, Jun 24
Barging into entertainment industry with his reckless actions and antics, Johnny Knoxville has really brought fresh air in American film scene through his unique flair in entertaining people. A daredevil whose given name is Phillip John Clapp, Johnny was raised in Knoxville, Tennessee from the day he was born on March 11, 1971 under the influence of his father, Phil Clapp, who had often conducted practical jokes to him since he was still a little boy. Growing up as a teenager with an odd sense of humor, he was known to like being the center of attention among his classmates of South Young High School, so it was not really shocking that he later developed a desire to be a professional actor. In order to achieve his dream, he thus headed for Los Angeles, California to attend American Academy of Dramatic Arts, but quickly dropped his study within weeks and returned to his hometown.
Made a living through a series of commercial works while also occasionally wrote articles for Blunt, Bikini, and Big Brother Magazines, Johnny then came up with an idea to create an unusual column of his wacky experience which included an act of shooting pepper spray or stun gun toward himself in 1996. Bringing this unique concept to Jeff Tremaine, the Big Brother's editor, a year later, he instead was suggested to record the stunts in video format and the result was “Big Brother Video Trilogy.” Surprisingly, it became an underground cult hit across the country, creating a buzz that certainly brought Johnny's name to the surface that led him to sign a propitious deal with MTV for developing “Jackass” in the year 2000.
To his delight, “Jackass” turned out to be a huge attainment for the series instantly became one of the highest-rated shows in U.S., directing Johnny to embrace wide popularity and commercial success. This also paved his way to land roles in big screen production which begun with an appearance in “Coyote Ugly” (2000), followed by other features of “Life Without Dick” (2001), “Deuces Wild” (2002), “Men in Black II” (2002), and “Walking Tall” (2004) among others. Starred alongside Heath Ledger plus Emile Hirsch in “Lords of Dogtown” (2005), this striking actor satisfyingly received more exposure as he was billed to play Luke Duke of “The Dukes of Hazzard” (2005) in which Jessica Simpson was also cast.
Portrayed the title character in another 2005