Knoxville at the Jackass 3D premiere in Berlin, October 2010
Philip John Clapp
March 11, 1971
Knoxville, Tennessee, U.S.
|Occupation||Actor, stunt performer, filmmaker, comedian|
(m. 1995; div. 2008)
Philip John Clapp (born March 11, 1971), known professionally as Johnny Knoxville, is an American actor, stunt performer, filmmaker, and comedian. He is best known as a co-creator and star of the MTV reality stunt show Jackass, which aired for three seasons from 2000 to 2002. A year later, Knoxville and his co-stars returned for the first installment in the Jackass film series, with a second and third installment being released in 2006 and 2010, respectively. Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa (2013), the first film in the series with a storyline, saw him star as his Jackass character Irving Zisman.
Knoxville has had acting roles in films such as Men in Black II (2002), A Dirty Shame, Walking Tall (2004), The Dukes of Hazzard, The Ringer, and a cameo role as a sleazy corporate president of a skateboard company in Lords of Dogtown (all 2005), The Last Stand (2013) and Skiptrace (2016). He also voiced Leonardo in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014).
Knoxville was born Philip John Clapp in Knoxville, Tennessee. His father, Philip (1935-2018), was a tire/car salesman, and his mother, Lemoyne Clapp (née Houck) (1938-2017), taught Sunday school. He has two older sisters.
After graduating from South-Young High School in 1989 in Knoxville, he moved to California to become an actor. In the beginning, Knoxville appeared mostly in commercials and made several minor appearances as an extra.
When the "big break" he sought eluded him, he decided to create his own opportunities by writing and pitching article ideas to various magazines. An idea to test self-defense equipment on himself captured the interest of Jeff Tremaine's skateboarding magazine Big Brother, and the stunts were filmed and included in Big Brother "Number Two" video.
Knoxville is responsible for many of the ideas in Jackass, and is often seen as the de facto leader of the crew. The show is directed by Jeff Tremaine, who produced a pilot that used footage from Big Brother and Bam Margera's CKY videos.
Knoxville also participated in the Gumball 3000 for Jackass along with co-stars Steve-O, Chris Pontius, Jackass director Jeff Tremaine, and producer Dimitry Elyashkevich. Prior to Jackass premiering on MTV, Knoxville and company turned down an offer to perform their stunts for Saturday Night Live on a weekly basis, though Knoxville later hosted a 2005 episode of the show.
Knoxville has been in several feature films, most notably starring opposite Seann William Scott in Jay Chandrasekhar's adaptation of The Dukes of Hazzard. He starred in Jackass: The Movie, Jackass Number Two, and Jackass 3D (which marked the 10th anniversary of the franchise). He played a two-headed alien in the 2002 film Men in Black II. Knoxville also worked with John Waters in A Dirty Shame in 2004, and appeared as a supporting character to The Rock in Walking Tall in the same year.
He starred in Katrina Holden Bronson's Daltry Calhoun in 2005, and in The Ringer as an office worker who pretends to be disabled and joins the Special Olympics to pay for surgery for his office's janitor. He starred in the movie Lords of Dogtown as Topper Burks, made a minor appearance in the 2000 movie Coyote Ugly, and was featured as a guest voice on two episodes of King of the Hill.
Knoxville appeared in the John Madden-directed adaptation of Elmore Leonard's novel, Killshot, however his character was subsequently removed from the final cut of the film. He guest-starred in a Season 3 episode "Prank Wars" on Viva La Bam, in which he and Ryan Dunn trashed Bam Margera's Hummer and performed other pranks. He voiced himself in an episode of Family Guy. He co-produces The Dudesons in America and the now-canceled Nitro Circus on MTV.
In 2010, Knoxville hosted a three-part online video for Palladium Boots titled Detroit Lives. The videos focus on the resurgence of creativity in Detroit. Knoxville guest starred as the voice of Johnny Krill, an extreme sports enthusiast, in "Extreme Spots", a 2012 episode of SpongeBob SquarePants. Knoxville voiced Leonardo in the 2014 film, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles but did not appear in the sequel.
Knoxville has a production company called Dickhouse Productions, which he owns and operates with Jeff Tremaine and Spike Jonze of the Jackass franchise. Dickhouse's projects include The Birth of Big Air (2010), a documentary about Mat Hoffman that was part of ESPN's 30 for 30 series, and The Wild and Wonderful Whites of West Virginia (2010), both of which have been picked up by Tribeca Films.
In May 2014, Knoxville (along with Jackass Executive Producer/H.M.F.I.C. Derek Freda) formally announced the formation of a new production company called 'Hello Junior', which will continue Knoxville's now-longstanding relationship with Paramount Pictures, who have signed an exclusive two-year first-look deal with Knoxville and 'Hello Junior' in the wake of the massive success of Bad Grandpa in late 2013.
Knoxville was quoted as saying, "I am over the damn moon about continuing an amazing partnership with Paramount Pictures," he said. "I have many more films to make and bones to break. I am glad I will be doing it for Paramount."
Knoxville married Melanie Lynn Cates on May 15, 1995. They have a daughter, Madison (born 1996). His daughter can be heard in the credits for Jackass Number Two, is seen in "The Making of Jackass Two" on the special features on the DVD, and was seen in the credits of Jackass 3D, punching Tremaine with a boxing glove. After eleven years of marriage, the couple separated in July 2006. Knoxville filed for divorce on July 3, 2007. The marriage was legally ended in March 2008, with final divorce arrangements settled in July 2009.
On August 18, 2009, Knoxville announced that he and his girlfriend Naomi Nelson were expecting a baby. Nelson gave birth to a son that December in Los Angeles. Knoxville and Nelson married on September 24, 2010. Nelson gave birth to a daughter in October 2011, in Los Angeles.
On January 15, 2009, at the Los Angeles International Airport security workers discovered an inert grenade in his carry-on luggage; he was detained and was cited for carrying a prohibited item into the airport. He was released following the investigation when it was determined that the item was a prop from a commercial, and that an assistant had packed his bag for him.
On February 4, 2009, Knoxville explained on The Howard Stern Show how he tore his urethra during a stunt for Nitro Circus, describing how he had to flush it twice daily. He said this was done by "sticking a tube into his penis all the way up to his bladder", referring to the practice of urinary catheterization. Knoxville said the process prevented scar tissue from forming and performed the procedure "twice a day for three and a half years" after the injury.
During the 2012 United States presidential election, Knoxville said of Republican Representative Paul Ryan: "From a vanity standpoint, it makes you feel a bit old to have a person from your generation on the presidential ticket. And it's embarrassing that it's Paul Ryan. I wonder if The Germs ever felt this way about having Belinda Carlisle as their first drummer."
|2000||Coyote Ugly||College guy|
|2002||Life Without Dick||Dick Rasmusson|
|2002||Big Trouble||Eddie Leadbetter|
|2002||Deuces Wild||Vinnie Fish|
|2002||Men in Black II||Scrad / Charlie|
|2002||Jackass: The Movie||Himself||Writer|
|2003||Grand Theft Parsons||Phil Kaufman|
|2004||Walking Tall||Ray Templeton|
|2004||A Dirty Shame||Ray Ray Perkins|
|2005||Lords of Dogtown||Topper Burks|
|2005||The Dukes of Hazzard||Luke Duke|
|2005||Daltry Calhoun||Daltry Calhoun|
|2005||The Ringer||Steve Barker|
|2006||Jackass Number Two||Himself||Writer and producer|
|2010||Father of Invention||Troy Coangelo|
|2013||The Last Stand||Lewis Dinkum|
|2013||Small Apartments||Tommy Balls|
|2013||Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa||Irving Zisman||Writer and producer|
|2014||Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles||Leonardo||Voice|
|2016||Elvis & Nixon||Sonny West|
|2017||Dumb: The Story of Big Brother Magazine||Himself||Documentary|
|2018||Half Magic||Father Gary|
|2018||Action Point||Deshawn Crious "D.C." Carver||Writer and producer|
|2019||We Summon the Darkness||Pastor John Henry Butler|
|2021||Jackass 4||Himself||Writer and producer|
|1992||The Ben Stiller Show||Cure fan||1 episode|
|2001||Don't Try This at Home: The Steve-O Video|
|2001||The Andy Dick Show||Wannabe Andy Dick||2 episodes|
|2002||CKY 4 Latest & Greatest|
|2002||Jackass Backyard BBQ|
|2002||MTV Cribs||1 episode|
|2004||Viva La Bam|
|2005||Jackass: Gumball 3000 Rally Special|
|2006||Saturday Night Live||2 episodes|
|2006||King of the Hill||Peter Sterling||1 episode|
|2007||Adventures in Hollyhood|
|2008||Jackassworld.com: 24 Hour Takeover|
|2008||Family Guy||Himself (voice)||Episode: "The Man with Two Brians"|
|2008||King of the Hill||Hoyt Platter|
|2009||Dogg After Dark||Himself|
|2009||Dancing with the Stars||3 episodes|
|2009||Rob Dyrdek's Fantasy Factory||1 episode|
|2009||Nitro Circus||10 episodes|
Creator and executive producer
|2009||The Goode Family||Dean||1 episode|
|2010||The Dudesons in America||3 episodes|
|2012||SpongeBob SquarePants||Johnny Krill||Episode: "Extreme Spots"|
|2014-2018||Drunk History||Various||4 episodes|
|2015||Jimmy Kimmel Live!||Himself||1 episode (Unexpected guest in a segment)|
|2020||Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt||C.J.||Special: "Kimmy vs the Reverend"|
|2007||Jackass: The Game||Himself|