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Bronson Pinchot

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Bronson Pinchot
Pinchot in 2012
Born (1959-05-20) May 20, 1959 (age 65)
Alma materYale University (BA, MFA)
Years active1983–present

Bronson Alcott Pinchot (/ˈpɪn/; born May 20, 1959) is an American actor. He is best known for playing Balki Bartokomous on the ABC sitcom Perfect Strangers (1986–1993). He also performed in films, such as Risky Business (1983), Beverly Hills Cop (1984), After Hours (1985), True Romance (1993), Beverly Hills Cop III (1994), Stephen King's The Langoliers (1995), It's My Party (1996), Courage Under Fire (1996), The First Wives Club (1996) and Beverly Hills Cop: Axel F (2024), and in television series, such as Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, Meego and Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. In 2012, he starred in his own reality series, The Bronson Pinchot Project on the DIY Network.

Pinchot has worked extensively as an audiobook narrator, with over 400 recordings as of 2024.[1][2] AudioFile magazine recognized him as Best Voice in Fiction & Classics for his 2010 renderings of Flannery O'Connor's Everything That Rises Must Converge (1965), Karl Marlantes's Matterhorn: A Novel of the Vietnam War (2009) and David Vann's Caribou Island (2011).[3]

Early life[edit]

Pinchot was born in New York City.[4] His mother, Rosina, was a typist and house cleaner, while his father was a bookbinder, born in New York and raised in Paris. Pinchot's paternal grandparents were from Russia and settled in France following the Russian Revolution. Upon returning to the United States, Pinchot's father changed his surname from Poncharavsky to Pinchot.[5][6]

When Pinchot was two and a half, his family moved to South Pasadena, California.[7] He graduated at the top of his class from South Pasadena High School and earned a full scholarship to Yale University. There, he resided at Morse College and intended to study fine arts, but instead majored in theater studies, graduating with honors.[7] After graduation, a casting director discovered him, which led to his film debut, Risky Business.[7]


Pinchot at the 39th Primetime Emmy Awards, 1987

Pinchot appeared in several feature films, such as Hot Resort, Risky Business, Beverly Hills Cop, The First Wives Club, True Romance, Courage Under Fire and It's My Party. He also played Dennis Kemper in the short-lived NBC sitcom Sara.[8] Pinchot was hired to replace Fisher Stevens as Ben Jabituya in the 1986 film Short Circuit, but Pinchot eventually left the production in order to begin work on Perfect Strangers, and Stevens was subsequently rehired for the role.[9]

Starting in 1986, Pinchot played Balki Bartokomous on the long-running ABC sitcom Perfect Strangers. When the show concluded filming its eight-season run in September 1992 (with the condensed final season airing during the summer of 1993), Pinchot secured the starring role on a new sitcom for CBS, entitled The Trouble with Larry. The series premiered just three weeks after ABC's Perfect Strangers finale in August 1993, and one episode (which never aired) was directed by Mark Linn-Baker, Pinchot's co-star on Strangers. After three weeks of dismal ratings and poor reviews, The Trouble with Larry was canceled. Pinchot would subsequently be rehired by Perfect Strangers producers Tom Miller and Bob Boyett for roles on two more of their sitcoms: Step By Step, where he played French hairdresser Jean-Luc Rieupeyroux in early 1997, and, that fall, on Meego, where he played an alien who crash-landed on Earth.

In 2008, Pinchot read the audio version of The Learners, author Chip Kidd's followup to The Cheese Monkeys. He also voiced Max, the fully restored Black 1964 VW Beetle, in the 2009 Volkswagen "Das Auto" campaign.[10] Between 2009 and 2014, Pinchot narrated over 100 audiobooks. In 2010, Pinchot read the audio version of the novels Matterhorn and Blood Oath. For the Blackstone Audio collection Patricia Highsmith: Selected Novels and Short Stories, he provided a reading of several stories, including Strangers on a Train. Pinchot also narrated for Christopher Healy's children's series, The Hero's Guide. He was recognized for his work with a number of awards,[11] including Audible.com's 2010 Narrator of the Year.[12]

On February 12, 2012, Pinchot starred in a home restoration show on DIY Network titled The Bronson Pinchot Project. The program is based on his hobby of restoring old homes using salvaged materials.[13] On March 8, 2018, it was announced that Pinchot would play George Hawthorne, the villainous, puritanical principal of Baxter High, who regularly clashes with Sabrina Spellman and her friends in the Netflix series The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.[14] The series premiered in October 2018.[15]

Personal life[edit]

In 1999, Pinchot spent a great deal of time in Harford, Pennsylvania, restoring the circa 1839 mansion built by Joab Tyler (father of historian William Seymour Tyler) and later inhabited by former Pennsylvania state Senator Edward E. Jones.[16] Pinchot purchased six properties in the small rural town of 1,300 residents[17] "in an effort to revive the town's 19th-century aesthetic." In 2015 he filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, claiming liabilities between $100,000 and $500,000.[18] All of his properties in Harford were subsequently put up for sale.[19] Pinchot told the Wilkes-Barre Citizens' Voice, "I have two skills: I can make old houses beautiful and I can make people laugh. Other than that I'm a waste of space. Well, I'm a dedicated son and brother, but I have no head for businesses."[20] By April 2017, he owned two tiny homes, one measuring 77 square feet, the other 153 square feet.[21]



Year Title Role Notes
1983 Risky Business Barry
1984 Beverly Hills Cop Serge
1984 The Flamingo Kid Alfred Schultz
1985 Hot Resort Brad
1985 After Hours Lloyd
1989 Second Sight Bobby McGee
1992 Blame It on the Bellboy Bellboy
1993 True Romance Elliot Blitzer
1993 Jungledyret Hugo Hugo (voice) English version
1994 Beverly Hills Cop III Serge
1995 The Langoliers Craig Toomy
1995 Napoleon Birdo (voice) English version
1996 It's My Party Monty Tipton
1996 Courage Under Fire Bruno
1996 The First Wives Club Duarto Feliz
1996 Jungledyret Hugo 2 - den store filmhelt (1996) Hugo (voice) English version
1997 Babes in Toyland Rodrigo (voice)
1998 Slappy and the Stinkers Roy
1998 Quest for Camelot Griffin (voice)
1998 Beach Movie Ronald a.k.a. Boardheads
1999 Out of the Cold Max Kaplan
1999 The All New Adventures of Laurel & Hardy in For Love or Mummy Stanley
2002 Winning Girls Through Psychic Mind Control Devon Sharpe
2003 Straight No Chaser Josh Peters Short
2004 Second Best 'Doc' Klingenstein
2005 Diamond Zero Bergerac De La Houssey AKA: IceMaker
2007 The Wager Colin Buchanan
2007 Mr. Art Critic M.J. Clayton
2008 From a Place of Darkness Carl
2008 The Tale of Despereaux Town Crier (voice)
2009 Hooking Up Mr. Kimbal (voice)
2009 Good Clean Fun Dean Vernon
2010 Pure Country 2: The Gift Joseph
2011 You and I Torrino
2012 Virgin Alexander Bim Norse
2013 Kung-Fu and Titties The Beaver
2015 The Strike Carlo Lombardi
2017 Double Play Bob
2024 Beverly Hills Cop: Axel F Serge


Year Title Role Notes
1985 Sara Dennis Kenper 13 episodes
1985 Amazing Stories Director Episode: "Mummy Daddy"
1986 Dave Thomas: The Incredible Time Travels of Henry Osgood Charles Dickens Television film
1986 Between Two Women Photographer Television film
1986–1993 Perfect Strangers Balki Bartokomous / Mama 150 episodes
1990 ABC TGIF Balki
1990 The Great American Sex Scandal Sanford Lagelfost / Jorge Jimenez / Arthur Lloyd / Magda Television film
1992 Eek! the Cat Additional voices
1992 Disney's Christmas Fantasy On Ice Uncle Bronny / Jack Frost Television special
1993 The Trouble with Larry Larry Burton 7 episodes
1994/1995 Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman Kyle Griffin / The Prankster 2 episodes
1995 The Langoliers Craig Toomey Miniseries; 2 episodes
1995 Dumb and Dumber Dymbster (voice) 2 episodes
1995 The Adventures of Hyperman Valerie Knockisblokov (voice) Episode: "Cosmo Not/The Brain Game"
1996 High Society Arthur Zipkin Episode: "Nip and Tuck"
1996 Duckman Dr. Henri Ducharme (voice) Episode: "A Room with a Bellevue"
1996 3rd Rock from the Sun Roy Albright Episode: "Ab-dick-ted"
1996 Bruno the Kid General Armando Castrato (voice) 36 episodes
1996 Adventures from the Book of Virtues The Man / The Dog (voices) Episode: "Work"
1996 Clueless Mr. Pomormo / Ka-feen 2 episodes
Aaahh!!! Real Monsters Dietrich Duchump
Deitrich Dunlap (voices)
"Amulet of Enfarg/Bad Hair Day"
"The Lips Have It/Escape Claws"
1997 Meego Meego 13 episodes
1997 High Incident Matt Shukat Episode: "Show Me the Money"
1997 The Angry Beavers Truman / Brat (voices) Episode: "House Broken/Stinky Toe"
1997 I Am Weasel Oscar / Guard / Old Wardrobe Man (voices) Episode: "I Are Big Star"
1997 Step by Step Jean-Luc Rieupeyroux / Black Bart 24 episodes
1997 Merry Christmas, George Bailey Mr. Carter Television film
Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child Sonny the Toad / Killer Whale / Reindeer (voices) "Thumbelina"
"The Snow Queen"
1998 Hey Arnold! Ronnie Matthews / Director / Chauffeur (voices) 2 episodes
1999 The Wild Thornberrys Franz Fensterkopf (voice) 2 episodes
2000 Buzz Lightyear of Star Command Shakey / Science (voices) Episode: "Haunted Moon"
2002 Breaking News Phillip Episode: "Spin Art
2003 All Grown Up! Pepe (voice) Episode: "Chuckie's in Love"
2005 The Surreal Life Himself Season 5 Castmember
2005 Law & Order: Criminal Intent Dr. Greg Ross Episode: "Beast"
2007 Six Degrees Thomas Johnson Episode: "Ray's Back"
2007 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Dr. Henry Carlisle Episode: "Alternate"
2008 The Young and the Restless Patrick Dalton 6 episodes
2010 Hawaii Five-0 Bastille Episode: "Mana'o"
2011 The Problem Solverz AI (voice) Episode: "Videogamez"
2011 Shake It Up Kashlack Hessenheffer Episode: "Vatalihootsit It Up"
2012–13 The Bronson Pinchot Project Himself (host) 20 episodes
2014 NCIS George Burton Episode: "Parental Guidance Suggested"
2015 The Mysteries of Laura Head Chef J.T. Thompson Episode: "The Mystery of the Frozen Foodie"
2015 Ray Donovan Flip Brightman 2 episodes
2017 The Untitled Action Bronson Show Himself Season 1 Episode 3
2018–2020 Chilling Adventures of Sabrina George Hawthorne Recurring role, 8 episodes
2019 A Million Little Things Berge Episode: "Twelve Seconds"
2019 Lodge 49 Dr. Kimbrough 3 episodes
2020 Project Blue Book David Dubrovsky Episode: "Close Encounters"
2021 Black Monday Douglas Blackmore Episode: "Four!"
2022 NCIS: Hawaiʻi Darrin Schwartz Episode: "Nurture"
2022 The Mysterious Benedict Society Yanis Episode: "Commitment to All Things Cozy"
2023 Our Flag Means Death Ned Lowe Episode: "Calypso's Birthday"

Direct to video
Year Title Voice role Notes
1996 Bruno the Kid: The Animated Movie General Armando Costrato
2001 Lady and the Tramp II: Scamp's Adventure Francois

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Association Category Work Result
1987 People’s Choice Awards Favorite Actor in a New TV Program Perfect Strangers Nominated
1987 Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series Perfect Strangers Nominated
1996 National Board of Review Best Cast The First Wives Club Won
2009 Audie Awards Humor The Learners by Chip Kidd Won
2011 Orlando Film Festival Best Supporting Performance Virgin Alexander Nominated
2011 Audie Awards Distinguished Achievement in Production Chapters from My Autobiography by Mark Twain Nominated
2012 Audie Awards Fantasy Rumo & His Miraculous Adventures by Walter Moers Nominated
2012 Audie Awards Non-Fiction My Korean Deli by Ben Ryder Howe Nominated
2012 Audie Awards Paranormal Hard Magic by Larry Correia Won
2012 Audie Awards Solo Narration — Male Hard Magic by Larry Correia Nominated
2012 Audie Awards Thriller/Suspense Unknown [Out of My Head] by Didier van Cauwelaert Nominated
2013 Audie Awards Paranormal Spellbound by Larry Correia Won
2013 Audie Awards Thriller/Suspense Red, White, and Blood by Christopher Farnsworth Won
2014 Audie Awards Paranormal Warbound by Larry Correia Nominated
2014 Audie Awards Solo Narration — Male Warbound by Larry Correia Nominated
2015 Audie Awards Solo Narration — Male The Hero's Guide to Being an Outlaw by Christopher Healy Won
2015 Audie Awards Children's Titles for Ages 8–12 The Hero's Guide to Being an Outlaw by Christopher Healy Nominated
2015 Audie Awards Thriller/Suspense Dead Six by Larry Correia and Mike Kupari Nominated
2016 Audie Awards History/Biography A Man on the Moon: The Voyages of the Apollo Astronauts by Andrew Chaikin and Tom Hanks Won
2016 Voice Arts Awards Audiobook Narration – Fantasy, Best Narrator The Anubis Gates by Tim Powers Won
2021 Audie Awards Science Fiction Aliens: Phalanx by Scott Sigler Nominated


  1. ^ "Audiobooks narrated by Bronson Pinchot". Audible.com. February 5, 2024. Retrieved February 26, 2024.
  2. ^ Jeff VanderMeer (2014). This Is the Best 5,453-Word Interview With Bronson Pinchot About Audiobooks You Will Ever Read, 22 July 2015; URL accessed 13 November 2015
  3. ^ "Narrator Profile: Bronson Pinchot". audiofilemagazine.com. Retrieved November 19, 2013.
  4. ^ "Bronson Pinchot Online -- Biography". Retrieved June 25, 2021.
  5. ^ Brewster, Ted. "Harford's Bronson Pinchot". Susquehanna County Transcript. Susquehanna, PA. Archived from the original on February 12, 2009. Retrieved March 30, 2009.
  6. ^ Endelman, Michael. "We admit it: We love Bronson Pinchot".
  7. ^ a b c "Actor Bronson Pinchot to Screen Newest Film at Yale Following a Silliman Master's Tea". YaleNews. Yale University. April 28, 2003. Retrieved July 18, 2021.
  8. ^ The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows, 1946–Present, Eighth Edition, Ballantine Books, ISBN 0-345-45542-8
  9. ^ Rabin, Nathan (August 19, 2009). "Fisher Stevens". A.V. Club. Retrieved March 2, 2014.
  10. ^ Howard, Theresa (April 18, 2008). "Ad Track: Introducing Max the Love Bug". USA Today. New York, NY. Retrieved March 30, 2009.
  11. ^ VanderMeer, Jeff (July 22, 2014). "This Is the Best 5,453-Word Interview With Bronson Pinchot About Audiobooks You Will Ever Read". Vulture. Retrieved July 25, 2014.
  12. ^ "Audible's Narrator of the Year". Bronson Pinchot. December 6, 2010. Retrieved November 19, 2013.
  13. ^ ""The Bronson Pinchot Project" shows actor's renovation talents to DIY Network audience". channelguidemag.com. February 9, 2012.
  14. ^ Petski, Denise (March 9, 2018). "Bronson Pinchot Joins Netflix's Sabrina Series As Recurring". Deadline. Retrieved March 8, 2018.
  15. ^ Lutes, Alicia (October 26, 2018). "Netflix's Chilling Adventures of Sabrina: Season 1 Review". IGN. Retrieved January 18, 2019.
  16. ^ Brewster, Ted. "A Harford Work in Progress". Susquehanna County Transcript. Susquehanna, Pennsylvania. Archived from the original on November 21, 2008. Retrieved March 30, 2009.
  17. ^ "Harford, Pennsylvania PA, township profile (Susquehanna County)". ePodunk. Retrieved May 10, 2010.
  18. ^ Falchek, David (April 30, 2015). "Bankruptcy halts Bronson Pinchot property sale". The Times-Tribune. Harford, Pennsylvania. Retrieved April 30, 2017.
  19. ^ Lepard, Clay (February 18, 2016). "Bronson Pinchot's Harford Mansion Up For Sale". WNEP.com. Harford, Pennsylvania. Retrieved April 30, 2017.
  20. ^ Falchek, David (August 24, 2014). "Debts mounting, Bronson Pinchot can't be found". The Citizen's Voice. Retrieved April 30, 2017.
  21. ^ Ho, Rodney (April 17, 2017). "Bronson Pinchot (Dad's Garage 4/28-29) talks improv, tiny homes and bald spots". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved July 18, 2021.

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