Jonathan Taylor Thomas

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Jonathan Taylor Thomas
Thomas in 1998
Jonathan Taylor Weiss

(1981-09-08) September 8, 1981 (age 42)
EducationHarvard University
Columbia University (BA)
University of St Andrews
  • Actor
  • director
Years active1990–2006, 2013–2016
RelativesJeff Weiss (uncle)

Jonathan Taylor Thomas (né Weiss; born September 8, 1981)[1] is an American actor and director. He is known for portraying Randy Taylor on Home Improvement and voicing young Simba in Disney's 1994 animated feature film The Lion King and Pinocchio in New Line Cinema's 1996 film The Adventures of Pinocchio.

Early life and education[edit]

Thomas was born in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, and later moved to Sacramento, California, and then to Los Angeles.[1] Thomas's uncle was playwright and actor Jeff Weiss (1940–2022).[2] Thomas has Pennsylvania Dutch and Portuguese ancestry.[3][4]

In 2000, Thomas graduated with honors from Chaminade College Preparatory School in West Hills, California.[5][6] Upon graduation, he enrolled at Harvard University, where he studied philosophy and history and spent his third year abroad at the University of St Andrews in Scotland.[7] In 2010, he graduated from the Columbia University School of General Studies.[8]



Thomas began his television career in 1990, playing the role of Kevin Brady, the son of Greg Brady, on The Bradys, a spin-off of the 1970s TV show The Brady Bunch. In 1991, Thomas appeared in three episodes of Fox's sketch comedy series In Living Color. That same year, he was cast as middle son Randy Taylor on ABC's sitcom Home Improvement. Despite looking much younger, in reality, Thomas was a month older than Zachary Ty Bryan who played his elder brother Brad. Thomas remained with Home Improvement well into his teenage years but left the show in 1998 to focus on academics.

In early 2004, Thomas had a small guest role on 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter, another ABC sitcom, and appeared in the WB's Smallville in 2002 and 2004. In 2005, he appeared in UPN's high school detective drama Veronica Mars and was also featured on The E! True Hollywood Story's episode on Home Improvement.[9]

On March 22, 2013, Thomas guest-starred on the second-season finale of his third ABC sitcom, Last Man Standing, and again in the fourth episode of the third season on October 11, 2013, reuniting with Tim Allen, his TV father from Home Improvement.[10] On January 10, 2015, he had a small cameo on the twelfth episode of the fourth season of Last Man Standing, reuniting with his TV parents from Home Improvement, Tim Allen and Patricia Richardson.[11]


Thomas appeared in many films during and after his run on Home Improvement. He had a few roles as a voice actor in his child years, including Disney's animated feature The Lion King, in which he voiced the protagonist Simba as a cub.

He also appeared in live-action films. Among the ones he starred in are those from Disney: Man of the House, Tom and Huck, and I'll Be Home for Christmas. Other live-action films starring Thomas are an adaptation of The Adventures of Pinocchio (in which he played and voiced the titular character), Wild America, Speedway Junky, and Walking Across Egypt.



Year Title Role Notes
1994 The Lion King Young Simba Voice role
Pom Poko Shoukichi Voice role
(2005 Disney dub)
1995 Man of the House Ben Archer
Tom and Huck Tom Sawyer
1996 The Adventures of Pinocchio Pinocchio Voice role
1997 Wild America Marshall Stouffer
1998 I Woke Up Early the Day I Died Boy at Beach
I'll Be Home for Christmas Jake Wilkinson
The Emperor's New Clothes: An All-Star Illustrated Retelling of the Classic Fairy Tale The Imperial Prince Voice role
1999 Speedway Junky Steve
Walking Across Egypt Wesley Benfield
2000 Common Ground Tobias Anderson
The Tangerine Bear: Home in Time for Christmas! Tangie Voice role;
TV movie
Timothy Tweedle the First Christmas Elf Timothy Tweedle TV movie
2001 An American Town Rafe
2005 Tilt-A-Whirl Customer #3 Short film
Thru the Moebius Strip Prince Ragis Voice role


Year Title Role Notes
1987–1993 The Adventures of Spot Spot Voice role;
26 episodes; (1995 American dub)
1990 The Bradys Kevin Brady 5 episodes
1991 In Living Color Macaulay Culkin 1 episode
1991–1998 Home Improvement Randy Taylor 179 episodes
1994 The Itsy Bitsy Spider George Voice role;
Episode: "Spider Sense"
1996 The Oz Kids Scarecrow Jr. Voice role
2000 Ally McBeal Chris Emerson Episode: "Do You Wanna Dance?"
2000–2001 The Wild Thornberrys Tyler Tucker Voice role;
6 episodes
2002-2004 Smallville Ian Randall 2 episodes
2003 The Simpsons Luke Stetson Voice role;
Episode: "Dude, Where's My Ranch?"
2004 8 Simple Rules Jeremy 3 episodes
2005 Veronica Mars Ben Episode: "Weapons of Class Destruction"
2013–2015 Last Man Standing John Baker / Randy 4 episodes

Video games[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1996 The Adventures of Pinocchio Human Pinocchio
2006 Kingdom Hearts II Young Simba Archive audio

Production credits[edit]

Year Title Position Notes
2006 The Extra Director Short film
2013–2016 Last Man Standing 3 episodes

Awards and nominations[edit]




  1. ^ a b Spencer, Ashley (July 16, 2019). "What Happened to Jonathan Taylor Thomas?". Vice. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  2. ^ "Walnutport Girl, 6, Already A New York Commuter ... Backstage". The Morning Call. Allentown, Pennsylvania. February 26, 1993. Retrieved December 27, 2021.
  3. ^ "Questions and answers w/ Jonathan Taylor Thomas". Bop. September 29, 2007. Archived from the original on September 29, 2007. Retrieved December 5, 2011.
  4. ^ Pacheco, Patrick (April 6, 1986). "Off-Off-Broadway's king goes Public". Newsday. Melville, NY. Archived from the original on January 11, 2013. Retrieved August 29, 2010.
  5. ^ "Jonathan Taylor Thomas' Birthday: Star Turns 30 Years Old (PHOTOS)". HuffPost. September 8, 2011. Retrieved December 5, 2011.
  6. ^ Nahas, Aili (September 8, 2011). "Jonathan Taylor Thomas Reunites with His Home Improvement Cast". People. Retrieved December 5, 2011.
  7. ^ Daley, Alana (September 22, 2005). "Whatever happened to: child star Jonathan Taylor Thomas?". The Gazette. London, Ontario. Archived from the original on March 19, 2012. Retrieved December 5, 2011.
  8. ^ "Notable Alumni". Columbia School of General Stucies. Archived from the original on July 15, 2014. Retrieved July 14, 2014.
  9. ^ "Home Improvement". E! True Hollywood Story. December 26, 2005.
  10. ^ "Jonathan Taylor Thomas Returns To 'Last Man Standing' (VIDEO)". HuffPost. October 10, 2013. Retrieved December 27, 2021.
  11. ^ Rice, Lynette (January 9, 2015). "Jonathan Taylor Thomas Returns to Last Man Standing". People. Retrieved March 5, 2019.

External links[edit]