Great Scott! Have you ever found yourself watching ‘Back to the Future’ and wondering, ‘Whatever happened to that charmingly obnoxious bully, Biff Tannen? Well, buckle up, because we’re about to hop in our DeLorean, crank up the flux capacitor, and take a trip through time to catch up with the man behind the character, Thomas F. Wilson. No need for roads where we’re going, just a healthy dose of curiosity and a love for all things ’80s. So, hold onto your hoverboards, folks, as we delve into the life and career of the man who made us all think twice about leaving our cars unattended near a manure truck!”
Thomas F. Wilson was born to Thomas Wilson and Anna Kelly on April 15, 1959, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The future actor attended Radnor High School, where he was active in dramatic arts and was president of the debate team. In addition, Wilson was a band member, playing the tuba and taking on the role of drum major.
Wilson furthered his education at Arizona State University, where he studied international politics. The future actor also attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City.
Wilson moved to Los Angeles in 1981 to pursue acting, two years after having his first stage performance as a comedian. Early in his career, Wilson roomed with comedians Andrew Dice Clay and Yakov Smirnoff.
Wilson received his first acting credit when he appeared in the second season of the action crime drama Knight Rider.
The actor had a small role in the episode "A Knight In Shining Armor." The series aired on NBC and starred David Hasselhoff, who is also known for his Baywatch fame.
Back to the Future
In 1985, Wilson landed the part of Biff Tannen, the bully in the classic film Back to the Future. He would also reprise his role in Back to the Future II and Back to the Future III, playing Biff’s grandson Griff Tannen and great-grandfather Buford "Mad Dog" Tannen.
The actor lent his voice to the movie’s animated version and later versions of the video game.
Fans couldn’t get enough of Wilson’s character, Biff, and thinks he didn’t get enough credit for his role. In addition, fans of the film franchise consider him one of the most memorable villains in movie history.
What did he do after Back To The Future?
After appearing in the Back to the Future series, Wilson played Detective Rollie McCann in the 1993 cult-classic film Blood In, Blood Out.
The crime drama movie also starred Benjamin Bratt and was based on the true life of poet Jimmy Santiago Baca.
Wilson took his talents to the small screen and appeared in six episodes of teen comedy-drama series. Between 1999-2000, the actor played Coach Ben Fredricks in the short-lived series.
Despite receiving positive reviews, including three Emmy nominations, Freaks and Geeks only lasted one season with 18 episodes.
Wilson would continue acting on television and appeared as Tim Flaherty in six episodes of the supernatural television series Ghost Whisperer, which starred Jennifer Love Hewitt.
The show centered around Melinda Gordon (Hewitt) and her ability to see and communicate with ghosts. Ghost Whisperer ran for five seasons, with Wilson appearing at various times between 2006-2008
In 2013, Wilson played the role of Andrew "Drew" Stone, Zach’s dad, for 12 episodes in the MTV teen sitcom Zach Stone is Gonna Be Famous.
The show centered around a recent high school graduate who forgoes college to pursue a life of fame. While Wilson had a recurring role, the series only lasted one season but began streaming on Netflix in 2021.
Wilson played Mark Cheviron in the 2009 film, The Informant!, a biographical-crime comedy directed by Steven Soderbergh.
The film also starred Matt Damon, Scott Bakula, and Joel McHale and was based on the 2000 nonfiction book of the same name.
The movie received positive reviews, mainly for Damon’s performance, and grossed $41.8 million worldwide.
In addition to lending his voice to the animated version of Back to the Future, the actor has also done voice-over work on the kids’ hit series SpongeBob SquarePants.
Wilson has been a recurring cast member on the Nickelodeon series since 2001 and has voiced various characters, including Flats the Flounder, Tattletale Strangler, Marty, Herb Starr, Regg, and additional voices throughout the series.
What is Thomas F. Wilson doing now?
Thomas is still very active in Hollywood and has consistent mostly of voice acting roles. He has lent his voice to the character Sandman in the TV series “Spidey and His Amazing Friends” from 2022 to 2023. He has also voiced several characters in “The Patrick Star Show” and “Kamp Koral: SpongeBob’s Under Years” during 2021-2023. In addition, he has voiced various characters in “SpongeBob SquarePants” from 2001 to 2022. He appeared in the TV series “Sydney to the Max” as Doug/Grandpa Doug during 2020-2021 and in “NCIS” as Angus Demint in 2020.
The comedic actor has also taken his hand at art, displaying various works in Laguna Beach, CA, and has a Pop Fugue Collection, a contemporary commentary on Pop identification.
Wilson became a published author between acting gigs with The Masked Man: A Memoir and Fantasy of Hollywood. The book details an adventure after meeting the late actor Clayton Moore, who starred in the television series The Lone Ranger. In addition, the book combines humor with a series of Wilson’s life experiences.
Wilson was previously seen on Cameo, where you could gift or receive birthday wishes from the Back to the Future star. You can also follow the actor on Instagram, where he often posts photos of his artwork.
You can also find Wilson at fan conventions. In 2023, he and the cast of “Back to the Future”reunited at the FAN EXPO Portland convention in Portland, Oregon.
Wilson has been married to his wife, Caroline Thomas, since July 6, 1985, and the couple has four children.
In 2000, Wilson, a devout Catholic, released a contemporary Christian album titled In the Name of the Father.
Wilson also took matters into his own hands regarding frequently asked questions from fans. The actor created business cards with answers to his most asked questions, emphasizing Back to the Future.