BARRY PEPPER Biography - Other artists & entretainers


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Pepper was born in British Columbia, Canada, in 1970, but the family didn’t stick around for too long. The Peppers were an eccentric brood, and they had been building a ship in their backyard for years. When Barry was five years old, the ship was done and the family set sail. Christened “The Moonlighter", the 50 ft. ship would be their home for the next five years. They navigated through the Islands of the South Pacific, using only a sextant and the stars as guides. While visiting such exotic locales as Fiji and Tahiti, Barry was educated through correspondence courses and sometimes enrolled in public schools. He grew up around Polynesian children and credits them for his love of dance, music and other expressive arts. Barry had plenty of time to practice his newfound loves too. Without television as entertainment on the ship, the family relied on games and sketch acting for fun. When the five year cruise was over, the Peppers returned to their native Canada, where they set up shop on a small island off the West Coast near Vancouver. They built a farm on the outskirts of a small artist’s town, which was populated mainly by hippies, poets, musicians and other craftsmen. Barry enrolled in college and majored in Marketing and Graphic Design, but after getting involved with the Vancouver Actors Studio, he changed his course. Once again, he was using the stars to navigate… Pepper landed a role on Madison (think 90210 - Canadian style) and then moved on to slightly more prestigious roles south of the border. Television movies followed, most notably the mini-series Titanic, which co-starred George C. Scott. Still, Barry’s career really wasn’t taking off. He was a hard working actor, but not a star. That all changed in 1998. After a string of big screen duds, the highpoint of which was Firestorm, Pepper secured himself a role in Steven Spielberg’s Saving Private Ryan. The film would captivate the world with its gruesome but realistic depiction of the carnage of WWII. Pepper portrayed a deeply religious sniper and played out that inherent contradiction well - quoting the bible as he calculatingly took aim on enemy after enemy. With the success of the film came sudden stardom for its cast - complete with photo spreads, interviews, and even some Oscar buzz. Pepper followed it up with a small but noteworthy role in the summer blockbuster, Enemy of the State opposite Will Smith and Gene Hackman. He next had a role with his SPR co-star Tom Hanks in the film adaptation of Stephen King’s The Green Mile.