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Biography from Leonard Maltin's Movie Encyclopedia:
No Brat-Packer he, Bacon emerged at the same time as many other youthful performers, but has shown himself to be an actor with serious ambitions-and the talent to back it up. After working on the daytime soaps "The Guiding Light" and "Search for Tomorrow," this slender, boyish actor with impish grin and engaging demeanor appeared in a string of hit movies, including National Lampoon's Animal House (1978, debuting as a slimy ROTC student), Friday the 13th (1980), and Barry Levinson's 1982 comic sleeper, Diner in which he sparkled amid a uniformly excellent ensemble cast. Bacon, who studied at the Manning St. Actor's Theatre and was an apprentice at Circle-in-the-Square in New York, made his off-Broadway debut in "Getting Out," and won an Obie for his performance in "Forty Deuce," playing a teenage hustler (a role he repeated in a lackluster 1982 film adaptation).
A starring role in the 1984 film Footloose brought Bacon box-office notoriety (if not critical acclaim), but also marked the beginning of what would become a somewhat uneven adult film career. He went on to star in such oddities as Quicksilver (1986), White Water Summer, End of the Line (both 1987), and She's Having a Baby (1988)-none of them particularly successful. (He also made an amusing cameo appearance in John Hughes' Planes, Trains & Automobiles in 1987.)
Bacon had choice parts in two 1989 films, Criminal Law (as a psychopathic, wealthy killer) and The Big Picture (as an award-winning film student sucked into the Hollywood maw), which were little seen in theaters but achieved some success in the home video market. He also raised eyebrows with a finely tuned performance in PBS's "Lemon Sky," for the American Playhouse series, which also introduced him to future wife Kyra Sedgwick (with whom he starred in 1990's abysmal Pyrates