As ’80s heart throbs go, Emilio Estevez hasn’t had that bad a career. So he may not have had the most glowing career of his The Outsiders costars—C. Thomas Howell has a whopping one hundred nineteen movie credits, without even looking at TV. And Matt Dillon’s an Oscar nominee. Still, he’s gotten the work he wants, so far as I can tell, and has done some directing. And unlike assorted other people he’s been in movies . . . and a family . . . with, he’s never had a big drug career. He’s second-generation Hollywood and seems to be a stable, pleasant guy, and that’s not so bad.
Yes, as I explained to the woman across the street when I told her I was writing this, he’s Martin Sheen’s son—and unlike his younger brother elected to keep his father’s birth name. They are full brothers. His younger brother is far more famous these days, I think, but when I was a teenager, there was still a lot of debate as to which one was cuter, cooler, a better actor. A while back, I had to apologize to my best friend from those days, because time had showed that she was right. Emilio was a better bet after all.
Apparently he was still an actual child when Martin realized his talent. And not in the “doting father” sense that got him a small role in Badlands but in a “yes, this is what my child will be doing for the rest of his life” sense. Oh, I won’t try to claim to you that every movie he’s done has been a quality one; let she who does not own Young Guns II make that claim. Still, he’s a talented actor even in those unfortunate movies. Yes, he made at least two movies in the “Look, It’s Attractive People In A Movie” genre, and admittedly he wasn’t the most attractive of them. Though my friend would disagree. But he’s also done no few more serious films, including getting some pretty skilled directing in.
For one thing, I am not counting his S. E. Hinton adaptations under the “pretty” cover. Yes, all right, The Outsiders sure is full of pretty young men. The prettiest—Rob Lowe is in that movie, and the only person who gives him a run for his money in Prettiest Young Man Of The Eighties is Robert Downey, Jr. (I’m a little surprised that he and Estevez have never worked together.) However, there’s obviously more plot to them; they are based on books dealing with serious issues. Class. Drug use. The meaning of family. Love and obligation.
Personally, he seems a lot quieter than his brother, which is not difficult. He’s a grandfather now. He didn’t participate in the tribute to John Hughes because he wasn’t interested in the publicity, which definitely isn’t something you could say of his brother. And to my surprise and delight, he is listed as both director and writer of the announced upcoming Young Guns III, not just the star. I almost want to suggest that my best friend from junior high come visit just so we can go see it together, even though she lives in another state.