Actor Brad Renfro, who became a child star at 14 in The Client but in recent years was plagued by numerous drug problems and arrests, was found dead at his Los Angeles home Tuesday morning; he was 25.
While the Los Angeles County coroner confirmed to Access Hollywood that Renfro had died, a cause of death was not named. The Tennessee-born actor snagged an amazingly high-profile part for his first role, that of a young boy sought by the mafia in the 1994 adaptation of the John Grisham novel The Client, opposite established stars Susan Sarandon and Tommy Lee Jones.
His impressive performance in the box office hit made him a high-profile young actor, and roles in such films as Tom and Huck, Sleepers and Telling Lies in America followed; he also appeared opposite Ian McKellen in Bryan Singer's controversial Apt Pupil, about a young student who blackmails his elderly neighbor, whom he believes is a Nazi war criminal.
Despite a string of successful roles, including solid performances in Bully and Ghost World, Renfro reportedly found adapting to Hollywood difficult, and was arrested on a number of drug and theft charges. In 2000, he was arrested in Florida on grand theft charges for allegedly trying to steal a 45-foot yacht, and while on probation for the crime was jailed for underage drinking. Other arrests followed, and last year he was found in violation of his probation for failing to enroll in a drug treatment program. Most recently, Renfro had appeared in The Jacket as well as an episode of Law & Order: Criminal Intent. He had just wrapped filming on The Informers opposite Winona Ryder, Mickey Rourke, Billy Bob Thornton and Kim Basinger.