Leo Penn

Biography: Over his career as a television director, Leo Penn helmed well over 400 primetime hours on a wide variety of series, ranging from Star Trek to I Spy to Diagnosis Murder. In 1973, he received an Emmy for directing a two-hour episode of Columbo titled "Any Port in a Storm." Before becoming a director, he acted on stage and in a few feature films, beginning with Shame (1945). His film career had just begun when Penn was blacklisted after attending a pro-union meeting with other actors. That the group was actively supporting the first blacklistees, the Hollywood Ten, only worsened matters. Unable to work in film, he turned to Broadway; there, along with his wife Eileen Ryan, he starred in several productions, including The Iceman Cometh, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, and Of Mice and Men. He also found acting jobs on television. In 1959, he returned to the screen in The Story on Page One, but by then the acting profession had lost its luster and he decided to become a director. He had hisOver his career as a television director, Leo Penn helmed well over 400 primetime hours on a wide variety of series, ranging from Star Trek to I Spy to Diagnosis Murder. In 1973, he received an Emmy for directing a two-hour episode of Columbo titled "Any Port in a Storm." Before becoming a director, he acted on stage and in a few feature films, beginning with Shame (1945). His film career had just begun when Penn was blacklisted after attending a pro-union meeting with other actors. That the group was actively supporting the first blacklistees, the Hollywood Ten, only worsened matters. Unable to work in film, he turned to Broadway; there, along with his wife Eileen Ryan, he starred in several productions, including The Iceman Cometh, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, and Of Mice and Men. He also found acting jobs on television. In 1959, he returned to the screen in The Story on Page One, but by then the acting profession had lost its luster and he decided to become a director. He had his first helming job on the early-'60s medical drama Ben Casey. In the mid-'90s, Penn reentered feature films as an actor, appearing with his wife in his son Sean Penn's directorial debut The Crossing Guard (1995). Son Sean also produced the last play in which Penn performed, a 1997 production of Remembrance. Though Sean is most famous, Penn's other sons, Michael Penn and Chris Penn, are also in the entertainment industry, Michael as a singer/songwriter and Chris as an actor. Expand

Leo Penn's Scores

  • TV
Average career score: 39
Highest Metascore: 42 In the Heat of the Night: Season 1
Lowest Metascore: 36 Matlock: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 2
  2. Negative: 1 out of 2
2 tv reviews
Title: Year: Credit: User score:
tbd Matlock: Season 9 Oct 13, 1994 Director tbd
tbd Diagnosis Murder: Season 2 Sep 16, 1994 Director tbd
tbd Matlock: Season 8 Sep 23, 1993 Director tbd
tbd Matlock: Season 7 Nov 5, 1992 Director / Russ Lewis tbd
tbd In the Heat of the Night: Season 6 Oct 28, 1992 Director tbd
tbd Diagnosis Murder: Season 1 Jan 5, 1992 Director tbd
tbd Matlock: Season 6 Oct 18, 1991 Director tbd
tbd In the Heat of the Night: Season 5 Oct 1, 1991 Director tbd
tbd Matlock: Season 5 Sep 18, 1990 Director / Spaulding tbd
tbd In the Heat of the Night: Season 4 Sep 18, 1990 Director tbd
tbd Jake and the Fatman: Season 4 Sep 12, 1990 Director tbd
tbd In the Heat of the Night: Season 3 Oct 24, 1989 Director tbd
tbd Jake and the Fatman: Season 3 Sep 20, 1989 Director tbd
tbd Matlock: Season 4 Sep 19, 1989 Director tbd
tbd Columbo: Season 8 Feb 6, 1989 Director tbd
tbd Matlock: Season 3 Nov 29, 1988 Director / Actor tbd
42 In the Heat of the Night: Season 1 Mar 15, 1988 Director tbd
tbd Matlock: Season 2 Sep 22, 1987 Director tbd
36 Matlock: Season 1 Mar 3, 1986 Director tbd
tbd Fame: Season 5 Oct 12, 1985 Director tbd
tbd Magnum, P.I.: Season 6 Sep 26, 1985 Director tbd
tbd St. Elsewhere: Season 4 Sep 18, 1985 Director tbd
tbd Magnum, P.I.: Season 5 Sep 27, 1984 Director tbd
tbd St. Elsewhere: Season 3 Sep 19, 1984 Director tbd
tbd Cagney & Lacey: Season 2 Oct 25, 1982 Director tbd
tbd Remington Steele: Season 1 Oct 1, 1982 Director tbd
tbd Magnum, P.I.: Season 3 Sep 30, 1982 Director tbd
tbd Hart to Hart: Season 4 Sep 28, 1982 Director tbd
tbd Mr. Merlin: Season 1 Oct 7, 1981 Director tbd
tbd Hart to Hart: Season 2 Nov 11, 1980 Director tbd