Since appearing in The Goonies in 1985 Astin has been no stranger to geek culture, going on to gain fame as the lovable Sam Gamgee in the record-setting Lord of the Rings trilogy, a role that won him MTV and SAG awards for ensemble works as well as a Saturn Award for his portrayal of Frodo Baggins’s (Elijah Wood’s) trusted friend and aide. More recently he played a man conflicted between his best intentions and his greatest weaknesses on Guillermo del Toro’s The Strain and has just joined the cast of Netflix’s instant hit Stranger Things.
That he would grow up to be a hero to generations of genre fan was foreshadowed by his Hollywood pedigree. His father, John Astin, was the indelible, wild-eyed Gomez, patriarch of The Addams Family in the 1960s. His mother, Anna Marie “Patty” Duke, was an Oscar-winning dramatic actress who proved just as deft in sitcom roles.
Astin’s credits go beyond live-action; his voice is currently heard on Justice League Action (Billy Batson/Shazam) and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Rafael). And stretching from these sorts of roles, he is also known to Notre Dame football fans as the title character of Rudy, the last Fighting Irish player to be carried off the field on his teammates’ shoulders.
But don’t worry, LotR fans. BoroughCon is a place where Astin is going that you can surely follow!
Especially if you live near the F train or the Q46 bus line. BoroughCon is New York’s newest multi-fandom pop-culture expo and its inaugural event will be held May 26-29 at St. John’s campus in Jamaica, Queens.