Eileen Ryan, Actor and Mother of Sean, Chris and Michael Penn, Dies at 94

Eileen Ryan, the actor and mother of composer Michael Penn and actors Sean Penn and Chris Penn, died at her home on Oct. 9. She was 94.

Ryan’s acting work included portraying Sean and Chris’ grandmother in 1986’s “At Close Range,” as well as appearing in 1995’s “The Crossing Guard,” directed and written by Sean.

Ryan was born on Oct. 16, 1927, in New York, the daughter of nurse Rose Isabel and dentist Amerigo Giuseppe Annucci. In 1957, Ryan met director and actor Leo Penn at rehearsals for the play “Iceman Cometh.” They married a few months later, and remained together for 41 years until Leo’s death in 1998.

During her screen career, which spanned nearly six decades, Ryan guest starred on series such as “Goodyear Playhouse,” “Studio One,” “The Detectives,” “The Twilight Zone,” “Outlaws,” “Bonanza,” “Matlock,” “NYPD Blue” and “Men of a Certain Age.”

In addition to “At Close Range” and “The Crossing Guard,” Ryan’s other notable film credits include “Winter People,” “Judgement in Berlin,” “Parenthood,” “Magnolia,” “The Pledge,” “Anywhere but Here,” “The Assassination of Richard Nixon,” “All the King’s Men,” “Feast,” “A Shape of Error,” “I Am Sam” and “The Indian Runner.” Her last film appearance was in the 2016 romantic dramedy “Rules Don’t Apply” starring Lily Collins, Alden Ehrenreich, Annette Bening, Taissa Farmiga, Martin Sheen and Warren Beatty, who also wrote and directed the film.

On Broadway, she portrayed Evie in “Sing Till Tomorrow” in 1953 and Lorraine in “Comes a Day” in 1958.

Michael paid tribute to Ryan on Twitter, sharing a photo of her along with a broken heart emoji.

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