Chris O'Donnell is most well know for his roles as Dick Grayson/Robin in Batman Forever (1995) and Batman & Robin (1997), Charlie Simms in Scent of a Woman (1992), and Jack McAuliffe in mini-series, The Company (2007).
O'Donnell was born in Winnetka, Illinois, the son of Julie Ann Rohs von Brecht and William Charles O'Donnell, Sr., a general manager of a CBS radio station. He is the youngest of seven children, with four sisters and two brothers, and is of German and Irish descent. He was raised in a Roman Catholic family and attended Roman Catholic schools, including Loyola Academy in Wilmette, Illinois for high school, graduating in 1988. He attended Boston College and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in marketing. He began modeling at the age of 13, and was featured in several commercials.
O'Donnell was discovered when he was cast in a McDonald's commercial, in which he served Michael Jordan. His first television role was an appearance on the series Jack and Mike in 1986. At the age of 17, he was offered a chance to audition for a part in the movie Men Don't Leave, with Jessica Lange, and he won the role. In the early 1990s, O'Donnell was a featured player in many successful movies such as Fried Green Tomatoes (1991), School Ties (1992), and Scent of a Woman (1992) with Al Pacino (receiving a nomination for the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor).
After the success of Blue Sky (1994) and Circle of Friends (1995), O'Donnell played Dick Grayson/Robin in Batman Forever. O'Donnell followed with a starring role in 1996's The Chamber, based on the John Grisham novel, and subsequently reprised his role as Robin in the Batman sequel, Batman & Robin, in 1997. O'Donnell did not appear in another movie for two years. The Robert Altman film Cookie's Fortune, The Bachelor (1999) and Vertical Limit (2000) were only moderately successful. However, he came back in 2004 with the widely praised Kinsey. Film projects for 2008 included Kit Kittredge: An American Girl and Max Payne. In 2010, O'Donnell appeared in the sequel to the 2001 movie Cats & Dogs, The Revenge of Kitty Galore.