Born in Lake Charles, LA, and raised in Sugar Land, TX, Sean Patrick Flanery attended the University of St. Thomas in Houston, where he took a drama class because of a girl. The girl was a short infatuation, but he found true love in college theater.
He moved to Los Angeles and waited tables. He got an agent and after eight months, began acting in television commercials and then other roles. He appear in two multi-part movies on Disney's Mickey Mouse Club: Just Perfect (1990) (TV) and My Life as a Babysitter (1990) (TV).
Early movie roles included Guinevere (1994) (TV), Frank & Jesse (1995), Powder (1995), Eden (1996), The Grass Harp (1995), and The Method (1996). One of his best known roles was probably as the title character in "The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles" (1992).