Jesse Adam Eisenberg is an American actor, author and playwright. He is best known for playing the role of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg in the movie ‘The Social Network’ and received an Academy Award nomination in the Best Actor Category for the same film. He has appeared in numerous movies including ‘30 Minutes or Less’, ‘Zombieland’, and ‘Now You See Me’. He has recently appeared as Lex Luthor in DC’s ‘Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’. Jesse has won appraisal from audiences and critics alike for portraying his roles with passion. Over the course of his career, he has won several awards including the Boston Society of film Critics Award and National Society of Film Critics Award. In addition to movies, he is known for his love for theatre and has starred in many stage productions as well. He has written as well as acted in three plays for the New York Stage. He is also an author and has written several articles for ‘The New Yorker’. Eisenberg has also authored a collection of short stories titled ‘Bream Gives Me Hiccups and Other Stories’.
Childhood & Early Life
Jesse Adam Eisenberg was born on October 5, 1983 in Queens, New York to Jewish parents Barry Eisenberg and Amy Fishman.
His mother, Amy Fishman, worked as a clown at children’s parties and was a choreographer for a Catholic high school. She now teaches cultural sensitivity in hospitals. His father, Barry Eisenberg, drove a taxi cab before running a hospital and then moving on to becoming a college professor, teaching sociology. Jesse has two sisters, Hallie Kate Eisenberg and Kerri Lea.
Jesse attended a number of schools. He started off by attending East Brunswick Public Schools, then went on to study in Hammarskjold Middle School, Churchill Junior High School and East Brunswick High School. He then moved to New York to attend the High School of Performing Arts there.
He studied anthropology and contemporary architecture at The New School in Greenwich Village and majored in liberal arts with concentration in Democracy and Cultural Pluralism.
Jesse had a rough time in school due to anxiety and sensitivity issues. At the age of seven, he appeared in several theatre productions of children’s plays. He started acting to find solace in the discomfort and has often said that he felt at ease on stage, playing different characters. Later when he was sixteen, he started writing screenplays and even got into trouble with Woody Allen’s lawyers once.
He has been open about his disorders, anxieties and depression. He has also said that acting has served as a coping mechanism.
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Jesse started his acting career as Oliver Twist in the musical ‘Oliver!’, a children’s theatre production at the age of 7 and was an understudy in the 1996 Broadway revival of ‘Summer and Smoke & A Christmas Carol’. He made his first professional debut with Arje Shaw’s play ‘The Gathering’.
In 1999, he made his television debut in the series ‘Get Real’ and appeared in a Dr. Pepper commercial in 2011. He then went on to appear in the television film ‘Lightning: Fire from the Sky’ and an independent film ‘Roger Dodger’. He also appeared in the 2002 movie ‘The Emperor’s Club’.
In 2005, he was seen in Wes Craven’s ‘Cursed’ and the independent drama ‘The Squid and the Whale’, which opened to positive reviews from the critics.
He played the role of James Brennan in the 2009 comedy ‘Adventureland’.
Jesse received recognition as Columbus in the post-zombie apocalypse flick ‘Zombieland’ in which he starred along with Emma Stone, Woody Harrelson and Abigail Breslin.
In 2010 he played Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg in ‘The Social Network’. This role earned him nominations for the Academy Award, the BAFTA Awards and the Golden Globes in the Best Actor category. He won the Best Actor Award from the National Board of Review of Motion Pictures.
He hosted an episode of ‘Saturday Night Live’on 29 January 2011. During the same year, he lent his voice to the main character Blu in the animated film ‘Rio’.
In 2012, he appeared in ‘Why Stop Now’ and the romantic comedy ‘To Rome With Love’.
In 2013, Jesse played street magician Danny Atlas in the magic caper film ‘Now You See Me’ alongside James Franco and Mark Ruffalo. He reprised the role in the film’s sequel ‘Now You See Me 2’ in 2016. In the next years, he reprised his role as Blu in ‘Rio 2’ and premiered his second play, ‘The Revisionist’.
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He portrayed Rolling Stone journalist David Lipsky in 2015, in ‘The End of the Tour’, a biographical drama. His third play, ‘The Spoils’, premiered in The New York Perishing Square Signature Center Alice Griffin Box Theatre.
In 2016, he appeared with Kristen Stewart in Woody Allen’s ‘Café Society’. His future ventures include reprising his role as Lex Luthor in DC’s Justice League. He will also appear in ‘Zombieland 2’.
Jesse was cast alongside Richard Gere and Terrence Howard in the 2007 comic thriller ‘The Hunting Party’.
He played the lead role in the romantic comedy drama – ‘Adventureland’ where he was cast alongside Kristen Stewart and Ryan Reynolds.
He played Sam Gold, in the 2010 independent film, ‘Holy Rollers’. The film is inspired by real life events where Hasidic Jews were used to smuggle ecstasy into the USA from Europe.
He also hosted the ‘Saturday Night Live’ on NBC, where Zuckerberg himself appeared to deliver a monologue.
He voiced ‘Blu’, the lead character in the 3D computer animated musical adventure comedy – ‘Rio’. His voice was featured alongside that of Anne Hathaway. He featured in one song – ‘Real in Rio’, which got nominated for the Academy Award.
He played Nick Davis, a pizza delivery boy who is forced to rob a bank in the 2011 action comedy ‘30 Minutes or Less’.
He has written and starred in three major plays, namely, ‘Asuncion’, ‘The Revisionist’ and ‘The Spoils’.
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He has written a book, ‘Bream Gives me Hiccups: and Other Stories’. It is a collection of short stories and was released in September 2015.
He was featured along with Kit Harrington, Keira Knightley, Kate Blanchett and others in a video from the UN’s refugee agency UNHCR to help raise awareness about the global refugee crisis.
Jesse is involved in protection of animals and promotes fostering animals. He is a vegetarian and has made several donations to Middle Way House, a domestic violence shelter in Indiana.
Awards & Achievements
Jesse made his film debut in 2002 playing Nick in the film ‘Roger Dodger’. He received the San Diego film festival for Most Promising New Actor for this role.
‘The Social Network’, the 2010 movie where Jesse played Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, is considered as his big breakthrough. He won the Best Actor Award from the National Board of Review of Motion Pictures and was nominated as the Best Actor at the BAFTA Awards, Golden Globes, and Academy Awards.
He was honored at the Children at Heart Celebrity Dinner Gala and Fantasy Auction, to benefit The Children of Chernobyl.
He was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Song for the song ‘Real in Rio’, from the animated film ‘Rio’.
From 2002 to 2012, Jesse dated Anna Strout, a crew member at ‘The Emperor’s Club’, where they first met.
After their break-up in 2012, Jesse dated his ‘The Double’ co-star Mia Wasikowska for a brief period of time.
He is now back with Anna Strout and the couple is expecting their first child together.
He has been playing drums since he was eight.
His favorite film is ‘Crimes and Misdemeanors’.