Jesse was born in Queens, New York, and raised in New Jersey. His ancestors moved to the US from Poland and Ukraine. His father ran a hospital before moving on to become a college professor. His mother is a professional clown, performing at children's birthday parties. He has two sisters.
He attended East Brunswick High School, but he didn't really enjoy school. From age 10, he performed in children's theater. Jesse had his first professional role in an off-Broadway play, "The Gathering". His first television role came in 1999 with "Get Real" (1999), but the show was canceled in 2000. In his senior year of high school, he landed his first film role in Roger Dodger (2002). He won an award for "Most Promising New Actor" at the San Diego film festival.
Jesse attended the New School University, New York, where he was a liberal arts major, with a focus on Democracy and Cultural Pluralism.
His breakthrough role came in Zombieland (2009). In 2010, he was nominated for Best Actor at the Golden Globes and Academy Awards for his role of Facebook's creator, Mark Zuckerberg, in the film, The Social Network (2010).
Often plays shy, anti-social characters
Often plays neurotic characters
Older brother of Hallie Kate Eisenberg.
Has been playing the drums since he was age 8.
His mother is a professional clown who performed at children's birthday parties in their hometown of East Brunswick, N.J. for 20 years.
Is of Polish descent.
His ancestors came to the US from the Polish city Szczecin. Jesse is fluent in Polish language and visits Poland very often.
Studied at The New School in New York City's Greenwich Village. He applied and was accepted to New York University but declined enrollment to complete a film role.
Very good friends with Andrew Garfield.
Good friends with Justin Bartha.
Favorite film is Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989).
Creator of OneUpMe.com - a wordplay website. He also owns Yugoslavio.com.
His character in Zombieland (2009), at one point, expresses relief at not having to update his status on Facebook. Jesse did not know what a Facebook status was until a crew member explained it. The following year, Jesse played Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg.
This [The Social Network (2010)] was not the sort of script you improvise on. With Aaron Sorkin, it's immediately clear what the rhythm of the scene is. It's similar to reading Shakespeare. In fact, it's a lot like great theater. I looked at some of the lengthier scenes as if I was doing a play. You find the story arc of the scene, discover different moments, build upon them to make it as rich as possible. [I] reconciled his intense control with his disengagement. He might appear detached and bored, but he's always working to control the entire room.
[My favorite website] is Geosense.net. It's a geography game. They actually kicked me off for writing "Sri Lanka" on their message boards. I guess it's a curse word on there?
[on his future projects]: I'm hoping to do several [sequels to] Rio (2011) - Rios 2 through 10. You know, this movie is so wonderful, and we were wondering where the story might go, because this is the same company that did Ice Age (2002), and we suspected it may have some odd sequels.
[Interview with Stephen Whitty, August, 2011] I have a lot of personal anxieties. And I've realized that playing a character stuck in a life-or-death situation like this allows me to release those anxieties in a very healthful, cathartic way.
I was mugged one night in New York and slammed into a concrete pillar, and I did an interview where I said I completely understand why they attacked me. It was a poor, black neighborhood. Someone sent me an article saying: 'You ignorant idiot. It's more offensive to defend these people. It's more racist to defend them.' He's right, and that is the impetus for the first scene.
There's something strange about theater. My characters consistently demonize elitism, but of course it's taking place in a theater where only so many people can see it. I've been in silly popcorn movies - the kind of thing that as an actor you might feel embarrassed about - but those movies reach many more people. In a play you're basically performing for rich people.
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