Jennifer Jason Leigh Poster


Jump to: Overview (4)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (1)  | Trivia (34)  | Personal Quotes (18)

Overview (4)

Born in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, USA
Birth NameJennifer Lee Morrow
Nickname JJL
Height 5' 3" (1.6 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Jennifer Jason Leigh was born Jennifer Lee Morrow in Los Angeles, California, the daughter of writer Barbara Turner and actor Vic Morrow. Her father was of Russian Jewish descent and her mother was of Austrian Jewish ancestry. She is the sister of Carrie Ann Morrow and half-sister of actress Mina Badie.

Jennifer's parents divorced when she was two. Jennifer worked in her first film at the age of nine, in a nonspeaking role for the film Death of a Stranger (The Spy Who Never Was (1976)). At 14 she attended summer acting workshops given by Lee Strasberg and landed a role in the Disney TV movie The Magical World of Disney: The Young Runaways (1978), and received her Screen Actors Guild membership in an episode of the TV series Baretta (1975) when she was 16. Jennifer performed in several TV movies and dropped out of Pacific Palisades High School six weeks short of graduation for her major role in the film Eyes of a Stranger (1981). Her first major success came as the female lead in Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982).

Jennifer was married to writer/director Noah Baumbach from 2005 to 2013, and the two have a son.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Alex Fung <aw220@freenet.carleton.ca>

Spouse (1)

Noah Baumbach (2 September 2005 - 17 September 2013) ( divorced) ( 1 child)

Trivia (34)

The daughter of actor Vic Morrow and actress-screenwriter Barbara Turner, Morrow (nee Morozoff) died during the filming of the movie Twilight Zone: The Movie (1983) when he was killed in a helicopter accident. Leigh and her father were estranged at the time of his death and he left her $100 in his will. Leigh is of entirely Ashkenazi Jewish descent. Her paternal grandparents, Harry Morozoff and Jean Kress, were emigrants from Russia. Her maternal grandfather, Alexander Turner, was an emigrant from Austria, and her maternal grandmother, Pearl Pauline Zises, was born in New York, to Austrian-born parents.
Won two 1990 Critic Society awards for her portrayal of Tralala in Last Exit to Brooklyn (1989), and as Susan Waggoner in Miami Blues (1990).
Selected as one of "America's 10 Most Beautiful Women" by Harper's Bazaar Magazine, 1989.
Has an older sister, Carrie Ann Morrow, and a younger half-sister, actress Mina Badie. Her ex-stepfather is director Reza Badiyi.
Well-known in Hollywood for the exhausting research she does for each of her portrayals and for her affinity of playing lurid roles.
Had a small part as Marion in Eyes Wide Shut (1999). However, when its director Stanley Kubrick asked Jennifer to do some re-shoots, she was not available to do that. Her entire part was reshot by Marie Richardson.
Born at 12:33pm-PST.
Jennifer lost weight down to 86 pounds for her role as an anorexic teenager in the TV-movie The Best Little Girl in the World (1981).
In 1997, Jennifer appeared in Faith No More's music video "Last Cup of Sorrow". Its plot was derived from Alfred Hitchcock's film Vertigo (1958).
After reading the script for the movie Backdraft (1991), Jennifer reportedly told its director, Ron Howard, that she wished that she could be the fire because it has the best part.
Jennifer attended the strict Stagedoor Manor summer camp in upstate New York which trains teenagers in acting, singing, and dancing. Her classmates include actor Zach Braff from NBC's Scrubs (2001), writer-director Todd Graff, and actress-singer Mandy Moore.
Frequently worked with maverick director Robert Altman who, before his maverick days, worked with her father, Vic Morrow, on the sixties television series Combat! (1962).
Jennifer lived with Eric Stoltz for five years during the '80s.
Jennifer chose her second middle name "Jason" from that of her and her father's friend, the actor Jason Robards.
Jennifer has acted with three of the four acting Baldwin brother in five different movies: Miami Blues (1990) and Lymelife (2005) with Alec Baldwin; Last Exit to Brooklyn (1989) and Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle (1994) with Stephen Baldwin; and Backdraft (1991) with William Baldwin.
Member of the jury at the "Venice Film Festival" in the year 2000.
Allegedly auditioned for the role of Sarah Connor in The Terminator (1984) but director James Cameron considered her too young for the part. Linda Hamilton ended up playing the part.
The song "Jennifer Jason Leigh" by the punk band J Church has lyrics made up from interview quotes.
Has become somewhat famous for having turned down many roles in some popular movies. She also turned down a recurring role on the TV show Lost (2004), which was eventually played by Cynthia Watros and the role of Bree on the TV series Desperate Housewives (2004), which was eventually played by Marcia Cross.
She signed on for the film Spread (2009) but later backed out, and was replaced by Anne Heche.
She was one of several actresses considered by Jane Campion for the Holly Hunter role in The Piano (1993), but she was unable to meet with her because she was shooting Rush (1991) at the time.
Dario Argento offered her the female lead in his film The Stendhal Syndrome (1996), but she turned it down. It was eventually played by his daughter Asia Argento.
She won the role in Washington Square (1997) over Meg Ryan and Anne Heche.
She won the role in The Hudsucker Proxy (1994) over Winona Ryder and Bridget Fonda.
Auditioned for the Nicole Kidman role in To Die For (1995).
Auditioned for the role of Catwoman in Batman Returns (1992).
Moved in with Jack Black and Nicole Kidman during filming Margot at the Wedding (2007), because they wanted to perfect their roles as a dysfunctional family.
She has received three separate career tributes - at the Telluride Film Festival in 1993, a special award for her contribution to independent cinema from the Film Society of Lincoln Center in 2002, and a week-long retrospective showing of her film work held by the American Cinematheque at Los Angeles' Egyptian Theatre in June 2001.
Reportedly auditioned for the role of Violet in Pretty Baby (1978), but the part went to Brooke Shields instead.
Ex-daughter-in-law of Jonathan Baumbach.
Returned to work five months after giving birth to her son Rohmer in order to film her guest appearance on Weeds (2005).
Announced that she had filed for divorce from husband Noah Baumbach, citing irreconcilable differences, and is seeking spousal support and primary custody of their son Rohmer (24 November 2010).
Gave birth to her 1st child at age 48, a son Rohmer Emmanuel Baumbach on March 17, 2010. Child's father is her now ex-husband, Noah Baumbach.
Counts Dog Day Afternoon (1975) as the very first movie to emotionally impact her. Though only 13-years-old when it was released, she managed to see it numerous times.

Personal Quotes (18)

I could never play the ingenue, the girl next door or the very successful young doctor. That would be a bore.
[on her best friend, Phoebe Cates] Your best friend is the only one who would tell you the person you are in love with is a sexually ambivalent man-child.
I just don't plan things. I live a month at a time.
I'm a typical middle child. I'm the mediator. The one that makes everything OK, puts their own needs aside to make sure everybody's happy. It's hard to change your nature, even with years and years of therapy.
I like a movie that the audience actively has to participate in, and not just casually observe. Whatever my part in it, just as an audience member, I find that exciting.
People can have so many ill-conceived ideas about me based on the parts that I play. I've had guys, when I've been single, come out of the woodwork to date me and I've found out very quickly that they were expecting some kind of whirlwind, some dramatic crazy person - and that's just not me.
I'd much rather be in a movie that people have really strong feelings about than one that makes a hundred million dollars but you can't remember because it's just like all the others.
When I did Short Cuts (1993) with Robert Altman, I went up to him on the first day and said 'Hi', and he said 'Hi, how are you? Could you get me a cup of coffee?' When I brought it back, it turned out he thought I was the PA. For him, I come alive on film. As a person, I don't really register that much. I mean, he loves me, I don't take it as a cut, although you could. But he says that as a person I disappear in a way. On film, I'm very mysterious, but in life I'm very dull. I don't feel like I'm dull, but I don't put out a lot.
But in mainstream movies the woman's role is mostly just to prove that the leading man is heterosexual. I'm not good at that, and I'm not interested in that.
I like the comparison to Johnny Depp because with him, the way he transforms himself from role to role, he's just this miraculous changeling and people really get behind it. But with me, people sometimes have a problem.
I think I live in this mythical world where doing the parts I do is not going to hurt me, and telling people my age is not going to hurt me. And it actually does. It's a bit sick-making but, you know, I can't change who I am.
[1992, on Backdraft (1991)] Ron Howard was incredibly generous and patient with me. He pursued me with this role. And I failed him. Everybody had been telling me for so long that I should stop playing women who go through grueling experiences, but there was no place for me in that character. It taught me that I can't take a role I don't really connect with.
When my first movie, Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982), turned out to be this big hit, I was so innocent, I thought: all movies are hits. It took a couple of years to figure out that almost every movie I made after that didn't make money. Some of them haven't made money because they're not very good movies. It's not like I look at a project and go, 'Oh, this is going to be a box-office bomb. I want it!'
[1992, on Miami Blues (1990)] Working with Alec (Baldwin) was like being on a roller coaster. He's thrilling, incredibly funny, completely free, unashamed, trustful. It was one of those rare experiences where you really believe your fellow actor is the character he's playing. We didn't screw, of course, but our love scenes felt alive.
[1982: on the death of her father, actor Vic Morrow] I always hoped we could work together and, through that, resolve whatever needed to be resolved between us. Now that chance is lost. That's the real tragedy.
I remember I once went to a nutritionist who said I come from good Russian- Jewish peasant stock, which means I can hold a potato in my body for a week, if need be.
So much of the joy of seeing Quentin [Tarantino]'s movies is just how explosively imaginative they are, and how you don't really know where things are going, and you don't really know who's who and what's what and what the truth is.
I think I am talented -- but I also think I'm very lucky.

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