Jennifer Jason Leigh (born February 5, 1962) is an American actress.
Born Jennifer Lee Morrow in Hollywood, California, she is the daughter of Blackboard Jungle actor Vic Morrow and Pollock screenwriter Barbara Turner, both of whom were Jewish, although Leigh was raised mostly without religion. Leigh changed her middle and last name, taking the middle name "Jason" in honor of family friend, the late actor, Jason Robards, Jr.
At the age of 14 she attended summer acting workshops given by Lee Strasberg and received her Screen Actors Guild membership in an episode of the TV show Baretta when she was 16. An episode of The Waltons and several TV movies followed, including an unusually powerful portrayal of an anorexic teenager in The Best Little Girl in the World, for which Leigh wasted away to a skeletal 86lbs under medical supervision. She made her screen debut as a blind, deaf and mute rape victim in the 1980 slasher flick Eyes of a Stranger. In 1982 she played a teenager who gets...
Created by dipity on Jan 24, 2008
Last updated: 02/14/08 at 12:40 PM
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Margot at the Wedding is an upcoming film written and directed by Noah Baumbach. It is the follow-up to his critically acclaimed, Academy Award nominated film The Squid and the Whale (2005). The film has been described as an intimate, character-driven, domestic comedy-drama. It stars Nicole Kidman and Baumbach's real-life wife Jennifer Jason Leigh as sisters named Margot and Pauline, and also features Jack Black, John Turturro and Ciarán Hinds. Kidman's character, Margot, is a successful but neurotic writer who brings her 11-year-old son (played by newcomer Zane Pais) to spend a weekend visiting her free-spirited sister Pauline (Leigh) on the eve of her wedding to Black's character. Margot disapproves of Pauline's choice of fiancé, which causes tension between the two sisters. Baumbach has mentioned that the film is influenced by the style of French writer-director Eric Rohmer, who is known for his character-driven, relationship-based comic dramas like Ma nuit chez Maud, Le Genou de...,
The Jacket is a 2005 psychological thriller, directed by John Maybury. Massy Tadjedin wrote the screenplay based on a story by Tom Bleecker and Marc Rocco. The original music score is composed by Brian Eno and the cinematography is by Peter Deming. The film is marketed with the tagline "Terror has a new name."After miraculously recovering from a bullet wound to the head, Gulf War veteran Jack Starks returns to Vermont suffering from amnesia. He is accused of murdering a police officer, and is incarcerated in a mental institution in the year 1992.In the ward, Starks becomes subject to the experiments of Dr. Thomas Becker, a psychiatrist. Starks is injected with an experimental drug and put into a straitjacket; he is then locked in a morgue drawer. While in this condition, Jack's mind sends him into the future of the closing week of 2007, where among other things he discovers that he is destined to die in four days from his first incarcaration in the drawer in 1992.The film embodies the...,
The Machinist (also known as El Maquinista) is an English-language Spanish psychological thriller film that was released in 2004. The film was written by Scott Kosar, directed by Brad Anderson, and starred Christian Bale. It was produced by the Fantastic Factory label of Filmax and Castelao Productions (Spain).
Despite being set in a West Coast American city, the film was shot in its entirety in, or just outside of, Barcelona, Spain. Brad Anderson hurt his back during filming and directed much of the film while lying on a gurney.Christian Bale starved himself for over 4 months prior to filming, as his character needed to look drastically thin. Allegedly his eating consisted of one can of tuna and an apple each day (approximately 275 calories), although there are conflicting reports on this. According to the DVD commentary, he lost 62 pounds (28 kg), reducing his body weight to 120 pounds (54.4 kg). Bale wanted to go down to 100 pounds (45.3 kg) but the filmmakers would...,
In the Cut is a 2003 American/British/Australian crime/erotic thriller film written and directed by New Zealand director Jane Campion. It is based on a Susanna Moore novel, and has been released on DVD. The unrated version is notorious for a scene of apparent unsimulated fellatio witnessed by Meg Ryan's character, although it was later revealed in the film commentary that the actress fellated a dildo. The film is noted for being the first time actress Meg Ryan appears fully nude in a film.Based on the best-selling novel by Susanna Moore, In the Cut is a psychological thriller in which Frannie (Meg Ryan) is a lonely New York City high school English teacher, who is compiling a dictionary of urban slang with the help of one her students. Frannie "discovers the darker side of passion" after becoming involved with a tough homicide detective investigating a series of murders in her neighborhood. As the plot develops, she begins to wonder if the detective (Mark Ruffalo) might be the...,
Road to Perdition is a 2002 period drama film directed by Sam Mendes. The film is based on the graphic novel Road to Perdition, written by Max Allan Collins and illustrated by Richard Piers Rayner, and takes place during the Great Depression. The film stars Tom Hanks, Paul Newman, Jude Law, and Tyler Hoechlin. Hanks stars as an enforcer who is forced to flee with his son from the crime syndicate for whom he had worked, and to ensure that his son does not become like him.
Filming took place in Chicago, in the Pullman neighborhood. Director Sam Mendes, having recently finished 1999's acclaimed American Beauty, pursued a film that had minimal dialogue and conveyed emotion in the imagery. A "cold look" was created for the locations in Road to Perdition to emphasize the characters' emotional states. Cinematographer Conrad L. Hall took advantage of the lighting and the environment to create symbolism for the film, for which he won several awards. Road to Perdition explored the themes...,
Skipped Parts (also known as The Wonder of Sex in the UK), is based on Tim Sandlin's book of the same name. Skipped Parts is the first in a series of novels based on the lives of Maury and Sam, the second and final being Sorrow Floats and Social Blunders. The film about a group of characters living in a small Wyoming town. After making the film-festival rounds in 2000, it had a limited release by Trimark Pictures. The title comes from how certain books mention sex and romance, but skips their factual aspects.
It was filmed in Regina and Fort Qu'Appelle, Saskatchewan.
In 1963, a liberal-minded woman, Lydia, has a 14-year-old son, Sam. Lydia's father is running for governor of North Carolina, and he does not want Lydia and Sam in his way, so the two are banished from North Carolina. Arriving in Wyoming, Lydia only wants to have a good time and Sam is never allowed to call her "Mom" (she wants him to call her "Lydia").
Sam soon finds out that he is one of only two students in...,
The Anniversary Party is a 2001 movie starring an ensemble cast, written, directed, and starring Jennifer Jason Leigh and Alan Cumming. The film was shot entirely in video and on a very small budget.Leigh and Cumming were both nominated for two Independent Spirit Awards; Reilly also received a nomination for his supporting performance.The Anniversary Party at the Internet Movie Database...,
Template:DISPLAYTITLE:eXistenZeXistenZ is a 1999 psychological thriller/science fiction film by Canadian director David Cronenberg. It stars Jennifer Jason Leigh and Jude Law.
Allegra Geller (Jennifer Jason Leigh) is the greatest game designer in the world and testing her latest virtual reality game, eXistenZ, with a focus group in a large hall. The game is fully immersive; To play, players must plug a 'pod', a bio-organic gaming device, into a 'bio-port' near the bottom of the spine.
As they begin, Geller is attacked by a fanatic assassin armed with a bizarre organic gun which is undetectable by security. Fearing other assassins, she flees with public relations trainee Ted Pikul (Jude Law), who is suddenly assigned as her bodyguard. Unfortunately her pod, containing the only copy of the eXistenZ game, is damaged in the assassination attempt. To inspect it, she talks a reluctant Pikul into accepting a bio-port in his own body so he can play the game with her. The results lead the pair...,
Kansas City is a 1996 film, directed by Robert Altman, and featuring numerous jazz tracks. Jennifer Jason Leigh, Miranda Richardson, Harry Belafonte, and Steve Buscemi starred.The film is notable for featuring modern jazz musicians playing the roles of famous musicians from the 1930s. Craig Handy plays the role of Coleman Hawkins, Joshua Redman plays Lester Young, and James Carter plays Ben Webster.The Delinquents (1957) • The James Dean Story (1957) •Countdown (1968) •That Cold Day in the Park (1969) •MASH (1970) •Brewster McCloud (1971) •McCabe & Mrs. Miller (1971)•Images (1972) •The Long Goodbye (1973) •Thieves Like Us (1974) •California Split (1974) •Nashville (1975) •Buffalo Bill and the Indians, or Sitting Bull's History Lesson (1976) •3 Women (1977) •A Wedding (1978) •Quintet (1979) •A Perfect Couple (1979) •HealtH (1980) •Popeye (1980) •Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean (1982) •Streamers (1983) •Secret Honor (1984) •O.C. and Stiggs (1984) •Fool for Love...
Georgia is a 1995 American independent movie starring Jennifer Jason Leigh and Mare Winningham. In the film, Leigh played Sadie Flood, a punky barroom singer who has a complicated, jealous but loving relationship with her older sister, Georgia, played by Winningham. Georgia is a successful, talented and well-adjusted folk music singer and a happily married mother of two. Sadie is passionate but self-destructive and untalented. While she seeks fame, she destroys herself through drug and alcohol abuse. Although the movie focuses largely on Sadie, it was apparently titled Georgia because Sadie defines her own identity so much through her older sister.
John Doe of the punk band X played a supporting role and performed as a member of Sadie's band. The music in the film consisted of 13 songs which were recorded live and performed by the actors ("a risk that has paid off spectacularly in terms of emotional intensity", according to Los Angeles Times critic Kenneth Turan). These included...
Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle was a film released in 1994. It was written and directed by Alan Rudolph and starred Jennifer Jason Leigh as the writer Dorothy Parker.The film revolves around Mrs. Parker's life, career, and romances. Mrs. Parker (1893-1967) was a writer, critic, wit and champion for social justice.Mrs. Parker was an original member of the Algonquin Round Table, a group of writers, actors and critics that met almost daily from 1919-1929 at Manhattan's Algonquin Hotel.Many respected actors appear in very brief roles in the film. Actress Martha Plimpton discussed this in her appearance on the Jon Favreau documentary program Dinner for Five; she stated that much dialogue was improvised in the style of the real-life characters actors were playing, but that many of those characters were not integral to the plot. As such many of the actors had much larger parts that were edited down to nearly nothing. The following is a list of the actors and the real-life personalities...,
The Hudsucker Proxy (1994) is a screwball comedy film directed by Joel and Ethan Coen, telling a fictitious story about the rise and fall of a naive executive and the invention of the hula hoop. It stars Tim Robbins, Paul Newman, and Jennifer Jason Leigh. One of the film's narrative devices is repeated reference to the Wheel of Fortune.
It is New Years Eve, 1958. Everyone all over New York City is out celebrating except Norville Barnes (Tim Robbins), the president of Hudsucker Industries, who is standing outside his window at the top of the building, ready to jump.
One month earlier, Norville is a college graduate who arrives in New York City looking for a job in business. The only problem is he can not find one because he has no experience. The only job he can take is as a mailroom clerk at Hudsucker Industries.
Meanwhile, the company founder and president of Hudsucker Industries, Waring Hudsucker (Charles Durning), commits suicide by jumping through a window on the forty-fourth...
Single White Female is a 1992 thriller based on John Lutz's novel SWF Seeks Same. The movie stars Bridget Fonda, Jennifer Jason Leigh & Steven Weber and is directed by Barbet Schroeder, who also directed Reversal of Fortune.Alison "Allie" Jones (Bridget Fonda) is a software designer living in New York City. While her professional star is on the rise -- she has created a computer software package that will revolutionize the fashion world -- her personal life is a mess. Allie banishes her fiancé Sam Rawson from her rent-controlled apartment on Manhattan's Upper West Side, after discovering that he slept with his ex-wife. Allie finds platonic comfort in her neighbor Graham Knox, an aspiring actor with a sensitive shoulder to lean on. Realizing that the only way to hold on to her apartment is to find a roommate, Allie places an ad and interviews a succession of unsuitable candidates before settling on the shy Hedra "Hedy" Carlson (Jennifer Jason Leigh), the ideal roomie in Allie's...,
Rush is a crime drama film, based on a novel written by Kim Wozencraft. An experienced narcotics detective (played by Jason Patric) and his inexperienced partner (Jennifer Jason Leigh) go after an elusive drug dealer (played by Gregg Allman). They become drug addicted themselves and, failing to get the evidence they need, are forced to use falsified evidence. It was released in 1991 (see 1991 in film).
Eric Clapton's "Tears in Heaven" (which won three Grammy Awards) is featured in the film. Clapton wrote the entire film's soundtrack, which is entirely instrumental, except for "Tears in Heaven", "All Along the Watchtower", "Free Bird", "Help Me Up" and Buddy Guy's "Don't Know Which Way to Go".
Seasoned undercover narcotics police officer Jim Raynor (Patric) must choose a new partner for his next assignment. He chooses the "wet-behind-the-ears" Kristen Cates (Jennifer Jason Leigh). Together they are looking to bring down the so-far untouchable Gaines (Gregg Allman).
As they get deeper...,
Backdraft is an American movie released in 1991, directed by Ron Howard and written by Gregory Widen. Kurt Russell, William Baldwin, Robert De Niro and Scott Glenn star. Donald Sutherland, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Rebecca De Mornay, Jason Gedrick and J.T. Walsh are also featured. The story is about firefighters in Chicago on the trail of a serial arsonist.
The film received three Academy Award nominations (Sound Effects Editing, Visual Effects and Best Sound). It also received two nominations at the first annual MTV Movie Awards.
Featured in the film are original songs performed by The Drovers, a Chicago band that was heavily influenced by Irish traditional music. The titles of the tracks are "Unpromised Land," "Nothing for You" and "Granuille Reels." The Drovers appeared several years later in the motion picture Blink, also filmed in Chicago. In the film, Madeleine Stowe plays the band's violinist.
There is an exhibit at Universal Studios based on the film.
The movie tells the story of...
Miami Blues is a 1990 film based on the novel of the same name by Charles Willeford. It stars Alec Baldwin, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Fred Ward, and was directed by George Armitage.
When sociopath Fred Frenger (Baldwin) gets out of prison, he decides to start over in Miami, Florida, where he starts a violent one-man crime wave. He soon meets up with amiable college student/prostitute Susie Waggoner (Leigh). Opposing Frenger is Sgt Hoke Moseley (Ward), a cop who is getting a bit old for the job, especially since the job of cop in 1980s Miami is getting crazier all the time.
Sister, Sister is a 1987 Southern Gothic thriller directed and co-written by Bill Condon. The film stars Eric Stoltz, Jennifer Jason Leigh, and Judith Ivey. Matt Rutledge (Eric Stoltz) is on business in the country. He decides to stay at an old house which is a bed-in-breakfast owned by two sisters, Charlotte (Judith Ivey) and Lucy (Jennifer Jason Leigh). Charlotte is in and out of love with town sheriff, Cleve Doucet (Dennis Lipscomb) while Lucy becomes seductive and attracted to Matt. Soon, the characters find themselves involved in murder, betrayal, and dark secrets from the past. ...,
The Hitcher is a 1986 horror / thriller film, directed by Robert Harmon and written by Eric Red. The film stars Rutger Hauer, C. Thomas Howell and Jennifer Jason Leigh. The film was #34 on Bravo TV's 100 Scariest Movie Moments.In addition to scenes shot in the studio, filming locations include Amboy, California, Barstow, California, Death Valley National Park in California, Imperial County, California and Lake Mead in Nevada.The film spawned a sequel in 2003, The Hitcher II: I've Been Waiting, with C. Thomas Howell returning to the role of Jim Halsey. With the replacement of Hauer by Jake Busey, the sequel posed none of the existential questions of the first film and struggled to find favour with admirers of the original. A remake was filmed and released on January 19, 2007; directed by Dave Meyers with Sean Bean playing the hitcher.Jim Halsey (C. Thomas Howell), a young man transporting a car from Chicago to San Diego, spots a man hitchhiking and gives him a ride. The man, John Ryder...,
Flesh & Blood (1985) is a film directed by Paul Verhoeven. The film is set in 1501 in Europe, and the title is an allusion to "Sex & Violence", the main themes. A group of mercenaries is followed as they battle, loot, rape and party.The script is partly based on unused material for the Dutch TV series Floris, which was the debut for Gerard Soeteman, Paul Verhoeven and Rutger Hauer.The film begins in 1501, where an unnamed city in Renaissance Italy is under siege. Many mercenaries were hired by the city's former ruler, Arnolfini (Fernando Hilbeck), to reinstate him. Arnolfini's Son, Steven, tries an experimental plan to blow open the city gate with explosives, but it fails rather comically. The city will be taken with an old-fashioned assault. To motivate his men, Arnolfini grants his troops 24 hours to take any spoils they can find within its walls. The plan works, and the men successfully take the city and slaughter the defenders.Arnolfini turns to the Mercenary Captain,...,
Fast Times at Ridgemont High is a 1982 American coming-of-age teen-comedy film written by Cameron Crowe (adapted from his book) and directed by Amy Heckerling. The film follows a school year in the lives of freshman Stacy Hamilton (Jennifer Jason Leigh), freshman Mark Ratner (Brian Backer) and their respective friends Linda Barrett (Phoebe Cates) and Mike Damone (Robert Romanus) who believe themselves wise in the ways of romance and counsel their younger counterparts. The ensemble cast of characters also includes Jeff Spicoli (Sean Penn), a perpetually stoned surfer who faces off against uptight history teacher Mr. Hand (Ray Walston), who is convinced that all of his students smoke marijuana. Stacy's brother, Brad (Judge Reinhold), is a popular senior who works at a local burger joint.
It includes early appearances by several actors who would later become stars, including Sean Penn, Eric Stoltz, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Nicolas Cage, Anthony Edwards, Forest Whitaker, and Judge Reinhold....,
Jennifer Jason Leigh was born in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California