Jason Lee (actor)
||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (August 2013)|
Jason Lee in 2011
|Born||Jason Michael Lee
April 25, 1970
Huntington Beach, California
|Occupation||Actor, Comedian, Voice actor, Producer, Professional skateboarder|
|Spouse(s)||Carmen Llywelyn (1995–2001)
Ceren Alkaç (2008–present)
|Partner(s)||Beth Riesgraf (2001–2007)|
Jason Michael Lee (born April 25, 1970) is an American actor, comedian and professional skateboarder, known for his roles as the title character on the NBC television series, My Name is Earl, Syndrome in the film The Incredibles, Dave Seville in the Alvin and the Chipmunks films, and his work with director Kevin Smith. Lee is also the co-founder and co-owner (with Chris Pastras) of Stereo Skateboards, a company that sponsors team riders and is primarily concerned with the manufacture of skateboard decks.
|This section requires expansion. (January 2013)|
As a professional skateboarder, Lee's reputation was especially prominent in the late-1980s and early-1990s. He co-founded Stereo Skateboards with Chris "Dune" Pastras in 1992, and the pair revived the company in 2003 after it had been defunct for several years. Both Lee and Pastras remain on the professional "Classics" team roster as of October 2013.
Pastras, who was nineteen years of age when the company was founded, has explained in a 2012 interview, in relation to the original formation of Stereo:
It didn't piss off the cool guys and it didn't piss off the hesh guys; it was just sort of, like, retro-Americana. It was, like, an original vibe, you know. And anyone that skated could be, like, "Oh, I get that. It's cool." It was the perfect thing for the perfect time—Stereo ... I met Jason because me and Mike V (Vallely) took a trip out to California, and I was, like, fourteen, fifteen years-old, and we came out and stayed with Mark Gonzales. So, I got super lucky and I met Jason our first trip out, or my first trip out ... We both kinda had similar music tastes and interests. We weren't, like, drinking beer, we were drinking wine—you know? ... Stereo was, kinda, a manifestation of our, sort of, aesthetic. We both got, sorta, I guess, like, disillusioned with ... things, it was just like a no-brainer, you know, like, why don't we start our own deal? Our concept wasn't fully developed. It was just like, "Oh yeah, we want, like, a retro skate brand!", you know?'
The original team from the 1990s, in addition to Lee and Pastras, included Ethan Fowler, Matt Rodriguez, Carl Shipman, and Mike Daher, and the company released its first video, A Visual Sound, in 1994, adopting the aesthetic of retro companies such as the Blue Note jazz record label, and non-skateboarding influences. However, by 1999, the style that Lee and Pastras had infused into their brand was not marketable and the company gradually dissolved, with the distributor at the time, diverting its financial resources into the launch of other initiatives. Pastras revealed in 2012, "It was, like, a huge relief when it, when Stereo, ended, just because it was, like, the first time I got to not be the 'skater dude', that I knew; put that down for a minute and, sort of, like, joined the rest of the world for a minute, and not feel pressured to skate; but I got sick of it real quick."
Prior to the relaunch of Stereo, Pastras received an email from Lee, who informed his former partner that he had been skateboarding again in a new skate park that was owned by professional skateboarder, Steve Berra—Lee explained in the email that he had been executing tricks such as 360-flips and backside flips. Pastras has stated, "I could tell he was really excited about skateboarding." At the point when Lee raised the idea of restarting Stereo to Pastras, the latter had already been working in the area of the company's trademark for a year.
As of January 2013, the Stereo brand, together with the Hi-Fi wheel company, also co-owned by Lee, is distributed by the Antics! International company, also responsible for distributing the Theeve, Lurkville, and Armourdillo skateboard brands—the Antics! negotiation was finalized in September 2010. Professional skateboarders such as Kyle Leeper, Clint Peterson, Benny Fairfax, and Raymond Molinar ride for the Stereo brand (no team exists for the Hi-Fi brand, but a signature "filmer wheel" for skateboard videographer, Jason Hernandez, is featured on the January 2013 website). In the Antics! press release following the Stereo and Hi-Fi signing, Brian Howard, at the time the general manager of the distribution company, stated:
Stereo is one of those brands in skateboarding that has true heritage and respect from the skateboard world. The opportunity to be involved with the Stereo and Hi-Fi [brands] is very exciting. With Jason, Chris, and their team behind the creative and Antics behind the operations, I feel that we will push Stereo to a whole new level.
Lee and Tony Hawk were the first two skateboarders to receive a signature shoe with the Airwalk company. As of November 25, 2008, Lee is sponsored by Stereo, Zumiez, WeSC, and Dekline Footwear.
Lee was featured in the 1991 Blind Skateboards video, Video Days, shot by director Spike Jonze, as he was a key member of the company's team, in addition to Guy Mariano, at the time. In 2004, Lee's skateboarding was featured in the film, Way Out East!, a film produced by Stereo Skateboards that Lee co-directed alongside Pastras and Eric Noren.
In August 2012, Lee participated in the 9th annual Stand Up For Skateparks Event, at which he was co-chair with Hawk. The event is held annually by the Tony Hawk Charitable Foundation and seeks to "help create free, quality public skateparks for youth in low-income communities."
Video game appearances
Lee later worked with Hawk when he lent his voice and likeness to the skateboarding video game, Tony Hawk's Project 8, to become a playable character. Lee then appeared in another skateboarding video game in 2010, with Skate 3, appearing as "Coach Frank", a character created during the development of Stereo.
After taking some minor acting roles in 1992-1994, including the Jonze-directed Sonic Youth music video for "100%," a small part in Allison Anders' 1993 film Mi Vida Loca, and a bit part as a dance instructor on the television in the picture Chance and Things, Lee left professional skateboarding for a full-time acting career. His first major movie role was in Kevin Smith's Mallrats, which became a cult hit. This started a friendship that subsequently led to appearances in many of Smith's films, including Chasing Amy, Dogma, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, Clerks II, and Cop Out. Lee won an Independent Spirit Award for his role in Chasing Amy as Banky Edwards, a comic book inker.
Lee graduated to leading man roles in Heartbreakers (with Jennifer Love Hewitt) and Stealing Harvard (with Tom Green), as well as A Guy Thing (with Julia Stiles). He has had supporting roles in Vanilla Sky, Almost Famous as a rock star, Dreamcatcher, Big Trouble, The Ballad of Jack and Rose, and Mumford, as well as a minor role in Enemy of the State. Lee also voiced the supervillain Syndrome in the animated movie The Incredibles and its DVD bonus video Jack-Jack Attack. Lee reprised the role as a "robot copy" of Syndrome in the 2006 Disney on Ice play Disney Presents Pixar's The Incredibles in a Magic Kingdom Adventure. He is also the voice of Underdog in Underdog and plays David "Dave" Seville in the films Alvin and the Chipmunks, Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel, and Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked.
In 2005, Lee was offered the lead role in the NBC sitcom My Name Is Earl. According to interviews on the first-season DVD, he passed on the series twice before finally agreeing to read for the pilot. In the series, Lee stars as Earl Hickey, a petty thief who discovers karma and sets out to put right all his past wrongs. Lee received two Golden Globe nominations for Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy in 2006 and 2007, as well as a nomination for the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series in 2006. After four seasons of My Name is Earl NBC cancelled the series.
On June 22, 2010, the new TNT series Memphis Beat premiered. Lee starred with Alfre Woodard and played Dwight Hendricks, a character who works as a police officer and moonlights as a blues singer. In October 2011, it was announced the series was not renewed for a third season.
As of December 2011, Lee appeared in the NBC comedy Up All Night, but it was officially canceled on May 9, 2013, after its second season. A fourth installment of the Alvin and the Chipmunks franchise was then announced in June 2013 by the 20th Century Fox studio and a release date of December 11, 2015; however, Lee's involvement was not confirmed.
In October 2012, a video was released by the Keep A Breast Foundation, featuring various skateboarding identities, including Lee, together with Pastras. The video, contributing to the Foundation's aim to prevent and raise awareness of breast cancer, promotes the "I Love Boobies" bracelet. The video also features Clint Peterson (Stereo) and Giovanni Reda (WESC), who are both teammates of Lee.
Professional skateboarder and co-founder/owner of the Girl and Lakai Limited Footwear skateboard brands, Mike Carroll, has cited Lee and Julian Stranger as his seminal influences—Carroll revealed this information during an interview that corresponded with the selection of Carroll as the sixteenth most influential skateboarders of all time by the Transworld Skateboarding publication.
Indie pop band All Girl Summer Fun Band named its song "Jason Lee" after him.
Lee married actress and photographer Carmen Llywelyn in 1995, but they divorced in 2001. Llywelyn later cited Lee's devotion to Scientology as the reason for the cessation of the relationship.
Lee was then engaged to actress Beth Riesgraf who gave birth to their son Pilot Inspektor. The unusual name was inspired by the song "He's Simple, He's Dumb, He's the Pilot", by indie rock band Grandaddy. Lee has insisted that his son does not dislike his unusual name, stating that "Pilot loves his name. He goes to a little hippy school where all the children have interesting names. He has a friend named Zoot. Then there's Cosmo, and lots of others too." Lee and Riesgraf separated in 2007 prior to the registration of an official marriage.
While on holiday in England, Lee met Turkish model Ceren Alkaç at a concert. Shortly afterwards Alkaç returned to Turkey; however, the two stayed in touch through email and text messages until she came to America. On August 10, 2008, Alkaç gave birth to a daughter who they named Casper and on November 24, 2008, Lee's publicist announced that the couple had secretly wed in California in July 2008. On June 16, 2012, Alkaç gave birth to a son in Los Angeles, U.S. and the couple named him Sonny Lee.
In December 2011, Lee explained the influence of being a father and over forty years of age: "I gave up a lot of things and started exercising. I used to smoke cigarettes and we all like our wine and beer and things like that. I gave all that up and I just got on a very strict diet and started exercising, cycling and running, I dropped about 35 pounds."
||This section of a biography of a living person does not include any references or sources. (August 2013)|
||This section of a biography of a living person does not include any references or sources. (August 2013)|
|1997||Weapons of Mass Distraction||Phillip Messenger|
|2005–2009||My Name Is Earl||Earl Hickey||96 Episodes
Also Producer for 50 Episodes
Nominated-Golden Globe Award for Best Actor - Television Series Musical or Comedy (2006-2007)
Nominated-Satellite Award for Best Actor - Television Series Musical or Comedy (2005-2006)
Nominated-Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series
Nominated-Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series (2006-2007)
|2010-2013||Raising Hope||Smokey Floyd||Guest Star|
|2010-2011||Memphis Beat||Dwight Hendricks||20 episodes|
|2011||Up All Night||Kevin|
|2013||Men at Work||Donnie||Guest star, uncredited cameo appearance|
|2006||Tony Hawk's Project 8||Himself|
|2007||Alvin and the Chipmunks||David Seville||Cutscenes Only|
|2010||Skate 3||Coach Frank|||
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