Emile Hirsch

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Emile Hirsch
Emile Hirsch TIFF 2012.jpg
Born Emile Davenport Hirsch
(1985-03-13) March 13, 1985 (age 30)
Palms, California, U.S.
Occupation Actor
Years active 1996–present

Emile Davenport Hirsch (born March 13, 1985)[1] is an American film actor, whose works include Into the Wild, Lone Survivor, Milk, Prince Avalanche, The Motel Life, Speed Racer and the A&E networks simulcast miniseries Bonnie & Clyde.[2] He began performing in the late 1990s, and became known as a film actor after roles in Lords of Dogtown, The Emperor's Club, The Girl Next Door, Alpha Dog and the Sean Penn-directed film Into the Wild. Next up, along with Miles Teller and Ellen Page, Hirsch will star in the long awaited Steven Conrad-directed and still yet-to-be-titled John Belushi biopic.[3]

Early life[edit]

Emile Hirsch was born in Palms, California. His mother, Margaret Esther (née Davenport), is a visual artist and teacher who designed pop-up books, and Hirsch's father, David M. Hirsch, is an entrepreneur, manager and producer.[4][5][6] He has an older sister, Jenny. He has German Jewish (from his paternal grandfather), English and German ancestry. He was raised in Los Angeles, California, and Santa Fe, New Mexico, where he lived with his mother for several years.


Hirsch's early work includes the Jodie Foster produced film The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys, for which he won great critical acclaim.[7] Great reviews also followed when he starred alongside Kevin Kline in the Michael Hoffman picture The Emperor's Club. He was then seen opposite Laura Linney and Gena Rowlands in the award-winning Showtime original movie Wild Iris.

Hirsch at Hollywood Life Magazine’s 7th Annual Breakthrough Awards in December 2007

Hirsch was then in the 2004 teen comedy, The Girl Next Door, and as a result gained excellent mainstream reviews and wider recognition among teenage audiences. The Mudge Boy, a film in which he had starred before making The Girl Next Door, was released in the summer of 2004. Hirsch next appeared with Jeff Daniels and Sigourney Weaver in Imaginary Heroes, a drama about a dysfunctional family, which was released in February 2005.[8][9]

Later, in 2005, Hirsch starred with Heath Ledger in Lords of Dogtown, a cult favorite by director Catherine Hardwicke; the film, about a number of well-known skaters of the 1970s and their role in the birth of a higher-profile skateboard culture, was released on June 3, 2005. Hirsch played Jay Adams (who some say was the original “Z-Boy”), and was praised by critics for his performance. It was this performance that caught Sean Penn's attention; he would later cast Hirsch in the feature film Into The Wild. He subsequently appeared in Alpha Dog, a dark drama starring Justin Timberlake, Anton Yelchin, Bruce Willis, and Sharon Stone in which Hirsch played a character based on real-life drug dealer Jesse James Hollywood; the film was shot in 2004 and released on January 12, 2007. Hirsch consulted with Hollywood's real life father before playing the role.

Hirsch next played adventurer Christopher McCandless in Sean Penn's critically acclaimed adventure-drama Into the Wild, released on September 21, 2007. He lost 40 pounds for the role and was noted in reviews as a potential Academy Award nominee for the film. Although he did not receive an Oscar nod for the star turn, he did gain a Screen Actors Guild nomination for best actor.[10][11] Hirsch had the title role in the Andy & Larry Wachowski's follow up to The Matrix Trilogy, Speed Racer, which was released on May 9, 2008.[12] Hirsch plays gay rights activist Cleve Jones in Gus Van Sant's 2008 Academy Award-winning Harvey Milk bio-pic Milk starring Sean Penn in the title role. He also appeared in Academy Award-winning director Ang Lee's film Taking Woodstock, based on a screenplay of Elliot Tiber's memoir Taking Woodstock, adapted by James Schamus. He starred in The Motel Life, based on the novel by Willy Vlautin. The film was lensed in Nevada in 2010, and released in 2013.

In April 2011, he was cast in Oliver Stone's Savages, which was released in July 2012.[13]

In 2012, he starred with Penélope Cruz in Venuto al mondo, a film by Italian director Sergio Castellitto. In 2013 he starred in Prince Avalanche, co-starring Paul Rudd, which premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival where it was acquired by Magnolia Pictures. Director David Gordon Green would go on to win Best Director for the film at the Berlin Film Festival. Additionally, Hirsch starred alongside Academy Award winner Matthew McConaughey in the William Friedkin directed Killer Joe. The controversial, NC-17 film, was written by Pulitzer Prize–winning playwright Tracy Letts. Hirsch also starred in the Rome Film Festival Award-winning film The Motel Life, co-starring Dakota Fanning and Stephen Dorff, directed by the Polsky brothers. In Fall 2013, he starred alongside Holliday Grainger, and Oscar winners Holly Hunter and William Hurt, in the two-part Bruce Beresford directed miniseries, Bonnie & Clyde. This television event was simultaneously broadcast on A&E, History, and Lifetime and drew in over ten million viewers, which to date renders it one of the most seen miniseries of all time.

In October 2013, it was reported that Hirsch is set to play Blues Brothers star John Belushi in a biopic about the actor's life. The yet-to-be-titled film will be written and directed by Steve Conrad. Hirsch will star alongside Miles Teller and Ellen Page in the film.

In 2013, Hirsch co-starred alongside Mark Wahlberg, Taylor Kitsch and Ben Foster in the Peter Berg directed Universal Pictures film Lone Survivor, (based on the true life memoir of Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell). The film grossed over $125 million domestically, as well as earning a rare and coveted A+ grade from CinemaScore. In the film, Hirsch plays fallen Navy SEAL Danny Dietz.[14][15]

Personal life and press[edit]

Hirsch resides in Venice, California, and enjoys writing poetry and screenplays and appreciating the visual arts. He has won five awards, including the Critics’ Choice Award for breakthrough performance and best actor for his role in Into the Wild, as well as 11 other nominations. He has appeared on many magazine covers, including Nylon Guys, Teen Vogue, Movieline, Another Man and L’Uomo Vogue (Italy).[16]

Hirsch appeared in Esquire in November 2007, being called one of the "Actors of the Year", along with Denzel Washington, Cate Blanchett, Javier Bardem, Jake Gyllenhaal and Robert Downey, Jr., for his role in Sean Penn's Into the Wild. Esquire said, "[Hirsch] creates a vivid, unforgettable character you at once admire and pity."[17]

Hirsch appeared on the cover of Men’s Journal in January 2009.[18][19] He wrote a "Congo Diary" in December 2008 that was published in the following issue along with a photo spread. He ventured into Africa along with four young activists, and kept a journal of his five-day trip. Reflecting on his trip, Hirsch said, “Now I look back at some of the earlier parts of this travelogue and almost chuckle at my naïveté. Maybe we can all come together to change the world.”[20]

On February 12, 2015, Hirsch was charged with aggravated assault after allegedly choking a woman during an argument at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival.[21][22]


Film and television
1997 Early Edition Lance Foster Season 2: Episode 8: March in Time
1997 3rd Rock from the Sun Punk Season 3: Episode 5: Scaredy Dick
1998 Gargantua Brandon Ellway
1998 Houdini Young Houdini Television movie
1999 Sabrina, the Teenage Witch Darryl Season 3: Episode 16: Sabrina, the Matchmaker
1999 The Pretender Bryce Season 3: Episode 19: End Game
1999 Two of a Kind Jeremy Season 1: Episode 12: Let's Dance
2001 Wild Iris Lony Brevard
2002 Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys, TheThe Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys Francis Doyle
2002 Emperor's Club, TheThe Emperor's Club Sedgewick Bell Nominated—Young Artist Award for Best Performance in a Feature Film – Supporting Young Actor
2003 Mudge Boy, TheThe Mudge Boy Duncan Mudge limited release
2004 Girl Next Door, TheThe Girl Next Door Matthew Kidman Nominated—MTV Movie Award for Best Kiss (shared with Elisha Cuthbert)
2004 Imaginary Heroes Tim Travis limited release
2005 Lords of Dogtown Jay Adams Nominated—Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie Breakout Performance – Male
2007 Alpha Dog Johnny Truelove
2007 Into the Wild Christopher "Alexander Super-Tramp" McCandless National Board of Review Award for Breakthrough Male Performance
Nominated—Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor
Nominated—Detroit Film Critics Society Award for Best Actor
Nominated—Houston Film Critics Society Award for Best Actor
Nominated—Gotham Award for Breakthrough Artist
Nominated—Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Actor
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated—Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie Actor: Drama
2008 Air I Breathe, TheThe Air I Breathe Tony limited release
2008 Speed Racer Speed Racer Nominated—Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie Actor: Action Adventure
2008 Milk Cleve Jones Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Cast
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
2009 Taking Woodstock Billy
2011 Killer Joe Chris Smith
2011 The Darkest Hour Sean
2012 Savages Spin
2012 Venuto al mondo - Twice Born Diego
2012 The Motel Life Frank Flannigan
2013 Prince Avalanche Lance
2013 Bonnie & Clyde Clyde Barrow TV miniseries
2013 Lone Survivor Danny Dietz
2015 Ten Thousand Saints Johnny
TBA Untitled John Belushi Biopic John Belushi


  1. ^ "Emile Davenport Hirsch 03/13/1985". California Birth Index. Retrieved January 30, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role". IMDB. Retrieved January 27, 2008. 
  3. ^ Kit, Borys. "Emile Hirsch to Play John Belushi in Biopic". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 28, 2013. 
  4. ^ "Margaret Davenport - California, Marriage Index, 1960-1985". Ancestry.com. Retrieved May 12, 2014. 
  5. ^ McLean, Craig (October 20, 2007). "Call of the wild". Daily Telegraph (London). Retrieved October 20, 2007. 
  6. ^ Toppman, Lawrence (October 21, 2007). "C`Wild' sets young star soaring". The Charlotte Observer. Retrieved October 21, 2007. 
  7. ^ Holden, Stephen. "The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys (2002) FILM REVIEW; Altar Boys Will Be Altar Boys, and They're Drawing Comics, Too". The New York Times. Retrieved June 14, 2002. 
  8. ^ "The Numbers.com". Emile Hirsch. Retrieved March 16, 2006. 
  9. ^ "Rotten Tomatoes". Emile Hirsch. Retrieved March 16, 2006. 
  10. ^ Piccalo, Gina (September 22, 2007). "Emile Hirsch comes 'Into the Wild'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 22, 2007. [dead link]
  11. ^ Levine, Stuart (September 18, 2007). "Emile Hirsch is here to stay". MSNBC. Retrieved September 19, 2007. 
  12. ^ Dicker, Ron (September 16, 2007). "Two Postcards From Toronto: Evan Rachel Wood, Emile Hirsch Give Hollywood A Glimpse Of Its Future". Hartford Courant. Archived from the original on November 23, 2007. Retrieved September 16, 2007. 
  13. ^ "Emile Hirsch Joins Oliver Stone's 'Savages'". Indiewire. April 22, 2011. Retrieved May 12, 2014. 
  14. ^ McClintock, Pamela. "Box Office: 'Lone Survivor' No. 1 Friday With $14.4 Million; 'Hercules' Stumbles". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved January 11, 2014. 
  15. ^ Mendelson, Scott. "Weekend Box Office: 'Neighbors' Opens To $51M, 'Spider-Man 2' Hits $550M Worldwide". Forbes. Retrieved May 11, 2014. 
  16. ^ "Emile Hirsch Gets Shot By Francesco Carrozzini For L’Uomo Vogue". socialitelife.com. March 24, 2009. Retrieved May 24, 2013. 
  17. ^ D' Angelo, Mike (November 20, 2007). "Actors of the Year - Page 6". Esquire.com. Retrieved May 25, 2013. 
  18. ^ "Emile Hirsch in Men's Journal (January 2009)". December 21, 2008. Retrieved May 25, 2013. 
  20. ^ Hirsch, Emile (December 15, 2008). "Emile Hirsch’s Congo Diary". mensjournal.com. Retrieved May 25, 2013. 
  21. ^ "Emile Hirsch Charged With Felony Assault In Sundance Fight". 
  22. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-31451264

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