Justin Theroux

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Justin Theroux
Maniac UK premiere (Theroux).jpg
Theroux in 2018
Justin Paul Theroux

(1971-08-10) August 10, 1971 (age 48)
Alma materBennington College
  • Actor
  • producer
  • director
  • writer
Years active1995–present
Jennifer Aniston
(m. 2015; div. 2019)
Partner(s)Heidi Bivens (1997–2011)
RelativesTheroux family

Justin Paul Theroux (/θəˈr/; born August 10, 1971)[1] is an American actor, film producer, director, and screenwriter. He gained recognition for his work with director David Lynch in the mystery film Mulholland Drive (2001) and the thriller film Inland Empire (2006). He also appeared in the films American Psycho (2000), Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle (2003), The Girl on the Train (2016), and The Spy Who Dumped Me (2018).

Theroux is further known as a screenwriter for films such as the action comedy Tropic Thunder (2008), the superhero film Iron Man 2 (2010), and the musical comedy-drama Rock of Ages (2012). He made his directorial debut with the romantic comedy film Dedication (2007).

Theroux starred as Kevin Garvey in the HBO mystery drama series The Leftovers (2014–2017), for which he was nominated for the Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Actor in a Drama Series. He also starred as Dr. James Mantleray in the Netflix comedy-drama miniseries Maniac (2018).

Early life[edit]

Theroux was born in Washington, D.C. His mother, Phyllis Grissim Theroux, is an essayist and author, and his father, Eugene Albert Theroux (born 1938), is a lawyer at Baker & McKenzie in Washington.[2][3] Theroux is the nephew of the travel writer and novelist Paul Theroux,[4][5] novelist and poet Alexander Theroux, author Peter Theroux, and novelist and educator Joseph Theroux; he is the cousin of British journalists and documentary filmmakers Louis and Marcel Theroux. His father is of half French-Canadian and half Italian descent. Through his mother, Theroux is a great-great-grandson of financier, banker and railroad magnate H. B. Hollins,[6][7] and of music critic and author Gustav Kobbé.[8][9][10]

Theroux attended Lafayette Elementary School, Annunciation School, and the Field School.[11] He first started acting while in high school at the Buxton School, in Williamstown, Massachusetts. He graduated from Bennington College in 1993 with a B.A. in visual arts and drama.[12]


Theroux made his film debut in 1996 in Mary Harron's I Shot Andy Warhol. Since then he has performed both on Broadway, starring in Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching Towards the Somme; in numerous off-Broadway productions; and in comedy films such as Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle, The Baxter, Romy and Michelle's High School Reunion, Broken Hearts Club, and Zoolander.

The stars and director of the film Mulholland Drive at the 2001 Cannes Film Festival. Left to right: actor Naomi Watts, director David Lynch, and actors Laura Harring and Justin Theroux

He has also performed in more serious films such as American Psycho. He appeared in the film versions of the cult television shows Strangers With Candy and Michael Mann's Miami Vice. He starred in David Lynch's films Mulholland Drive and Inland Empire.

In 2003, he was featured in a music video for the British band Muse for their song "Hysteria". Theroux also has appeared on television, having starred in The District and appeared on episodes of shows such as Alias, Ally McBeal, Sex and the City (in which he guest starred in two episodes as different characters), and Six Feet Under (in which he played a recurring character in the third and fourth seasons).

In 2006, he directed his first film, Dedication, which premiered at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival. A fan of the band Deerhoof, Theroux chose them to score Dedication.[13] Theroux also had roles in two other films at the festival, Broken English and The Ten, in which he played Jesus Christ alongside Gretchen Mol. Theroux co-wrote the Ben Stiller film Tropic Thunder, and also appeared in the behind-the-scenes mockumentary Tropic Thunder: Rain of Madness.

In 2008, Theroux played John Hancock in the HBO miniseries John Adams. In 2009, Theroux made up part of the voice cast for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. He also played Justin in Parks and Recreation. Theroux wrote the screenplay for the 2010 film Iron Man 2. Following Theroux's work on Tropic Thunder, actor Robert Downey Jr. recommended Theroux as a screenwriter to the film's director, Jon Favreau.

Theroux returned to acting in the film Your Highness (2011), as Leezar, an evil wizard who kidnaps a princess. He starred in the 2012 comedy Wanderlust, playing the leader of a hippie commune. By August 2012, Theroux was hired to direct and rewrite the script for the comedy film Swear to God.[14]

In June 2013, Theroux was cast as the lead character in HBO's TV pilot The Leftovers,[15] which HBO ordered as a 10-episode season In September 2013.[16] The series, which premiered June 29, 2014, is based on a book of the same name by Tom Perrotta, which follows a group of people left behind in the suburban community of Mapleton after mysterious disappearances worldwide.[17]

Theroux co-wrote the sequel Zoolander 2 (2016), and reprised his role, Evil DJ, in the film.[18]

Theroux also gave a voice to the character The Evil Lord Garmadon in the 2017 film The Lego Ninjago Movie.

Theroux made a cameo as The Master Codebreaker in the casino scenes in the 2017 film Star Wars: The Last Jedi.

He played savant neurochemist James Mantleray in the 2018 Netflix sci-fi drama Maniac.

He voiced the Decepticon Dropkick in the 2018 film Bumblebee, and will voice Tramp in Disney's live-action Lady and the Tramp, which will reunite him with The Lego Ninjago Movie director Charlie Bean.

Personal life[edit]

Theroux was in a relationship with stylist Heidi Bivens for 14 years until 2011.[19] Theroux began dating actress Jennifer Aniston in 2011, after working together on the film Wanderlust.[20] They became engaged in August 2012,[20] and wed on August 5, 2015.[21] On February 15, 2018, Theroux and Aniston announced in a statement to the Associated Press their separation at the end of 2017.[22] They formally divorced in 2019.



Year Title Role Notes
1996 I Shot Andy Warhol Mark
1997 Romy and Michele's High School Reunion Cowboy
Below Utopia Daniel Beckett
Dream House Mark Brooks
1998 Frogs for Snakes Flav Santana
Dead Broke James
2000 American Psycho Timothy Bryce
The Broken Hearts Club: A Romantic Comedy Marshall
2001 The Sleepy Time Gal Rebecca's Boyfriend
Mulholland Drive Adam
Zoolander Evil DJ
2002 Peel Narrator (voice) Short film
2003 Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle Seamus O'Grady
Duplex Coop
Happy Ending Jack
2005 Strangers with Candy Carlo Honklin
The Baxter Bradley Lake
The Legend of Lucky Keyes Guy Cooley
2006 Return to Rajapur Jeremy Reardon
Miami Vice Detective Larry Zito
Inland Empire Devon Berk / Billy Side
2007 Broken English Nick Gable
The Ten Jesus H. Christ
Dedication N/A Director and executive producer
2008 Tropic Thunder N/A Executive producer and writer
2010 Megamind Megamind's Father (voice) Also creative consultant
Iron Man 2 N/A Writer
Ultimate Iron Man Himself Documentary
2011 Your Highness Leezar
2012 Wanderlust Seth
Rock of Ages N/A Writer
2016 Zoolander 2 Evil DJ Also writer
The Girl on the Train Tom Watson
The Master Narrator (voice) Short film
2017 The Lego Ninjago Movie Lord Garmadon (voice)
Star Wars: The Last Jedi Master Codebreaker Cameo
2018 Mute Duck Teddington
The Spy Who Dumped Me Drew Thayer
On the Basis of Sex Mel Wulf
Bumblebee Dropkick (voice)
2019 Joker Ethan Chase Cameo
Lady and the Tramp Tramp (voice) Completed
TBA False Positive TBA Post-production
TBA Violet The Voice Post-production


Year Title Role Notes
1995 C.P.W. Gary Andrews Episode: "Stephanie and the Wolves"
1998 New York Undercover Frankie Stone 3 episodes
Ally McBeal Raymond Brown Episode: "Just Looking"
Spin City Pete Episode: "Local Hero"
Bronx County Unknown Pilot
1998–1999 Sex and the City Vaughn Wysel / Jared 2 episodes
1999 Sirens Officer David Bontempo Television film
2000–2001 The District Nick Pierce 27 episodes
2003 Alias Simon Walker 2 episodes
2003–2004 Six Feet Under Joe 8 episodes
2005 Confessions of a Dog Unknown Pilot
2008 John Adams John Hancock 2 episodes
2010 Parks and Recreation Justin Anderson 4 episodes
2011 Documental Jan Jurgen Pilot; also director and writer
2014–2017 The Leftovers Kevin Garvey 25 episodes
2016 Zoolander: Super Model N/A Television film; executive producer
2017–2019 At Home with Amy Sedaris Various characters 2 episodes
2018 Maniac Dr. James K. Mantleray 9 episodes

Video game[edit]

Year Title Voice role
2009 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Additional Voice Talent

Awards and nominations[edit]

List of awards and nominations received by Theroux.[23]

Year Association Category Title Result Ref
2005 Screen Actors Guild Award Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Six Feet Under Nominated [24]
2016 Critics Choice Television Award Best Actor in a Drama Series The Leftovers Nominated [25]
Dorian Award TV Performance of the Year – Actor Nominated [26]
Gold Derby Award Drama Lead Actor Nominated [27]
2017 Nominated [28]
IGN Summer Movie Award Best Dramatic TV Performance Nominated [29]
Online Film & Television Association Award Best Actor in a Drama Series Won [30]
2019 Primetime Emmy Award Outstanding Variety Special (Live) Live in Front of a Studio Audience: Norman Lear's All in the Family and The Jeffersons Won [23]


  1. ^ "Justin Theroux Biography: Screenwriter, Actor, Director (1971–)". Biography.com (FYI / A&E Networks). Archived from the original on March 23, 2016. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
  2. ^ Marchand, Philip (November 21, 1998). "Odd Authors? It Takes One to Know One" (abstract). Toronto Star (via ProQuest Archiver). Retrieved August 13, 2012.
  3. ^ Arnold, Gary (October 12, 2001). "Smoke and Mirrors". The Washington Post (via Davidlynch.de). Archived from the original on September 4, 2012. Retrieved August 13, 2012.
  4. ^ Hines, Barbara (September 14, 1980). "Letters – Lowells and Sitwells Questions of Gender The Wrong Theroux Cats" (title abstract only). The New York Times. Retrieved August 13, 2012.
  5. ^ Staff (n.d.). "Biography". Paultheroux.com. Retrieved August 13, 2012.
  6. ^ Staff (n.d.). "HollinsGrissim" (title abstract only). The New York Times. Retrieved August 13, 2012.
  7. ^ [page needed] Staff (2011). Contemporary Authors New Revision Series – A Bio-Bibliographical Guide to Current Writers in Fiction, General Non-Fiction, Poetry, Journalism, Drama, Motion Pictures, Television, & Other Fields. Gale Group (via Google Books). ISBN 978-1-414-46106-9. Retrieved August 13, 2012.
  8. ^ Staff (November 5, 1937). "Mrs.Hollins Web in Reno – Daughter of Mrs. Gustav Kobbe Is Bride of Henry Morgan" (abstract). The New York Times. Retrieved August 13, 2012.
  9. ^ Staff (October 23, 1909). "Hewlett – Schoonmacher Wedding" (abstract (click "preview" for full article in PDF format)). The New York Times. Retrieved August 14, 2012.
  10. ^ Staff (November 19, 1909). "Marriage Announcement 1 – No Title" (abstract (click "preview" for full article in PDF format)). The New York Times. Retrieved August 14, 2012.
  11. ^ Chaney, Jen (May 5, 2010). "Talking with Justin Theroux, Writer of 'Iron Man 2'". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 14, 2012.
  12. ^ "Meet Justin Theroux, Jennifer Aniston's new man". USA Today. June 6, 2011. Retrieved December 31, 2015.
  13. ^ Staff (August 21, 2007). "Excl: Justin Theroux Has Dedication". ComingSoon.net. Retrieved August 14, 2012.
  14. ^ Fleming, Mike (August 9, 2012). "Justin Theroux To Helm 'Swear To God' With Will Ferrell And Steve Carell". Deadline Hollywood. PMC Digital Media. Retrieved July 7, 2014.
  15. ^ West, Kelly (June 4, 2013). "Damon Lindelof's HBO Pilot The Leftovers Casts Justin Theroux". cinemablend.com. Retrieved June 5, 2013.
  16. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (September 16, 2013). "Damon Lindelof's 'The Leftovers' Gets Series Order At HBO". Deadline Hollywood. PMC Digital Media. Retrieved July 7, 2014.
  17. ^ "The Leftovers Episode List". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved July 7, 2014.
  18. ^ "Justin Theroux to Co-Write and Direct 'Zoolander 2'". Collider.com. February 24, 2010. Retrieved September 1, 2012.
  19. ^ "Five Things to Know About Justin Theroux's Ex-Girlfriend, Heidi Bivens". eonline.com.
  20. ^ a b Jordan, Julie (August 12, 2012). "Jennifer Aniston Is Engaged to Justin Theroux!". People. Retrieved November 13, 2019.
  21. ^ Zauzmer, Emily (August 6, 2015). "Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux Are Married!". People. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
  22. ^ Kohen, Sandy (February 15, 2018). "Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux announce separation". Associated Press. Retrieved February 15, 2018.
  23. ^ a b "Justin Theroux". IMDb. Retrieved April 7, 2018.
  24. ^ "11th Screen Actors Guild Awards", Wikipedia, May 4, 2018, retrieved August 14, 2018
  25. ^ "6th Critics' Choice Television Awards", Wikipedia, July 31, 2018, retrieved August 14, 2018
  26. ^ "Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association (GALECA) (2016)". IMDb. Retrieved August 14, 2018.
  27. ^ "2016 Gold Derby Awards", Wikipedia, August 9, 2018, retrieved August 14, 2018
  28. ^ "2017 Gold Derby Awards", Wikipedia, August 9, 2018, retrieved August 14, 2018
  29. ^ "IGN Summer Movie Awards (2017)". IMDb. Retrieved August 14, 2018.
  30. ^ "21st Annual TV Awards (2016–17) – Online Film & Television Association". www.oftaawards.com. Retrieved August 14, 2018.

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