Jason Michael Lee (born April 25, 1970) is an American skateboarder and actor, known for his role as the title character on the NBC television series My Name is Earl, his portrayal of Syndrome in the film The Incredibles and his work with director Kevin Smith. Lee is currently starring in the new TNT series Memphis Beat, which premiered on June 22, 2010.[1]


Lee was a prominent professional skateboarder in the late 1980s and early 1990s. He co-founded Stereo Skateboards with Chris Pastras in 1992; the pair revived the company in 2003 after it had been defunct for several years.[2] Lee and Tony Hawk were the first two skateboarders to receive a signature shoe with Airwalk.[3][4] Lee later worked with Hawk when he lent his voice and likeness to the skateboarding video-game Tony Hawk's Project 8. Lee later appeared in another skateboarding video-game in 2010 with Skate 3 as 'Coach Frank', a character created during development for Stereo.[5]

He had a part in the 1991 Blind Skateboards video Video Days, shot by director Spike Jonze. In 2004, Lee's skateboarding was featured in the film "Way Out East!", a film produced by Stereo Skateboards that he co-wrote and directed.[citation needed]

Acting career

After taking some minor acting roles, including the Jonze-directed Sonic Youth music video for "100%," in 1992 and a small part in Allison Anders' 1993 film Mi Vida Loca, Lee left professional skating for a full-time acting career.[6][7] His first major movie role was in Kevin Smith's Mallrats which became a cult hit.[6][8] 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 2 and Cop Out.[7][9][10] Lee won an Independent Spirit Award for his role in Chasing Amy as Banky Edwards, a comic book inker.[7]

Lee graduated to leading man roles in Heartbreakers (alongside Jennifer Love Hewitt) and Stealing Harvard (alongside Tom Green) as well as A Guy Thing (alongside Julia Stiles).[11][12][13] 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.[9] Lee also voiced the supervillain Syndrome in the animated movie The Incredibles and its DVD bonus video Jack-Jack Attack.[9] 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.[citation needed] He is also the voice of Underdog in Underdog, and plays David "Dave" Seville in the films Alvin and the Chipmunks and Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel.[9][10]

In 2005, Lee was offered the lead role in the NBC sitcom, My Name Is Earl.[14] 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.[15][16][17] After four seasons of My Name is Earl NBC cancelled the series.

On June 22, 2010 the new TNT series Memphis Beat premiered. Lee stars alongside Alfre Woodard[18] and plays Dwight Hendricks, a character who despite being a police officer moonlights as a blues singer.[18]

Personal life

Lee was born in Orange County, California, the son of Carol (née Weaver), a homemaker, and Greg Lee.[19] He was raised in Huntington Beach and attended Ocean View High School.[citation needed]

Lee married actress and photographer Carmen Llywelyn in 1995, but they divorced in 2001. Lee was engaged to actress Beth Riesgraf and together have a son named Pilot Inspektor. The couple came up with the unusual name after listening to the song "He's Simple, He's Dumb, He's the Pilot" by the indie rock band Grandaddy.[20] Lee and Riesgraf separated in 2007. On August 10, 2008, Lee's partner Ceren Alkaç gave birth to a daughter.[20] On November 24, 2008, Lee's publicist announced that the couple had secretly wed in California in July 2008.[21]

Lee has a substantial collection of rare motorcycles. He owns a rare post-war custom Falcon Motorcycle which won Best Custom Motorcycle at the 2008 year Legend Of The Motorcycle International Concours d’Elegance.[22]

Lee is a member of the Church of Scientology[23] and is on the Board of Advisors for the Citizens Commission on Human Rights,[24] an organization founded by the Church of Scientology "dedicated to investigating and exposing psychiatric violations of human rights."[25]


Upcoming films


Video games


  1. Episode list for "Memphis Beat" IMDb
  2. History
  3. "Powerful Pro Shoes- What are some of the top-selling skate shoes of all time?", TransWorld Skateboarding, January 27, 2004
  4. "My First Paycheck - Jason Lee", TransWorld Skateboarding, February 24, 2004
  5. 5.0 5.1 "Skate 3 Coming May 11". Gamespy. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 Paatsch, Leigh (March 21, 2002). "Reel Deal". Herald Sun (Melbourne, Australia). p. 38. 
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Ash, Leona. "Biography: Jason Lee". Helium. Retrieved 6 July 2010. 
  8. Howe, Desson (October 20, 1995). "Overcrowded Mallrats". Washington Post. p. N44. 
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 "Filmography by year for Jason Lee". IMDB. Retrieved 6 July 2010. 
  10. 10.0 10.1 Koltnow, Barry (January 3, 2008). "Chasing chipmunks". The Courier Mail (Brisbane, Australia). p. 34. 
  11. Crawford, Jeff (July 11, 2001). "Hot Heartbreakers Only Mildly Amusing". Messenger (Adelaide, Australia). p. 11. 
  12. Dowell, Gary (September 13, 2002). "Getting into Harvard lawless school - Ivy League requires some stolen green in likeable comedy". The Dallas Morning News. p. 1J. 
  13. Burr, Ty (March 21, 2003). "Bleedful Things - 'Dreamcatcher' a Jumble of Classic Stephen King Gore". The Boston Globe. p. D1. 
  14. Itzkoff, Dave (January 8, 2006). "Trust Me, I'm Funnier With the Moustache". The New York Times. p. 33. 
  15. Nepales, Ruben V. (December 16, 2005). "Brokeback Mountain tops Golden Globe nominations". Philippine Daily Inquirer. p. 2. 
  16. "Golden Globes Ballot". San Francisco Chronicle. January 14, 2007. p. 24. 
  17. Longino, Bob (January 5, 2007). "SAG nominees have Oscar feel, diversified look". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. p. E14. 
  18. 18.0 18.1 Stanley, Alessandra (June 22, 2010). "Take Your Time, Crime Will Wait". The New York Times. p. 1. 
  19. Jason Lee Biography |
  20. 20.0 20.1 "EXCLUSIVE: My Name Is Earl Star Jason Lee Has Baby Girl". 
  21. "Jason Lee secretly marries". people magazine. 
  22. Vapors Magazine
  23. ABC News
  24. "CCHR's Board of Advisors". Citizens Commission on Human Rights. 
  25. "Frequently Asked Questions - Citizens Commission on Human Rights". Citizens Commission on Human Rights. 

External links

  1. REDIRECT Template:IMDb name
ar:جايسون لي

ca:Jason Lee cs:Jason Lee da:Jason Leeid:Jason Lee (aktor) it:Jason Lee he:ג'ייסון לי mk:Џејсон Ли nl:Jason Leeno:Jason Lee pl:Jason Leeru:Ли, Джейсон Майкл sl:Jason Lee fi:Jason Lee sv:Jason Lee tr:Jason Lee uk:Джейсон Лі

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