J. K. Simmons

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J. K. Simmons
JKSimmons07TIFF (cropped).jpg
Simmons at the 2007 Toronto International Film Festival in Toronto, Canada.
BornJonathan Kimble Simmons
(1955-01-09) January 9, 1955 (age 59)
Detroit, Michigan, United States
OccupationActor
Years active1986–present
Spouse(s)Michelle Schumacher (m. 1996)
Children3
 
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J. K. Simmons
JKSimmons07TIFF (cropped).jpg
Simmons at the 2007 Toronto International Film Festival in Toronto, Canada.
BornJonathan Kimble Simmons
(1955-01-09) January 9, 1955 (age 59)
Detroit, Michigan, United States
OccupationActor
Years active1986–present
Spouse(s)Michelle Schumacher (m. 1996)
Children3

Jonathan Kimble "J. K." Simmons (born January 9, 1955) is an American actor. He is best known for his roles on television as Dr. Emil Skoda in NBC's Law & Order (and other shows in the Law & Order franchise), neo-Nazi Vernon Schillinger in the HBO prison drama Oz, and as Assistant Police Chief Will Pope on TNT's The Closer; on film as J. Jonah Jameson in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man trilogy, and for voice-over work in animation and video games.

Early life[edit]

Simmons was born in Detroit, Michigan, the son of Patricia (née Kimble), an administrator, and Donald William Simmons, a college professor.[1][2] He has a brother, David (a singer-songwriter), and a sister, Elizabeth. He was raised in Columbus, Ohio and Missoula, Montana, and attended the University of Montana.[3][4] Simmons was a member of the Seattle Repertory Theatre.[3]

Career[edit]

Musical theatre[edit]

Simmons was a Broadway actor and singer. He played Benny Southstreet in the 1992 revival of Guys and Dolls,[5] and in 1994, he sang multiple roles in the Wagner opera satire, Das Barbecu.[3] He also played the role of Jigger in a revival of Carousel with the Houston Grand Opera and starred in the 1987 Off-Broadway musical Birds of Paradise.

Film and television roles[edit]

Simmons is known for his TV roles as Dr. Emil Skoda, a police psychiatrist, who has appeared on three of the four incarnations of Law & Order and New York Undercover, and as the sadistic Aryan inmate Vernon Schillinger on the prison drama Oz. He also stars as Ralph Earnhardt, the father of race-car driver Dale Earnhardt, in 3: The Dale Earnhardt Story. He played B.R. in the film Thank You For Smoking and has been praised for his performance in Juno as "Mac" McGuff, the title character's father. Until recently he played Will Pope, Assistant Chief of the LAPD, in The Closer.

He also played J. Jonah Jameson in all three of Sam Raimi's Spider-Man films and the expanded video game adaptation of Spider-Man 3. Simmons provided his voice for two newspaper editors in two episodes of the eighteenth season of The Simpsons. The characters are never named, but are obviously meant to emulate the character of Jameson (one, bearing Jameson's appearance, even demands "pictures of Spider-Man", then on being reminded he works at a poetry journal, demands "poems about Spider-Man"). Similarly, Simmons voiced an editor-in-chief of a newspaper (with Jameson's appearance and mannerisms) for a 2013 episode of The Hub's Pound Puppies.

Simmons also provides the voice of the yellow M&M in the product's commercials, as well as the 3-D film I Lost My M in Vegas, playing at M&M's World in Las Vegas, NV. He has also done voiceover work for Norelco razors. He also provided the voice of General Wade Eiling in Justice League Unlimited. He recorded an audio book for Tom Clancy's Net Force Point of Impact. Like many of his Law & Order co-stars, he also appeared in an episode of Homicide: Life on the Street, portraying a criminal in an episode that crossed over with Law & Order before Simmons joined the cast as Skoda. He also played a small role as an army general in the television sitcom Arrested Development, alongside his Juno co-stars, Michael Cera and Jason Bateman. As well, he played Dan the Barber in the surreal Nickelodeon kid's show The Adventures of Pete & Pete in 1995. In 2008, he had a small part as the "CIA Superior" in Burn After Reading. Simmons appears also in Postal as Candidate Wells. He has also been featured as Professor Nathaniel Burke of the University of Farmers in television commercials for Farmers Insurance Group beginning in 2010.[6] He also played Paul Rudd's father in I Love You, Man

Simmons is quickly becoming known for starring in films that are produced or directed by his friend Jason Reitman, including Thank You for Smoking, Juno, Up in the Air and Jennifer's Body, written by Juno screenwriter Diablo Cody. He also lent his voice to Reitman's latest film Young Adult voicing the protagonist's boss through a series of voicemails.

Simmons voices the character of Tenzin, an Airbending master and the son of Aang and Katara, in the 2012 Nickelodeon series The Legend of Korra. Also, he has resumed his role as the voice of J. Jonah Jameson in the animated series Ultimate Spider-Man and in The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes. He said he would like to reprise the role again in Marc Webb's The Amazing Spider-Man series, a reboot of the Spider-Man film series.[7]

Video games[edit]

Simmons has appeared as the anti-communist U. S. President Howard T. Ackerman in the video game Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 and a series of promotional advertisements parodying the 2008 presidential elections. In these advertisements, he offers himself (as Ackerman) as an alternative to other, unnamed presidential candidates and used the slogan "Vote for me, if you want to live."[8] In April 2011, he appeared in Portal 2 as the voice of Aperture Science founder Cave Johnson,[9] a performance that was lauded as the "surprise star turn" of the game.[10]

Filmography[edit]

YearTitleRoleNotes
1986Popeye DoylePatrolman in ParkTelevision film
1994Ref, TheThe RefSiskel
Heisei tanuki gassen pompokoSeizaemonVoice only (English version)
a.k.a. Pom Poko
Scout, TheThe ScoutAssistant Coach
Law & OrderJerry LuppinEpisode: "Sanctuary"
1995New York NewsUnknownEpisode: "Welcome Back Cotter"
Adventures of Pete & Pete, TheThe Adventures of Pete & PeteBarber DanEpisode: "Saturday"
1996Homicide: Life on the StreetCol. Alexander RauschEpisode: "For God and Country" (Part II)
Swift JusticeMel TurmanEpisode: "Stones"
First Wives Club, TheThe First Wives ClubFederal Marshal
Extreme MeasuresDr. Mingus
1996–1998New York UndercoverSergeant Treadway/Dr. Emil Skoda2 episodes
1997Love Walked InMr. Shulman
Spin CityKevin TravisEpisode: "Hot in the City"
Crossing FieldsGuy
Jackal, TheThe JackalFBI Agent T. I. Witherspoon
AnastasiaEnsemble and Character Vocals
Face DownHerb AamesTelevision film
1997–2003OzVernon Schillinger56 episodes
1997–2004Law & OrderDr. Emil Skoda45 Episodes
1998New York UndercoverDr. Emil SkodaEpisode: "Mob Street"
CelebritySouvenir Hawker
Remember WENNCaptain AmazonEpisode: "All's Noisy on the Pittsburgh Front"
Above FreezingHoyd
1999Hit and RunwayRay Tilman
Cider House Rules, TheThe Cider House RulesRay Kendall
For Love of the GameFrank Perry
I Lost My M in VegasYellowVoice only
Saturday Night LiveVern SchillingerEpisode: "Jerry Seinfeld/David Bowie"
2000Third WatchFrank HagononEpisode: "Demolition Derby"
Beautiful JoeUncredited
Autumn in New YorkDr. Tom Grandy
Gift, TheThe GiftSheriff Pearl Johnson
2000–01Law & Order: Special Victims UnitDr. Emil Skoda6 episodes
2001Disney's RecessVarious People
Mexican, TheThe MexicanTed Slocum
2002Homeward BoundJim AshtonTelevision film
Law & Order: Criminal IntentDr. Emil SkodaEpisode: "Crazy"
Spider-ManJ. Jonah Jameson
Path to WarCIA BrieferTelevision film
2003DisposalOlder Hunter
Off the MapGeorge
John DoeLucas DoyaEpisode: "The Rising"
EverwoodPhil DrebblesEpisode: "Burden of Truth"
2004ERGus LoomerEpisode: "Impulse Control"
HidalgoBuffalo Bill Cody
Ladykillers, TheThe LadykillersGarth Pancake
The D.A.Dep. Dist. Atty. Joe CarterEpisode: "The People vs. Sergius Kovinsky"; "The People vs. Achmed Abbas"
Without a TraceMark WilsonEpisode: "Two Families"
Jury, TheThe JuryRon StalsukilisEpisode: "Last Rites"
Spider-Man 2J. Jonah Jameson
Nip/TuckIke ConnorsEpisode: "Kimber Henry"
3: The Dale Earnhardt StoryRalph EarnhardtTelevision film
2004–06Justice LeagueGeneral Wade EilingVoice only
5 Episodes
2005Arrested DevelopmentGeneral AndersonEpisode: "Switch Hitter"
Jack & BobbyCyrus MillerEpisode: "Running Scared"
Numb3rsDr. Clarence WeaverEpisode: "Vector"
Thank You for SmokingBR
Harsh TimesAgent Richards
2005–2012Closer, TheThe CloserAssistant Chief Will Pope88 Episodes;
Nominated - Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2011)
Nominated - Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2010)
Nominated - Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2009)
Nominated - Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2008)
Nominated - Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2006)
2006West Wing, TheThe West WingHarry RavitchEpisode: "Duck and Cover"
First SnowVacaro
Astronaut Farmer, TheThe Astronaut FarmerJacobson
2006–07Simpsons, TheThe SimpsonsJ. Jonah Jameson; Tabloid EditorVoice only
Episodes: "Moe'N'a Lisa" and "Homerazzi"
2007Spider-Man 3J. Jonah Jameson
Spider-Man 3J. Jonah JamesonVideo game
Voice only
Bury My Heart at Wounded KneeJames McLaughlinTelevision film
Queens SupremeErnest FingermanEpisode: "Let's Make a Deal"
Kim PossibleMartin SmartyVoice only
3 Episodes
PostalCandidate Welles
JunoMac MacGuffNominated - Chlotrudis Award Best Supporting Actor
Nominated - Critics Choice Award Best Acting Ensemble (shared w/ cast)
RenditionLee Mayer
2007–08American Dad!Judge; McCrearyVoice only
Episodes: "The Most Adequate Christmas Ever" and "The One That Got Away"
2008Phineas and FerbJ.B.Voice only
Episode: "Toy to the World"
Burn After ReadingCIA Superior
Ben 10: Alien ForceMagister GhilhilVoice only
Episode: "Darkstar Rising"
Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3President Howard T. AckermanVideo game
2009Vicious Kind, TheThe Vicious KindDonald Sinclaire
New in TownStu Kopenhafer
Way of War, TheThe Way of WarSergeant Mitchell
Red SandsLt. Col. Arson
I Love You, ManOswald Klaven
Aliens in the AtticSkipVoice only
Post GradRoy Davies
ExtractBrian
Up in the AirBobCameo;
Central Ohio Film Critics Association Best Ensemble (shared w/ cast)
Nominated - Critics Choice Award Best Acting Ensemble (shared w/ cast)
Nominated - Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association Best Ensemble (shared w/ cast)
Jennifer's BodyMr. Wroblewski
Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack, TheThe Marvelous Misadventures of FlapjackPoseidonVoice only
4 Episodes
2009–10Party DownLeonard StiltskinEpisode: "Taylor Stiltskin Sweet Sixteen"
Episode: "Precious Lights Pre-School Auction"
20104192: The Crowning of the Hit KingNarrator
Batman: The Brave and the BoldGuardians of the Universe, Evil Star, Kyle "Ace" MorganVoice only
Episode: "Revenge of the Reach!"
Ben 10: Ultimate AlienMagister GhilhilVoice only
Episode: "Escape From Aggregor"
Generator RexWhite KnightVoice only
Crazy on the OutsideEd
Invisible Sign, AnAn Invisible SignMr. Jones
Beginner's Guide to Endings, AA Beginner's Guide to EndingsUncle Pal
MegamindWardenVoice only
True GritLawyer DaggettVoice only
Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty GaloreGruff K-9Voice only
2011Music Never Stopped, TheThe Music Never StoppedHenry Sawyer
Portal 2Cave JohnsonVideo game
Voice only
Raising HopeBruce Chance
NTSF:SD:SUV::Frank ForrestEpisode: "One Cabeza, Two Cabeza, Three Cabeza...DEAD!"
Pound PuppiesLieutenant Rock, Mr. WithersVoice Only
Episodes: "The K9 Kid" and "Working K-9 to 5"
Young AdultMavis's publisherUncredited
2012The WordsRory's Father
Geezers!J Kimball
ContrabandCaptain
Best Friends ForeverDonEpisode: "Put a Pin It"
The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest HeroesJ. Jonah JamesonVoice only
Episode: "Along Came a Spider"
The Venture Bros.BenVoice Only
Episode: "A Very Venture Halloween"
2012–presentLegend of Korra, TheThe Legend of KorraTenzinVoice, animated TV Show
Ultimate Spider-ManJ. Jonah JamesonVoice only
Men at WorkP.J. JordanRecurring Role[11]
2013Jobs[12]Arthur Rock
Dark SkiesEdwin Pollard
Family ToolsTony SheaTelevision series
Avengers AssembleJ. Jonah JamesonVoice Only
Episode: "The Avengers Protocols: Pt. 2"
Pound PuppiesMr. WithersVoice Only
Episode: "Working K-9 to 5"
Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H.J. Jonah JamesonVoice Only
2014Growing Up FisherMel FisherFilming
WhiplashTerence Fletcher
Untitled Marc Lawrence filmFilming
Men, Women & ChildrenFilming

References[edit]

External links[edit]