Natasha Lyonne

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Natasha Lyonne

Lyonne onstage at the 2009 Seattle International Film Festival
Born(1979-04-04) April 4, 1979 (age 33)
Manhattan, New York, U.S.
Years active1985–present
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Natasha Lyonne

Lyonne onstage at the 2009 Seattle International Film Festival
Born(1979-04-04) April 4, 1979 (age 33)
Manhattan, New York, U.S.
Years active1985–present

Natasha Lyonne (born April 4, 1979) is an American stage, film, and television actress, known for her roles in the American Pie series, as well as the films Everyone Says I Love You, Slums of Beverly Hills, But I'm a Cheerleader, and Blade: Trinity.



As a young child she was signed by the Ford Modeling Agency, and at the age of six she was cast as Opal on Pee-wee's Playhouse which was quickly followed by film appearances in Heartburn written by Nora Ephron, directed by Mike Nichols; A Man Called Sarge; and Dennis the Menace with Walter Matthau and Christopher Lloyd. At the age of 16, Woody Allen cast her as his and Goldie Hawn’s daughter in Everyone Says I Love You alongside Julia Roberts, Edward Norton, Natalie Portman which led to appearances in almost 30 films over the next 10 years, including starring roles in the independent films Slums of Beverly Hills and But I'm a Cheerleader. Lyonne’s other films included Detroit Rock City; Scary Movie 2; The Grey Zone directed by Tim Blake Nelson; James Mangold's Kate and Leopold; Party Monster; Die Mommy Die; and Blade: Trinity as well TV appearances in show including NBC’s Will and Grace. Lyonne is perhaps best known for her roles in the American Pie films as the wise-cracking Jessica. After a short hiatus due to well-documented health and legal struggles, in 2008, Lyonne returned to work, making her New York stage debut in the award-winning New Group production of Mike Leigh’s Two Thousand Years [1] and in films The Immaculate Conception of Little Dizzle and Goyband. Since then Lyonne has steadily worked in the New York theatre scene, in film and in television. Films include All about Evil with Thomas Dekker; Abel Ferrara’s 4:44 Last Day On Earth with Willem Dafoe; and upcoming projects Imogene with Kristen Wiig, Darren Criss, Matt Dillon and Annette Bening; The Rambler with Dermot Mulroney; Clutter with Carol Kane and Kathy Najimy; He’s Way More Famous Than You written by Halley Feiffer directed by Michael Urie with Ben Stiller and Jesse Eisenberg. Recent TV appearances include the hit series New Girl and Law & Order Special Victims Unit. On stage she in the original cast of Nora Ephron and Delia Ephron’s award-winning Love, Loss, and What I Wore [2] with Samantha Bee, Tyne Daly, Katie Finneran, and Rosie O'Donnell and in the original cast in Los Angeles at Geffen Playhouse with Tracee Ellis Ross, Carol Kane, and Rita Wilson. She received rave reviews in Kim Rosenstock’s Tigers Be Still[3] directed by Sam Gold with Reed Birney, Halley Feiffer, John Magaro at the Roundabout Theatre Company and returned this past season to the New Group stage with Ethan Hawke, Gordon Clapp and Daphne Rubin-Vega in Tommy Nohilly's Blood From a Stone. Most recently she participated in New Group’s benefit performance of Women Behind Bars with Charles Busch, Josh Hamilton, Cynthia Nixon, Rhea Perlman, and Rosie O'Donnell.[4]

Early life

Lyonne was born in Manhattan,[citation needed] New York City, the daughter of Yvette and Aaron Braunstein, who worked as a boxing promoter and radio host.[5][6][7][8][9] Her maternal grandparents were Holocaust survivors.[7][10] Lyonne grew up in an Orthodox Jewish household.[11][12] Her parents moved to Israel, where Natasha spent a few years of her early childhood.[11] Her parents divorced; Natasha and her older brother Adam returned to the US with their mother.[13] She attended Ramaz School, a private Jewish school.[14] Her mother then moved to Miami, where Natasha attended and graduated from Miami Country Day School.[15][16]


Nominated, CFCA Award Most Promising Actress for Slums of Beverly Hills (1998).

Won, Angel Award Best Supporting Female Actor for Tricks of Love (2008).

Nominated, Teen Choice Award Film - Breakout Performance for Slums of Beverly Hills (1998). Nominated, Teen Choice Award Film - Funniest Scene for Slums of Beverly Hills (1998). Shared with Marisa Tomei

Won, Young Hollywood Award Best Ensemble Cast for American Pie (1999). Shared With: Seann William Scott, Jason Biggs, Shannon Elizabeth, Chris Klein, Eddie Kaye Thomas, Mena Suvari, Alyson Hannigan, Tara Reid, Thomas Ian Nicholas

Personal life

Lyonne dated actor Edward Furlong, whom she met on the set of Detroit Rock City, from 1998 to 2000. She became friends with actor Michael Rapaport in 1997 and later rented an apartment in a building he owned on East 18th Street. In 2005, Rapaport evicted her and wrote an account of the matter in that May's issue of Jane.

Singer and former neighbor Rufus Wainwright wrote a song about her called "Natasha" included on his 2003 album Want One.

Legal troubles

Lyonne was arrested in August 2001 for driving under the influence of alcohol after she ran her rented automobile onto a Miami Beach sidewalk, hitting a road sign and causing minor damages.[17] In August 2002 she pleaded guilty to drunk driving and paid $1,000 in fines and court fees, performed 50 hours of community service, took part in a victim's panel organized by Mothers Against Drunk Driving, was placed on probation for one year and had her license suspended for that same period.[18] In 2003 she was evicted by her landlord, actor Michael Rapaport, after numerous complaints were made by other tenants about her behavior.[19] In 2005 Lyonne was in Beth Israel Medical Center in Manhattan, suffering from hepatitis C and undergoing methadone treatment.[20][21] In 2006, Lyonne was in the Caron Foundation, a drug and alcohol treatment center, and appeared in court after missing several court dates to face earlier charges of mischief, trespass and harassment A judge sentenced her to conditional discharge.[22] In 2012, she underwent heart surgery and discussed this and past health and legal issues on the The Rosie Show.[23]

In December 2004, Lyonne was arrested after verbally threatening her neighbor, breaking a mirror in the neighbor's apartment, and threatening to molest the neighbor's dog.[24] She spent a night in jail before being arraigned on charges of criminal mischief, harassment, and trespassing. The details of this incident did not become publicly known until two years later. In April 2005, an arrest warrant was issued for Lyonne for failure to appear in court on the charges. Prosecutors say she showed up, but arrived an hour late and only stayed 30 minutes. Police were unable to locate Lyonne until reports of her hospitalization in August.

In January 2006, another arrest warrant was issued for her after she missed another hearing. Lyonne's lawyer said an emergency came up, but he didn't specify.


In August 2005, the New York Post reported that Lyonne was in Beth Israel Medical Center in Manhattan under a pseudonym, and had been there for over a month after being transferred from Bellevue Hospital. She reportedly suffered from hepatitis C, a heart infection, and a collapsed lung. She was also allegedly undergoing methadone treatment for a heroin addiction and had track marks on her body.[25] The Post also reported that Lyonne had been homeless and on the streets after her eviction by Rapaport. In an interview with Access Hollywood, Lyonne's father denied she was homeless and said he might take legal action against the hospital for breaking the confidentiality of Lyonne's status.

Recovery and return to acting

In December 2006, Lyonne appeared in court to face the 2005 charges. A judge sentenced her to conditional discharge. Since then, she has completed four films.[26] In January 2008, she appeared in a Broadway play, Two Thousand Years.[27]

Lyonne worked on the thriller 13 with a release date of 2010. Other cast members include Mickey Rourke, Ray Liotta and Jason Statham.[28]

Lyonne is currently working on dark-comedy/ horror flick All About Evil in San Francisco, which was written by and directed by San Francisco late-night movie host and short film producer Joshua Grannel.



  1. ^ "Natasha Lyonne to Star in Mike Leigh's Two Thousand Years, Buzz". Retrieved October 20, 2011. 
  2. ^ Isherwood, Charles (October 2, 2009). "Spandex Agonistes: Why Don’t You Try It On?". The New York Times. Retrieved April 21, 2011. 
  3. ^ Isherwood, Charles (October 6, 2010). "Escaped Predator? What Else Is New?". Retrieved October 20, 2011. 
  4. ^ "Cynthia Nixon, Rosie O'Donnell and Natasha Lyonne are Women Behind Bars". Playbill. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ Grove, Lloyd. "Lyonne Hunters Share Scary Tales". Retrieved 4 August 2012. 
  7. ^ a b Hass, Nancy (July 9, 2000). "SHOPPING WITH: Natasha Lyonne; Rough, Tough, But on a Road To Ladylike". The New York Times. Retrieved May 19, 2010. 
  8. ^ "Natasha Lyonne Biography (1979–)". Retrieved October 20, 2011. 
  9. ^ "Internet Archive Wayback Machine". October 27, 2009. Retrieved October 20, 2011. 
  10. ^ "New York Metro". November 27, 2000. Retrieved July 16, 2006. 
  11. ^ a b Simonson, Robert (January 6, 2008). "When Living at All Is the Best Revenge". The New York Times. Retrieved January 6, 2008. 
  12. ^ [1]
  13. ^ [2]
  14. ^ [3]
  15. ^ [4]
  16. ^ [5]
  17. ^ "Pie Star Lyonne Arrested for Drink Driving". Retrieved October 20, 2011. 
  18. ^ Susman, Gary (August 27, 2002). "Natasha Lyonne pleads guilty on DUI charge".,,344621,00.html. Retrieved October 20, 2011. 
  19. ^ "Michael Rapaport Driven to Despair by Natasha Lyonne". April 21, 2005. Retrieved October 20, 2011. 
  20. ^ Updated 58 minutes ago 10/20/2011 3:07:38 pm +00:00. "‘American Pie’ star’s fight for life - Entertainment - Access Hollywood". Retrieved October 20, 2011. 
  21. ^ "Hey! Natasha Lyonne Is Still Alive! – Daily Intel". Retrieved October 20, 2011. 
  22. ^ Simonson, Robert (January 6, 2008). "When Living at All Is the Best Revenge". The New York Times. Retrieved May 19, 2010. 
  23. ^ O'Donnell, Rosie. "The Rosie Show". OWN Network. 
  24. ^,,1051274,00.html
  25. ^ "MSNBC". American Pie star’s fight for life. Retrieved July 16, 2006. 
  26. ^ Natasha Lyonne - Theater - New York Times
  27. ^ Natasha Lyonne to Star in Mike Leigh's Two Thousand Years, Buzz
  28. ^

External links