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Zooey Deschanel

Facts about Zooey Deschanel

Date of Birth:17 January 1980
Birthplace:Los Angeles, CA
First Name:Zooey
Middle Name:Claire
Last Name:Deschanel
Height:5' 6" (168 cm)
Eye Color:Blue
Hair Color:Black
Star Sign:Capricorn
Claim to Fame:Elf, The New Guy
Occupation:Actress, Musician
Occupation Category:Actress
Alternative Names:Zo
MoreRead more about Zooey Deschanel


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Zooey Deschanel (Female Celebrities)
Zooey Deschanel (Female Celebrities)
Zooey Deschanel (Female Celebrities)
Zooey Deschanel (Female Celebrities)
Zooey Deschanel (Female Celebrities)
Zooey Deschanel (Female Celebrities)
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Biography for Zooey Deschanel

Zooey Claire Deschanel (born Jan. 17, 1980 (41 years ago)) is an American actress, musician and singer-songwriter. Deschanel made her movie debut in 1999's Mumford and soon became known for memorable, deadpan supporting roles in movies such as Almost Famous (2000, 21 years ago) and The New Guy (2002, 19 years ago). She then began playing lead roles in films, including All the Real Girls (2003, 18 years ago), Elf (2003, 18 years ago), Winter Passing (2005, 16 years ago), The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy (2005, 16 years ago), Failure to Launch (2006, 15 years ago), Tin Man (2007, 14 years ago), Yes Man (2008, 13 years ago), and 500 Days of Summer (2009, 12 years ago).

Since 2001 (20 years ago), Deschanel has performed in the jazz cabaret act If All the Stars Were Pretty Babies with fellow actress Samantha Shelton. She plays keyboards, percussion[vague], xylophone, banjo and ukulele. She has sung in several of her films, and her debut album Volume One (recorded with M. Ward under the moniker She & Him) was released on Mar. 18, 2008 (13 years ago).

Early years

Zooey Deschanel was born in Los Angeles, California, and is the daughter of Academy Award-nominated cinematographer and director Caleb Deschanel and actress Mary Jo Deschanel (née Weir). She is of Irish and French descent. She was named after Zooey Glass, the male protagonist of J. D. Salinger's 1961 (60 years ago) novella Franny and Zooey. Her older sister Emily Deschanel is also an actress and stars in the TV series Bones.

Deschanel lived in Los Angeles, but spent much of her childhood traveling because her father shot movies on location; she later said that she "hated all the traveling[...]I'm really happy now that I had the experience, but at the time I was just so miserable to have to leave my friends in Los Angeles and go to places where they didn't have any food I liked or things I was used to." She attended Crossroads, a private preparatory school in Santa Monica, California, where she befriended future co-stars Jake Gyllenhaal (7 walls) and Kate Hudson. She also attended the French Woods Festival of the Performing Arts summer camp and sang throughout high school, planning to pursue a career in musical theatre. She attended Northwestern University for seven months before dropping out to work as an actress.


Deschanel appeared in a guest role on the TV series Veronica's Closet before making her movie debut in Lawrence Kasdan’s 1999 (22 years ago) comedy Mumford, and later in the year she appeared in the music video for The Offspring's single "She's Got Issues". In her second film, director Cameron Crowe's semi-autobiographical Almost Famous (2000, 21 years ago), Deschanel played Anita Miller, the protagonist's rebellious older sister. The movie received critical praise, but was not a box office success. Deschanel continued to sing, and in 2001 (20 years ago) formed If All the Stars Were Pretty Babies, a jazz cabaret act with fellow actress Samantha Shelton. The pair performed around Los Angeles.

Deschanel played supporting roles in a series of movies that included Manic (2001, 20 years ago), with Don Cheadle and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Big Trouble (2002, 19 years ago), with Tim Allen and Rene Russo Abandon (2002, 19 years ago) alongside Katie Holmes (57 walls), Benjamin Bratt (3 walls) and Melanie Lynskey, and The Good Girl (2002, 19 years ago) alongside Jennifer Aniston (39 walls) and Jake Gyllenhaal. In late 2002 (19 years ago), The New York Times reported that Deschanel was "one of Hollywood's most sought-after young stars," and the Los Angeles Times wrote in early 2003 (18 years ago) that Deschanel had become a recognizable type, due to "her deadpan, sardonic and scene-stealing [film] performances" as the protagonist's best friend. Deschanel objected to her typecasting, arguing, "A lot of these roles are just a formula idea of somebody's best friend, and it's like, I don't even have that many friends. In high school, I stayed home all the time, so I don't know how I'm everybody's best friend now."

Deschanel turned down several supporting roles and played her first lead role in All the Real Girls (2003, 18 years ago). Deschanel's performance as Noel, a sexually curious 18-year-old virgin who has a life-changing romance with an aimless 22-year-old, received critical praise, and she received an Independent Spirit nomination for Best Actress. Later in 2003 (18 years ago), Deschanel played a deadpan department store worker opposite Will Ferrell in the comedy Elf, which became a box office hit.

In 2002 (19 years ago), Deschanel appeared in The New Guy as Nora, the guitar player in the lead character's band, Suburban Funk. The New Guy was the first of Deschanel's movies in which she sang onscreen; in Elf she duetted with Ferrell in the bathroom shower scene on "Baby, It's Cold Outside", and was also heard singing it on the soundtrack with Leon Redbone. Subsequently, Deschanel has sung in Winter Passing ("My Bonnie Lies over the Ocean"), the 2005 (16 years ago) TV musical Once Upon a Mattress ("An Opening For a Princess," "In a Little While," "Normandy," and "Yesterday I Loved You"), an old cabaret song in The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford and the 2007 (14 years ago) short movie Raving ("Hello, Dolly!"). Her piano composition "Bittersuite" was used thematically in the dark, off-beat 2004 (17 years ago) dramedy Winter Passing, in which she starred alongside Ferrell and Ed Harris.

In 2004 (17 years ago), Deschanel starred in Eulogy, and in 2005 (16 years ago) as Trillian in the movie adaptation of Douglas Adams' science fiction novel The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Deschanel then played Sarah Jessica Parker's neurotic roommate in Failure to Launch (2006, 15 years ago), and appeared on four episodes of the Showtime TV series Weeds from 2006 (15 years ago) to 2007 (14 years ago), playing Andy Botwin's quirky ex-girlfriend, Kat. In sep. 2006 (15 years ago), Variety announced that Deschanel would play 1960 (61 years ago) singer Janis Joplin in the movie The Gospel According to Janis, to be co-written and directed by Penelope Spheeris. Deschanel planned to sing all of Joplin's songs, and took four months of singing lessons "to approximate Joplin's gritty vocals." The film, scheduled to begin shooting on Nov. 13, 2006 (15 years ago), was postponed indefinitely.

Deschanel at the Newport Folk Festival on Aug. 2,2008In 2007 (14 years ago), Deschanel appeared in two children's films, Bridge to Terabithia and the animated movie Surf's Up, in which she voiced a penguin named Lani Aliikai. In dec. 2007 (14 years ago), she played DG, the lead in the new Sci Fi Channel miniseries Tin Man, a re-imagined science fiction version of L. Frank Baum's children's book The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.

In Mar. 2007 (14 years ago), Deschanel contributed vocals to two songs "Slowly" and "Ask Her To Dance" on the album Nighttiming by Jason Schwartzman's band Coconut Records. In May 2007 (14 years ago), singer/songwriter M. Ward, who had previously performed with Deschanel onstage, said that he was "just finishing work" on her debut album, which will feature songs written by Deschanel and produced by Ward. Fox reported that Deschanel and Ward were recording under the moniker She & Him, and that the album, titled Volume One, would be released by Merge Records on Mar. 18, 2008 (13 years ago).

On Apr. 27, 2008 (13 years ago), she appeared on The Simpsons (15 walls) (1 walls), playing the role of Mary, Cletus's daughter.

In Jun. 2008 (13 years ago), Deschanel starred opposite Mark Wahlberg (4 walls) in M. Night Shyamalan's environmental thriller The Happening.

In dec. 2008 (13 years ago), Deschanel starred in the comedy movie Yes Man, opposite Jim Carrey. She sings several songs featured in the movie and is shown singing Uh-Huh and Sweet Ballad alongside San Franciscan all-girl electro soul-punk group Von Iva in a band called Munchausen by Proxy.

Deschanel currently stars as the title character in the popular romantic-comedy (500) Days of Summer, opposite Joseph Gordon-Levitt (for a second time after Manic). The movie is directed by long-time commercial and music video director Marc Webb.

Personal life

Deschanel became engaged to Ben Gibbard of Death Cab for Cutie on dec. 28, 2008 (13 years ago). In an Episode of Top Chef Masters she revealed that she's a gluten-intolerant, soy-free, vegan.


  • Mumford
  • Almost Famous
  • Manic
  • Abandon
  • The New Guy
  • Big Trouble
  • The Good Girl
  • Elf
  • All the Real Girls
  • Eulogy
  • Once Upon a Mattress
  • Winter Passing
  • The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
  • Failure to Launch
  • Weeds
  • Live Free or Die
  • Flakes
  • The Good Life
  • The Go-Getter
  • Bridge to Terabithia
  • Surf's Up
  • The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
  • Tin Man
  • The Happening
  • Gigantic
  • The Simpsons (15 walls) (1 walls)
  • Yes Man
  • (500) Days of Summer


  • Solo
  • "Baby, It's Cold Outside" with Leon Redbone - Elf soundtrack
  • "Fabric of My Life" - Cotton Incorporated Campaign
  • "Sugar Town" on (500) Days of Summer soundtrack
  • Munchausen By Proxy
  • "Sweet Ballad" featuring Zooey Deschanel & Von Iva- Yes Man soundtrack
  • "Uh-Huh" featuring Zooey Deschanel & Von Iva- Yes Man soundtrack
  • "Keystar" featuring Zooey Deschanel & Von Iva- Yes Man soundtrack
  • "Yes Man" featuring Zooey Deschanel & Von Iva- Yes Man soundtrack
  • She & Him
  • Volume One (March 18, 2008 (13 years ago)) #71 US
  • "I Put A Spell On You" (January 30, 2009 (12 years ago)) Starbucks' Sweetheart CD
  • "Why Do You Let Me Stay Here?" (January, 2008 (13 years ago))
  • "When I Get To The Border" (2007, 14 years ago) on The Go-Getter soundtrack
  • "Please, Please, Please, Let Me Get What I Want" (2009, 12 years ago) on (500) Days of Summer soundtrack


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