Paul Giamatti

Paul Edward Valentine Giamatti (/ˌəˈmɑːti/; born June 6, 1967) is an American actor and producer. He first garnered attention for his breakout role in Private Parts (1997) as Kenny "Pig Vomit" Rushton, which led to him playing more supporting roles such as Sergeant Hill in Saving Private Ryan (1998), Bob Zmuda in Man on the Moon (1999), John Maxwell in Big Momma's House (2000), and Marty Wolf in Big Fat Liar (2002)

Paul Giamatti
Paul Edward Valentine Giamatti

(1967-06-06) June 6, 1967
ResidenceBrooklyn Heights, Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
Alma materYale University (BA, MFA)
OccupationActor, producer
Years active1989–present
Spouse(s)Elizabeth Cohen (m. 1997, divorced)
Parent(s)A. Bartlett Giamatti (father)
RelativesMarcus Giamatti (brother)

He won acclaim for his leading roles as Harvey Pekar in American Splendor (2003), Miles Raymond in Sideways (2004) and Mike Flaherty in Win Win (2011) while continuing to play supporting roles, like Joe Gould in Cinderella Man (2005), which earned him a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, Chief Inspector Uhl in The Illusionist (2006), Karl Hertz in Shoot 'Em Up (2007), Nicholas "Nick" Claus in Fred Claus (2007), Tom Duffy in The Ides of March (2011), Theophilus Freeman in 12 Years a Slave (2013), Ralph in Saving Mr. Banks (2013), Eugene Landy in Love & Mercy (2014), Dr. Lawrence Hayes in San Andreas (2015) and Jerry Heller in Straight Outta Compton (2015).

He played the titular character in the HBO miniseries John Adams (2008), which earned him a Golden Globe Award, a Primetime Emmy Award and Screen Actors Guild Award. He stars as U.S. Attorney Chuck Rhoades Jr. in the Showtime television series Billions (2016–present).

Early life

Giamatti was born June 6, 1967, in New Haven, Connecticut, the youngest of three children. His father, Angelo Bartlett Giamatti, was a Yale University professor who later became president of the university and commissioner of Major League Baseball. His mother, Toni Marilyn Giamatti (née Smith), was a homemaker and English teacher who taught at Hopkins School and had also previously acted.[1][2] His paternal grandfather's family were Italian emigrants from Telese Terme; the family surname was originally spelled "Giammattei" (Italian pronunciation: [dʒammatˈtɛi]).[3] The rest of Giamatti's ancestry is German, Dutch, English, French, Irish, and Scottish.[4] His paternal grandmother had deep roots in New England, dating back to the colonial era.[5] His brother, Marcus, is also an actor.

Giamatti was first educated at The Foote School and later graduated from Choate Rosemary Hall in 1985. He attended Yale University. He was active in the undergraduate theater scene, working alongside fellow actors and Yale students Ron Livingston and Edward Norton. He graduated in 1989 with a bachelor's degree in English, and went on to earn a Master of Fine Arts degree from the Yale School of Drama, where he studied with Earle R. Gister. He performed in numerous theatrical productions, including Broadway and a stint from 1989 to 1992 with Seattle's Annex Theater,[6] before appearing in some small television and film roles in the early 1990s.


In 1997, Giamatti landed in his first high-profile role as Kenny "Pig Vomit" Rushton in the film adaptation of Howard Stern's Private Parts. Stern praised Giamatti's performance often on his radio program, calling for him to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. In 1998, Giamatti appeared in a number of supporting roles in the big-budget films, The Truman Show, Saving Private Ryan and The Negotiator. In 1999, he played Bob Zmuda and Tony Clifton in Miloš Forman's Andy Kaufman biopic, Man on the Moon. Giamatti continued working steadily during the early 2000s by appearing in major studio releases including Big Momma's House, Planet of the Apes and Big Fat Liar.

In 2003, Giamatti began to earn critical acclaim after his lead role in the film American Splendor. In 2004, Giamatti gained mainstream recognition and fame with the 2004 independent romantic comedy Sideways. His portrayal of a depressed writer vacationing in the Santa Barbara wine country garnered him a Golden Globe nomination and an Independent Spirit Award and he was named Best Actor in a Leading Role by several significant film critics groups (New York, Chicago, Toronto, San Francisco, Online Film Critics). Following the commercial success of Sideways, Giamatti appeared in Cinderella Man, for which he earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor. He was nominated for a Golden Globe and won the Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Supporting Actor - Motion Picture. In 2006, Giamatti was the lead in M. Night Shyamalan's Lady in the Water, a supernatural thriller, followed by the animated film The Ant Bully, and Neil Burger's drama The Illusionist co-starring Edward Norton.

Giamatti had his first major role in an action movie in the 2007 film Shoot 'Em Up, while also starring in The Nanny Diaries and Fred Claus. In 2008, Giamatti received an Emmy Award[7] for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie for his title performance in the 2008 HBO miniseries John Adams, as well as his first Golden Globe Award [8] for Best Actor - Miniseries or Television Film, and also earned a Screen Actors Guild award. That same year, he starred in the independent film Pretty Bird, which is a fictionalized retelling about the drama behind the invention of a rocketbelt.[9]

Giamatti received his second Golden Globe[10] win for Best Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy for his role in the 2010 film, Barney's Version. Giamatti starred as the lead in the comedy-drama film Win Win, which earned positive reviews from critics.[11] The same year he had small roles in Ironclad, The Hangover Part II and The Ides of March.

In 2012, Giamatti became the voiceover actor for Liberty Mutual insurance commercials.[12] He was the narrator for the PBS Nature episode An Original DUCKumentary.[13] Giamatti produced and starred in John Dies at the End, which is based on the book of the same name. He also had roles in the films Rock of Ages and Cosmopolis.

In 2013, Giamatti returned to his alma mater, Yale University, to perform the title role in Shakespeare's Hamlet, for which he won rave reviews in a sold-out, modern dress stage production of the play at the Yale Repertory Theatre, in New Haven.[14] He also had supporting roles in several films, including the animated Turbo and The Congress, as well as Parkland, Saving Mr. Banks, and the critically acclaimed 12 Years a Slave.[15][16] In addition, Giamatti played the role of New Yorker Harold Levinson, the brother of Cora, the Countess of Grantham (Elizabeth McGovern), in the 2013 Christmas special of the period drama, ITV Studios/Carnival Films television series, Downton Abbey.[17]

In 2014, Giamatti played villain The Rhino in The Amazing Spider-Man 2.[18] Also in 2014, Giamatti portrayed psychologist Eugene Landy in the Brian Wilson biopic Love & Mercy. In 2015, he played a scientist in the disaster film San Andreas.

He portrayed manager Jerry Heller in the biographical drama Straight Outta Compton, released in August 2015. In 2016, Giamatti began appearing in commercials for Prism TV, the IPTV service owned by CenturyLink; the spots are the first-ever on-camera TV commercial appearances for Giamatti.[19]

Giamatti plays a lead role in the Showtime series Billions, portraying the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York. The show, debuting in 2016, is loosely based on a real event.[20]

Wax Paul Now campaign

Giamatti is the subject of the viral "Wax Paul Now" campaign, which pushes for the actor to get a Madame Tussauds wax statue in his likeness, most likely at the New York location.[21] The movement first achieved national prominence when Giamatti appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert and discussed the campaign with host Stephen Colbert.[22] After this and subsequent articles in Forbes,[21] Buzzfeed,[23] and The A.V. Club[22] among others, Madame Tussauds New York announced that they would host a party in Giamatti's honor to coincide with the premiere of Billions Season 3 on March 25, 2018, at which the founders of the Wax Paul Now movement would speak.[24] Tussauds announced that if a petition garnered 500,000 signatures in the nine days leading up to the party, they would agree to create the wax statue of Giamatti.[24] As the petition was unable to garner enough signatures in time, the Wax Paul Now campaign is still ongoing.[25] A short film chronicling the campaign premiered at the Virginia Film Festival in October 2019.[26]

Personal life

Giamatti resides in the Brooklyn Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York[27] and was married to Elizabeth Cohen from 1997 to an undisclosed date in the 2000s. They have a son, Samuel Giamatti, known as "Sam" (born 2001), who is raised in Elizabeth's religion of Judaism.

Giamatti considers himself an atheist, but he says he has no problem with religious people and strongly admires the Jewish faith.[28]



1989I, MadmanDetective who answers phone callTibor TakácsUncredited
1991Past MidnightLarry CanipeJan Eliasberg
1992SinglesKissing ManCameron Crowe
1995Mighty AphroditeExtras Guild ResearcherWoody Allen
1995SabrinaScottSydney Pollack
1996Breathing RoomGeorgeJon Sherman
1996Before and AfterMember of the JuryBarbet SchroederUncredited
1997Arresting GenaDetective WilsonHannah Weyer
1997Donnie BrascoFBI TechnicianMike Newell
1997Private PartsKenny "Pig Vomit" RushtonBetty Thomas
1997My Best Friend's WeddingRichard the BellmanP.J. Hogan
1997Deconstructing HarryProfessor AbbotWoody Allen
1997A Further GestureHotel ClerkRobert Dornhelm
1998The Truman ShowControl Room DirectorPeter Weir
1998Dr. DolittleBlaineBetty ThomasUncredited
1998Saving Private RyanSgt. HillSteven Spielberg
1998The NegotiatorRudy TimmonsF. Gary Gray
1998Safe MenVeal ChopJohn Hamburg
1999Cradle Will RockCarloTim Robbins
1999Man on the MoonBob ZmudaMiloš Forman
2000Big Momma's HouseJohn MaxwellRaja GosnellNominated—Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Favorite Supporting Actor – Comedy
2000DuetsTodd WoodsBruce Paltrow
2001StorytellingToby OxmanTodd SolondzSegment: "Non-Fiction"
2001Planet of the ApesLimboTim Burton
2002Big Fat LiarMarty WolfShawn Levy
2002ThunderpantsJohnson J. JohnsonPete Hewitt
2003American SplendorHarvey PekarShari Springer Berman
Robert Pulcini
2003PaycheckShortyJohn Woo
2003ConfidenceGordoJames Foley
2004SidewaysMiles RaymondAlexander Payne
2005RobotsTim the Gate GuardChris WedgeVoice
2005The Fan and the FlowerNarratorBill PlymptonVoice
Short film
2005Cinderella ManJoe GouldRon Howard
2006Asterix and the VikingsAsterixStefan Fjeldmark
Jesper Møller
English dub
2006The Hawk Is DyingGeorge GattlingJulian Goldberger
2006The IllusionistChief Inspector UhlNeil Burger
2006Lady in the WaterCleveland HeepM. Night Shyamalan
2006The Ant BullyStan BealsJohn A. DavisVoice
2007The Nanny DiariesMr. XShari Springer Berman
Robert Pulcini
2007Shoot 'Em UpKarl HertzMichael Davis
2007Too Loud a SolitudeHantaGenevieve AndersonVoice
2007Fred ClausNicholas "Nick" ClausDavid Dobkin
2008Pretty BirdRickPaul SchneiderAlso producer
2009DuplicityRichard "Dick" GarsikTony Gilroy
2009Cold SoulsPaulSophie Barthes
2009The Haunted World of El SuperbeastoDr. Satan/Steve WachowskiRob ZombieVoice
2009The Last StationVladimir ChertkovMichael Hoffman
2010Barney's VersionBarney PanofskyRichard J. Lewis
2011Win WinMike FlahertyTom McCarthy
2011IroncladKing JohnJonathan English
2011The Hangover Part IIKingsley / Detective PetersTodd Phillips
2011The Ides of MarchTom DuffyGeorge ClooneyNominated—Critics' Choice Movie Award for Best Acting Ensemble
2012Rock of AgesPaul GillAdam Shankman
2012CosmopolisBenno LevinDavid Cronenberg
2012John Dies at the EndArnie BlondestoneDon CoscarelliAlso producer
2013TurboChetDavid SorenVoice
Nominated—Annie Award for Voice Acting in a Feature Production
2013The CongressDr. BakerAri Folman
2013Romeo & JulietFriar LaurenceCarlo Carlei
2013ParklandAbraham ZapruderPeter Landesman
201312 Years a SlaveTheophilus FreemanSteve McQueen
2013All Is BrightDennisPhil MorrisonAlso producer
2013Saving Mr. BanksRalphJohn Lee Hancock
2014Ernest & CelestineRat JudgeStéphane Aubier
Vincent Patar
Benjamin Renner
English dub
2014River of FundamentPtah-Nem-HotepMatthew Barney
2014The Amazing Spider-Man 2Aleksei Sytsevich / RhinoMarc Webb
2014Madame BovaryMonsieur HomaisSophie Barthes
2015Giant SlothGordon BoonewellMichael KonyvesVoice
Short film
2015Love & MercyDr. Eugene LandyBill Pohlad
2015The Little PrinceThe Academy TeacherMark OsborneVoice
2015San AndreasDr. Lawrence HayesBrad Peyton
2015Straight Outta ComptonJerry HellerF. Gary GrayNominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated—Critics' Choice Movie Award for Best Acting Ensemble
2016Ratchet & ClankChairman DrekKevin MunroeVoice
2016April and the Extraordinary WorldPizoniChristian Desmares
Franck Ekinci
English dub
2016The PhenomDr. MobleyNoah Buschel
2016MorganDr. Alan ShapiroLuke Scott
2018I Think We're Alone NowPatrickReed Morano
2018Private LifeRichardTamara Jenkins
2018The Catcher Was a SpySamuel GoudsmitBen Lewin
2018White FangBeauty SmithAlexandre EspigaresEnglish voice dub
2020Jungle CruiseJaume Collet-SerraPost-production
2020Gunpowder MilkshakeNathanAharon Keshales
Navot Papushado
TBAA Mouthful of AirAmy KoppelmanPost-production


1990She'll Take RomanceHeckler #2Television film
1994NYPD BlueMan in Sleeping BagEpisode: "You Bet Your Life"
1995New York NewsDr. WargnerEpisode: "Past Imperfect"
1996The ShowJeffrey RoffmanEpisode: "Pilot"
1998Homicide: Life on the StreetHarry TjarksEpisode: "Pit Bull Sessions"
1998Tourist TrapJeremiah PiperTelevision film
1998WinchellHerman KurfeldTelevision film
1999American ExperienceNarratorEpisode: "New York: Part V - Cosmopolis"
2000If These Walls Could Talk 2Ted HedleyTelevision film
2001King of the HillMr. McKayVoice
Episode: "It's Not Easy Being Green"
2003The Pentagon PapersAnthony RussoTelevision film
2005Saturday Night LiveHimself (host)Episode: "Paul Giamatti/Ludacris featuring Sum-41"
2006The Amazing Screw-On HeadScrew-On HeadVoice
2008John AdamsJohn Adams7 episodes
201030 RockRitchieEpisode: "When It Rains, It Pours"
2011Too Big to FailBen BernankeTelevision film
2013Downton AbbeyHarold LevinsonEpisode: "The London Season"
2014The Roosevelts: An Intimate HistoryTheodore RooseveltVoice
2014HokeHoke MoselyPilot; also executive producer
2015Breakthrough[29]HimselfDocumentary; also director
Episode: "More Than Human"
2014–2015Inside Amy SchumerGod / Juror #102 episodes
2016–presentBillionsChuck RhoadesMain Role
2016–2017OutsidersExecutive producer
2017BoJack HorsemanHimself as BoJackVoice
Episode: "The Old Sugarman Place"
2017At Home with Amy SedarisMr. OgilvyEpisode: "TGIF"
Episode: "Sex, Lies and Butterflies"
2018–presentLodge 49L. Marvin Metz2 episodes; also executive producer


1995ArcadiaEzra ChaterLincoln Center Theater
1995Racing DemonThe Rev. Donald "Streaky" BaconLincoln Center Theater
1996The Blues are RunningPyle/Boo/JohnnyManhattan Theatre Club
1997The Three SistersAndrei ProzorovThe Roundabout Theatre Company
1999The Iceman ComethJames CameronBrooks Atkinson Theatre
Nominated—Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play
2002The Resistible Rise of Arturo UiTed Ragg/Prosector/Ignatius DullfeetNational Actors Theatre
2013HamletPrince HamletYale Repertory Theatre

Video games

1996RipperDoctor Bud Cable
2016Ratchet & ClankChairman DrekVoice

Audio books

2006A Scanner Darkly
2019Stay Sexy & Don't Get Murdered


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  2. "–Ai. Bartlett Giamatti Marries Ton! Smith". The New York Times. June 19, 1960. Retrieved May 22, 2010.
  3. LaGumina, Salvatore J.; et al. (2000). The Italian American Experience: An Encyclopedia. New York: Garland. pp. 263–264.
  4. "Paul Giamatti". IMDb. Retrieved July 31, 2017.
  5. Reston, James (1997). Collision at Home Plate: The Lives of Pete Rose and Bart Giamatti. Nebraska: U of Nebraska Press. pp. 15–16. ISBN 0-8032-8964-2.
  6. Wiecking, Steve. Seattle Met magazine. "Worried Man". July 2009 edition. Archived November 10, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  7. "Paul Giamatti Emmy Award Winner". Retrieved August 3, 2014.
  8. ""John Adams," "30 Rock" big winners at Golden Globes". Reuters. January 12, 2009. Retrieved July 23, 2017.
  9. craveonline (September 7, 2007). "Paul Giamatti's Good Times". Archived from the original on April 19, 2012. Retrieved August 3, 2014.
  10. Desk, BWW News. "Paul Giamatti Wins Golden Globe for BARNEY'S VERSION". Retrieved July 23, 2017.
  11. "Win Win". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved March 12, 2011.
  12. "Liberty Mutual Press Release". Retrieved January 25, 2014.
  13. "Watch An Original DUCKumentary Online | Full Episode | Nature". PBS. Retrieved January 25, 2014.
  14. "Marshall Fine: Onstage: Paul Giamatti in Hamlet". April 10, 2013. Retrieved January 25, 2014.
  15. Kit, Borys (February 23, 2012). "Paul Giamatti, Samuel L. Jackson Join DreamWorks Animation's 'Turbo' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved February 24, 2012.
  16. "ScreenRant". Retrieved July 26, 2012.
  17. ITV Archived January 4, 2014, at the Wayback Machine
  18. Kit, Borys (January 28, 2013). "Paul Giamatti in Talks to Play The Rhino in 'Spider-Man 2' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on January 28, 2013. Retrieved January 28, 2013.
  19. Gianatasio, David (March 1, 2016). "Ad of the Day: Paul Giamatti Battles a Family of Movie Buffs in His First Ads Ever". Adweek. Retrieved May 8, 2016.
  20. Orden, Erica. "Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara's Office Gets Hollywood Treatment in Showtime Series". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved April 11, 2016.
  21. King, Darryn. "New Yorkers Want A Paul Giamatti Wax Figure At Madame Tussauds". Forbes. Retrieved January 1, 2019.
  22. "Stephen Colbert and Paul Giamatti Bring the Saga". The A.V. Club.
  23. Wax For Paul (July 26, 2017). "People Are Demanding Paul Giamatti Get The Wax Figure He Deserves". Retrieved January 1, 2019.
  24. ""Gallery of Giamatti and Billion Viewing Party"". Retrieved January 1, 2019.
  25. King, Darryn (March 26, 2018). "Night of a Thousand Paul Giamattis". Vulture.
  27. Hale, Mike. "Film", The New York Times. July 29, 2007. Retrieved November 29, 2007.
  28. Lipworth, Elaine (May 20, 2011). "Paul Giamatti: My family values". Retrieved July 31, 2017 via The Guardian.
  29. Jon Weisman. "Paul Giamatti on Nat Geo's 'Breakthrough': Actor Embraces Inner Geek - Variety". Variety.
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