Kazan at a screening of The F Word in 2014
Zoe Swicord Kazan
September 9, 1983
|Alma mater||Yale University|
|Partner(s)||Paul Dano (2007–present)|
Zoe Swicord Kazan (born September 9, 1983) is an American actress, playwright, and screenwriter. Kazan made her acting debut in Swordswallowers and Thin Men (2003) and later appeared in films such as The Savages (2007), Revolutionary Road (2008) and It's Complicated (2009). She starred in Happy. Thank You. More. Please. (2010), Meek's Cutoff (2010), Ruby Sparks (2012), and What If (2013). In 2014, she appeared in the HBO miniseries Olive Kitteridge, for which she received an Emmy nomination. She portrayed Emily Gardner in the film The Big Sick (2017), and in 2018 she appeared in the Coen brothers film The Ballad of Buster Scruggs.
Kazan has acted in several Broadway productions. She also wrote Ruby Sparks and co-wrote Wildlife (2018) with her partner, Paul Dano, who directed the film. In 2020, she appeared in the HBO miniseries The Plot Against America.
Kazan was born in Los Angeles, the daughter of screenwriters Nicholas Kazan and Robin Swicord. Her paternal grandparents were film and theatre director Elia Kazan and playwright Molly Kazan (née Thacher). Elia Kazan was an Anatolian Greek emigrant from Istanbul. His family original surname was Kazantzoglou.
Kazan was educated at the private Wildwood School, Windward School, and also at the Marlborough School, located in Hancock Park, Los Angeles. She attended Yale University (also her grandfather's alma mater), where she was a member of the Manuscript Society, graduating in 2005 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in theatre.
After her film debut in 2003 playing Samantha in Swordswallowers and Thin Men, Kazan went on to play her first professional stage role in the 2006 off-Broadway revival of The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie starring Cynthia Nixon.
In 2007 she had a small role in The Savages, which starred Laura Linney and Philip Seymour Hoffman. She also guest appeared in an episode of Medium. She next appeared in the films Fracture and In the Valley of Elah. In the fall of the same year, she returned to the stage in a The New Group production of 100 Saints You Should Know and Jonathan Marc Sherman's Things We Want, directed by Ethan Hawke.
In January 2008, Kazan made her Broadway debut opposite S. Epatha Merkerson and Kevin Anderson in a revival of William Inge's Come Back, Little Sheba. Ben Brantley of The New York Times called her performance "first-rate", adding, "Ms. Kazan is terrific in conveying the character's self-consciousness." In the fall, she appeared on stage as Masha in a Broadway revival of Anton Chekhov's The Seagull opposite Kristin Scott Thomas, Carey Mulligan, and Peter Sarsgaard. In the same year she had roles in August, Me and Orson Welles and Revolutionary Road.
Kazan is also a playwright. In 2009, her play Absalom premiered at the Humana Festival of New American Plays in Louisville, KY. The play, about a father's tense relationships with his children, had been extensively read and workshopped since Kazan's junior year at Yale University. She capped off the year playing Meryl Streep's daughter in the Nancy Meyers comedy It's Complicated. She appeared in the Broadway production of A Behanding in Spokane with Christopher Walken and Sam Rockwell until June 6, 2010. She also played a main role in the movies I Hate Valentine's Day and The Exploding Girl, which were both released in 2009.
In 2010, she had a main role in the comedy-drama Happy. Thank You. More. Please. as Mary Catherine, the cousin of Josh Radnor's character. She also starred as Millie Gately in 2010 (alongside Paul Dano, playing her husband) in Kelly Reichardt's independent western drama Meek's Cutoff. In the fall, Kazan played Harper Pitt in Signature Theatre Company's 20th anniversary production of Tony Kushner's Angels in America. On the small screen, Kazan then appeared in four episodes of HBO's Bored to Death as Nina, the love interest of a fictionalized Jonathan Ames played by Jason Schwartzman.
Her play We Live Here, about a dysfunctional family, received its world premiere production from October 12 to November 6, 2011, at the off-Broadway Manhattan Theater Club in New York City. Among the ensemble cast was Amy Irving and the director was 2010 Obie Award winner Sam Gold.
Her next project, for which she wrote the screenplay, was Ruby Sparks, a comedy-romance film directed by Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris, and starring Kazan, along with Paul Dano, Chris Messina, Antonio Banderas, Annette Bening, Deborah Ann Woll, and Steve Coogan.
In 2014, her third play Trudy and Max in Love opened at the South Coast Repertory. Also in 2014, she starred in the HBO miniseries Olive Kitteridge, which earned her a Primetime Emmy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress in a Limited Series.
Kazan most recently starred in Joel and Ethan Coen's western anthology film, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018). She appears in the vignette, "The Gal Who Got Rattled". Many critics have called out her performance as one of the highlights of the film.
|2003||Swordswallowers and Thin Men||Samantha|
|2007||In the Valley of Elah||Angie|
|2008||Me and Orson Welles||Gretta Adler|
|2008||Revolutionary Road||Maureen Grube|
|2009||The Exploding Girl||Ivy|
|2009||The Private Lives of Pippa Lee||Grace Lee|
|2009||I Hate Valentine's Day||Tammy Greenwood|
|2009||It's Complicated||Gabby Adler|
|2010||Happy. Thank You. More. Please.||Mary Catherine|
|2010||Meek's Cutoff||Millie Gately|
|2012||Ruby Sparks||Ruby||Also writer and executive producer|
|2013||The Pretty One||Laurel/Audrey|
|2014||In Your Eyes||Rebecca Porter|
|2015||Our Brand Is Crisis||LeBlanc|
|2016||My Blind Brother||Francie|
|2017||The Big Sick||Emily Gardner|
|2018||Wildlife||N/A||Co-writer with Paul Dano|
|2018||The Ballad of Buster Scruggs||Alice Longabaugh||Segment: "The Gal Who Got Rattled"|
|2019||The Kindness of Strangers||Clara|
|2007||Medium||Izzy||Episode: "The Boy Next Door"|
|2008||Speechless||Stood Up Girl #2||Documentary|
|2010||Bored to Death||Nina||4 episodes|
|2014||Olive Kitteridge||Denise Thibodeau||2 episodes|
|2017–18||The Deuce||Andrea Martino||8 episodes|
|2020||The Plot Against America||Elizabeth Levin||6 episodes|
|TBA||Clickbait||Pia Brewer||Upcoming miniseries|
|2006||The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie||Sandy||Muriel Spark||Acorn Theatre, Off-Broadway|||
|2007||100 Saints You Should Know||Abby||Kate Fodor||Playwrights Horizons, Off-Broadway|||
|2007||Things We Want||Stella||Jonathan Marc Sherman||Acorn Theatre, Off-Broadway|||
|2008||Come Back, Little Sheba||Marie||William Inge||Biltmore Theatre, Broadway|||
|2008||The Seagull||Masha||Anton Chekov||Walter Kerr Theatre, Broadway|||
|2009||Absalom||N/A||Zoe Kazan||Actors Theatre of Louisville|||
|2010||A Behanding in Spokane||Marilyn||Martin McDonagh||Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre, Broadway|||
|2010||Angels in America||Harper Pitt||Tony Kushner||Signature Theatre, Off-Broadway|||
|2011||We Live Here||N/A||Zoe Kazan||Manhattan Theater Club|||
|2013||Clive||Joanne||Jonathan Marc Sherman||Acorn Theatre, Off-Broadway|||
|2014||Trudy and Max in Love||N/A||Zoe Kazan||South Coast Repertory|||
|2014||When We Were Young and Unafraid||Mary Anne||Sarah Treem||Manhattan Theater Club, Off-Broadway|||
|2016||Love Love Love||Rose||Mike Bartlett||Roundabout Theatre, Off-Broadway|||
|2017||After the Blast||N/A||Zoe Kazan||Lincoln Center Theatre|||
|2009||National Board of Review||Best Cast||It's Complicated||Won|
|2012||Detroit Film Critics Society||Breakthrough Performance||Ruby Sparks||Won|
|Saturn Awards||Best Actress||Nominated|
|Independent Spirit Awards||Best Screenplay||Nominated|
|2015||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie||Olive Kitteridge||Nominated|
|Satellite Awards||Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film||Nominated|
|2017||Critics' Choice Movie Awards||Best Actress in a Comedy||The Big Sick||Nominated|
|Screen Actors Guild||Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture||Nominated|
Age: 27 (09/09/83)
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