You’ve seen Jane Levy on TV. You may have not known it was Jane Levy, but it was Jane Levy. And now she’s set to star in Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist, a musical comedy from NBC. So here are 18 things to know about Jane:
1. Jane Levy was born in Los Angeles, and raised in northern California. Her dad, musician Lester Levy, is Jewish, and her mom, Mary Tilbury, is Irish and Scottish.
And this seems to be her grandfather, who worked as an NYC trial officer:
2. She celebrates Hanukkah!
3. She played soccer in high school, and played Division III soccer at Goucher College for one year. “I wasn’t naturally talented, but I worked so hard and committed myself 100 percent. I enjoyed the process of training, learning and hanging out with my teammates,” Jane said.
4. She acted in high school, but stopped after freshman year to focus on soccer.
5. That swapped in college: “I dropped out of college in 2008 to pursue acting,” Jane explains. “I had no idea what I was doing and no reason to think it could work. My parents were skeptical but supportive, and I enrolled at the Stella Adler Studio of Acting less than a year later. When we were about to graduate we sent our headshots and resumes to various managers and agents. I had a really great headshot, apparently, and I got a meeting with a manager.”
6. Jane compares acting and soccer: “My favorite thing about making movies and television is the teamwork and camaraderie. I played soccer seriously as a teenager and the idea of reaching a goal with a group gets me high. Every so often, everything aligns and everyone on set works in unison and beautiful collaborative art is made and it feels like magic.”
7. Last year, she shared her abortion story on Twitter, writing, “my abortion allowed me to finish high school, go to college, drop out and persue [sic] my dream of becoming an actress. i am grateful for my teenage self – for knowing what she needed – and i’m grateful for the doctors who took care of me. i had an abortion because i wasn’t ready to be a mom. not wanting to be pregnant is as good of a reason as ANY. #ShoutYourAbortion@AbortionStories”
— Jane Levy (@jcolburnlevy) April 28, 2019
8. Her first lead role was as Tessa in Suburgatory, a show about a single dad who moves his jaded teen to the suburbs. It aired for three seasons on ABC.
9. Her other lead roles include Diane on Castle Rock, Joy on There’s… Johnny! and Lisa on Netflix’s What/If. She also appeared in guest roles on Shameless, Kroll Show, and Twin Peaks.
10. Jane has also starred in a bunch of horror films, including The Evil Dead and Don’t Breathe. “Nothing gets me to the movie theater quicker than horror,” Jane told GQ. “I like things that push buttons and push boundaries, and horror and comedy are genres that do that. I guess, I hope, there’s a quality in me that is vulnerable yet strong, which is a really funny thing to say about yourself. I am a huge crybaby, but I’m also really tough. I used to be a soccer player so I have an athletic background. It’s a quality a lot of final girls have.”
11. She’s also starred in a bunch of other films: Fun Size, Frank and Cindy, Monster Trucks, I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore, Office Uprising, and The Pretenders.
12. She’s very proud of Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist, explaining, “There’s an earnestness and joy about it that I think is not common at the moment. It’s about empathy and love and loss.”
13. Working as an actor, Jane told Vulture, means she spends a lot of time upset. “The job of being an actor is being told no all the time and being disappointed a lot. At the same time, I am also extremely grateful that I get to work as an actor. Even when you do get a job, I never feel like it’s actually going to happen until the first day I’m on set, because so many times it falls apart. Even after you did all the crazy hard work to get the job. It’s kind of a miracle that I even got two jobs, and then three.”
14. In 2011, she married actor Jaime Freitas, and they separated later that year — Jane then filed for divorce in April 2013.
15. She is pals with Jenny Slate and Mae Whitman, calling Mae her “best friend in the whole world.”
16. In a profile in Vanity Fair, Slate said, “Once every two months, I’m up until 6 in the morning—with my friends, just talking.” The author’s aside? “(A recent such late night involved fellow actresses Jane Levy and Mae Whitman.)”
They’re close enough that Jane posts b-day wishes for Jenny:
And they tweet at each other:
I'll check in with ad and let you know as soon as possible. Sorry for the wait
— Jane Levy (@jcolburnlevy) June 14, 2017
16. Jane narrated a Drunk History episode with Mae about the murderess row behind the smash hit Chicago. It’s a must-watch:
18. Jane is very good at Twitter. Example A:
i wrote a horror film called famous people's children
— Jane Levy (@jcolburnlevy) September 16, 2019
just tried to spy on everyone i went to high school with on instagram but all of their profiles are private what the hell
— Jane Levy (@jcolburnlevy) July 5, 2019
rupaul says he has an app that gives him yiddish word of the day and i can’t find it and i’m pissed
— Jane Levy (@jcolburnlevy) August 25, 2019
We hope you found your Yiddish app, Jane!
Image of Jane Levy in header by Rich Polk/Getty Images for IMDb.