If you’ve never watched “The Bear,” FX’s fabulous restaurant industry dramedy now in its second season, there are a couple things I can tell you that aren’t spoilers. (And if you have seen the show, please enjoy these insider references.) First, phrases like “Yes, chef,” “Behind!” and calling your friend “Cousin” are important vocabulary. Second, the guest stars are killer. And third, Jewish actor Ebon Moss-Bachrach absolutely shines as Richie, a lovable dirtbag chef.
With that in mind, here are 18 things to know about Ebon Moss-Bachrach.
1. Ebon was born on March 19, 1977 in Amherst, Massachussetts to a Jewish father and a non-Jewish mother.
2. He’s a Pisces!
3. His father Eric was born in Germany after the war. Though his parents were American, his father’s job was as a translator for an organization trying to return artwork and belongings stolen by the Nazis.
4. He has a brother named Elan. In Hebrew, Elan (or Ilan) means “tree.”
5. He attended Amherst Regional High School and later graduated from Columbia University in 1999.
6. Ebon considered studying jazz piano in college, but instead turned to acting. In 1997, he was cast in show at the Williamstown Theater Festival called “Dead End.”
“This play made me want to spend my life in the theater. A dream I’m still chasing,” he wrote in an Instagram caption in 2017.
7. His first movie role was as a waiter (foreshadowing!) in the 2001 movie “The Believers.”
8. From 2014-2017 he starred as Desi Harperin on “Girls,” who many viewers found unlikeable.
“It is a character that I like, and I get upset a little bit — he gets called a douche so much,” Ebon told the New York Times. “I got very proprietary and defensive and protective of him.”
9. “He is the biggest mensch in the world,” according to Jenni Konner, the writer-director who cast him in “Girls.”
10. Other projects he has been a part of include “The Dropout,” “John Adams” and “The Punisher.”
11. Ebon is married to Ukrainian photographer Yelena Yemchuk. The couple has two daughters, Sasha and Mirabelle.
12. He is not a COVID baker.
13. According to the New Yorker, he is a hot Brooklyn dad. (Or, at least he has “the soulful eyes and the regulation close-cropped beard of the hot Brooklyn dad.”)
14. He didn’t expect “The Bear” to be as big of a hit as it is.
“I loved the process of making it, and then when I watched it and thought it was really good, I was like, ‘Oh, it’s not going to do well.’ I thought my taste was so weird that I’m out of sync with what people like,” he said in an interview with Sarah Paulson, adding, “The response to it was shocking. I was out of the country last summer on vacation. I just started getting text messages from the cast, like, ‘This is crazy. What’s going on?'”
15. Ebon is a skilled chef in his own right! “In his own kitchen, he is partial to roasting chickens, striving to master the classic French omelet,” New York Times writer Melena Ryzik explained in 2023.
16. This is perhaps the best scene in “The Bear” season two:
I know the Christmas episode is probably more impressive from all aspects, but season 2 episode 7 of the Bear “Forks” is probably my favorite episode of the series. Ebon Moss-Bachrach fucking kills it pic.twitter.com/kErqEFxoTS
— Paulie’s Sun Reflector (@Kyle_4Real) July 1, 2023
17. He has some advice for fans who are attracted to Richie:
Bless your heart AND be careful out there. https://t.co/ozzJao16He
— Ebon Moss-Bachrach (@EbonMossB) July 14, 2022
18. In 2023, Ebon starred in “No Hard Feelings” (alongside Andrew Barth Feldman) and his next project is the upcoming movie “Dust.”