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Jesse W. Peretz (born May 19, 1968)[1] is an American film and television director, TV producer and former musician. He first rose to prominence as a bass guitarist and founding member of The Lemonheads, a Cambridge, Massachusetts-based band which formed in 1986. Peretz left the band as a musician shortly before their breakout album, It's a Shame About Ray, was released, but stayed on as the band photographer. After leaving The Lemonheads, he began to work extensively as a director, first in short form works such as television commercials and music videos, later transitioning to feature films and television series. His directorial work includes the films Our Idiot Brother and Juliet, Naked, and the TV series Girls.

Jesse Peretz
Jesse W. Peretz

(1968-05-19) May 19, 1968 (age 51)
Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
Alma materHarvard University
OccupationFilm director, musician
Years active1986-present



Peretz is a founding member of the Cambridge, Massachusetts-based rock band The Lemonheads, which he formed in high school with classmates Evan Dando and Ben Deily.[2] He left the band as a musician prior to the band's breakthrough album, It's a Shame About Ray; however, he continued to work with them as a photographer and music video director. His first videos for The Lemonheads were for the songs "Mrs. Robinson", "Confetti" and "It's a Shame about Ray".[3] He went on to direct videos for the Foo Fighters (he won a Grammy for Best Music Video for "Learn to Fly"),[4] Jack Black, Nada Surf and The Breeders,[3] as well as creating and co-directing the "Jimmy the Cab-Driver" comedy vignettes for MTV with his friends from Harvard Donal Logue and Clay Tarver.[5] Peretz also directed several commercials including spots for Nike, IKEA, Barq's Root Beer, and the Sony PlayStation.[6] In 1998, he directed a feature film called First Love, Last Rites based on the Ian McEwan short story of the same name.[3] In 2001 he directed The Chateau (starring Paul Rudd), in 2006 The Ex, and in 2011 Our Idiot Brother.[7] He has worked as a producer/director on the HBO show Girls and Showtime's Nurse Jackie.[3][8] It was announced in 2014 that Peretz would direct an adaptation of the Nick Hornby novel Juliet, Naked, produced by Judd Apatow.[9] Peretz's film version premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival.[10]

Personal lifeEdit

Peretz was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the son of Anne Devereux (née Labouisse), and publisher Marty Peretz.[1][11] His father is a descendant of Yiddish-language author I. L. Peretz. His maternal grandparents were Elizabeth Scriven (Clark) and diplomat Henry Richardson Labouisse, Jr. His maternal great-grandfather was art collector and philanthropist Stephen Carlton Clark, who was the son of Alfred Corning Clark and the grandson of inventor Edward C. Clark.[12] His father is Jewish and his mother is Protestant.[13]


Film (as director)Edit

TV (as director)Edit



  1. ^ a b "Jesse Peretz Biography - Yahoo! Movies". 1968-05-19. Retrieved 2011-07-20.
  2. ^ Collins-Hughes, Laura (30 August 2011). "Peretz's local learning curve" – via The Boston Globe.
  3. ^ a b c d Ducker, Eric (4 March 2013). "Q&A: Girls Director Jesse Peretz on Lena Dunham, His Music Video and Features Career, and the Satisfaction of Working on Cable TV". Grantland. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
  4. ^ "Artist: Jesse Peretz". Retrieved 30 November 2018.
  5. ^ Sheffield, Rob (18 November 2014). "Jimmy the Cab Driver's Greatest MTV Hits". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
  6. ^ Gardyn, Rebecca (1 November 1999). "WHEN JESSE PERETZ LAUGHS, THE WORLD LAUGHS WITH HIM . . . AND SOMETIMES AT HIM". Ad Age. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
  7. ^ Brown, Hannah (23 July 2011). "IT RUNS IN THE FAMILY". Jerusalem Post. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
  8. ^ Lee, Ashley (23 June 2015). "'Nurse Jackie': On the Set With Edie Falco as Show Says Goodbye for Good". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
  10. ^ "Juliet, Naked". Sundance Film Festival. The Sundance Institute. Retrieved December 18, 2017.
  11. ^ Rodrick, Stephen (January 24, 2011). "Martin Peretz Is Not Sorry About Anything". The New York Times.
  12. ^ "Record-Journal - Google News Archive Search".
  13. ^ Orel, Gwen (25 August 2011). "Q&A: Siblings Evgenia and Jesse Peretz on 'Our Idiot Brother'". The Forward. Retrieved 30 November 2018.

External linksEdit