Jesse Tyler Ferguson (born October 22, 1975) is an American actor. From 2009 to 2020, he portrayed Mitchell Pritchett on the sitcom Modern Family, for which he earned five consecutive nominations for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series.
Jesse Tyler Ferguson
|Born||October 22, 1975|
Missoula, Montana, U.S.
|Education||American Musical and Dramatic Academy|
Ferguson made his Broadway debut in On the Town, and was in the original Broadway cast of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, for which he and his ensemble cast won a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Cast Ensemble. He has appeared in theatre adaptations of A Winter's Tale, The Producers, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Spamalot and The Merchant of Venice. For his performance in the 2016 Broadway production of Fully Committed, Ferguson was awarded a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Solo Performance. He won the Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Play for his performance in the 2022 Broadway revival of Richard Greenberg's Take Me Out.
Jesse Tyler Ferguson was born in Missoula, Montana, to Anne Ferguson (née Doyle) and Robert "Bob" Ferguson. His parents divorced when he was 18 years old. Ferguson has a brother, Ben Ferguson, and sister, Kelly Ferguson. Ferguson was named after his paternal grandmother, Jessie Uppercue Ferguson, to whom he was very close growing up. His paternal great-grandfather was also named Jesse.
His family moved when he was young to Albuquerque, New Mexico, where he was raised. At age eight he decided to become an actor, and joined the Albuquerque Children's Theater, where he was a member for six years. At Albuquerque's St. Pius X High School, Ferguson played Albert Peterson in Bye Bye Birdie and General Bullmoose in Li'l Abner. He participated on the speech and debate team and graduated in 1994. He worked as a dancer/singer at Cliff's Amusement Park.
In New York City, Ferguson worked mainly in Off-Broadway and Broadway theatre, including the Tony Award-winning The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, where he originated the role of Leaf Coneybear. Ferguson starred in the Public Theater's 2007 Shakespeare in the Park production of A Midsummer Night's Dream and 2015 production of The Tempest. In the summer of 2015, he played Sir Robin in the Hollywood Bowl production of Monty Python's Spamalot.
In March 2012, Ferguson was featured as Dr. Ilan Meyer in a performance of Dustin Lance Black's play 8, a staged reenactment of Perry v. Brown, the federal trial that overturned California's Proposition 8 ban on same-sex marriage. The production was held at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre and broadcast on YouTube to raise money for the American Foundation for Equal Rights, a non-profit organization funding the plaintiffs' legal team and sponsoring the play.
Television and filmEdit
From 2009 to 2020, he has played the role of Mitchell Pritchett, the openly gay lawyer on the ABC sitcom Modern Family. For his performance, Ferguson has received five consecutive Emmy Award nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series. He has also appeared as a judge on So You Think You Can Dance, and opposed actress Chrissy Metz in a 2017 episode of TBS's Drop the Mic. From 2020, he has co-hosted HGTV's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition together with Ty Pennington.
In September 2012, Ferguson and his lawyer husband, Justin Mikita, started the non-profit charity Tie The Knot, an effort to raise funds in support of same-sex marriage, using bow ties sold to retail. They officially launched it as their engagement announcement in an online video where they explain only seven states at the time had same-sex marriage. In an interview Ferguson stated that he wanted to do something that was smaller and manageable in case it did not work out as a business model.
The foundation sells limited-edition bow ties to support organizations that advocate for same-sex marriage. Their collections are designed by the couple plus guest designers, and is sold by The Tie Bar, a Naperville, Illinois-based online men's neckwear company.
In January 2013, the couple were recruited by Lieutenant Governor of Illinois Sheila Simon to lobby legislators to pass SB10 which would allow same-sex marriage. The bill passed both legislative houses, and Governor Pat Quinn signed the bill into law, going into effect on June 1, 2014.
In October 2013, the American Civil Liberties Union named Ferguson the celebrity ambassador for the LGBT community. He participated heavily in the ACLU's "Out for Freedom" campaign They noted that Ferguson travelled to New Mexico, his home state, to take part in same sex marriage efforts. Before the state's full legalization of same-sex marriage on December 19, 2013, New Mexico did not explicitly permit or prohibit same-sex marriage; it was the only state lacking a statute or constitutional provision explicitly addressing same-sex marriage. The couple's non-profit made a grant of US$10,000 to the ACLU of New Mexico for same sex efforts.
In November 2013, a pop-up retail store for 'Tie The Knot' was located at the Los Angeles Beverly Center featuring the fourth collection from the couple, including professional athlete designs with Scott Fujita and Chris Kluwe, and Brittney Griner.
Ferguson uses his full name as there was already an actor called Jesse Ferguson in the actors' union when he joined.
In September 2012, Ferguson announced his engagement to lawyer Justin Mikita, his boyfriend of nearly two years. They married in Manhattan on July 20, 2013, with the playwright and screenwriter Tony Kushner officiating at their wedding. Their son, Beckett Mercer Ferguson-Mikita, was born on July 7, 2020.
In August 2022, Ferguson officiated his Modern Family co-star Sarah Hyland's wedding with TV personality Wells Adams. The marriage ceremony took place at the Californian Sunstone Winery in Santa Ynez, California.
|2004||Mercury in Retrograde||Duane||Short film|
|2006||Griffin and Phoenix||Student|
|2008||Untraceable||Arthur James Elmer|
|2012||The Procession||Jason||Short film|
|8||Dr. Ilan Meyer|
|2016||Ice Age: Collision Course||Shangri Llama (voice)||First animated role and film|
|2000||Sally Hemings: An American Scandal||Young Tom Hemings||TV film|
|2002||Absolutely Fabulous||Uncredited||Episode: "Gay"|
|2006–2007||The Class||Richie Velch||19 episodes|
|2007, 2010||Ugly Betty||Dr. Gabe Farkas||Episode: "Icing on the Cake" (2007)|
Episode: "The Passion of the Betty" (2010)
|2008||Do Not Disturb||Larry||5 episodes|
|2009||The Battery's Down||Shamus McKelvy||Episode: "The Party's Over"|
|2009–2020||Modern Family||Mitchell Pritchett||Main character|
|2011–2013||So You Think You Can Dance||Himself||7 episodes|
|2012||Submissions Only||Jared Halstead||Episode: "Another Interruption"|
|RuPaul's Drag Race||Himself||Episode: "Dads I'd Like to Frock"|
|2013||2013 Do Something Awards||Honoree||TV film|
|2013–14||Web Therapy||Steve Olson||5 episodes|
|2013||Hot in Cleveland||Wes||Episode: "Love Is All Around"|
|Project Runway||Himself||Episode: "Tie the Knot"|
|2014||Backstage with Disney on Broadway: Celebrating 20 Years||Host|
|2015||Comedy Bang! Bang!||Episode: "Jesse Tyler Ferguson Wears a Brown Checked Shirt and Stripey Socks"|
|Running Wild with Bear Grylls||Episode: "Jesse Tyler Ferguson"|
|2017||Nightcap||Episode: "Always a Beard, Never a Bride"|
|Drop the Mic||Episode: "David Arquette vs. Brian Tyree Henry / Jesse Tyler Ferguson vs. Chrissy Metz"|
|2020||Extreme Makeover: Home Edition||Host|
|2021||The Good Fight||Garrison Vitar||Episode: "And the Two Partners Had a Fight..."|
|2022||High School Musical: The Musical: The Series||Marvin||Episode: “Into The Unknown”|
|1998–1999||On the Town||Chip||Broadway revival|
November 19, 1998 – January 17, 1999
|The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told||Off-Broadway|
|Where Do We Live|
|A Midsummer Night's Dream||Francis Flute||Public Theater|
(Shakespeare in the Park)
|The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged)|
|2005–2008||The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee||Leaf Coneybear||Broadway|
May 2, 2005 – June 23, 2006
|2005||On the Twentieth Century||Max Jacobs||Special concert|
|2010||The Winter's Tale||Shepard's Son||Public Theater|
(Shakespeare in the Park)
|The Merchant of Venice||Launcelot Gobbo||Public Theater|
(Shakespeare in the Park)
|2012||The Producers||Leo Bloom||Hollywood Bowl|
July 27–29, 2012
|2013||A Comedy of Errors||Dromio of Syracus / Dromio of Ephesus||Public Theater|
(Shakespeare in the Park)
|2015||Spamalot||Sir Robin||Hollywood Bowl|
July 31 – August 2, 2015
|2016||Fully Committed||Sam and others||Broadway|
April 25 – July 24, 2016
|2018||Log Cabin||Ezra||Playwrights Horizons|
June 1 – July 18, 2018
|2022||Take Me Out||Mason Marzac||Broadway|
March 10 – June 11, 2022
|2019||"You Need to Calm Down"||Taylor Swift||Cameo|
Awards and nominationsEdit
- "Jesse Tyler Ferguson". TV Guide Online. Archived from the original on April 3, 2016.
- "Robert B Ferguson". United States Public Records, 1970–2009. FamilySearch. Retrieved August 4, 2014.
- "Jesse Tyler Ferguson follows the trouble-filled story of his great-grandfather's life—and draws conclusions about his ultimate legacy". Ancestry.com. August 1, 2014. Archived from the original on May 1, 2016. Retrieved August 3, 2014.
- Strohm, Emily (July 30, 2014). "Jesse Tyler Ferguson Discovers a Dark Crime While Tracing His Family Tree". People. Retrieved August 4, 2014.
- "Jesse Tyler Ferguson 25 Things You Don't Know About Me". Us Magazine. July 26, 2014. Retrieved August 4, 2014.
- "Modern Family Biography: Mitchell Played by Jesse Tyler Ferguson". ABC. Archived from the original on June 23, 2011. Retrieved August 6, 2011.
- Allen, Steven Robert (September 19–25, 2013). "Wedding Bells for Jesse Tyler Ferguson". Alibi. Vol. 22, no. 38. Retrieved August 4, 2014.
- Artavia, David (May 21, 2013). "Jesse Tyler Ferguson Slams His Former Catholic School for Forcing Trans Teen to Wear Women's Graduation Garb". Advocate. Retrieved August 4, 2014.
- Stated on Inside the Actors Studio, 2011
- "'Glee' Stars 'Touched' By Pitt & Clooney's Support of '8'". Access Hollywood. March 5, 2012. Retrieved March 18, 2012.
- "'8': A Play about the Fight for Marriage Equality". Archived from the original on December 13, 2021. Retrieved March 18, 2012 – via YouTube.
- "YouTube to broadcast Proposition 8 play live". Pink News. March 1, 2012. Retrieved March 18, 2012.
- Perkins, Dennis (March 19, 2018). "John Oliver hijacks homophobe Mike Pence's bunny book with a better one in A Day In The Life Of Marlon Bundo". AV Club. Retrieved March 19, 2018.
- TaylorSwiftVEVO (June 17, 2019), Taylor Swift - You Need To Calm Down, archived from the original on December 13, 2021, retrieved June 17, 2019
- "Home". Tie The Knot.
- "Modern Family's Jesse Tyler Ferguson Buys Gwen Stefani's Home for $4.55 Million". Realty Today. November 6, 2013. Retrieved December 5, 2013.
- Riggs, Erika (November 5, 2013). "Jesse Tyler Ferguson Buys Gwen Stefani's Former Home". Zillow. Retrieved August 4, 2014.
- "'Modern Family' Star Jesse Tyler Ferguson Marries!". Entertainment Tonight. April 29, 2013. Retrieved December 5, 2013.
- Interview with Ferguson by David Letterman, Late Night with David Letterman, CBS, November 20, 2013.
- "Gay marriage bill voted through Illinois House". 89 WLS AM. November 5, 2013. Archived from the original on December 2, 2013. Retrieved August 4, 2014.
- Garcia, Monique; Long, Ray (November 5, 2013). "Lawmakers approve gay marriage in Illinois". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved November 21, 2013.
- "Gay marriage bill passes in Illinois house, senate – on to governors desk". Chicago Sun-Times. November 5, 2013. Archived from the original on December 3, 2013. Retrieved December 5, 2013.
- Garcia, Monique (November 20, 2013). "Quinn signs Illinois gay marriage bill". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved November 20, 2013.
- Geiger, Kim (November 5, 2013). "Q&A on same-sex marriage". Chicago Tribune. Archived from the original on November 9, 2013. Retrieved November 21, 2013.
- "ACLU Ambassadors – Jesse Tyler Ferguson". aclu.olrg (American Civil Liberties Union). Retrieved January 5, 2015.
- "ACLU Names Celebrity Ambassadors for Key Civil Liberties Issues". American Civil Liberties Union. October 29, 2013. Retrieved December 5, 2013.
- Ehrman-Dupre, Joseph (October 29, 2013). "Jesse Tyler Ferguson Named Celebrity Ambassador For Marriage Equality By ACLU: VIDEO". Towleroad. Retrieved December 5, 2013.
- Grovum, Jake (February 12, 2013). "How New Mexico Legalized Gay Marriage – For 8 Hours". Statelines. Pew Charitable Trust. Archived from the original on April 12, 2014. Retrieved August 4, 2014.
- Matthew Breen. "Modern Family's Jesse Tyler Ferguson releases bow tie collection". Pursuitist. Archived from the original on July 24, 2018. Retrieved December 5, 2013.
- Tschorn, Adam (November 18, 2013). "Tie the Knot pops up at the Beverly Center through Jan. 10". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 5, 2013.
- Chi, Paul (September 19, 2012). "Jesse Tyler Ferguson Is Engaged to Justin Mikita". People. Archived from the original on June 16, 2016. Retrieved September 19, 2012.
- Rizzo, Monica (July 21, 2013). "Jesse Tyler Ferguson Marries Justin Mikita". People. Retrieved July 21, 2013.
- "Jesse Tyler Ferguson Is a Dad! Actor Welcomes First Child, Beckett Mercer, with Justin Mikita". PEOPLE.com. Retrieved July 9, 2020.
- Winfrey, Oprah (October 27, 2013). "Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Dan Bucatinsky and Wanda Sykes Reflect on Coming Out" (video interview). Oprah's Next Chapter. Retrieved August 4, 2014.
- "Democratic National Convention - Our Fight Song". YouTube. Archived from the original on December 13, 2021. Retrieved July 11, 2018.
- Cox, Nicki (August 23, 2022). "Jesse Tyler Ferguson officiated Wells Adams and Sarah Hyland's wedding". Page Six. Retrieved August 29, 2022.
- Roberts, Madison (June 19, 2019). "Modern Family's Jessie Tyler Ferguson Will Host Extreme Makeover: Home Edition Reboot on HGTV". People. Retrieved September 27, 2019.