Jesse Lon Plemons (born April 2, 1988) is an American actor and comedian. He is known for playing Landry Clarke in the NBC drama series Friday Night Lights, Todd Alquist in the AMC crime drama series Breaking Bad, and Ed Blumquist in the second season of the FX anthology series Fargo. He is also known for his film roles in the films Like Mike (2002), Observe and Report (2009), Battleship (2012), The Master (2012), and as mobster Kevin Weeks in Black Mass (2015). Most recently, Plemons starred in an episode of Black Mirror, "USS Callister". He has appeared in two Steven Spielberg films: the historical drama Bridge of Spies (2015) and the political thriller The Post (2017).
Plemons was born in Dallas, Texas, the son of Lisa Beth (née Cason) and Jim Bob Plemons. He was raised in Mart, a small town outside Waco. He has an older sister named Jill. On his paternal side, he is related to empresario Stephen F. Austin, known as the Father of Texas.
In 2007, Plemons graduated from the Texas Tech University Independent School District, a distance learning program, which allowed him to earn his high school diploma. He attended schools in the Mart, Texas area, where he played football in middle school, junior high, and high school. He attended Mart High School until he received more acting jobs and needed to shift to the online program.
Plemons got his first start in a Coca-Cola commercial when he was 3 1/2 years old. Then when he was 8 years old he started doing extra work, and with the support of his family, spent time auditioning in Los Angeles and landing small jobs.
After appearing in the films Varsity Blues (1999) and All the Pretty Horses (2000), and guest-starring on Walker, Texas Ranger and Sabrina, the Teenage Witch, Plemons' first prominent role was in the film Children on their Birthdays (2002). He later appeared in Like Mike (2002) and When Zachary Beaver Came to Town (2003), with guest roles on the television series Judging Amy, The Lyon's Den, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, and Grey's Anatomy between 2003 and 2006.
In 2006, when he was 18 years old, Plemons joined the ensemble cast of NBC's television series Friday Night Lights, filmed in Austin, Texas, detailing the fictional events surrounding a high school football team in fictional Dillon, Texas. In the show's first season, his character Landry Clarke provided comic relief as the best friend of football quarterback Matt Saracen, though Landry himself was not on the team. Among the cast and crew, the joke was that Plemons played football better than most of the other actors, even though his character was one of the few who did not play.
Landry joined the Panthers football team in the second season, and Plemons, having played high school football, told director Jeffrey Reiner that he would do his own stunts. In his first football scene, Landry had to "get the crap beat out of [him] over and over and over again". When hit by co-star Taylor Kitsch (playing Tim Riggins) Plemons' chin split open, requiring eleven stitches. The show, a fan and critic favorite, after shifting to DirecTV, ended after five seasons, in 2011.
In 2012, Plemons reunited with Kitsch and Friday Night Lights creator Peter Berg in the film Battleship. Berg, who directed the film, explained that he knew how comfortable Kitsch was with Plemons: "I know that he's really good for Taylor and he makes Taylor better. So, I wrote that whole part for Jesse. I never thought of it as a Friday Night Lights reunion. I thought of it as protection, bringing a trusted family member in."
From 2012 to 2013, Plemons portrayed the psychopathic villain Todd Alquist during the final season of the AMC drama series Breaking Bad. He was a recurring cast member in Season 5A and was promoted to series regular for Season 5B.
In January 2014, it was reported that Plemons was in strong consideration to be one of the new stars of the upcoming Star Wars Episode VII (Star Wars: The Force Awakens). In March 2014, it was further reported that Plemons, along with four other actors, were being considered for the lead role of Finn in Episode VII. The role, however, went to John Boyega. Plemons had a starring role in the Boston-set mob film Black Mass, starring Johnny Depp, which opened in theaters in September 2015. Also that year, he appeared in the Stephen Frears film about Lance Armstrong, The Program, and the Steven Spielberg film Bridge of Spies.
In late 2015, Plemons co-starred in the second season of the TV show loosely based on the film of the same name, Fargo. He portrayed Ed Blumquist, who is a butcher, and is the husband of Peggy Blumquist (Kirsten Dunst). For his performance, he was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie. In 2016, Plemons starred in the film Other People. In 2017, he appeared in the Doug Liman thriller film American Made (released on September 29) and portrayed villainous programmer Robert Daly in the Black Mirror episode "USS Callister".
Plemons has long been noted for his resemblance to actors Matt Damon and Philip Seymour Hoffman. One of his first film roles, at age 12, was playing the younger version of Damon's character in the 2000 film All the Pretty Horses. He also appeared as Hoffman's son in the 2012 film The Master. When Plemons appeared on Breaking Bad, he acquired the nickname "Meth Damon" from fans, given that his character was in the methamphetamines trade.
|1998||Finding North||Hobo||Tanya Wexler|
|1999||Varsity Blues||Tommy Harbor||Brian Robbins|
|2000||All the Pretty Horses||Young John Grady Cole||Billy Bob Thornton|
|2002||Children on Their Birthdays||Preacher Star||Mark Medoff|
|2002||Like Mike||Ox||John Schultz|
|2003||When Zachary Beaver Came to Town||Jay||John Schultz|
|2003||The Failures||Boe||Tim Hunter|
|2008||The Flyboys||Bully #1||Rocco DeVilliers|
|2009||Observe and Report||Charles||Jody Hill|
|2010||Happiness Runs||Chad||Adam Sherman|
|2010||Meeting Spencer||Spencer West||Malcolm Mowbray|
|2012||The Master||Val Dodd||Paul Thomas Anderson|
|2012||Battleship||Jimmy "Ordy" Ord||Peter Berg|
|2014||The Homesman||Garn Sours||Tommy Lee Jones|
|2015||Black Mass||Kevin Weeks||Scott Cooper|
|2015||The Program||Floyd Landis||Stephen Frears|
|2015||Bridge of Spies||Joe Murphy||Steven Spielberg|
|2016||Other People||David Mulcahey||Chris Kelly||Nominated—Independent Spirit Award for Best Male Lead|
|2017||The Discovery||Toby Harbor||Charlie McDowell|
|2017||American Made||Sheriff Downing||Doug Liman|
|2017||Hostiles||Lieutenant Rudy Kidder||Scott Cooper|
|2017||The Post||Roger Clark||Steven Spielberg|
|2018||Game Night||Gary Kingsbury||John Francis Daley
|2019||The Irishman||Chuckie O’Brien||Martin Scorsese||In post-production|
|2000||Walker, Texas Ranger||Russell, Jr.||Episode: "The General's Return"|
|2001||The Guardian||Lawrence Neal||Episode: "Paternity"|
|2001||Sabrina, the Teenage Witch||Bigger Kid||Episode: "Really Big Season Opener"|
|2003||The Lyon's Den||Ray Ferris||Episode: "The Other Side of Caution"|
|2003||Judging Amy||James Franklin||Episode: "Marry, Marry Quite Contrary"|
|2004||Huff||Dawson James||Episode: "Cold Day in Shanghai"|
|2004||CSI: Crime Scene Investigation||Owen Durbin||Episode: "Down the Drain"|
|2006||Grey's Anatomy||Jake Burton||Episode: "Yesterday"|
|2006||NCIS||Jason Geckler||Episode: "Deception"|
|2006–2011||Friday Night Lights||Landry Clarke||59 episodes|
|2008||Fear Itself||Lemmon||Episode: "The Sacrifice"|
|2009||Cold Case||Ryan Stewart||2 episodes|
|2011||Childrens Hospital||Jesse||Episode: "Father's Day"|
|2012–2013||Breaking Bad||Todd Alquist||11 episodes
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2013)
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2012)
|2013||The Missionary||Sherwood Elbridge||Unsold TV pilot|
|2014–2018||Drunk History||Various||3 episodes|
|2014||Olive Kitteridge||Jerry McCarthy||2 episodes|
|2015||Fargo||Ed Blumquist||10 episodes
Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Movie/Miniseries (2015)
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or a Movie (2016)
|2017||No Activity||Angus||8 episodes|
|2017||Black Mirror||Captain Robert Daly||Episode: "USS Callister"
Pending—Saturn Award for Best Guest Starring Role on Television