J.K. Simmons is an American actor, considered one of the most prolific and well-established character actors of his generation. He has appeared in over 200 films and television roles since his debut in 1986. He is best known for his roles as J. Jonah Jameson in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man trilogy (2002–2007), Thank You for Smoking with Aaron Eckhart (2005), Juno (2007), Whiplash with Miles Teller (2014), for which he won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, La La Land with Ryan Gosling (2016), Commissioner James Gordon in Justice League (2017), and William Frawley in Being the Ricardos (2021).
On television, he is known for playing Dr. Emil Skoda in the Law & Order franchise (1997–2010), white supremacist prisoner Vernon Schillinger on the HBO series Oz (1997–2003), and Assistant Police Chief Will Pope on the TNT series The Closer (2005–2012). From 2017 to 2019, he starred as Howard Silk in the Starz series Counterpart. In 2020, he had recurring roles on the miniseries Defending Jacob and The Stand.
Simmons was born on January 9, 1955, in Grosse Pointe, Michigan. He studied music at the University of Montana, where he originally planned to be a composer. However, he soon discovered a passion for acting and began appearing in regional theater productions. In 1986, he made his film debut in the comedy Ruthless People.
Simmons' breakthrough role came in 2002, when he was cast as J. Jonah Jameson in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man. He reprised the role in the two sequels, and his performance is widely considered to be one of the best in the trilogy.
In 2014, Simmons won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance as Terence Fletcher in the drama Whiplash. His portrayal of a ruthless and demanding music teacher was widely praised by critics and audiences alike.