Spike Jonze

Spike Jonze Photo


Birth Name: Adam Spiegel

Date of Birth: October 22, 1969

Born Adam Spiegel in Missouri, Spike Jonze lived for the first part of his life in Potomac, MD. He was raised, along with his younger brother Sam, by a single mom who worked as a publicist.

Abandoning his chance to go to college, he decided to go into a print career working as an editor, writer and photographer on Freestylin', Go, and BMX Action, all BMX/freestyle magazines, and Homeboy, which was into BMX, music, skateboarding, etc. It turned out that Spike ended up shooting more than writing for the magazine.

In 1991, he co-founded Sassy's brother magazine Dirt. He met his fellow founders in highschool. "I rode freestyle bikes," Jonze once reminisced, "And I got to meet Andy and Lew, who I now work with at Dirt, but at the time they did this magazine Freestylin', which I grew up reading and was totally into. I started writing to them when I was in high school. And they said, 'Hey, after high school, do you want to come move out here and work as an editorial assistant?'" "Of course!" Jonze responded.

He began working in the skateboarding industry as a filmmaker, and acquired much success, especially after co-founding Girl Skateboards with Rick Howard.

Later, his direction of the Beastie Boys' "Sabotage" music video (1994), as well as numerous commercials, received critical praise and numerous awards. Each year, Jonze is recognized with MTV awards and nominations for his videos. In 1998, he was nominated for Best Breakthrough Video for Sean Lennon's "Home." He did not win the category, but he did win MTV's Viewer's Choice Award for the Puff Daddy video "It's All About the Benjamins." Jonze has also directed music videos for Weezer, R.E.M., and Bjork.

Jonze has been managed by Satellite Films since 1992, and in 1997, he signed an overall first-look development and production deal with Propaganda films for features and TV projects, and its subsidiary Satellite Films for commercial and video representation.

His first onscreen appearance came in Francine McDougall's Pig (1996), followed in 1997 by his own short film How They Get There, and in 1998 by his documentary short Amarillo By Morning. He has had other bit roles in Mi Vida Loca (1993), The Game (1997) and Three Kings (1999).

That same year, Jonze made his feature-length directorial debut with Being John Malkovich. The film has earned him an array of awards including his first Oscar nomination for Best Director.

Jonze is divorced from Sofia Coppola.

Filmography (director):

Where the Wild Things Are (2009)
Adaptation (2002)
Being John Malkovich (1999)

Filmography (actor):

Being John Malkovich (1999) (uncredited)
Three Kings (1999)
The Game (1997)
Mi vida loca (1993)