Jon Heder profile

Jon Heder in "School for Scoundrels"

Jon Heder

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For every actor, one role defines their entire career. For Jon Heder, it’s Napoleon Dynamite. Born and raised in Utah under the Mormon religion, Jon did what just about every other Mormon does when they graduate from high school: enroll to study at Brigham Young University. Upon returning from his mission (a two-year rite of passage that all Mormon men must endure), Jon met fellow BYU student Jared Hess and was cast in the aspiring director’s short film “Peluca.” Using the short as a means to make money for a feature, the filmmakers shopped it around until they were able to score $200,000 to start production on the full-length version of the tale: “Napoleon Dynamite.”

“Dynamite” exploded at Sundance as the indie hit of the year, and shortly after, Jon became a cult sensation. To date, Jon had officially appeared in only one film, though that hardly stopped the agents from pummeling him with offers. The actor even took home two MTV Movie Awards for his performance, a clear sign that the kiddies love him. Jon’s future in Hollywood hasn’t been as lucid. Many believe that his Mormon religion would impede on his decision to sign up for certain movies, but so far, Jon has either turned down a role or talked the director/writer into changing specific content within the scripts he’s agreed to be part of. With “Napoleon” and a small role in the 2005 romantic comedy “Just Like Heaven” already in the can, Jon will appear in no less than eight new movies by the end of 2007. And you thought that he was a one-hit wonder...

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Jon on the Web

An online database of Jon's short film career.

Jon on the Screen

Jon broke onto the big screen with the indie hit "Napoleon Dynamite" and has been climbing the Hollywood ladder ever since. A recent scene-stealing performance in the romantic comedy "Just Like Heaven" proved he wasn't just a one hit wonder, either, and he's probably the only actor in the business who isn't completely full of himself.