Jennifer Jason Leigh

In The Cut Movie Premiere

Leigh in 2003, photo by Prphotos

Birth Name: Jennifer L. Morrow

Place of Birth: Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, United States

Date of Birth: February 5, 1962

Ethnicity: Ashkenazi Jewish

Jennifer Jason Leigh is an American actress. She is known for her roles in the films Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Sister Sister, Single White Female, Short Cuts, Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle, Dolores Claiborne, and The Hateful Eight, and on the show Hunters.

She is the daughter of actor Vic Morrow (born Victor Morozoff) and screenwriter Barbara Turner (born Gloria Rose Turner). Her parents were both Jewish; their families emigrated from Russia and the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Her half-sister is actress Mina Badie.

Jennifer uses the middle name Jason in tribute to actor Jason Robards, who was a family friend.

Jennifer has a son with her former husband, writer and director Noah Baumbach.

Jennifer’s paternal grandfather was named Harry Morozoff. Harry was a Russian Jewish immigrant.

Jennifer’s paternal grandmother was named Jeanette/Jean Kress/Krez. Jeanette was a Russian Jewish immigrant.

Jennifer’s maternal grandfather was Alexander Chaim Turner (the son of Meilech/Milton Turner and Hanna/Henie/Anna/Annie Teicholtz). Alexander was a Jewish emigrant, from Galicia. Hanna was the daughter of Isaac Teicholtz and Ida.

Jennifer’s maternal grandmother was Pearl Pauline Zisez/Zises (the daughter of Samuel/Sam Zisez/Zises and Fannie/Fanny Abershtark/Aberstark). Pearl was born in New York, to Jewish parents from the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Fannie was the daughter of Gussie.

Sources: Genealogies of Jennifer Jason Leigh –

Obituaries of Jennifer’s parents –

Jennifer’s father on the 1940 U.S. Census –

Jennifer’s maternal grandparents, Alexander Chaim Turner and Pearl Pauline Zisez/Zises, on the 1920 U.S. Census –
Alexander Chaim Turner and Pearl Pauline Zisez/Zises on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Jennifer’s maternal grandmother, Pearl Pauline Zisez/Zises, on the 1900 U.S. Census –
Pearl Pauline Zisez/Zises on the 1910 U.S. Census –


Curious about ethnicity

5 Responses

  1. celebfan says:

    Jennifer Jason Leigh was estranged from her father when she began her professional career. The name Jason was in honor of Jason Robards, a longtime family friend. Leigh is her middle name. She refused to use the name Morrow because she didn’t want to be associated with him.

  2. pookerella says:

    Technically, Galicia is not Austria. It was part of Austro-Hungary and encompassed portions of Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Belarus and Ukraine. It was never in Austria proper, so saying someone from Galicia is Austrian is like saying someone from Estonia is Russian. Just because a country takes over another country, doesn’t mean it has anything whatsoever to do with the ethnicity of that area.

  3. Capricious says:

    Definitely does look Jewish.

    I had a (hijabi) Lebanese teacher, who had her skin tone, and she resembled her a lot!

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