Joseph Gordon-Levitt


Gordon-Levitt in 2012, photo by Debby Wong/

Birth Name: Joseph Leonard Gordon-Levitt

Place of Birth: Los Angeles, California, United States

Date of Birth: February 17, 1981

Ethnicity: Ashkenazi Jewish

Joseph Gordon-Levitt is an American actor, filmmaker, singer, and entrepreneur. He is known for playing Tommy on the television series 3rd Rock from the Sun, as well as for his roles in the films 10 Things I Hate About You, (500) Days of Summer, 50/50, and The Dark Knight Rises.

Joseph is the son of Jane Gordon and Dennis Levitt. His brother was photographer and fire spinner Daniel Gordon-Levitt, and his maternal grandfather was director Michael Gordon. Joseph is married to businessperson Tasha McCauley, with whom he has two children.

Joseph’s parents are both Jewish. His father’s family were Russian Jews and Polish Jews, while his mother’s family were Lithuanian Jews, Romanian Jews, and Russian Jews. A picture of Joseph’s parents can be seen here.

Joseph’s paternal grandfather was Milton R. Levitt (born Milton Levitz, the son of Louis Levitz and Fraudel “Fannie” Isaacson). Milton was born in Ohio, to Russian Jewish parents. Louis’s parents were Meyer Levitz and Lena Friedsohn (the daughter of Nathan Friedsohn and Rachel). Joseph’s great-grandmother Fraudel was the daughter of Dave Isaacson and Irene/Lena Ida/Riva Feinstock. While census records list Fraudel as having been born in Russia, one source states that Fraudel was born in then-Ottoman Palestine, in 1894. At the time, known as the First Aliyah, many Ashkenazi Jews from Eastern Europe had moved to the area.

Joseph’s paternal grandmother was Celia Roth (the daughter of F. Charles Roth and Fanny/Fradel Mekel). Celia was born in Pennsylvania, to Polish Jewish parents. Fanny was the daughter of Boruch Mekel and Sarah.

Joseph’s maternal grandfather was film director Michael Gordon (born Irving Kunin Gordon, the son of Paul Gordon and Eva Kunen). Michael was born in Baltimore, Maryland. Paul and Eva were Jewish. They are listed as being born in Russia in some records, Lithuania in another record, and in yet another record, Paul is listed as having been born in Russia, while Eva is listed as having been born in Pennsylvania, to parents who were born in Russia. Paul’s parents were Leyb/Louis Gordon and Rachel Gviemer/Gviener/Greiner.

Joseph’s maternal grandmother was Elizabeth A. Cohn (the daughter of Isaac “Isak” Cohn/Cohen and Mollie Fineberg). Elizabeth was born in Ohio. Isaac was a Romanian Jewish immigrant, the son of Frank/Efraim Cohn and Hanna/Hena. Mollie was a Russian Jewish immigrant.

Gordon-Levitt in 2010, kathclick/

Sources: Genealogies of Joseph Gordon-Levitt –

Marriage record of Joseph’s paternal grandparents, Milton Levitz (later Milton Levitt) and Celia Roth –

Joseph’s paternal grandfather, Milton Levitz, on the 1920 U.S. Census –

Joseph’s paternal grandmother, Celia Roth, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Joseph’s maternal grandparents, Michael Gordon (“Mickeal Gordon”) and Elizabeth Gordon, on the 1940 U.S. Census –

Joseph’s maternal grandfather, Irving Kunin Gordon (later Michael Gordon), on the 1920 U.S. Census –
Irving Kunin Gordon on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Obituaries of Joseph’s maternal grandfather, Michael Gordon –

Joseph’s maternal grandmother, Elizabeth A. Cohn, on the 1920 U.S. Census –

Joseph is able to speak French and is a self-confessed Francophile. The YouTube link below shows an interview with Joseph on a television show where he speaks French –


Curious about ethnicity

192 Responses

  1. alexgxo says:

    The only odd feature is his eyes. Everything else looks cacasoid to me. Though is nose bridge is pretty low, it’s still bridged and not really wide..

  2. andrew says:

    I don’t know if the last link is necessary, it’s not the only actor who is able to speak French: Jodie Foster, Bradley Cooper, Kristin Scott-Thomas and many others .

  3. Capricious says:

    I’m a full Semite myself and my eyes are kinda similar to his.

    My father has big bulging eyes though, but mother’s eyes are small.

    Trust me doesn’t mean I have Mongoloid roots. Lol

    • memphis says:

      He’s of Russian Jewish ancestry and last time I looked most of Russia is in Asia. When someone is Semite that could mean Lebanese, Saudi or any Arab speaker or Afro Asiatic speaker. Jews originated in West Asia and some say North Africa but jumped continents thousands of years ago. Ashkenazi Jews y dna has the highest haplogroup radiation of E1b1b than other Jewish groups. Jewish people are mostly Middle Easterners that migrated out to almost every continent and in some cases mixed with other cultures including mine.

      • undashing says:

        Russians are White Europeans. The Native people of Siberia are Mongols.

        • memphis says:

          Russians that are of European decent are of Viking stock with maybe a litte Sami. Siberia is still Russia with a variety of Asian ethnic groups like the Yakuts, Intelmen, Tatars and other Turkic groups. Gordon Levitt looks very Asian but looks are deceiving but people of Jewish descent can have variety of phenotypes.

    • andrew says:

      @ Capricious/Devotion/Theropod

      if you claimed to be half or part Serbian you’re hardly “full Semite”.

    • Turcoman says:

      if you refer Turkic people they are not all mongoloid matter fact Turkic people lived between indo-European and mongoloid which they get the eastern part more mongoloid while western part more indo -European.. also after chengiz khan rules most of the Turkic clans were force to mongrelized …

  4. visokozen says:

    He looks like f****** asshole. :) End of discussion.

  5. xoxo says:

    He was cuter when he was younger.

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