Samm Levine

Samm Levine (photo)

Samm Levine plays Neal, a confident sci-fi loving geek who cautiously studies every path taken by the school bully, in order to avoid any chance of running into him. As for comparisons to his own high school experience, Levine confides, "While Neal and I do have a lot in common, I'd like to think I was a bit more outgoing in high school. I tried to make it to all my school dances. Whether or not I had a date is a different story."

Levine says his career in show business started at age 12 when he emceed his sixth grade talent show. After that, he performed a stand-up comedy routine for the first time, at age 13, during his Bar Mitzvah. Within two years he had begun appearing at such famous comedy haunts as Caroline's, Stand-up N.Y. and Gotham Comedy Club, with his mother often driving him to his gigs. After appearing in TV and radio commercials, Levine landed roles on "One Life to Live" and the Discovery Channel series "Discover Kids."

Although he may have a lot in common with his television counterpart from the short-lived Freaks and Geeks, in reality Samm Levine is much more outgoing than his prime time parallel, performing standup comedy at some of New York's finest comedy clubs by the age of 15 and soon after becoming the youngest member of the New York Friar's Club. Born March 12, 1982, in Chicago, IL, and raised in Fort Lee, New Jersey, young Levine got his first taste of the spotlight when, at age 12, he emceed his sixth grade talent show. Performing standup at his bar mitzvah the following year, the aspiring jokester was soon being dropped off by his mother for performances at such Big Apple comedy staples as Carolines, Stand-Up N.Y., and the Gotham Comedy Club. Soon landing commercial roles, Levine kicked off his television career with appearances in One Life to Live and Discovery Kids. A severe asthmatic who made frequent trips to the emergency room during his youth, his respiratory disease often made the demands of school and comedy appearances even more difficult to endure. Praised for his performance as the young member of the "geek" half of television's Freaks and Geeks, Levine originally auditioned for the role of Sam Weir (eventually essayed by John Francis Daley), though he was almost perfectly suited to the role of the smart, bully dodging, aspiring comic character of Neil Schweiber. Though the show was canceled after a short run, episodes gained a devoted following thanks to repeat airings on the FOX Family Channel, and Levine later re-joined Freaks and Geeks creator Judd Apatow (as well as a few of his former freaky cast members) for Apatow's next small-screen endeavor, the widely praised Undeclared (2001). That same year, Levine would make his feature debut in the teen spoof Not Another Teen Movie. Levine most recently starred as part of Brad Pitt's Nazi-Scalping assault force in Quentin Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds (2009).

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