Michael Pitt is an American actor and musician best known for his starring role as James "Jimmy" Darmody in the television drama series Boardwalk Empire.
Pitt was born in West Orange, New Jersey, the youngest of four children. At age ten, he announced to his parents that he wished to become an actor. He moved to New York City when he was 16 years old, where he took a job as a bike messenger.
In 1999, Pitt made his off-Broadway debut in the play The Trestle at Pope Lick Creek at the New York Theatre Workshop.
A casting agent, whom Pitt mistook as a police officer attempting to arrest him, noticed him and recommended him for a guest role on the television series Dawson's Creek (he played Henry Parker in 15 episodes between 1999 and 2000).
His breakout role as the lover of a transgendered rock star in Hedwig and the Angry Inch in 2001 led to supporting roles in Bully and in mainstream Hollywood fare such as Murder by Numbers and The Village, as well as the lead in Bernardo Bertolucci's The Dreamers.
His role in The Dreamers was notable in that he had several full frontal nude scenes.