Michael Austin Cera is a Brampton Canadian television and film actor, best known for playing George Michael Bluth in Arrested Development, Evan in Superbad, Paulie Bleeker in Juno, Nick in Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist, and Scott Pilgrim in Scott Pilgrim vs. The World. Cera received two Canadian Comedy Award Best Actor nominations in 2008 for his work in Juno and Superbad, winning for Superbad.
Cera, the middle child of three siblings, was born in Brampton, Ontario, Canada. He is the son of Linda, a native of Quebec, and Luigi Cera, a Xerox technician who is originally from Sicily. Cera has an older sister, Jordan, and a younger sister, Molly. He attended Conestoga Public School, Robert H. Lagerquist Senior Public School, and then Heart Lake Secondary School until grade nine, but then completed high school through correspondence. His first role was an unpaid appearance in a Tim Hortons summer camp commercial. He divides his time between Ontario and Los Angeles.
In 2002, Cera played the young Chuck Barris in Confessions of a Dangerous Mind and provided the voice for Brother Bear in The Berenstain Bears animated series; he also voiced Josh Spitz in the cartoon Braceface. He played George Michael Bluth in the award-winning television series Arrested Development for three seasons before it was canceled. In 2005, he starred as Harold in the award winning surreal humour short film Darling Darling, for which he was awarded Best Actor at the San Gio Festival in Verona, Italy. In 2006, he created and starred in a parody of Impossible is Nothing, a video résumé created by Aleksey Vayner. He also guest-starred in an episode of teen noir drama Veronica Mars (in the episode "The Rapes of Graff", which also featured Arrested Development co-star Alia Shawkat), and also in the Adult Swim series Tom Goes to the Mayor and Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!
Cera, along with best friend Clark Duke, wrote and starred in a series of short videos released on their website. In 2007, they signed a deal with CBS Television to write, produce, direct, and act in a short-form comedy series entitled Clark and Michael. The show featured guest stars such as David Cross, Andy Richter and Patton Oswalt, and was distributed via CBS's new internet channel, CBS Innertube. Duke and Cera are both members of the band The Long Goodbye.
Cera also appeared in a staged comedy video that shows Cera being fired from the lead role of the film Knocked Up after belittling and arguing with the director, in a scene that mocks the David O. Russell blow up on the set of I Heart Huckabees. Other clips featured movie stars James Franco and Orlando Bloom in a similar situation.
Cera starred alongside Jonah Hill in the film Superbad, which was written by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. The film opened in North America on August 17, 2007, with Cera playing a character named Evan. In November 2007, Cera hosted Saturday Night Live on strike, a live staged version of SNL not shown on television due to the 2007 Writers Guild of America Strike. Also in 2007, Cera co-starred in Juno (written by Diablo Cody and directed by Jason Reitman), playing Paulie Bleeker, who unexpectedly impregnates his long time teenage friend Juno (Elliot Page). Juno also starred Arrested Development co-star Jason Bateman. For Superbad and Juno, Cera won Breakthrough Artist in the Austin Film Critics Association Awards 2007.
In early 2008, Cera appeared in the comedy short "Drunk History", playing Alexander Hamilton in a comedic retelling of Hamilton's duel with Aaron Burr. Cera will next star in film adaptations of the novels Youth in Revolt (playing lead character Nick Twisp) and Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist, opposite Kat Dennings. He will also appear as the titular character in graphic novel adaptation Scott Pilgrim vs. the World.
In August 2014, Michael Cera released an album of lo-fi bedroom recordings on Bandcamp.