Elizabeth Banks (born Elizabeth Irene Mitchell; February 10, 1974) is an American actress, producer and director. Banks made her film debut in the low-budget independent filmSurrender Dorothy. She is best known for her roles in the films Seabiscuit, The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Invincible, Definitely, Maybe, Zack and Miri Make a Porno, W., Role Models, Wet Hot American Summer, The Uninvited, The Hunger Games, People Like Us, Man on a Ledge, and Pitch Perfect.
On television, Banks had a recurring role as Avery Jessup on the sitcom 30 Rock, which gained her two Emmy Award nominations. Previously, Banks had starred in a recurring role as Dr. Kim Briggs on Scrubs from 2006 to 2009.
Banks was born in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, the eldest of four children of Ann (née Wallace) and Mark P. Mitchell. Her father was a factory worker for General Electric and her mother worked in a bank.Early life and education
Growing up, she played baseball and rode horses. She was in little league when she broke her leg sliding into third. She then tried out for the school play which was her start in acting. She graduated from Pittsfield High School in 1992, and was a member of the Massachusetts Junior Classical League. She attended the University of Pennsylvania, where she was a member of the Delta Delta Delta Sorority. Banks graduated magna cum laude in 1996. In 1998, she completed schooling at the American Conservatory Theater and earned an MFA.