Elizabeth Irene Banks (née Mitchell; born February 10, 1974) is an American actress, director, model and producer. Banks made her film debut in the low-budget independent film Surrender Dorothy (1998), and is known for her roles in the films Wet Hot American Summer (2001), Sam Raimi's Spider-Man trilogy (2002–2007), Seabiscuit (2003), The 40-Year-Old Virgin (2005), Zack and Miri Make a Porno (2008), Role Models (2008), The Next Three Days (2010), the Pitch Perfect trilogy (2012-2017), Power Rangers (2017), The Lego Movie (2014), and The Hunger Games film series (2012–2015). In 2014, she portrayed Melinda Ledbetter, the girlfriend and later wife of the Beach Boys co-founder Brian Wilson, in the biographical drama Love & Mercy and made her directorial debut with Pitch Perfect 2, whose $69 million opening-weekend gross set a record for a first-time director.
On television, Banks had a recurring role as Avery Jessup on the NBC sitcom 30 Rock, which garnered her two Primetime Emmy Award nominations. She also had recurring roles on the comedy series Scrubs and Modern Family, the latter of which earned her a Primetime Emmy Award nomination. She reprised her Wet Hot American Summer role as Lindsay for the Netflix miniseries Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp (2015) and Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later (2017).
Banks was born in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, and grew up on Brown Street, the eldest of four children of Ann (née Wallace) and Mark P. Mitchell. Her father, a Vietnam veteran, was a factory worker for General Electric and her mother worked in a bank. She has said that she grew up "Irish + WASP + Catholic."Linked at Pirate's Cove in the "Sorta Blogless Sunday Pinup" and links. Wombat-socho has "Rule 5 Sunday: Girls In The Desert" and "FMJRA 2.0: Desert Plains" up and running.
Growing up, Banks played baseball and rode horses. She was in Little League when she broke her leg sliding into third base. She then tried out for the school play, which was her start in acting.