If one were to base one's judgment of David Schwimmer's talent on his low-key performance as the anxious, awkward but lovable paleontologist Ross on NBC's smash hit comedy Friends, one might never suspect that beneath the affable exterior lies a versatile, multi-talented actor and filmmaker.
Tall, dark-haired, and lanky, Schwimmer was born in Queens, but later raised in Southern California, where he attended the famed Beverly Hills High School. He then enrolled in Chicago's Northwestern University, where he briefly considered pursuing his family's traditional profession and becoming a lawyer, but by that time, the acting bug had bitten him deeply and he was committed to it. Following graduation from Northwestern, Schwimmer gained enough stage experience in Chicago theater to co-found the Lookingglass Theatre Company with fellow actors. Schwimmer remains passionate about his involvement with the troupe and has starred in or directed many of their productions.
In 1989, he made the first of several attempts to break into Hollywood, when he was cast as a killer in the made-for-TV thriller A Deadly Silence. It was apparently an unpleasant experience and the young actor hastened back to the familiarity of Lookingglass. Still, the lure of Hollywood was great and Schwimmer returned to guest star and play recurring roles on several television series. One of his best-known early TV roles was that of Olivia D'Abo's hippie fiancé on The Wonder Years. On the gritty crime drama NYPD Blue, he garnered critical acclaim for his portrayal of a lawyer who goes over the edge and becomes a vigilante. He had another bad television experience when he was cast opposite Henry Winkler in Fox's sitcom Monty. The series crashed before it got off the ground and Schwimmer swore he'd never do another comedy show. Up until 1994, he continued to play a wide variety of roles and to divide his time between stage and television.
Despite his earlier vow, Schwimmer reluctantly accepted the role of Ross in Friends, a role that the show's creators wrote especially for him. The series, about a group of good-looking, but rather aimless buddies in their twenties, was an immediate hit and Schwimmer's lovable nerd character made him a star and got him an Emmy nomination for Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series
With his newfound stardom came offers for feature film roles. Though he had actually begun appearing in films in 1990, he had, thus far, played only small roles. He made his debut as a star playing a virtual clone of Ross in the Pallbearer (1996). He played a dramatic role as one of the inventors of silicon breast implants in the made-for-television docudrama Breast Men (1997). Schwimmer signed a lucrative contract with Miramax that will not only star him in several pictures, but also allow him to direct. ~ Sandra Brennan, All Movie Guide
About Ross Geller (David Schwimmer)
Ross Geller (David Schwimmer): Ross is Monica's brother. He has a Ph.D. in paleontology. Originally in the series, he worked for a museum . He lost that job in season 5, due to his "rage problem." Later he became a guest lecturer at NYU (episode ). This lead to a full-time teaching position there.
Ross's wife divorced him after she realised/decided that she was a lesbian . Much of season one involved her pregnancy (discovered in episode 102). She finally gave birth to Ross' son Ben  and both she and her partner want Ross to be involved with the child to some degree  despite the fact that he doesn't really get along with his ex-wife's wife. But that may be changing. He not only gave away the bride at her wedding but he even danced with her new wife.  Ross speaks very precisely  and is somewhat shy. He had a pet monkey named Marcel  who he had to send to zoo when it hit puberty .
Ross has been madly in love with Rachel since the ninth grade. At the end of the first season, he gave up on Rachel and began seeing Julie, whom he knew in Grad School and re-met on a trip to China . When he found out that Rachel was interested in him, he broke up with Julie but blew it with Rachel when "the list" he made to help him decide between Julie and Rachel fell into Rachel's hands.  But they got over their differences and became a couple . However, they broke up because their relationship was stressed by Rachel's busy schedule and Ross's jealousy . The next morning Rachel changed her mind and a reconciliation looked likely, until she found out that Ross has slept with Chloe, the navel-ringed copy store girl . Rachel couldn't forgive Ross but he claimed innocence since they were on a break. Because of their strong feelings, they briefly got back together at the beach  but it wasn't long before they right back to the same arguement (We were on a break!) .
In season 4, Ross met Emily Waltham , a woman visiting from London, and after a very hasty courtship, they decided to get married . However, at the wedding in London, Ross accidently spoke Rachel's name instead of Emily's . Although they still went through with the wedding, their relationship quickly disintigrated. Emily decided she can never trust Ross, so they got divorced.
Ross and Rachel's friendship began improving again, and in the final episode of the fifth season, they got drunk in Las Vegas and ended up getting married . Early in the sixth season that was corrected with a divorce. Another notable occurance was when Rachel and Ross arranged to be their "backups" if they weren't married by the time they're 40 .
In early season 8, we learned that Ross fathered Rachel's child during a "one-night stand." Both have internal conflicts about where they want or think the relationship should go, but neither one seems to admit that they still want to be together. At the end of season 8, after the baby is born, Ross is apparently ready to propose to Rachel. However, a strange turn of events has led Rachel to agree to marry Joey, even though he didn't really ask (nor did he intend to).
By now (start of the 9th season) Ross is 34, based on his statement eight years ago in the pilot episode, "I'm only 26 and I'm divorced!", and his statement four years ago in episode , "I am 30 years old, and I'm about to be divorced twice." In episode  his birthday is stated as October 18th. That is consistent with episode , which aired in October 1995, had him celebrating his birthday at the hootie concert. But I don't blame Joey for thinking Ross' birthday was in Maytember, because I'm not sure anyone really could keep track of it. Episode , which aired in October 1994, had Ross state his birthday was "7 months ago," which would seem to place it in March. And Ross told Gunther his birthday was in December, in episode . Maybe Ross just likes getting presents all year round?… Expand
David Schwimmer's Scores
|Friends: Season 1||Sep 22, 1994||Ross Geller||9.0|
|Friends: Season 2||Sep 21, 1995||Ross Geller||9.1|
|Friends: Season 3||Sep 16, 1996||Ross Geller||9.1|
|Friends: Season 4||Sep 25, 1997||Ross Geller||9.2|
|Friends: Season 5||Sep 24, 1998||Ross Geller||9.0|
|Friends: Season 6||Sep 23, 1999||Ross Geller / Director||8.9|
|Friends: Season 7||Oct 12, 2000||Ross Geller / Director||9.1|
|Friends: Season 8||Sep 27, 2001||Ross Geller / Director||9.0|
|Friends: Season 9||Sep 26, 2002||Ross Geller / Director||8.9|
|Friends: Season 10||Sep 25, 2003||Ross Geller / Director||8.9|
|L.A. Law: Season 6||Oct 10, 1991||Dana Romney||tbd|
|Late Show with David Letterman: Season 3||Sep 4, 1995||Guest||tbd|
|Late Show with David Letterman: Season 4||Sep 2, 1996||Guest||tbd|
|Late Show with David Letterman: Season 5||Sep 1, 1997||Guest||tbd|
|Late Show with David Letterman: Season 6||Aug 31, 1998||Guest||tbd|
|Late Show with David Letterman: Season 10||Sep 3, 2002||Guest||tbd|
|Late Show with David Letterman: Season 11||Sep 1, 2003||Guest||tbd|
|Joey: Season 1||Sep 9, 2004||Director||6.8|