Ben Schwartz (born September 15, 1981) is an American actor, comedian, and writer. He is known for portraying Jean-Ralphio Saperstein on the sitcom Parks and Recreation. In 2012, he joined Showtime's comedy House of Lies as the ambitious, brash, and insecure management consultant Clyde Oberholt.
His feature film credits include Peep World, Everybody's Fine, The Other Guys, The Walk and This Is Where I Leave You.
On television, Schwartz guest-starred as Jean-Ralphio Saperstein on NBC's Parks and Recreation and is a lead in the Showtime show House of Lies with Don Cheadle, Kristen Bell and Josh Lawson. In 2010, Schwartz played series regular Bill Hoyt on J. J. Abrams' one-hour spy drama Undercovers for NBC.
Schwartz has been writing, directing and acting in his own short films for some time. He had his own segment on HBO’s Funny or Die Presents called Terrible Decisions with Ben Schwartz and has appeared in multiple CollegeHumor sketches including the popular web series Jake and Amir. Schwartz has been nominated for two Emmys and won the 2009 Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing for a Variety, Music or Comedy Special for coauthoring Hugh Jackman's opening number for the 81st Academy Awards.
He was recently hired by Paramount Pictures to re-make the 1991 classic comedy Soapdish, retitled El Fuego Caliente and reworking the original's American soap opera into a Latin telenovela, with producers Rob Reiner and Alan Greisman, and he sold an original pitch to Universal Studios based on an idea by Brian Grazer with Imagine Entertainment attached to produce. He was a staff writer for the third season of Adult Swim’s Robot Chicken and served as a freelance writer for the Weekend Update segment of Saturday Night Live as well as the monologues for the Late Show with David Letterman.
Schwartz is an alumnus of the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre (UCBT) and continues to perform there regularly. He is a member of the improv group “Hot Sauce” with Adam Pally and Gil Ozeri, the group performs their long-form improv show “Something Fresh” at UCBT every month.
Schwartz grew up in Riverdale, a neighborhood in the Bronx in New York City. In an interview with Kevin Pollak, he stated, “When I told people I was from the Bronx, it was like 'Oh, do you have bullet wounds?' And I'm like 'No, it's just me and, like, Jewish people.'”
Schwartz grew up in a family of social workers and Bronx school teachers, including his mother, a music teacher. He graduated from Union College in 2003 with a double major in psychology and anthropology.