Zooey Claire Deschanel is born in Los Angeles, California to Oscar-nominated cinematographer and director Caleb Deschanel, and Twin Peaks actress Mary Jo Deschanel. Her name is inspired by one of the main characters in the J.D. Salinger novella, Franny and Zooey. She has an older sister, Emily, who stars in the hit television crime drama series, Bones. She attends Santa Monica’s Crossroads, a private preparatory school along with Jake Gyllenhaal and Kate Hudson. On her childhood struggles:
Nothing could be as hard as middle school. There were insecurities that I think I would have worked through a lot faster if I’d had certain tools and could have connected with certain people earlier.