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Why George From The Power Of The Dog Looks So Familiar

Written and directed by Jane Campion, "The Power of the Dog" premiered at the Venice International Film Festival in September to immediate critical acclaim. The film currently holds a solid Certified Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and will be released to Netflix on December 1, giving a wider audience a chance to see what all the hype is about.

Set in Montana in the year 1925, "The Power of the Dog" follows Phil Burbank (Benedict Cumberbatch), a volatile and wealthy rancher, who takes a strong disliking to his brother George's new wife — the former widow and inn keeper, Rose (Kirsten Dunst) and her son, Peter (Kodi Smit-McPhee). Believing Rose only married George for his money, and seeing Peter as not masculine enough, Phil begins tormenting both of them — until he appears to take Peter under his wing.

The film is led by quite a few familiar faces, between Doctor Strange himself and the ever-busy Kirsten Dunst. There's also George, played by actor Jesse Plemons — and if you recognize Plemons, but aren't sure from where, read on to learn where you've seen him before.

Jesse Plemons' breakout role was in Friday Night Lights

If Plemons looked familiar to you, you may have thought that he looked like an older version of Landry Clarke from the sports drama series "Friday Night Lights" — and you would be correct. Plemons portrayed Landry on the popular series for its entire five seasons, from 2006 to 2011 (during which he was a main cast member for the first four and a recurring character for the fifth and final season).

"Friday Night Lights" follows the close-knit community of Dillon, Texas, with a focus on the high school football team whose games the town comes together for. Plemons' Landry, a freshman at the beginning of the series, is best friends with the shy quarterback Matt Saracen (Zach Gilford). Landry joins the team himself in Season 2, which is also when he begins dating his crush, Tyra (Adrianne Palicki). His character is also notable for having a somewhat out of place storyline involving an accidental death: as Plemons discussed with Vulture, he was "conflicted" about this plot development when it aired, but found it fun from an acting standpoint.

Overall, though, Plemons has a hugely positive outlook on the series and his part in it. In a 2018 interview with Entertainment Weekly, Plemons reflected back on his time working on the beloved football drama, saying, "I feel like that show kind of raised the bar and changed what I thought was possible with filmmaking or acting or television — the level of realism."

Plemons played a villain in Breaking Bad

Taking a turn from the lovable and shy Landry, Plemons took on a villainous role in the ultra-popular AMC drama "Breaking Bad" during the show's fifth and final season. Plemons played Todd Alquist, one of the exterminators of the Vamonos Pest, a fumigation company that Walt (Bryan Cranston), Jesse (Aaron Paul) and Mike (Jonathan Banks) team up with as a front for their meth lab. 

Todd also happens to be tied to a neo-Nazi gang, and he first shows his true colors in a shocking moment — when he casually murders a young boy who witnessed a train heist that he, Jesse, and Walt pull off. Throughout the rest of the series, Todd proves to be an incredibly disturbing figure, but he ultimately faces his death in the explosive series finale. 

Years later, Plemons returned to his character for 2019's sequel film, "El Camino," in flashback scenes depicting Jesse's time in captivity by the neo-Nazis. Plemons discussed getting to return to the much-talked about character for "El Camino" in an interview with The Playlist, saying, "I always loved the scenes with Jesse because it's such a complicated, strange, and creepy relationship [between Jesse and Todd]. Getting to delve deeper into that was a lot of fun. Getting to see his apartment was a lot of fun ... I don't know if my approach changed, but it was about exploring different parts of his psyche and that relationship."

Jesse Plemons co-led Season 2 of Fargo

The black comedy crime drama "Fargo" — based on the 1996 Coen Brothers film of the same name — follows an anthology format, with a different storyline and cast every season. Plemons came into "Fargo" for Season 2 in 2015, which he co-led alongside his "The Power of the Dog" co-star (and real-life romantic partner) Kirsten Dunst. 

A prequel to the events of Season 1, the second season is set in March 1979 and follows married couple Peggy (Dunst) and Ed Blumquist (Plemons) in their attempt to cover up the hit-and-run homicide of Rye Gerhardt (Kieran Culkin), a member of a prominent crime family. While speaking with Vulture, Plemons described what drew him to the role of Ed. He told the outlet, "It seemed like a part I'd never really done before and a part that definitely has an interesting arc and journey. It was kind of a no-brainer, taking this genuinely good-hearted man and dragging him through this horrible ride and seeing how he manages. And the fact that pretty much everything that motivates what he does comes out of his love for his wife, this idea of the American Dream, and everything he had always planned on and was brought up believing."

Plemons even received an Emmy nomination for outstanding supporting Actor in a limited series or movie for his run in "Fargo" (per Emmys.com).

Jesse Plemons has made his mark on the big screen, as well

Following "Fargo," Plemons switched from television to film and starred in 2016's "Other People," directed by Chris Kelly. The film follows David Mulchaney (Plemons), an aspiring comedy writer who moves to Sacramento to help take care of his mother Joanne (Molly Shannon), who has recently been diagnosed with cancer. In a video interview with W Magazine, Plemons said of the role, "Each part was written so poignantly and with so much substance and room. Then, filming it, I was just amazed that [Kelly] was a first time director."

Continuing with film projects, Plemons appeared in 2018's "Game Night" alongside his former "Friday Night Lights" co-star Kyle Chandler. Plemons plays Gary Kingsbury, the police officer neighbor to main couple Annie (Rachel McAdams) and Max (Jason Bateman), whose game night turns into a bigger mystery. Gary, reeling from his divorce and not invited to game night, is later used by the group for his police computer — and ends up being more involved in the charade than Annie and Max thought.

The following year, Plemons acted in Martin Scorsese's "The Irishman," playing Chuckie O'Brien, the foster son of Al Pacino's character, Jimmy Hoffa. Talking with BlackFilm.com, Plemons talked about his on-set experience with "The Irishman," stating, "It is exactly the thing to aspire to when you're starting out ... To find myself on that set surrounded by all these people I've looked up to for such a long time, it's the dream."

Jesse Plemons took a dark turn with Charlie Kaufman's I'm Thinking of Ending Things

In 2020, Plemons continued his film career when he starred in Charlie Kaufman's "I'm Thinking of Ending Things." 

The mind-bending psychological thriller follows a young woman (Jessie Buckley) who goes with her boyfriend Jake (Plemons) to meet his parents (Toni Collette and David Thewlis), even though she's already considering breaking up with him. At the home of Jake's family, strange and unexplainable occurrences arise. 

Talking to inews, Plemons discussed how having Kaufman as a director altered his performance — in a good way. Plemons said, "It's so hard to put into words how much I love and respect [and] appreciate this man. His heart and his willingness to expose any of the ugly, unseemly, frightened parts of himself ... allows you to do the same with more confidence. I never before felt like a director was in the fight, in the struggle, with an actor like Charlie was."