Kevin Smith has been married to wife Jennifer Schwalbach Smith for more than 20 years
Film director Kevin Smith has been happily married to his wife, Jennifer Schwalbach Smith, for more than 20 years.
While many know Kevin for his hit movies like Clerks and Jay and Silent Bob, not as many fans are familiar with the many talents of Jennifer.
With jobs in fields like journalism, podcasting, and acting, Jennifer has had her own impressive career. She’s not very active on social media (her Instagram page has only two posts) and she doesn’t do media interviews, but there are still plenty of interesting things to know about her.
It’s also obvious that Kevin is completely dedicated to her. He has gone through some tough times in recent years, like suffering a heart attack in 2018, going into treatment to deal with past traumas, and opening up about his mental health journey, which he detailed to PEOPLE in 2023. Through it all, the couple has stuck together.
In a Mother’s Day tribute post to Jennifer on Instagram, Kevin gushed about how great she is, calling her a “true maternal magician” and adding, “Thank you for affording me the opportunity over the past few decades to make something far greater than just a series of increasingly goofier movies!”
Here’s a look at everything there is to know about Kevin Smith’s wife, Jennifer Schwalbach Smith.
They first met when she interviewed him
The couple’s relationship got off to a unique start when they first met: Jennifer was a journalist working for USA Today when she interviewed Kevin about the release of his Clerks comic book. According to an Instagram post by Smith, after the interview, the two started talking through email and then “all-night phone calls.”
Eventually, he asked her if she wanted to go to the Spirit Awards with him in Los Angeles, and their relationship got a slow start since they were both so busy. Over the course of some time they ended up going out on a dinner date and Kevin said he “spent all my free time at night talking to Jen on the phone, like we were still in high school.”
She’s an actress
Jennifer has had various roles, including some where she worked alongside Kevin. She played Emma “Mrs. Hicks” Bunting in Clerks and Missy in Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back. She’s also appeared in movies such as Jersey Girl, Red State, Tusk, Yoga Hosers, and Zack and Miri Make a Porno. She voiced Blunt-Girl in Jay & Silent Bob’s Super Groovy Cartoon Movie and served as a producer on that, as well as on Tusk and Yoga Hosers.
She also had a role in Clerks III, the latest installment of the series that was partially inspired by Kevin’s health issues. “The heart attack was the greatest gift I ever had,” he told PEOPLE. “Not only did it save my life, make me go vegan and go healthier and stuff, but it gave me the spine for Clerks III.”
She’s a mom
Jennifer and Kevin are the proud parents of one child, their daughter Harley Quinn Smith. She was born on June 26, 1999, and appeared in Cruel Summer. She has also worked with her dad almost as often as her mom has, appearing in Clerks III, some of the Jay and Silent Bob movies, and Yoga Hosers.
“It’s such a cool gift to be able to work with somebody you’re related to,” Harley Quinn told E! News once when talking about working alongside her dad. “We have pretty similar minds, so it’s kind of like you’re shooting with another version of yourself.”
They’ve been married for more than 20 years
Jennifer and Kevin celebrated their 20 year anniversary back in 2019. The two got married in 1999 when Jennifer was pregnant with Harley Quinn, something Kevin called a “shotgun wedding” in an Instagram post dedicated to celebrating their 22nd anniversary.
“We barely knew each other when we exchanged vows back in 1999 — but at this point, nobody knows me better than Jen,” Kevin wrote. “22 years ago, we took a leap of faith on behalf of a child we hadn’t yet met — and that bet on one another has paid off with a lifetime of milestones and memories for the both of us.”
She’s a vegetarian
Kevin has been open about the fact that he went vegan after his massive heart attack in order to be healthier. His daughter is the one who pushed him to adopt a vegan diet, telling PEOPLE, “That wasn’t so much advice, as it was, ‘You have to do this.’ I didn’t really give him a choice. There was no way that was not going to happen.”
In one YouTube video, Harley Quinn says she’s been a vegetarian since about 2016, saying she partially got the idea of going vegetarian because her mom had been “a vegetarian for a very long time.” She said that while her mom never pushed her beliefs on her, it inspired her own decision to start eating like that.
She has modeled in Playboy
While Jennifer isn’t a model by profession, she did do one pretty big modeling job: She had an appearance in Playboy, appearing in a photo Kevin shot. In the photo, she wears some revealing lingerie and stands in front of a Superman lookalike.
In a 2017 Facebook post, Kevin talked about the moment when Playboy asked him and other film directors to shoot some “erotic pictorials” for the 50th anniversary of the magazine. “I told the folks at the magazine that my wife Jen was my idea of eroticism, and since we’d met when she’d interviewed me for @usatoday, I thought it’d be geeky-hot to cast Jen as Lois Lane, meeting Superman for a rooftop rendezvous.” He called it a “wild one-off experience that neither of us ever imagined would happen.”
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