He did not elect to call himself J.J., but, rather, was given the nickname by his parents at birth. Briefly, upon first becoming a produced screenwriter, he decided to go by the name—publicly, at least—of Jeffrey Abrams. He gave up on being Jeffrey, however, when he realized that it was “just simply not my name,” and, further, that his choice to be called Jeffrey was indicative of a heady, unattractive state he describes as “being an ass.”
His bagel preference, in order: plain, sesame, cinnamon raisin.
He cannot abide tapenade.
His films and TV shows often include a subtle visual or verbal reference to a fictional frozen beverage of his own invention called Slusho. In his mind, a Slusho “hits that way-too-sweet button” and “tastes like blue.”
His hair naturally puffs into a “big, fuzzy ball,” but he tames it into an attractive, Zeppo Marx–like mass of waves with a paste from the Joe Grooming line of men’s products.
His daily uniform is a T-shirt, a pair of jeans, and Blundstone boots.
He owns precisely one item of bespoke clothing: a tuxedo shirt.
His wife, Katie McGrath, is merely half an inch taller than he is, Abrams insists. However, he appears much shorter than she is in red-carpet photographs, which he attributes to her wearing what he calls her “mean shoes.”
His franchise-juggling duties notwithstanding, he has not yet been guilty of an egregious Star Wars–Star Trek conflation along the lines of President Obama’s “Jedi mind meld” gaffe in March. He is certain, though, that committing such a slipup is inevitable.
He was a latecomer to Star Trek fandom, never really appreciating the Gene Roddenberry–created universe until he was recruited to direct Paramount’s 2009 reboot of the movie franchise, to which Star Trek into Darkness is the sequel. He was a Star Wars devotee, however, from the moment he saw the first film (now known as Episode IV: A New Hope) at age 11, in 1977.
The cultural figure he most revered as a child was the pioneering Hollywood makeup artist Dick Smith, renowned for his work on macabre 1960s TV shows and such film classics as The Godfather, The Exorcist, and Scanners. Once, while waiting with his mother at an airport to collect his father, Gerald Abrams, a successful TV-movie producer, from an incoming flight, he saw another man disembark from the plane who looked remarkably the way Dick Smith looked in published photos. Abrams, cognizant of the fact that Smith has only four fingers on one hand, carefully surveyed the man’s digits: only nine! With this visual confirmation, the boy summoned the courage to introduce himself to the latex maestro. Smith was gracious and presented Abrams with an autographed copy of Cinefantastique magazine that bore his likeness on the cover.
He once stood next to Cary Grant in a buffet line in a tent while attending Wimbledon with his father.
He has met two U.S. presidents, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama.
He grew up in Southern California. He considers himself to have been “not a very successful kid”: chubby, unathletic, the object of concern from educators who reported his peculiar playground behavior to his parents. An example of the behavior in question: observing other children playing on the jungle gym with his left hand cupped in front of his left eye, as if looking through a viewfinder. The young Abrams was exhilarated to discover that, while moving to his left or right while observing in such a fashion, “the foreground moved the parallax—the foreground moved faster than the background.” However, his kindergarten teacher told his mother, Carol, that this was not normal behavior—that her son might be some kind of voyeuristic oddball.
“And maybe,” he says, “I was.”
From ‘Fourteen Vital Stats About J.J. Abrams’ by David Kamp – Vanity Fair Magazine