David Packard Corenswet (born July 8, 1993) is an American actor. After graduating from the Juilliard School in 2016, he began guest starring in television series, including House of Cards in 2018. He then starred in the Netflix series The Politician (2019–present) and Hollywood (2020), both created by Ryan Murphy.
Corenswet was raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. His father, John Corenswet, was from a prominent Jewish family in New Orleans, and worked as a stage actor in New York City for many year before becoming a lawyer; his mother, Caroline Packard, is a lawyer who specializes in nonprofit organizational conflict resolution; his sister, Amy Packard Corenswet, is a 2020 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School. Corenswet’s maternal grandfather is Edward Packard, creator of the Choose Your Own Adventure book concept and author of more than 50 books in the series.His maternal grandmother was a prominent Quaker activist. Corenswet graduated from The Shipley School and earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in drama in 2016 from the Juilliard School in New York City. He applied and was accepted to Juilliard while a freshman at the University of Pennsylvania.
As a child actor, Corenswet appeared in numerous professional theater productions, including the Arden Theatre Company’s 2002 production of Arthur Miller’s All My Sons, the Philadelphia Shakespeare Festival’s 2003 production of Macbeth, the Walnut Street Theatre Company’s 2003 production of La Vie En Bleu, the People’s Light and Theatre Company’s 2004 production of The Forgiving Harvest, among others.
Corenswet wrote the screenplay for and acted in Following Chase (2011), directed by Greg Koorhan.He next co-wrote, produced, and starred in a two-season sketch-comedy web series, Moe & Jerryweather (2014-2016).
In 2016, director Rob Reiner cast Corenswet as a co-lead in his planned television series, The Tap, set at Yale College in 1969. Corenswet played a student. USA Network ordered the pilot episode, which was filmed in 2017, but declined to pick up the series.
In Corenswet’s first film role after graduating from Juilliard, he starred as Michael Lawson in Affairs of State (2018), a political thriller. The film also stars Thora Birch, Mimi Rogers, and Adrian Grenier. Los Angeles Times described the film as “well-acted”. Corenswet has appeared in guest-star roles in House of Cards, Elementary, and Instinct.
In The Politician (2019–present), he plays River Barkley, the lover and high-school political rival of Payton Hobart (Ben Platt). Vanity Fair described River as a “wealthy, sporty, straight student”.
Corenswet stars as Jack Castello in Hollywood (2020), a Netflix limited series about the post-World War II film business in Los Angeles. Corenswet is also an executive producer on the series. He stars alongside Patti Lupone, Dylan McDermott, Darren Criss, and Holland Taylor. Men’s Health magazine praised Corenswet’s performance as that of a “breakout lead”. IndieWire called it “…another star-proving turn from David Corenswet.”