Studio: New Line Cinema
Director: Adam Shankman
Screenwriter: Leslie Dixon
Starring: John Travolta, Michelle Pfeiffer
Genre: Comedy, Musical
MPAA Rating: PG
JOHN TRAVOLTA (Edna Turnblad)
MICHELLE PFEIFFER (Velma Von Tussle)
CHRISTOPHER WALKEN (Wilbur Turnblad)
AMANDA BYNES (Penny Pingleton)
JAMES MARSDEN (Corny Collins)
QUEEN LATIFAH (Motormouth Maybelle)
BRITTANY SNOW (Amber Von Tussle)
ZAC EFRON (Link Larkin)
ELIJAH KELLEY (Seaweed)
ALLISON JANNEY (Prudy Pingleton)
JERRY STILLER (Mr. Pinky)
PAUL DOOLEY (Mr. Spritzer)
NIKKI BLONSKY (Tracy Turnblad)
TAYLOR PARKS (Little Inez)
ABOUT THE CAST
TRAVOLTA (Edna Turnblad)
Travolta garnered further praise as a Mafioso-turned-movie producer in the comedy sensation Get Shorty, winning the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in a Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy. In 1998 Travolta was honored by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts with the Britannia Award; and in that same year he received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Chicago Film Festival. Travolta also won the prestigious Alan J. Pakula Award from the US Broadcast Critics Association for his performance in A Civil Action, based on the best-selling book and directed by Steve Zailian. He was nominated again for a Golden Globe for his performance in Primary Colors, directed by Mike Nichols and co-starring Emma Thompson and Billy Bob Thornton.
He previously starred in some of the most monumental films of our generation, including earning his first Oscar® and Golden Globe nominations for his role in the blockbuster Saturday Night Fever, which launched the disco phenomenon in the 1970's. He went on to star in the big screen version of the long-running musical Grease and the wildly successful Urban Cowboy, which also influenced trends in popular culture. Additional film credits include the Brian DePalma thrillers Carrie and Blowout, as well as Amy Heckerling's hit comedy Look Who's Talking and Nora Ephron’s comic hit Michael. Travolta starred in Phenomenon and took an equally diverse turn as an action star in John Woo's top-grossing Broken Arrow. He also starred in the classic Face/Off opposite Nicholas Cage and The General's Daughter co-starring Madeline Stowe. Recently, Travolta reprised the role of ultra cool Chili Palmer in the Get Shorty sequel Be Cool. In addition, he starred opposite Scarlett Johansson in the critically acclaimed independent feature film A Love Song for Bobby Long, which was screened at the Venice Film Festival, where both Travolta and the film won rave reviews.
Other recent feature film credits include the hit action-thriller Ladder 49 with Joaquin Phoenix, the movie version of the wildly successful comic book The Punisher, the drama Basic directed by John McTiernan, the psychological thriller Domestic Disturbance directed by Harold Becker, the hit action picture Swordfish with Halle Berry and Hugh Jackman directed by Dominic Sena, the successful sci-fi movie Battlefield Earth, based upon the best-selling novel by L. Ron Hubbard, and Lonely Hearts co-starring James Gandolfini and Salma Hayek which is based on the true story of the elusive “Lonely Hearts Killers” of the late 1940s.
most recently starred in the box office hit comedy "Wild Hogs" and
will next be seen starring opposite Robin Williams and Kelly Preston
in "Old Dogs."
Additionally, Pfeiffer won a Golden Globe for her performance in The Fabulous Baker Boys and received Golden Globe nominations for her performances in The Age of Innocence, Love Field, Frankie and Johnny, The Russia House and Married to the Mob.
Pfeiffer will next be seen in Paramount Pictures’ August 10th release, Stardust, an adaptation of the Neil Gaiman fantasy novel directed by Matthew Vaughn. Pfeiffer portrays the evil witch “Lamia” in the film, which is an old fashion fairy tale set in ancient England. The cast includes Claire Danes, Robert DeNiro, Sienna Miller, Rupert Everett and Ricky Gervais.
In 2003, she lent her voice in Dreamworks’ animated feature Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas with Brad Pitt, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Joseph Fiennes. In 2002, Pfeiffer received a Screen Actors Guild nomination for her role as the murderous mother Ingrid Magnusson in Warner Brothers’ White Oleander.
In 2001, she starred in the critically acclaimed I am Sam, opposite Sean Penn. In 2000, she starred in the summer blockbuster What Lies Beneath, opposite Harrison Ford.
As the wife of Al Pacino’s Tony Montana in Scarface, Pfeiffer made a strong impression with her stunning looks and haunting style. She has since become one of the motion picture industry’s most respected actresses and ranks as a top-grossing box office star in roles opposite leading men like Bruce Willis, George Clooney, Robert Redford, Jack Nicholson and Sean Connery.
films also include The Story of Us, A Midsummer Night’s Dream,
One Fine Day, To Gillian on her 37th Birthday, Up Close and Personal,
Dangerous Minds, Wolf, Batman Returns, The Witches of Eastwick, Tequila
Sunrise, Sweet Liberty and Ladyhawke.
WALKEN (Wilbur Turnblad)
His film career skyrocketed after his unforgettable role as "Duane Hall," brother to Diane Keaton's title character in Woody Allen's Oscar®-winning Best Picture Annie Hall. Since then, Walken has appeared in more than 50 feature films, including Herbert Ross' Oscar®-nominated Pennies From Heaven; David Cronenberg's adaptation of Stephen King's The Dead Zone; James Foley's At Close Range, opposite Sean Penn; Mike Nichols' Biloxi Blues, based on the Neil Simon play; Abel Ferrara's gritty crime-drama King of New York; Joe Roth's comedy, America’s Sweethearts, co-starring Julia Roberts, Billy Crystal, and John Cusack; and Tony Scott's Man on Fire, opposite Denzel Washington. Other recent film credits include the hit comedy Wedding Crashers, opposite Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn; John Turturro's ensemble musical Romance and Cigarettes; and in the heartwarming drama Around the Bend, opposite Michael Caine.
This August, Walken will be seen in the comedy, Balls of Fury, opposite Dan Fogler.
Walken has succeeded in creating some of the most memorable characters in film history, appearing in supporting and cameo roles such as: "Vincent Coccotti" in Tony Scott's True Romance; "Captain Koons" in Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction, "Carlo Bartolucci" in Suicide Kings; "The Headless Horseman" in Tim Burton's Sleepy Hollow; and crooked businessman, "Max Shreck," in Burton's Batman Returns.
Walken began acting and dancing as a boy. He trained to be a dancer at the Professional Children's School in Manhattan, and eventually went on to appear in numerous stage plays and musicals. He received the Clarence Derwent Award for his performance in the Broadway production of The Lion in Winter, an Obie Award for his role in The Seagull, a Theatre World Award for The Rose Tattoo, and the 1997 Susan Stein Shiva Award for his work with Joseph Papp's Public Theatre. In the Fall of 1999, he co-starred in the stage adaptation of James Joyce's The Dead. In the summer of 2001, Christopher again appeared in a revival of Chekhov's The Seagull for the New York Shakespeare Festival, directed by Mike Nichols, opposite Meryl Streep.
television, Walken has hilariously and memorably hosted Saturday
Night Live a total of six times since 1990 and contributed a mesmerizing
dance performance to the Spike Jonze-directed music video for Fat
Boy Slim's “Weapon of Choice.”
BYNES (Penny Pingleton)
Working steadily since the age of 10, Bynes charmed audiences in the hit comedy Big Fat Liar, with Frankie Muniz. In the spring of 2003, Bynes starred in her first lead role in the hit film What A Girl Wants, co-starring Colin Firth and Kelly Preston. In the spring of 2004, Bynes loaned her voice to the animated hit film Robots and recently starred in the Dreamworks comedy feature She’s The Man.
for her unique style of bold, no-holds-barred physical comedy, Bynes
has risen to the top on the Nickelodeon series and remained on All
That for four seasons. By the age of 12, Bynes became the youngest
performer to host her own variety sketch show, The Amanda Show, which
earned her the Favorite Television Actress honor four years in a
row from Nickelodeon's Kids' Choice Awards. In 2003 & 2004, she
won a Kids' Choice Award as Favorite Movie Actress for What A Girl
Wants. In 2003, Bynes was featured on the “It's Totally Raining
Teens” cover of Vanity Fair. She was nominated for Choice TV
Actress in a Comedy at the Teen Choice Awards in 2003 and 2005.
Marsden will next be seen in Kevin Lima's Enchanted, opposite Susan Sarandon, Amy Adams, Idina Menzel and Patrick Dempsey for Disney. Enchanted is a romantic fable, mixing live action with CGI animation set to open November 21, 2007.
is currently in production on 27 Dresses, a romantic comedy for Fox
2000 and Spyglass Entertainment. The film centers on a young woman,
played by Katherine Heigl, who always ends up as a bridesmaid, but
never the bride. Marsden plays the lucky man who will change her
bridesmaid status for good. Fox is set to release the film in January
or February 2008.
Marsden also recently starred in X-Men: The Last Stand, directed by Brett Ratner. Marsden reprised his role as 'Scott Summers/Cyclops' in 20th Century Fox's hugely successful franchise based on the Marvel comic book series.
Also due for release is the independent filmThe Alibi. The film tells the story of 'Ray Elliott' (Steve Coogan) who runs a successful business providing alibis for men and women who cheat on their spouses. Marsden plays 'Wendall Hatch,' a man who murders his girlfriend while on a clandestine weekend get-away. Selma Blair, John Leguizamo and Rebecca Romijn also star.
Recent films also include the Nick Cassavetes romantic drama "The Notebook" with Rachel McAdams, James Garner, Gena Rowlands, Joan Allen, and Ryan Gosling, Merchant Ivory's "Heights" with Glenn Close and Elizabeth Banks, and the blockbusters "X-Men" and "X2" with Patrick Stewart, Rebecca Romijn, Halle Berry, Famke Janssen, Anna Paquin and Ian McKellen.
Additional film credits include the MGM thriller Disturbing Behavior with Katie Holmes and Nick Stahl; 10th and Wolf; Davis Guggenheim's Gossip, a Warner Bros. drama opposite Kate Hudson; Tony Piccirillo's 24th Day; New Line's comedy Sugar and Spice with Mena Suvari and Marley Shelton for director Francine McDougall; Interstate 60 with Gary Oldman, Chris Cooper, Ann Margaret, Amy Smart and Christopher Lloyd. His notable television roles include 'Glen Floy' on the final season of the Emmy winning, David E. Kelley series "Ally McBeal."
currently resides in Los Angeles with his wife and two children.
LATIFAH (Motormouth Maybelle)
Latifah has had amazing success in Hollywood in recent years, and became the first hip hop artist to be crowned with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on January 4th, 2006. She received rave reviews, an Oscar® nomination for Best Supporting Actress, a Golden Globe nomination and a SAG Award nomination for her portrayal as Mama Morton in Miramax’s Chicago, which was executive produced by Hairspray producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron. Following Chicago, Latifah starred in and executive produced Disney’s box office hit, Bringing Down the House, which was directed by Hairspray director Adam Shankman.
Most recently, Latifah wowed critics in the HBO film “Life Support,” in which she was both the star and executive producer. In the true-life drama, she plays a mother who overcomes an addiction to crack to become a positive role model and AIDS activist in the black community.
Latifah’s recent successes include Wayne Wang’s The Last Holiday, in which she starred opposite LL Cool J, and Marc Forster’s Stranger Than Fiction, playing opposite Emma Thompson and Dustin Hoffman. She also lent her voice to Ice Age 2, playing the part of the Wooly Mammoth and starred in and produced MGM’s Beauty Shop (a spin-off of the hit Barbershop). She is currently filming Mad Money opposite Diane Keaton and Katie Holmes.
To most people releasing multiple movies would be enough, but Queen Latifah wasn’t satisfied. In 2004, Latifah once again returned to the music scene with a brand new album, demonstrating her singing talent. She teamed up with Grammy Award-winning producer Arif Mardin as well as Ron Fair to release her first vocal album, Queen Latifah – The Dana Owens Album which earned her a Grammy nomination. The platinum-selling album was a collection of timeless classics chosen and covered by the Queen herself. As Latifah demonstrated both in Living Out Loud (1998) and her Oscar®-nominated performance in Chicago (2002), her vocal talent is as impressive as her acting.
Queen Latifah is also one of music’s most well respected rappers. From her ground breaking 1989 debut All Hail the Queen, which set the visual and contextual standard for female rappers, to her bold foray into R&B, Latifah continues to define what a woman in the music industry should be. She has earned four Grammy nominations as well as a Grammy Award for Best Solo Rap Performance in 1994. Latifah toured the U.S. as part of The Sugar Water Festival with fellow soul sisters, Erykah Badu and Jill Scott.
And then there’s Flavor Unit Entertainment, a production company owned and operated by Queen Latifah and her partner, Shakim Compere. The company, based in New Jersey, is quickly establishing itself as one of the most important production companies in the film industry. They began by executive producing the box office hit Bringing Down the House and then continued with Beauty Shop for MGM. They have also produced The Cookout with Lion’s Gate.
Latifah is also not a stranger to the small screen. Her first television series, “Living Single,” was a huge success and is currently in syndication. From the small screen, Latifah made a leap to film and her acting skills have earned her the status of leading lady.
Since her screen debut in Spike Lee’s 1991 film Jungle Fever, her film career has taken off. She starred in Set it Off, which earned her a nomination for a Spirit Award in the Best Actress category and co-starred with Holly Hunter and Danny DeVito in the critically acclaimed Living Out Loud. In 1999, she was seen in Universal’s The Bone Collector directed by Philip Noyce and starring Denzel Washington. In 2002, she co-starred with Taye Diggs and Sanaa Latham in Fox Searchlight’s Brown Sugar.
Latifah is diligent in her pursuit of excellence, as is evident by
the awards she has received for her work in film and music. Her sincere
concern for others is revealed by the generous amount of time and
money that she donates to worthwhile charitable organizations. Every
year, Queen Latifah serves as co-chairman for the Lancelot H. Owens
Scholarship Foundation, Inc. Established by her mother, Rita Owens,
to perpetuate the memory of a loving son and brother, the foundation
provides scholarships to students who excel scholastically, but are
limited in financial resources.
SNOW (Amber Von Tussle)
was seen last spring in the FOX movie John Tucker Must Die, which
marked her first leading film role. She made her big-screen debut
in the box-office hit The Pacifier for Disney starring opposite Vin
Diesel. Snow had a recurring role as Matt’s neo-nazi girlfriend
on FX’s “Nip/Tuck” last season.
EFRON (Link Larkin)
In August 2006, Efron won two Teen Choice Awards – the Choice TV Breakout Star and TV Chemistry (with his “High School Musical” co-star). Segueing effortlessly between the big and small screen, Efron quickly garnered attention and became the breakout star of the Emmy Award-winning Disney Channel phenomenon, “High School Musical.” He will reprise his role as Troy Bolton, head of the basketball team, in “High School Musical 2,” which will debut on the Disney Channel in August 2007.
His other television credits include a recurring role on the WB series “Summerland,” guest starring roles on “The Suite Life of Zack & Cody,” “ER,” “The Guardian” and “C.S.I. Miami.” Additionally, Efron starred on stage in the musical “Gypsy” and has appeared in productions of “Peter Pan,” “Mame,” “Little Shop of Horrors” and “The Music Man.”
native of Northern California, Efron currently resides in Los Angeles
and enjoys surfing, skateboarding, playing video games and hanging
out with friends. He is also fixing up two cars, a Delorean and ’65
Mustang convertible, both treasured hand-me-downs from his grandfather.
Born in LaGrange, Georgia, Kelley grew up knowing acting, singing and music were his passions. In June of 2004 Kelley made the move to Los Angeles to further his acting dreams. Accompanied by his parents, who left everything behind in support of him, his career did nothing but surge ahead. He has landed roles on television shows including Everybody Hates Chris, Numbers and The Shield. He also plays the supporting role of “Leroy Wright” in the feature Heavens Fall with David Strathairn, Timothy Hutton and Leelee Sobieski, which premiered March 13th, 2006 in Texas at the South by Southwest Film Festival.
addition to his acting, Kelley enjoys singing as well as writing
and composing music, spending time on the basketball court and playing
tennis. He resides in Los Angeles.
Currently Janney is in production on Jason Reitman’s dramedy Juno alongside Jennifer Garner and Jason Bateman. She also recently wrapped production on Kenneth Lonergan’s Margaret opposite Matt Damon and Anna Paquin.
Janney received a 2006 Independent Spirit Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress for Our Very Own, which debuted last year at the Los Angeles Film Festival. Additionally, she appeared in the independent films Winter Solstice, The Chumscrubber, which received its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival and Picadilly Jim, which had its premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival.
She previously appeared in the comedy Strangers with Candy and was heard as the voice of ‘Gladys’ in Dreamworks’ animated comedy Over the Hedge. Janney also starred opposite Meryl Streep in The Hours, which received a SAG Award nomination for Outstanding Ensemble Cast in a Motion Picture. Other feature credits include the Academy Award winning films American Beauty (for which she won a SAG Award for Outstanding Ensemble Cast in a Motion Picture) and Finding Nemo as well as Nurse Betty, How to Deal, Drop Dead Gorgeous, 10 Things I Hate About You, Primary Colors, The Ice Storm, Celebrity, Six Days Seven Nights, The Object of My Affection and Big Night.
Janney is probably best known for her starring role as CJ Cregg in the award-winning NBC series “The West Wing.” She won a remarkable four SAG Awards and four Emmys for her work on the series. She earned Golden Globe nominations four years in a row for her performance on the show as well.
is also no stranger to the theatre. While a freshman studying acting
at Kenyon College in Ohio she auditioned for Paul Newman and got
the part. Soon after, Newman and his wife Joanne Woodward suggested
she study at the Neighborhood Playhouse in New York. She followed
their advice and was later nominated for a Tony Award and won the
Outer Critics Circle Award and the Drama Desk Award for Best Supporting
Actress for her Broadway performance in Arthur Miller’s “A
View from the Bridge.” In addition she has starred in the New
York Public Theater’s production of “Taming of the Shrew,” which
was part of the Shakespeare in the Park series.
STILLER (Mr. Pinky)
Jerry and his wife, Anne Meara were part of The Compass Players (which later became Second City). Then as Stiller and Meara, they performed at David Gordon's Phase II in Greenwich Village. They went on to play record-breaking engagements at Max Gordon's Blue Angel and The Village Vanguard. They toured the country playing Mr. Kelly’s, The Hungry i, The Crescendo, The Flamingo and The Sands, working with Count Basie, the original Supremes, Billy Eckstine and Diahann Carroll. Anne and Jerry performed at The Establishment in London, and appeared thirty-six times on “The Ed Sullivan Show.”
Stiller made his legit debut in “The Silver Whistle” with Burgess Meredith then appeared with Lawrence Tibbett and Veronica Lake in the National Company of “Peter Pan.” T. Hambleton and Norris Houghton cast him as a resident in the first two seasons at the Phoenix Theatre, where he appeared in “The Golden Apple” and later “Coriolanous” for John Houseman. He worked again for Mr. Houseman at the Stratford Festival.
Broadway has seen Stiller in “Hurlyburly,” directed by Mike Nichols, “The Ritz,” “Passione,” “The Golden Apple,” “Unexpected Guests,” “Three Men on a Horse” (with Tony Randall and Jack Klugman), “What's Wrong with This Picture?” and “The Three Sisters.”
He toured the boroughs in the first season of Joe Papp’s New York Shakespeare Festival and created the role of Launce in John Guare's musical version of “Two Gentlemen of Verona.” He also appeared as Dogberry in “Much Ado About Nothing” with Kevin Kline and Blythe Danner. At Lincoln Center, Jerry appeared in David Mamet’s “Prairie Du Chien” for Greg Mosher. He played Bourbouroche for Walt Witcover's Masterwork Laboratory Theatre. Stiller played Nathan Detroit in “Guys and Dolls,” the first musical produced at the Guthrie Theatre. He played opposite his daughter, Amy, in “I Ought to be in Pictures” and “Beau Jest on the Straw Hat Circuit.” Stiller starred with Anne Meara in her award winning play, “After-Play,” at Theatre Four Off-Broadway and theatres on the summer circuit.
Shoeshine, which starred Jerry and his son Ben Stiller, was nominated for an Academy Award in the 1988 Short Subject Category. Other film appearances include The Taking of Pelham One-Two-Three, Those Lips-Those Eyes, Airport '75, Nadine, The Ritz, The McGuffin, Hot Pursuit, Hairspray (original 1988 film) and The Pickle. He and Meara starred in the Joan Micklin Silver film, The Fish in the Bathtub. Other films include On the Line, Servicing Sara and Zoolander, (directed by and starring his son Ben Stiller). His starring role in The Independent opposite Jeaneane Garafolo garnered rave reviews nationwide. Stiller will next be seen in the Farrelly Brother’s next film The Seven Day Itch (once again co-starring with Ben).
television, Stiller won praise as the charlatan psychoanalyst, Dr.
Tamkin, opposite Robin Williams, in a PBS Great Performance of Saul
Bellow’s “Seize The Day,” produced by Robert Geller.
He also appeared in “The Hollow Boy,” again for Mr. Geller.
He and Meara starred together in “The Detective” (part
of The Sunset Gang on American Playhouse). Stiller appeared in the
HBO film “Subway Stories” and as the Devil’s Advocate
in “Tales From the Darkside.”
Stiller and Meara have written, performed and produced award winning radio commercials for Blue Nun Wine, United Van Lines and Amalgamated Bank among many others. Stiller appeared as Vince Lombardi in Nike ads, AT&T commercials with his “Seinfeld” wife, Estelle Harris, and for Total Cereal, Glad Bags and America Online 9.0. He was also featured in a video for the band Rush which opened every performance on their recent tour. performance on their recent tour.
Stiller has performed for Isiah Sheffer’s “Selected Shorts” series, heard on Public Radio reading John Sayle’s At The Anarchist’s Convention, S.J. Perelman’s Eine Kleine Mothmusik and Russel Baker’s Uncle Harold. He and Meara are also featured on the CD One People, Many Stories, for the Jewish Community Library of Los Angeles Stiller and Meara host an informational video on the business of acting, entitled “So You Want To Be An Actor?” Stiller credits Professor Sawyer Falk at Syracuse University and Esther Porter Lane at the Henry Street Playhouse as his mentors. He has taught at the Herbert Berghof Studio and studied with Uta Hagen. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Speech and Drama from Syracuse University.
In April 2004, Stiller returned to his alma mater, Syracuse University, to perform his own one-man show to a rousing standing ovation. He has since performed his show at the Cape Playhouse and for several other organizations in Florida and the Northeast.
In February 2007, Stiller and Meara were honored with a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, only one of four married couples to ever be honored with their own star. In May of 2004, the couple received the Productive Aging Award, presented by the Jewish Council For the Aging in Washington, D.C. and in July of 2004 received the Thalia Award from Humber College in Toronto.
Stiller and Meara have been honored by the City of New York with a Crystal Apple Award and are in the Brooklyn Botanic Garden Walk of Fame. The most recent honor is the Fourth Annual Alan King Award in American Jewish Humor, given by the National Foundation for Jewish Culture. Stiller has received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor and was the receipient of the first annual George Burns Memorial Award by the Lower East Side Festival. He was also awarded a Biffy by the Baltimore Film Festival and the first Big Apple Orange Award by Syracuse University and is also is on their Walk of Fame. In October 1999 he was honored by The New York Friar’s Club at their annual roast. The televised event, “The New York Friar’s Club Roast of Jerry Stiller,” received the highest ratings for any program in the history of the Comedy Central Network.
autobiography, Married to Laughter was published by Simon and Schuster
and the audio version of the book, read by Jerry, was released by
Random House. The audio version received a 2000 Grammy Award nomination
in the Spoken Word category. The paperback version of Married to
Laughter was also released by Random House.
It all happened when legendary film director Robert Altman caught Dooley on stage in the Jules Feiffer comedy “Hold Me.” Altman signed Dooley on the spot to play Carol Burnett’s husband, and the father of the bride, in his film The Wedding.
After another starring role in Altman’s A Perfect Couple, Dooley landed the part that would change his life forever, in the unforgettable coming-of-age classic, Breaking Away. His hilarious portrayal of the long-suffering Dad earned him critical acclaim and set the stage for another triumph in the beloved John Hughes classic, Sixteen Candles. As Molly Ringwald’s distracted yet sympathetic father, Dooley endeared himself to an entire generation of young people.
Since then, Dooley has played the father of some of our finest actresses, including Helen Hunt, Toni Collette, Mia Farrow and Julia Roberts (in Runaway Bride). In addition to being Hollywood’s favorite Dad, Dooley has become one of the busiest actors working today, creating one memorable character after another in such films as Popeye, with Robin Williams, where he appeared as the hamburger-loving Wimpy. Other films include Paternity, with Burt Reynolds, Kiss Me Goodbye, opposite Sally Field and Jeff Bridges, Happy Texas, with William H. Macy, Insomnia, with Al Pacino, the Disney/Pixas film, Cars (he provided the voice for “Sarge”) and three films for writer/director Christopher Guest: Waiting for Guffman, A Mighty Wind and For Your Consideration. He will next be seen in The Horsemen, with Dennis Quaid.
On television, Dooley starred in his own sitcom, “Coming of Age,” on CBS, which kicked off a series of recurring roles on other TV shows, including “ER,” “Grace Under Fire,” “My So-Called Life,” “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine,” “Once and Again,” “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” HBO’s “Dream On” (as the out-of-the-closet father), for which he received an Emmy nomination, and “The Practice,” for which he received his second Emmy nomination for his portrayal of a feisty judge.
Despite appearances, Dooley’s success didn’t happen overnight. Upon graduation from West Virginia University, he headed to New York City in a broken-down 1948 Dodge, with just fifty dollars in his pocket and nothing to lose. To pay the rent, he worked as a clown, entertaining kids at birthday parties with his magic, juggling and cartooning skills. Luckily one of his college chums was none other than Don Knotts. Already a working actor, Knotts convinced the producers of a new children’s TV show that Dooley would be perfect as a comic cowboy.
Next came a role in the New York premiere of Kurt Weill’s masterpiece, “The Threepenny Opera,” a job procured for him by another friend, John Astin, who was appearing in it, along with Charlotte Rae and Bea Arthur.
Dooley’s love of comedy led him to develop an act as a stand-up comic, and after several years of playing nightclubs, he landed on “The Tonight Show.” From there he joined Second City, where his fellow actors included Alan Arkin and Alan Alda. Improving became Dooley’s passion.
While at Second City he met director Mike Nichols, who was about to begin the original Broadway production of “The Odd Couple.” Dooley was cast as one of the poker playing buddies and received kudos when he replaced Art Carney as Felix, playing opposite Walter Matthau.
The Second City actors were suddenly in demand on Madison Avenue, their improvisational wit beginning to change the face of commercials. Teaming up with fellow writer-performers Andrew Duncan and Lynne Lipton, Dooley formed a company called All Over Creation, and over the next ten years he appeared in over five hundred TV commercials and nearly a thousand radio spots.
Dooley also was the co-creator and head writer of “The Electric Company,” The Emmy-award winning children’s program on PBS. Throughout all this, he continued to perform onstage in New York, including his much-lauded portrayal of “Casey Stengel,” in a one-man show about the life of the eccentric baseball coach.
recent years, Dooley has turned his talents to screenwriting, collaborating
with his son, Adam, on a story inspired by his coming of age in West
Virginia. He’s currently putting together the financing to
bring this very personal story to the screen. Now at work on a second
screenplay, Dooley is married to Winnie Holzman, also a writer, and
lives in Los Angeles. He has four children and three grandchildren.
Nikki was born and raised in Great Neck, Long Island, New York. Although she graduated from the Great Neck Village School in January, 2006, she received all her dramatic and musical training at Great Neck South High School, which is a four-time Grammy Foundation Signature School, with its most recent honor bestowed in 2005.
Nikki’s high school performing credits include ‘Madame Tanardeau’ in Les Miserables, ‘Mrs. Lovett’ in Sweeney Todd, ‘Kate’ in Kiss Me, Kate, ‘Rebecca Hillicker’ in The Laramie Project and the title role in Bizet’s Carmen, which was performed entirely in French.
She has sung for many organizations and events in and around the Long Island, New York area, including an original song for 2002 Olympic gold medalist figure skater Sarah Hughes’ homecoming parade in Great Neck.
Nikki is a regular volunteer and supporter of the Special Olympics. At last year’s New York state games, which were held at Hofstra University and presided over by New York Senator Charles Schumer, Nikki had the honor of singing the National Anthem at the opening ceremonies. It was an especially moving experience for her, as the 3,000 Olympians in attendance began to sing along with her.
She is also a published poet, having written an original piece in honor of Jonathan Lee Ielpi, a member of the Fire Department of New York and a volunteer firefighter at Great Neck’s “Vigilant” Fire Department, who was killed in the September 11th World Trade Center tragedy. Nikki used to baby-sit for Jonathan’s family.
quit her day job scooping ice cream at the local Cold Stone Creamery
in Great Neck in June when she found out she had won the role of
Tracy Turnblad. She still lives in Great Neck with her parents, Karen
and Carl, her twelve-year-old brother, Joey, her Uncle Steve and
her pug, Rocky.
Her television appearances include roles on the series “Everybody Hates Chris,” “Untold Stories of the ER,” “Carpoolers” and “Gilmore Girls.”
stage credits include The Kennedy Center performance of “Dancing
in the Wings,” an original dance musical written, directed
and choreographed by Debbie Allen, with whom Taylor has studied dance
and acting for several years. She has also studied acting with Kevin
McDermott and Cynthia Bain and singing with Billy Purnell and Terrence
Production notes, photos and promotional video © 2007 New Line Cinema.