Melissa Ann McCarthy (born August 26, 1970) is an American actress, comedian, writer and producer.
McCarthy first gained recognition for her role as Sookie St. James on the television series Gilmore Girls. She worked in this supporting role from 2000 to 2007. On the ABC sitcom Samantha Who? she portrayed Dena from 2007 to 2009. McCarthy was then cast as Molly Flynn-Biggs on the CBS sitcom Mike & Molly, a role that earned her a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series, as well as two award nominations during subsequent seasons. McCarthy has also been nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series for her work as host on Saturday Night Live three years consecutively.
McCarthy achieved major success and fame for her breakthrough film role as Megan Price in the 2011 comedy hit Bridesmaids, which garnered her numerous award nominations including an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress, a BAFTA nomination and a Screen Actors Guild Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. In 2013, she co-starred in the films Identity Thief and The Heat. She also appeared in the films The Nines, The Back-up Plan, Life as We Know It, and The Hangover Part III. In 2014, McCarthy starred in the comedy Tammy and the comedy-drama film St. Vincent. McCarthy will also headline the upcoming action comedy Spy, which is scheduled for a May 22, 2015 release. She is the founder of the production company On the Day with her husband Ben Falcone.
Melissa Ann McCarthy was born in Plainfield, Illinois, the daughter of Sandra and Michael McCarthy. She is a cousin of actress/model Jenny McCarthy. McCarthy was raised on a farm, in a "big, Irish-Catholic family". Some of her ancestors were from County Cork. She graduated from St. Francis Academy (now Joliet Catholic Academy) in Joliet, Illinois. Her career started with stand-up comedy and includes film, television and theater. McCarthy is an alumna of The Groundlings, an improvisational and sketch comedy troupe based in Los Angeles, California.
McCarthy made her first television appearance in an episode of the NBC comedy series Jenny, opposite her cousin Jenny McCarthy. She made her feature film debut in a supporting role of 1998 comedy Go, and later had roles in the movies Drowning Mona, Disney's The Kid, Charlie's Angels, The Third Wheel and The Life of David Gale. She also did voice work in three episodes of Kim Possible, where she played DNAmy.
In 2000, McCarthy was cast as Sookie St.Â James, the control freak and scatterbrain/klutzy best friend of Lorelai Gilmore on the TheÂ WB television series Gilmore Girls. The series ended after seven seasons, in 2007. In 2007, she starred opposite Ryan Reynolds in the science fantasy psychological thriller The Nines, written and directed by John August. She later starred in the independent comedies The Captain, Just Add Water, and Pretty Ugly People. From 2007 to 2009, McCarthy starred as Dena on the ABC sitcom Samantha Who? She also guest starred in Rita Rocks in 2009, and on Private Practice in 2010. In 2010, McCarthy played supporting roles in films The Back-Up Plan and Life as We Know It.
In early 2010, McCarthy was cast in the leading role as Molly Flynn on the CBS sitcom MikeÂ & Molly. In 2011, McCarthy had a breakout performance in the comedy movie Bridesmaids alongside Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Rose Byrne, Wendi McLendon-Covey and Ellie Kemper. McCarthy received an Academy Award nomination for her performance. In fall 2011, after achieving fame from Bridesmaids, she received her first Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series for her role on MikeÂ & Molly. In June 2011, she hosted the Women in Film CrystalÂ + Lucy Awards. McCarthy later had supporting roles in This Is 40 (2012), the semi-sequel to Judd Apatow's film Knocked Up, and The Hangover Part III (2013). She was invited to join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in June 2012 along with 175 other individuals.
McCarthy hosted Saturday Night Live on October 1, 2011, again on April 6, 2013, and a third time on February 1, 2014. She was nominated three times for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series for her appearances on the television show from 2012-2014.
In 2013, McCarthy co-starred in Identity Thief with Jason Bateman. Identity Thief opened at #1 at the box office, and grossed $174 million worldwide. Later in 2013, she co-starred with Sandra Bullock in The Heat. The film was released in the United States and Canada on June 28, 2013 to both critical and commercial success. With McCarthy being called "box office gold, The Heat grossed $229 million worldwide.
McCarthy co-wrote the script for the movie Tammy, which was released on July 2, 2014. McCarthy starred in the movie, about a woman who loses her job and her car, and then learns that her husband has been unfaithful. To get away, McCarthy's character is forced to rely on her alcoholic grandmother for transportation (played by Susan Sarandon) as they embark on a journey of self-discovery.
McCarthy has also produced a CBS pilot, which starred her husband, Ben Falcone.
McCarthy played the female lead, opposite Bill Murray, in the 2014 comedy-drama film St. Vincent, directed and written by Theodore Melfi. In addition to this, McCarthy will be the lead in frequent collaborator Paul Feig's spy comedy Spy previously known as Susan Cooper, set to be released Memorial Day weekend of 2015.
McCarthy is the founder of the production company On the Day with her husband Ben Falcone. Tammy was first project of her company. The film cost $20 million, a quite low budget, and McCarthy, who can command close to $10 million a roleâ"took a smaller upfront salary in exchange for a larger-than-normal cut of the film's proceeds, according to people familiar with the deal. McCarthy also announced that in March 2015 she will film Michelle Darnell, a comedy film based on a character McCarthy first created in the Los Angeles Groundlings, about "a self-help inspiration speaker (a la Suze Orman or Oprah) who goes to jail for insider trading, and struggles to reinvent herself as Americaâs new sweetheart when sheâs released". She also announced The Memory of Running, based on the Ron McLarty novel about a war veteran on a cross-country bike pilgrimage, Cousin Irv based on the book by Bruce Eric Kaplan, and Just Do It. In Just Do It, McCarthy set to star as "wife who tries to repair her marriage with her husband through 100 days of continuous sex".
On November 19, 2014, announced that McCarthy will star as eponymous fairy heroine Tinker Bell in the untitled comedy-adventure directing by Shawn Levy. She is also set to produce this film. On January 9, 2015 it was announced that McCarthy will star in Paul Feig's comedy-mystery film Ghostbusters III.
On January 27, 2015, it was announced that McCarthy had signed for the lead role in the all-female reboot of Ghostbusters directed by Paul Feig, where she will portray Patty, a New York City Subway worker.
McCarthy married her longtime boyfriend, Ben Falcone, an actor and alumnus of The Groundlings, on October 8, 2005. Falcone often makes cameo appearances in movies starring McCarthy, such as Bridesmaids and The Heat. Together, they have two daughters; Vivian born in 2007 and Georgette born in 2010. McCarthy's pregnancy with Vivian was written into the last season of Gilmore Girls.
Awards and nominations
Throughout her career McCarthy has received 74 nominations out of which she has won 20. For her work in Bridesmaids, McCarthy was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress and a Outstanding Supporting Actress. Along with the cast of Bridesmaids she has received a Screen Actors Guild Award nomination, a Critics' Choice Award nomination and numerous other critics group nominations for Best Ensemble. She is also a recipient of Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series in 2011 for her performance in the Television Series, Mike & Molly.
- Melissa McCarthy at the Internet Movie Database
- Melissa McCarthy at AllMovie
- Melissa McCarthy at Emmys.com