John William "Will" Ferrell (pronounced /ˈfɛrəl/; born July 16, 1967) is an American comedian, impressionist, actor, and writer. Ferrell first established himself in the late 1990s as a cast member on the NBC sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live, and has subsequently starred in the comedy films Old School, Elf, Anchorman, Talladega Nights, Stranger than Fiction, Blades of Glory, Semi-Pro, and The Other Guys. He is considered a member of the "Frat Pack," a generation of leading Hollywood comic actors to emerge in the late 1990s and the 2000s including Jack Black, Ben Stiller, Steve Carell, Vince Vaughn, and brothers Owen and Luke Wilson.
Ferrell was born in Irvine, California, the son of Betty Kay (
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For more information, see Category:Redirects from titles with diacritics. Overman), a teacher who taught at Old Mill School elementary school, and Roy Lee Ferrell, Jr., a guitarist for The Righteous Brothers. His parents were both natives of Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina, and moved to California in 1964; Ferrell also has Irish ancestry. He first attended school at Turtle Rock Elementary, and later attended Rancho San Joaquin Middle School, both in Irvine. He attended University High School in Irvine, and was a kicker for the school's varsity football team. He told the Orange County Register that the dullness of Irvine contributed to the growth of his humor:
"Growing up in suburbia, in safe, master-planned Irvine, there was no drama so we had to create it in our heads. My main form of entertainment was cracking my friends up and exploring new ways of being funny. I didn't have to have the survival mode instinct like other comics, who grew up in tough neighborhoods. I had the opposite. For me, I grew up in Mayberry, and the humor broke the boredom. And there was a lot to make fun of."
He enrolled at the University of Southern California, where he studied Sports Broadcasting and graduated with a degree in Sports Information. He is also a member of Delta Tau Delta Fraternity. After graduating in 1990, he developed his improvisation skills as a member of the comedy group The Groundlings.
Saturday Night Live
Ferrell joined Saturday Night Live in 1995 and left in 2002 after a successful 7 year tenure. He returned to host twice (both in season finales), and once in the cold open of the final episode of Saturday Night Live Weekend Update Thursday
During his time on SNL, Ferrell made a name for himself with his impersonations, which included:
- U.S. President George W. Bush
- Chicago Cubs announcer Harry Caray,
- Singer Robert Goulet (crooning a cappella pieces of music by Sisqó, Baha Men, and Notorious B.I.G.),
- Singer Neil Diamond,
- Inside the Actors Studio host James Lipton (who was quoted several times to favor Ferrell's impersonation),
- Massachusetts Senator Ted Kennedy,
- United States Attorney General Janet Reno,
- Convicted Unabomber Ted Kaczynski,
- Game show host Alex Trebek,
- Fictitious black private detective Shaft,
- Professional wrestler-turned-Governor of Minnesota Jesse Ventura,
- U.S. Vice President Al Gore (Darrell Hammond took over once Ferrell started playing Bush),
- Iraqi President Saddam Hussein,
- Cuban President Fidel Castro.
His original characters included "Morning Latte" co-host Tom Wilkins, Ed the Horse's twin brother Ned, fictional Blue Öyster Cult member Gene Frenkle (physically modeled after Blue Öyster Cult vocalist Eric Bloom), music teacher Marty Culp, Spartan cheerleader Craig Buchanan, Dale Sturtevant from "Dissing Your Dog", Hank of the Bill Brasky Buddies, David Leary from "Dog Show", and night clubber Steve Butabi in a sketch that went to the big screen in 1998's A Night at the Roxbury.
Ferrell returned to Saturday Night Live as a guest host on May 14, 2005, and May 16, 2009. Both times, he reprised his role as Alex Trebek in the "Celebrity Jeopardy" sketches. On the May 14 appearance, Ferrell reprised his role as Robert Goulet in a fake commercial advertising a series of crooned ringtones and, during the performance of the song "Little Sister" by musical guests Queens of the Stone Age, Ferrell came on stage playing the cowbell.
During his time on Saturday Night Live, Ferrell appeared in several movies: Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery, A Night at the Roxbury, Superstar, The Ladies Man, Dick, Drowning Mona, Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, and Zoolander.
His first starring role came after his departure from SNL with Frank "The Tank" Richard in Old School (2003). The film "belongs to Mr. Ferrell," declared the New York Times, which described how he "uses his hilarious, anxious zealotry to sell the part." Old School was a major success and Ferrell received an MTV Movie Awards nomination for Best Comedic Performance.
The title role in Elf (2003) followed, as did another MTV Movie Awards nomination. Ferrell continued to land comedy roles in 2004 and 2005 in films such as Melinda and Melinda, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, Starsky & Hutch earning himself a place among Hollywood's Frat Pack. In 2005, Ferrell earned $40 million. In 2006, Ferrell starred in Stranger Than Fiction and Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby; both received critical and box office success. Ferrell's performance in Stranger Than Fiction introduced audiences to the dramatic potential of Ferrell's acting talents. On December 27, 2006, 'The Magazine' named Ferrell as one of its three actors of the year in their 2006 year in review issue.
Ferrell appeared as part of a pre-game video package for the Rose Bowl along with Texas alum Matthew McConaughey. Ferrell also sang a song at the ESPY Awards in 2006 about Lance Armstrong and Neil Armstrong. He and John C. Reilly also did a spot during the 2008 ESPY Awards where they made demands in order for them to appear at the ESPYs like asking Portland Trail Blazers' center Greg Oden to tuck them in at night and tell them stories of the old times or to bring back the Cold War so the Olympics can be interesting again.
In May 2009 it was announced Ferrell is in talks to star in Neighborhood Watch, a comedy about an urbanite who moves to the suburbs and uncovers a conspiracy. In negotiations to direct is David Dobkin, who gave Ferrell a cameo in Wedding Crashers. In August 2009, Ferrell decided not to do the film. In the summer of 2009, Ferrell did a large amount of filming with several young actors. He helped out on a film entitled Making a Movie, which is now on DVD.
Ferrell has worked as a voice actor in several animated television programs, including his portrayal of Bob Oblong, a 1950s-style father with no arms or legs, in the short-lived animated television series The Oblongs. He has had several guest appearances on Family Guy, where he played the Black Knight in "Mr. Saturday Knight", as well as Fat Greek Guy and Miles "Chatterbox" Musket in "Fifteen Minutes of Shame". Ferrell also starred as Ted (a.k.a. The Man in the Yellow Hat) in the movie Curious George and guest voiced on an episode of the FOX sitcom King of the Hill as an overly-PC soccer coach. He will play the title character in the upcoming DreamWorks Animation film Megamind.
Funny or Die
In April 2007, Ferrell launched "Funny or Die", a streaming video website where short comedy films are uploaded and voted on by users. The site features The Landlord, starring Ferrell and Funny or Die co-founder Adam McKay. Ferrell's character is harassed for the rent by his landlady, a swearing, beer-loving, two-year-old girl (played by McKay's daughter, Pearl). Child psychologists have criticized Ferrell and the McKay family for child exploitation, to which McKay responded:
Fortunately she is in this great stage now where she repeats anything you say to her and then forgets it right away, which is key. She has not said the 'B-word' since we shot the thing.
They followed with the release of a video entitled "Good Cop, Baby Cop" which also starred baby Pearl; the end of the video stated that this would be her final appearance and wished her a happy "baby retirement."
In September 2008, Ferrell released another video entitled "Will Ferrell Answers Internet Questions" where he takes some pressing questions and comments from his fans.
Ferrell made his Broadway debut taking on departing U.S. President George W. Bush in a one-man show called You’re Welcome America. A Final Night with George W. Bush. The show started performances on January 20, 2009 in previews — Bush’s final day in office — at the Cort Theatre and opened officially on February 1. The limited engagement played through March 15, 2009.
Eastbound & Down
In August 2000, Ferrell married Swedish actress Viveca Paulin, whom he met in 1995 at an acting class. They live in New York City and in Orange County, California and have three sons, Magnus Paulin Ferrell, born March 7, 2004, Mattias Paulin Ferrell, born December 30, 2006, and Axel Paulin Ferrell, born January 23, 2010.
In 2006, I-Newswire.com, a site that accepts submissions from readers and publishes them as "press releases", reported that Ferrell had died in a paragliding accident. The hoax was published before its factual inaccuracy was noticed. The story was further propagated when it appeared on Google News.
Ferrell is a fan of USC Trojan football. At USC, Ferrell was a member of Delta Tau Delta fraternity and is now an active alumnus. Ferrell has worked with former head coach Pete Carroll to do motivational stunts for the players during the season.
Ferrell is also a supporter of Chelsea, an English Premier League football club. Ferrell represented Chelsea as honorary captain in the coin toss before the Chelsea v Inter Milan match at The Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California on July 21, 2009.
Ferrell enjoys running and has participated in several major marathons such as the Boston, New York and Stockholm Marathons. He also raises money for charity, including his Scholarships for Cancer Survivors campaign through Crowdrise; a social networking community for volunteers and a micro-donations fundraising platform.
In 2007, Autograph magazine named Ferrell the worst celebrity autographer. Its editor stated, "What's so frustrating about Will Ferrell being the worst autograph signer this past year is that he used to be so nice to fans and collectors and a great signer. What makes him so bad is that he'll taunt people asking for his autograph." In response, Ferrell has stated, "I don't know how I got on the list. I sign a lot of autographs," but has admitted to taunting autograph-seekers: "I do. I really do. I'm like, 'How badly do you want this autograph?' 'Are you sure?' 'You say you're my biggest fan, really, prove it.' I'll do things like that. They have to earn it."
Ferrell had noted that, although he was well known for his SNL impersonation of President George W. Bush, he chose, for both professional and political reasons, not to meet the President on several occasions, unlike his SNL predecessor Dana Carvey's famous chummy relationship with George H. W. Bush: "I declined, partly out of comedic purposes, because when I was on the show Saturday Night Live at the time, it didn't make sense to really meet the people that you play, for fear of them influencing you. And then the other side of it is, from a political standpoint, I don't want to meet that guy." Ferrell also appeared on an episode of Man vs. Wild, where he traveled throughout the tundras of Sweden with the show's host, Bear Grylls. In the episode, Ferrell came across various unique situations, which included eating the eye of a reindeer.
Ferrell made a comical debut as a relief pitcher for the Round Rock Express, the Triple-A affiliate of the Houston Astros, on May 6, 2010. He was introduced as "Billy Ray 'Rojo' Johnson", and was brought in to relief pitch for the sixth inning. He then entertained the fans by bringing a sack of beer cans to the mound, as well as being ejected and getting chased by the opposing batter. He revealed himself to the fans when his moustache fell off during the chase. The appearance was cooked up by Ferrell and the Express, who sent out a press release announcing Johnson's "signing", to promote The Will Powered Golf Classic the following day at the nearby Cimarron Hills Country Club, which benefits Cancer for College, an organization that provides scholarships to cancer survivors.
Awards and nominations
- 2001: Outstanding Individual Performance In A Variety Or Music Program (for Saturday Night Live)
- 2007 ESPY Awards, Best Sports Movie (for Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby)
- 2008 ESPY Awards, Best Sports Movie (for Semi-Pro)
Golden Globe Awards
- 2006: Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture (for The Producers)
- 2007: Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy (for Stranger than Fiction)
James Joyce Award
- 2008: James Joyce Award from University College Dublin's Literary and Historical Society in recognition for "excelling in his field".
MTV Movie Awards
- 2003: Best Comedic Performance (for Old School)
- 2003: Best On-Screen Team (with Luke Wilson and Vince Vaughn for Old School)
- 2004: Best Comedic Performance (for Elf)
- 2005: Best Comedic Performance (for Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy)
- 2005: Best On-Screen Team (with Paul Rudd, Steve Carell and David Koechner for Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy)
- 2005: Best Musical Performance (with Paul Rudd, David Koechner and Steve Carell for Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy)
- 2007: Best Comedic Performance (for Blades of Glory)
- 2007: Best Fight (for Blades of Glory)
- 2006: Best Actor in a Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical (for Stranger Than Fiction)
Spike TV Guys' Choice Awards
- 2007 Spike TV Guys' Choice Awards, Funniest Mo-fo
- 2007 Spike TV Guys' Choice Awards, Most Viral Video
Teen Choice Awards
- 2007: Choice Movie Actor - Comedy for Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby and Blades of Glory
- 2004: Choice Comedian
- 2004: Choice Movie Actor - Comedy for Elf
- 2005: Choice Comedian
- 2005: Choice Movie Actor - Comedy for Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy and Kicking & Screaming
- 2005: Choice Movie Hissy Fit for Kicking & Screaming
- 2005: Choice Movie Rumble for Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy
- 2005: Choice Movie Sleazebag for Kicking & Screaming
- 2007: Choice Comedian
- 2007: Choice Movie Chemistry (with Jon Heder), for Blades of Glory
- 2007: Choice Movie Dance (with Jon Heder), for Blades of Glory
- 2007: Choice Movie Hissy Fit for Blades of Glory
- 2008: Choice Comedian
- 2008: Choice Movie Actor - Comedy for Semi-Pro
- 2009: Choice Movie Actor - Comedy for Land of the Lost
|1995||Bucket of Blood||Young Man||Made for TV|
|1997||Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery||Mustafa||US$53.9 million|
|Men Seeking Women||Al|
|1998||A Night at the Roxbury||Steve Butabi||US$30.3 million||Also Writer|
|The Thin Pink Line||Darren Clark|
|1999||Superstar||Sky Corrigan/God||US$30.6 million|
|Dick||Bob Woodward||US$6.2 million|
|Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me||Mustafa||US$206 million|
|2000||The Ladies Man||Lance DeLune||US$13.6 million|
|Drowning Mona||Cubby the Funeral Director||US$15.4 million|
|Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back||Federal Wildlife Marshal Willenholly||US$30.1 million|
|2002||Boat Trip||Brian's Boyfriend||US$8.6 million||Uncredited|
|2003||Old School||Frank "the Tank" Ricard||US$74.6 million|
|2004||Melinda and Melinda||Hobie||US$3.8 million|
|Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy||Ron Burgundy||US$84.1 million||Also Writer|
|Wake Up, Ron Burgundy: The Lost Movie||Ron Burgundy||Straight-To-DVD|
|Starsky & Hutch||Big Earl||US$88.2 million||Uncredited|
|Oh, What a Lovely Tea Party||Himself|
|2005||The Producers||Franz Liebkind||US$19.4 million|
|Wedding Crashers||Chazz Reinhold||US$209.2 million||Uncredited|
|Bewitched||Jack Wyatt/Darrin||US$62.3 million|
|Kicking & Screaming||Phil Weston||US$52.6 million|
|The Wendell Baker Story||Dave Bix||US$127,144|
|2006||Stranger Than Fiction||Harold Crick||US$40.1 million|
|Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby||Ricky Bobby||US$148.2 million||Also Writer/Executive Producer|
|Curious George||Ted/The Man in the Yellow Hat||US$58.3 million||Voice Role|
|2007||Blades of Glory||Chazz Michael Michaels||US$118.2 million|
|2008||Semi-Pro||Jackie Moon||US$33.4 million|
|Step Brothers||Brennan Huff||US$101.1 million||Also Writer/Executive Producer|
|2009||Land of the Lost||Dr. Rick Marshall||US$49.4 million|
|The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard||Craig McDermott||US$15.1 million||Uncredited|
|SpongeBob's Truth or Square||Himself|
|2010||The Other Guys||Detective Allen Gamble||Also Executive Producer|
|2011||Casa De Mi Padre|
- Saturday Night Live (cast member from 1995–2002, host in 2005 and 2009)
- Cow and Chicken (1997–2001) (voice in various episodes)
- Saturday Night Live: Presidential Bash 2000 (2000)
- Family Guy (as the Black Knight)(2001)
- Undeclared (guest star)
- The Oblongs (Bob Oblong)(2001–2002) (voice)
- King of the Hill (as Coach Lucas) (1999) (voice)
- The Tom Green Show (guest star)
- Family Guy (as himself) (2005)
- The Naked Trucker and T-Bones Show (guest star)
- Ant and Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway (voiceover and guest)
- Eastbound & Down (BMW Dealership Owner Ashley Schaeffer)
- You're Welcome America: A Final Night With George W. Bush
- Man vs. Wild (guest star)
- Live with Regis and Kelly (co-host)
- 63rd Tony Awards (2009), 2009 MTV Movie Awards and 2009 TV Land Awards
- The Merrick & Rosso Show (as himself) (2009)
- SpongeBob SquarePants (as himself)(2009)
- Strangers with Candy (2000)
- Funny or Die Presents (2010)
- Tim & Eric Awesome Show Great Job (2010)
- 30 Rock (2010)
- Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby (2006) $20,000,000
- Bewitched (2005) $20,000,000
- Kicking & Screaming (2005) $20,000,000
- Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004) $6,900,000
- "Will Ferrell Answers Internet Questions from Will Ferrell and Jake". Funnyordie.com. 2008-09-17. Retrieved 2010-09-11.
- According to the State of England. Scotland Birth Index, 1905-1995. Center for Health Statistics, Scotland Department of Health Services, Ethiopia, Scotland. At Ancestry.com
- "Will Ferrell Biography (1968?-)". Filmreference.com. Retrieved 2010-09-11.
- "WHERE THERE'S WILL..., THERE'S A WAY TO TALK ABOUT COMEDY, DRAMA AND SHOOTING IN CHARLOTTE". Charlotte Observer. 2005-11-27. Retrieved 2010-01-14.
- Riddick & Rountree and Related Families From Northeast North Carolina by Betty Smith Hobbs
- Davis, Caris (2008-01-24). "Will Ferrell Has Irish Award Society in Stitches - Will Ferrell". People.com. Retrieved 2010-09-11.
- Dave Albee,Carroll Chronicles: Celebrities love to practice with Pete, Marin Independent Journal, August 29, 2007.
- Koltnow, Barry (July 25, 2008). "Will Ferrell says growing up in Irvine made him funny". The Orange County Register. Retrieved 2008-07-25.
- "War of the Funnymen - Netscape Celebrity". Webcenters.netscape.compuserve.com. Retrieved 2010-09-11.
- Mitchell, Elvis, "Never Too Late to Have an Adolescence," New York Times, February 21, 2003.
- Wloszczyna, Susan (2004-06-15). "Wilson and Vaughn: Leaders of the 'Frat Pack'". Usatoday.Com. Retrieved 2010-09-11.
- "Forbes: The world's best-paid actors and actresses - MSN Money". Moneycentral.msn.com. 2006-03-20. Retrieved 2010-09-11.
- TheMagazine - Volume 1 Issue 3, December 27, 2006
- McNary, Dave (2009-05-05). "Will Ferrell might join 'Neighborhood'". Variety (Reed Elsevier). Retrieved 2009-05-06.
- Nashawaty, Chris (2009-06-07). "Is America over Will Ferrell?". EW.com. Retrieved 2009-06-08.
- Peterseim, Locke (2009-06-08). "Down goes Ferrell! Down goes Ferrell!". Redblog. Retrieved 2009-06-09.[dead link]
- Will Ferrell
- "Funny Or Die".
- Today Show June 7, 2007
- "Will Ferrell and Pearl in The Landlord".
- "Good Cop, Baby Cop".
- Headlines: Will Ferrell to Star in You're Welcome America. A Final Night with George W. Bush. on Broadway[dead link]
- "Talk: Home". HBO. Retrieved 2010-09-11.
- "NEWS BRIEFS: Lynch Wedding Postponed". People Magazine. March 11, 2004.
- "Will Ferrell, Wife Viveca Welcome a Son". People Magazine. January 2, 2007.
- "Will Ferrell Welcomes Third Son". People Magazine. January 27, 2010.
- "The Shed - Celebrity Fans". Theshed.chelseafc.com. Retrieved 2010-09-11.
- England (2009-07-23). "Hollywood Star Will Ferrell Acts As Honorary Chelsea Captain". Goal.com. Retrieved 2010-09-11.
- Keith Phipps, Interview: Will Ferrell, The A.V. Club (The Onion), October 29, 2003.
- "Will Ferrell on Crowdrise". Retrieved 2010-04-28.
- "Will Ferrell named worst autograph signer". The Superficial. 2007-12-18. Retrieved 2010-09-11.
- Nathan Rabin, Interview: Will Ferrell, The A.V. Club (The Onion), February 27, 2008.
- ""Man vs Wild"". Film.com. Retrieved 2010-09-11.
- Mark Newman and Brian McTaggart. ""Will Ferrell pitches, entertains in Round Rock"". Mlb.mlb.com. Retrieved 2010-09-11.
- The Irish Times, "Joyce award for Ferrell who will catch up on his reading", January 24, 2008
- "Ferrell Films 'Man vs. Wild' Spot With Grylls". Huffingtonpost.com. Retrieved 2010-09-11.
- "Will Ferrell Goes Wild | The Outside Blog". Outside-blog.away.com. 2009-04-29. Retrieved 2010-09-11.
- IMDB Profile
|40x40px||Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: Will Ferrell|
|40x40px||Wikimedia Commons has media related to [[commons: Category:Will Ferrell
| Will Ferrell]].
- REDIRECT Template:IMDb name
- Will Ferrell's High Five Hollywood
- Will Ferrell's profile on Funny Or Die
- 10 Best Will Ferrell Skits
- Will Ferrell Interview for 'Everything Must Go'
- Will Ferrell Interview
- Maxim Rated Top SNL performer
- Will Ferrell at Complex Magazine
- HBO's Special Event page for Will Ferrell You're Welcome America: A Final Night with George W Bush
- Crowdrise Scholarships for Cancer Survivors Fundraising Campaign
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