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Steve Carell's Biography
American actor and writer, best known for his performance in the title role of the 2005 film ?The 40-Year-Old Virgin? and for his portrayal of Michael Scott, the leading character in the American remake of the British sitcom ?The Office,? which premiered on NBC in 2005. The latter role earned him a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in Television Comedy in 2006.
Carell was the youngest son in an Italian-American family. He grew up in Concord, attending The Fenn School, an expensive, all-boys private school, and then moving to a private prep school, Middlesex School, for high school. A self-described ?band geek? who played baritone horn, his love of acting solidified during high school, and he credits Middlesex for providing an environment where he says, ?You could be a varsity athlete in three sports and also play Judd in ?Oklahoma!,? and nobody raised an eyebrow.?
He attended Denison University, majoring in history and theater, and graduated in 1984 with plans to become a lawyer. His career path changed after college, once he discovered practicing law appealed to him because it sounded tangible and respectable, not because he felt any affinity for it. He had never considered becoming an actor, he says, because ?Acting sounded like something akin to ?I want to be an astronaut.? ?I wanna be a cowboy, an actor, or an astronaut.? It doesn?t live in the real world?.So I thought to be a real person, I needed to have a real job.?
In 1985, after a year stint as a postal worker, Carell moved to Chicago to pursue acting, consciously ruling out both Los Angeles and New York City as too big and intimidating. In 1987 he landed a coveted position with the Second City Comedy Troupe touring company and worked his way up the ranks to Mainstage by 1989. He remained with the comedy troupe through 1994. Also in the cast at this time was Stephen Colbert, who remains a close friend. In 1991 Carell got his first film role as Tesio the Waiter in the John Hughes comedy ?Curly Sue.? In 1995, Carell and his wife actor-writer Nancy Walls moved to New York City when Walls became a cast member of ?Saturday Night Live? (SNL), and Carell found work as a writer and regular on the short-lived ?Dana Carvey Show.? The following year, Carell and friend Stephen Colbert did the voices for ?The Ambiguously Gay Duo,? an animated spoof which ran on SNL for six years.
While in New York, buddy Stephen Colbert recommended Carell for a job as a field correspondent with The Daily Show, a news satire show on the Comedy Central hosted by comedian Jon Stewart. Uncomfortable with making fun of unwitting people who thought they were being interviewed by a legitimate news correspondent, Carell almost turned down the job. To offset his discomfort, he created a character whose straight-faced, pathological self-absorption made him as likely to be the butt of the joke as those being interviewed. In 1999 Carell did his first field piece, an interview with an Elvis impersonator who also ran a venom research facility and he remained a regular on the show until 2004.
Carell?s breakout role was as Evan Baxter, Jim Carrey?s newscaster nemesis in the film ?Bruce Almighty? (2003). The scene-stealing, bit role brought him to the attention of a larger audience as well as to the Hollywood establishment itself. Offers for more supporting roles followed: ?Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy? and ?Sleepover? in 2004, ?Melinda and Melinda? and ?Bewitched? in 2005, ?Little Miss Sunshine? and ?Over the Hedge? in 2006. In 2005, Carell co-wrote, produced and starred in ?The 40-Year-Old Virgin,? which was nominated for Best Original Screenplay by the Screenwriter?s Guild. The film was selected as one of the top 10 films for 2006 by the American Film Institute.
Carell?s parents are Harriet T. and Edwin A. Carell. While teaching improv classes at Second City in the 1990s, Carell met actor-writer and future wife Nancy Walls when she attended one of his classes. Married in 1995, they have two children, Elisabeth Anne, born May 25, 2001, and John, born June 2004. By all accounts, they have a strong, stable marriage, and they often work together, though intermittently, as Walls has opted to put her career on hold while raising their children. Once, when asked if his first love was writing or acting, he replied ?My first love is Nancy Walls.?
He sprained his ankle on May 13, 2006 in Richmond , VA when he fell while stepping out of a Hummer.
His dramatic role as wrestling coach and convicted murderer John EleuthŠre du Pont in the 2014 film Foxcatcher earned him several awards and nominations including a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actor.
Link to Wikipedia biography