Will Ferrell

Will Ferrell used his prodigious skills in sketch comedy to become one of the most successful comedians of his generation. A native of Irvine, California, he attended the University of Southern California with an eye towards going into sports broadcasting. After college, however, he joined the Los Angeles improv group The Groundlings. He made his screen debut on the family sitcom "On Our Own" (ABC, 1994-95), and added small parts on the hit comedies "Grace Under Fire" (ABC, 1993-98) and "Living Single" (Fox, 1993-98). Ferrell's big break came in 1995 when he was asked, along with fellow Groundlings member Chris Kattan and Cheri Oteri, to join the cast of "Saturday Night Live" (NBC, 1975-). He initially established himself with characters developed in Los Angeles, including the club-going Butabi Brothers with Kattan, and the overly-enthusiastic Spartan cheerleaders with Oteri. He soon became one of the shows breakout stars, using his impressions of everyone from Alex Trebek to President George W. Bush to tremendous comedic effect. While still on "SNL," he began adding film credits with a cameo in Mike Myers' "Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery" (1998) and the "SNL" sketch based "A Night at the Roxbury" (1998). His film profile took a noticeable leap in 2003 when he starred in both Jon Favreau's Christmas-themed film, "Elf" (2003) and the broad comedy "Old School" (2003), with Luke Wilson and Vince Vaughn. Starring in the 1970s parody "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy" (2004), directed by his longtime writing partner Adam McKay, added another memorable character to his growing portfolio. Wanting to diversify beyond the standard comedy conventions, he added roles in Woody Allen's "Melinda and Melinda" (2004), "Stranger Than Fiction" (2005), and the musical "The Producers" (2005). Soon after, he began one of his most fruitful on-screen pairings when he starred with John C. Reilly in "Talladega Nights: The Legend of Ricky Bobby" (2006). The duo would reteam for "Step Brothers" (2008). Ferrell and McKay began the online comedy outlet Funny or Die in 2007, featuring a series of short films, including the pair's viral video "The Landlord" (2007). He formed yet another film partnership when he worked with Mark Wahlberg on "The Other Guys" (2010). They would costar with each other again in "Daddy's Home" (2015) and "Daddy's Home Two" (2017). While he became recognized as a film star, he didn't shun television. He joined both "The Office" (NBC, 2005-2013) and "Eastbound & Down" (HBO, 2009-13) for multi-episode appearances. Along with McKay, he produced the Emmy-nominated sketch comedy series "Drunk History" (Comedy Central, 2011-), and the mini-series "The Spoils of Babylon" (IFC, 2014). He was also a much sought after guest on television talk shows, where he would frequently appear in character. Working with fellow "SNL" alum Molly Shannon, he starred in the TV film "The Royal Wedding Live With Cord and Tish!" (HBO, 2018), and its follow-up "The 2019 Rose Parade Hosted by Cord & Tish" (HBO, 2019). Ferrell re-teamed with Reilly for the Sherlock Holmes spoof "Holmes & Watson" (2018).