JANEANE GAROFALO (Beth) has has turned in a variety of memorable comedic and dramatic performances in film and on television.
She made her television debut on the syndicated "The Dennis Miller Show," followed by appearances on the Fox Network's "Comic Strip Live" and MTV's "Half-Hour Comedy Hour." She first gained national attention as a regular on the Emmy Award-winning "The Ben Stiller Show."
Garofalo received two consecutive Emmy Award nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series (1996, 1997) for her continuing role as Paula on HBO's "The Larry Sanders Show." She was also a member of the repertory company of NBC's "Saturday Night Live" during the 1994-95 season; and a correspondent for Michael Moore's "TV Nation," during its NBC run.
She has guest-starred on such top television series as NBC's "Seinfeld," "Mad About You," and "Law & Order"; ABC's "Home Improvement"; and HBO's "The Sopranos." She was animated for episodes of the Fox Network's "The Simpsons" and Comedy Central's "Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist."
Beginning with W.D. Richter's "Late for Dinner" (1991), she has appeared in over 35 feature films. These include starring roles in "Reality Bites" (directed by and costarring Ben Stiller), Michael Lehmann's "The Truth About Cats & Dogs," Kinka Usher's "Mystery Men" (again costarring with Stiller), Mark Joffe's "The Matchmaker," David Dobkin's "Clay Pigeons," Hampton Fancher's "The Minus Man," Bruce McCulloch's "Dog Park," Kevin Smith's "Dogma," and Robert Greenwald's "Steal This Movie!" (as Abbie Hoffman's wife Anita).
Garofalo has also been seen on-screen in, among other films, Kelly Makin's "Kids in the Hall Brain Candy," Ben Stiller's "The Cable Guy," James Mangold's "Cop Land," David Veloz' "Permanent Midnight" (again costarring with Stiller), Risa Bramon Garcia's "200 Cigarettes," and Des McAnuff's "The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle."
She most recently completed work on Mike Binder's independent feature "The Search for John Gissing" Barry Sonnenfeld's "Big Trouble"; Moises Kaufman's "The Laramie Project" (for HBO). Currently she is starring on a new TV series in preparation for ABC.
Garofalo also co-authored the best-seller Feel This Book, with longtime friend Ben Stiller.
DAVID HYDE PIERCE (Professor Neuman) has won three Emmy awards as Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series for his portrayal of Dr. Niles Crane in the multi-Emmy Award-winning NBC comedy hit "Frasier," which begins its ninth season this fall. In addition to the Emmy honors, Pierce has received several American Comedy Awards, the Screen Actors Guild Award, the Viewers for Quality Television Award, and the Television Critics Association Award.
His previous television credits include a starring role in the NBC series "The Powers That Be," and guest-starring roles in NBC's "Crime Story," ABC's "Spenser: For Hire," and Showtime's "The Outer Limits" (for which he won a CableACE Award). In 1999, he hosted "The 51st Annual Primetime Emmy Awards."
Pierce made his film debut in James Bridges' "Bright Lights, Big City," and continued to work with an acclaimed group of directors, including Joan Micklin Silver (on "Crossing Delancey"), Jodie Foster (on her feature directorial debut, "Little Man Tate"), Terry Gilliam (on "The Fisher King"), Nora Ephron (on "Sleepless in Seattle"), Mike Nichols (on "Wolf"), Oliver Stone (on "Nixon," as John Dean), Andrew Bergman (on "Isn't She Great"), and John Lasseter and Andrew Stanton (on the animated smash "a bug's life"). He recently completed voiceover work on the much-anticipated animated feature "Osmosis Jones," which is scheduled for an August release.
Upon graduation from Yale in 1981, Pierce secured his first professional acting job in the Broadway production of Christopher Durang's "Beyond Therapy," co-starring John Lithgow and Dianne Wiest. His next Broadway role was opposite Christine Lahti in Wendy Wasserstein's award-winning "The Heidi Chronicles." Off-Broadway, Pierce appeared in numerous plays, including Mike Nichols' production of Jules Feiffer's "Elliot Loves," Peter Brook's production of "The Cherry Orchard," Richard Greenberg's "The Author's Voice," and New York Shakespeare Festival stagings of "Much Ado About Nothing," and "Hamlet." Last fall he made his return to the stage, starring in the Los Angeles production of "The Boys from Syracuse." Last summer her starred opposite Uta Hagen in Los Angeles in the two-person play "Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks." The play will soon be coming to New York.
MICHAEL SHOWALTER (Co-writer, Actor) and DAVID WAIN (Director, Co-writer) have been colleagues and friends since they met at NYU in 1988.
As members of the comedy troupe The State (along with W.H.A.S. cast members Michael Ian Black, Joe Lo Truglio, and Ken Marino; and Kevin Allison, Ben Garant, Michael Patrick Jann, Kerri Kenney, and Thomas Lennon), they co-created, -wrote, -edited and -produced an award-winning and critically acclaimed MTV series, a special for CBS, a book for Hyperion Press, and an album for Warner Bros. The State also toured the United States, and performed the sketch show "Molt" off-Broadway.
They are creators and performers, with Michael Ian Black, of "Stella," a comedy trio which has spawned a six-year running nightclub show in Manhattan, a series of short films, a pilot for VH1, and now a three man show.
Showalter and Wain also co-wrote (with Joe Lo Truglio) a play, "Sex, a.k.a. Wieners and Boobs," which completed successful runs in New York and Los Angeles. They have created short films for various shows on MTV and VH1. After having spent the past year making W.H.A.S., they are now prepping a series of projects, including their next movie, "They Came Together," a spoof of romantic comedies, and a pilot of WET HOT for Fox-TV.
In addition to their collaborations, they have both worked as writers and actors on TV, theater, and film projects. Wain's directing experience includes the award-winning short film "Aisle Six" (which screened at the 1993 Sundance Film Festival), short films and videos for The State, and music videos.
Natives of Princeton, New Jersey and Shaker Heights, Ohio, respectively, Showalter and Wain attended NYU and Brown University. The both live in New York.
Click here for an interview with Showalter and Wain from January 2001.
MARGUERITE MOREAU (Katie) will next be seen in John Grisham's The Runaway Jury opposite Gene Hackman. Also out this spring, is the surf mockumentary, Off The Lip where she goes head to head with L.A.'s infamous naked trucker.
She may also be seen in Easy, The Locket, Two Days (opposite Paul Rudd), Firestarter, Queen of the Damned and as Connie in the Mighty Ducks Trilogy.
Her first role was on the Wonder Years. Other TV credits include Smallville, 3rd Rock from the Sun, Blossom, Boy Meets World, Almost Home, Amazing Grace and Brooklyn Bridge.
She has a degree in Political Science from Vassar College.
PAUL RUDD (Andy) Rudd made his West End debut in the London production of Eugene O'Neill's "Long Days Journey Into Night."
Last summer he performed in A.R. Gurney's "Ancestral Voices" with Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward at the Westport Country Playhouse. Earlier in the year he appeared in the same play with George Grizzard and Frances Sternhagen at the George Street Playhouse in New Brunswick, New Jersey. He also starred with Calista Flockhart and Ron Eldard in both the New York and Los Angeles productions of Neil LaBute's critically acclaimed "Bash."
His Broadway credits include "Twelfth Night" and "Last Night of Ballyhoo" (Tony Award, Best New Play). Rudd was seen in the A&E/BBC production of "The Great Gatsby." He has also done several films including: "200 Cigarettes," "The Locusts," "The Object Of My Affection," "Romeo and Juliet," "Clueless," "Overnight Delivery" and most recently the Oscar-nominated "The Cider House Rules."
His upcoming feature film "The Chateau" will be released in soon.
Most recently, he completed a sucessful run of "The Shape of Things", a play by Neil Labute, which is currently being made into a feature film.
MOLLY SHANNON (Gail) will be seen next in David Zucker's "The Guest" (starring with Ashton Kutcher and Tara Reid). Last summer, in addition to "Wet Hot American Summer," she was in Peter Chelsom's "Serendipity" and the animated/live-action "Osmosis Jones."
Shannon's other film credits include Ron Howard's blockbuster "How the Grinch Stole Christmas," Bruce McCulloch's "Superstar" (in which she starred in the title role), Raja Gosnell's "Never Been Kissed," Harold Ramis' smash "Analyze This," Todd Solondz' "Happiness," and John Fortenberry's "A Night at the Roxbury."
She spent six seasons on NBC's "Saturday Night Live" as a member of the repertory company. There, she became nationally known for her impersonations (of Courtney Love, Liza Minnelli, Monica Lewinsky, and Meredith Vieira, among others) and her eclectic range of original characters. Of the latter, her Mary Katherine Gallagher was a highlight among the revitalized ensemble.
Prior to joining "SNL," Shannon appeared at The Up Front Comedy Theater in Los Angeles in "The Rob and Molly Show," an improvisational show with Rob Muir which she co-wrote. Her television credits include guest appearances on NBC's "Will & Grace" (in a recurring role) and "Seinfeld"; and on ABC's "Twin Peaks."
GIDEON JACOBS (Aaron) has appeared in the films "Julie Johnson," "Music of the Heart," "Liberty Heights," "You've Got Mail" (as the young Tom Hanks) and "One Fine Day." TV viewers know him from "All My Children" and "The Guiding Light."
CHRISTOPHER MELONI (Gene) currently stars on NBC's hit series "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (which begins its third season this fall) as Detective Elliot Stabler. Concurrently, he continues his role as duplicitous prison inmate Chris Keller on HBO's critically praised drama series, "Oz,".
His other memorable TV roles include volatile undercover target Jimmy Liery on ABC's "NYPD Blue"; and the bounty hunter Dennis Knoll on NBC's "Homicide: Life on the Street." In addition, Meloni has starred in the ABC series "Leaving L.A." and the NBC comedy "The Fanelli Boys"; and several miniseries, including CBS' "In a Child's Name" and Mario Puzo's "The Last Don.'"
Meloni's film credits encompass both mainstream and independent projects. Among them are Garry Marshall's "Runaway Bride," Larry and Andy Wachowski's "Bound," Terry Gilliam's "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" and "Twelve Monkeys," Bill Kalmenson's "The Souler Opposite," and Ivan Reitman's "Junior."
A.D. MILES (Gary) began his career by performing comedy in New York City while writing and acting in his own short films. His first short, "Ray Has Sex," debuted at the 1997 US Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen and was later expanded into a 1/2 hour pilot for MTV called "This Is Ray." He also wrote and starred in the short, "Girl Go Boom," which was featured in the 2000 Sundance Film Festival. He recently directed several short films for Robert Smigel's "TV Funhouse" on Comedy Central. Miles' feature film credits include Henry Bean's "The Believer," winner of the dramatic competition at Sundance 2001, and Spike Lee's "Bamboozled." He just finished shooting Jill Sprecher's "Thirteen Conversations About One Thing."
KEN MARINO (Victor) stars with Sarah Paulsen on the new NBC series "Leap of Faith".
He received the Strasberg Studio Award from the famed institute and attended Circle Rep Summer School of the Arts, appearing in Neil Simon's "Brighton Beach Memoirs" and the musical "Pippin." He was later cast in the national touring company of "A Few Good Men" and in the Off-Broadway stage adaptation of "Valley of the Dolls."
Marino has completed starring roles in the indie films "Kissing Jessica Stein," "Carlo's Wake" and "Love Happens," and was featured in Columbia Pictures' "Gattaca." He recently starred on the NBC drama series, "First Years." Marino played the lead in NBC's hit comedy "Men Behaving Badly" and has made appearances on "The Practice," "Spin City," "Will & Grace," "Angel" and Veronica's Closet."
Marino was a co-founder of "The State," with David Wain, Michael Showalter and Michael Ian Black. He performed, wrote and directed on the MTV series for four years, was a collaborator on the book State by State with the State and the album "Comedy for Gracious Living" and starred on CBS in "The State's 43rd Annual Halloween Special."
MARISA RYAN (Abby) appeared in Penny Marshall's "Riding in Cars with Boys" starring Drew Barrymore. She has appeared in many independent films including "Without a Trace," "Elephant and the Mouse," "With or Without You" and "The Cure for Boredom." Ryan has also made numerous television appearances, including recurring roles on "Third Watch" and "Deadline," and guest appearances on "Sex & The City," "The Practice," "Boy Meets World" and "The Pretender." She was a series regular on "Falcone," "New York Undercover," "Major Dad" and "The Tattingers." Ryan has appeared on the stage in "The Other Side" directed by Alan Rickman, "Another Part of the Forest," "Something So Right," "The Little Foxes" and "Picnic."
AMY POEHLER (Susie) is currently a member of the cast of "Saturday Night Live"
She joined the Chicago-based sketch troupe "Upright Citizens Brigade" (UCB) in 1993, going on to write and perform in a number of shows. In the Spring of 1996, Poehler moved to New York City with the UCB, where they ran the sketch shows "Bucket of Truth" and "Punch Your Friend in the Face" as well as the improvisational comedy show "A.S.S.S.S.C.A.T." In 1998, the UCB's "Saigon Suicide Squad" won the Jury Prize for Best Sketch/Alternative Performance at the prestigious U.S. Comedy & Arts Festival in Aspen. In August of 1998, the UCB premiered their own sketch comedy show on Comedy Central as the highest rated debut of any original comedy series. In February of 1999, Poehler and fellow UCB members opened the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater in New York City, where they perform weekly. Poehler's most notable television appearance was the recurring role of Stacey, Andy Richter's little sister on "Late Night with Conan O'Brien." In December of 1999, Poehler made her big screen debut in the box office hit "Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo" as Ruth.
BRADLEY COOPER (Ben) Immediately after Bradley Cooper graduated from the Honors English program at Georgetown University in 1997, he moved to New York City to enroll in the Masters of Fine Arts program at the Actors Studio Drama School at the New School University. There, with guidance of such mentors as Ellen Burstyn, Susan Batson and Elizabeth Kemp, Cooper developed his stage work, culminating with his thesis performance as John Merrick in Bernard Pomerance's "The Elephant Man," performed in New York's Circle in the Square.
While in school, Cooper began his professional career, appearing opposite Sarah Jessica Parkerin "Sex and the City" and in the series "The Beat." His weekends were spent with LEAP (Learning Through The Expanded Arts Program), a non-profit organization that teaches acting and movement to inner city school children. The summers took him all across the globe, from kayaking in British Columbia with Orca Whales to ice climbing in the Peruvian Andes, while hosting Lonely Planet's "Exreme Treks in a Wild World" for the Discovery Channel.
Cooper had to skip his graduation ceremony from the Actor's Studio in order to appear in "Wet Hot American Summer." After finishing his second feature, "Carnival Knowledge," his plans to relocate to Los Angeles were delayed when Darren Star hired him to star in the series "The $treet," opposite Jennie Garth, Tom Everett Scott, Adam Goldberg and Jennifer Connely.
Cooper went on to win the role of young law student Gordon Pinella in the film "Changing Lanes," starring Ben Affleck and Samuel Jackson, and also stars as Travis Patterson in "My Little Eye," which will be released in 2002.
Cooper finally decided that it was time to forgo his other New York projects and move to Los Angeles when he was cast in "Alias." Although he lives in LA, he will never abandon his New York nightly ritual of Watching Charlie Rose while finishing off a pint of Cherry Garcia ice cream.
MICHAEL IAN BLACK (McKinley) currently stars on the NBC hit comedy "Ed." He was also the host of the hit NBC reality show "Spy TV." Black is a graduate of NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. He was a co-creator and lead performer on the television series "Hey Neighbor," "Every Night," "Random Play" and "Viva Variety." He was also a series regular on "The State," "You Wrote It, You Watch It," and guest starred on "NYPD Blue" and "Junk Bonds."
Michael's work in the theater includes roles in "Fifth Planet," "The Day the Bronx Died" and "Junk Bonds." He is a creator and co-host, with David Wain and Michael Showalter, of the weekly nightclub show, "Stella," which has played to sold-out audiences in New York since its inception in January of 1997. "Stella" has spawned a series of short films (featured on Heavy.com) and a pilot for VH1.
ZAK ORTH (J.J.) has appeared in several feature films, including Amy Heckerling's "Loser," Kris Isacsson's "Down to You," Scott Hicks' "Snow Falling on Cedars," John Irvin's "When Trumpets Fade" (for HBO), Frank Oz' "In and Out," Baz Luhrmann's "William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet," Matt Reeves' "The Pallbearer," and David O. Russell's "Spanking the Monkey."
His television work includes a guest appearance on NBC's "Law & Order." He has appeared on stage in "A Place at the Table," "The Eros Trilogy," "Misalliance," "The Three Sisters," and "SubUrbia." He recently appearing in the new Broadway production of "Major Barbara" and the TV Movie "Monday Night Mayhem."
JOE LO TRUGLIO (Neil) was a member of "The State" comedy troupe, appearing in theater performances as well as the series on MTV and the CBS Halloween Special. He also appears in the weekly nightclub show "Stella" with David Wain, Michael Showalter and Michael Ian Black.
Lo Truglio's television work also includes "Shut Up and Laugh" and "You Wrote It, You Watch It" on MTV. He has appeared on the stage in "An Evening of New Plays" at Raw Space, "Emile Le Bleu" at La Cucaracha and "Gulliver's Travel" at the Washington Theater. On film, Lo Truglio has appeared in "Against the Wind," "The Waiter," "Naked in the Cold" and David Wain's "Aisle Six."
KEVIN SUSSMAN (Steve) television work includes featured roles in "Third Watch," "The Sopranos" and "Law & Order." He currently plays the recurring role of Gordon Fiemster on "All My Children." Sussman has appeared in Barry Levinson's feature film "Liberty Heights" and will soon be seen in "Pipe Dream" and "Kissing Jessica Stein." In addition he has just completed filming "Changing Lanes" with Ben Affleck and Samuel L. Jackson.
ELIZABETH BANKS (Lindsay) recently completed work on Sam Raimi's "Spider-Man," in which she portrays (from the original comic books) Betty Brant. She also stars with Madonna in the upcoming "Swept Away."
Banks has previously appeared on-screen in John Singleton's "Shaft" (2000); and in the independent features "The Trade" (directed by Thomas Halikias) and "Ordinary Sinner" (directed by John Henry Davis). Her television appearances include roles on HBO's "Sex and the City" and NBC's "Third Watch." She graduated from the American Conservatory Theatre (ACT); and, Magna Cum Laude, from the University of Pennsylvania.
LIAM NORTON (Arty) is eleven years old and lives in Stony Brook, NY. He received his SAG card at the age of eight for being a "singing raviolio" in a commercial. Since that time the home-schooled actor has joined both AFTRA and MENSA. Norton has appeared in the films "A Price Above Rubies," "It Had to Be You" and "Cherry." On television he has appeared on "Spin City" and on "The View" as a MENSA representative. Norton has appeared in numerous commercials, promotions, industrial films and print ads and has done extensive voice-over work. He enjoys rollerblading, swimming, ice-skating, chess, singing and computers and hopes one day to be the first man to set foot on another planet.