Tina Fey

Tina Fey

Infobox Comedian
name = Tina Fey

imagesize = 300px
caption = Fey at the premiere of "Baby Mama", 2008
pseudonym =
birth_name = Elizabeth Stamatina Fey
birth_date = birth date and age|mf=yes|1970|5|18
birth_place = Upper Darby, Pennsylvania, United States
alma_mater=The University of Virginia
death_date =
death_place =
active = 1994–present
genre =
subject =
influences =
influenced =
spouse = Jeff Richmond (2001–2008)
children = Alice Zenobia Richmond (born 2005)

website =
footnotes =
emmyawards = Outstanding Writing - Variety Program
2002 "Saturday Night Live"
Outstanding Comedy Series
2007 "30 Rock"
2008 "30 Rock"
Outstanding Writing - Comedy Series
2008 "30 Rock"
Outstanding Actress - Comedy
2008 "30 Rock"
goldenglobeawards = Best Actress - Musical or Comedy Series
2008 "30 Rock"
sagawards = Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series
2008 "30 Rock"

Elizabeth Stamatina "Tina" Fey (born May 18, 1970) is a Golden Globe-, five time Emmy-, and SAG Award-winning American writer, comedian, actress and producer. Fey is best known for her work on "Saturday Night Live" ("SNL") as well as her work on "30 Rock", a situation comedy loosely based on her experiences at "Saturday Night Live".Cite news | last = Friend | first = Tad | title = Who’s On First Dept.: Shows About Shows | work = The New Yorker | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2006-04-24 | url = http://www.newyorker.com/archive/2006/04/24/060424ta_talk_friend ]

Fey became a writer on "SNL" in 1997 and she was promoted to the position of head writer in 1999. She was added to the cast of "SNL" in 2000.cite web |url=http://movies.yahoo.com/movie/contributor/1807539611/bio |title=Tina Fey Biography |accessdate=2008-08-12 |last= |first= |coauthors= |date= |work= |publisher="Yahoo"] After leaving "SNL" in 2006, Fey created her own television series called "30 Rock". In the series, she portrays Liz Lemon, the head writer of "TGS with Tracy Jordan", a fictional sketch comedy series. In 2008, she starred in the movie "Baby Mama", alongside Amy Poehler. More recently, Fey has returned to SNL to portray/parody Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin.

Early life

Fey was born in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Philadelphia, the daughter of Zenobia "Jeanne" (née Xenakes), [cite web|url=http://www.accessmylibrary.com/coms2/summary_0286-7616555_ITM|title=A `grounded' Tina Fey expands her territory to movies|publisher=The Philadelphia Inquirer|accessdate=2008-09-21] [Fey revealed on Rachel Ray that her mother was born as Zenobia, but the name was changed at school to Jean/Jeanne due to difficulty of pronunciation -hence Fey's own daughter's middle name is Zenobia.] a brokerage employee, and Donald Fey, a university grant proposal-writer. [Cite web | title = Tina Fey - Biography | work = The Internet Movie Database | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | url = http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0275486/bio ] Fey's father is of German and Scottish ancestry and her mother Greek American.Cite news | last = Heffernan | first = Virginia | title = Annals of Entertainment: Anchor Woman: Tina Fey Rewrites Late-Night Comedy | work = The New Yorker | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2003-11-03 | url = http://www.newyorker.com/archive/2003/11/03/031103fa_fact ]

Fey was exposed to comedy early, saying:

She also grew up watching "SCTV" and includes Catherine O'Hara as one of her role models. [Cite web | title = Tina Fey - 'SNL' vet pilots '30 Rock' | work = Variety | accessdate = 2008-03-09 | url = http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117969258.html?categoryid=2160&cs=1 ]

Fey attended Cardington Elementary School and Beverly Hills Middle School.Cite web | title = Wall of Fame -- Tina Fey | work = Upper Darby High School Wall of Fame | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | url = http://www.udsd.k12.pa.us/alumni/wof_3.php?id=30 ] By middle school, she knew she was interested in comedy, even doing an independent study project on the subject in eighth grade. She graduated from Upper Darby High School in 1988. [ [http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,118079,00.html "Tina Fey Gets the Last Laugh"] , Fox News, April 25, 2004. Accessed November 28, 2007. "Back in the late 1980s, Fey and the other "AP-class brainiac nerds," as she called her clique, used to sit together in the lunchroom at suburban Philadelphia's Upper Darby High School, making up nasty nicknames for their classmates."]


After Fey graduated from the University of Virginia with a B.A. in Drama in 1992, she moved to Chicago in order to take night classes at The Second City.Cite interview | interviewer = Eric Spitznagel | last = Fey | first = Tina | title = Believer Interview with Tina Fey | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2003-11 | url = http://www.believermag.com/issues/200311/?read=interview_fey ] Once her Second City training began, she immersed herself in the "cult of improvisation", becoming, as she described it a decade later, "one of those athletes trying to get into the Olympics. It was all about blind focus. I was so sure that I was doing exactly what I’d been put on this Earth to do, and I would have done anything to make it onto that stage. Not because of "SNL", but because I wanted to devote my life to improv. I would have been perfectly happy to stay at Second City forever."

By 1994, she was invited to join the cast of The Second City, where she performed in the Jeff Award-winning revue "Paradigm Lost". Improvisation became an important influence on her initial understanding of what it means to be an actress, as she noted in an interview for "The Believer" in November 2003:

While in Chicago, she also made what she later described as an "amateurish" attempt at stand-up comedy.Cite interview | interviewer = Noel Murray | last = Fey | first = Tina | title = Interviews: Tina Fey | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2006-11-01 | url = http://www.avclub.com/content/node/54729 ] Fey is also a veteran of The ImprovOlympic.

"Saturday Night Live"

With then-head-writer Adam McKay's help, Fey became a writer for NBC's "Saturday Night Live" ("SNL") in 1997. By 1999, Fey was SNL's first female head writer, a milestone she downplays in light of the fact that there have not been very many head writers.Cite interview | interviewer = George Everit | last = Fey | first = Tina | title = SuicideGirls Interview with Tina Fey | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2004-05-10 | url = http://suicidegirls.com/interviews/Tina+Fey/ ] As co-head writer of SNL's 25th anniversary special, Fey won a 2001 Writers Guild of America Award. She and the writing staff also won a 2002 Emmy Award for their work on the show.

In September 2005, she went on maternity leave after giving birth to a daughter, Alice Zenobia Richmond. Her "Weekend Update" role was covered by Horatio Sanz for two episodes before her return to the show on October 22, 2005, at which time she noted::"I had to get back to work. NBC has me under contract; the baby and I only have a verbal agreement." [Cite news | title = New Mom Fey Returns to 'SNL' | work = Zap2It TV News | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2005-10-20 | url = http://tv.zap2it.com/tveditorial/tve_main/1,1002,271|98150|1|,00.html]

The season was her last, as she thereafter departed to develop "30 Rock".

"SNL" sketches

Some recurring sketches written by Fey include:
* Parodies of "Live with Regis and Kelly" and "The View"
* The Girl with No Gaydar, cowritten by Rachel Dratch
* The Boston Teens, cowritten by Rachel Dratch

She is also credited with:
* Colonel Angus, portrayed by Christopher Walken in a sketch filled with word play on the colonel's name
* Mom Jeans commercial
* "Talkin 'Bout 'Ginas" (Parody of "The Vagina Monologues")
* "Old French Whore!" (game show parody with teens paired with old French prostitutes)
* "Census" (Tim Meadows questions a clueless Christopher Walken)

"Weekend Update"

In 2000, Fey and Jimmy Fallon became co-anchors of "SNL's Weekend Update", a pairing that ended in May 2004 when Fallon last appeared as a cast member. (Fey also was co-writer of the "Weekend Update" segment). Fallon was replaced by Amy Poehler. It was the first time that two women co-anchored "Weekend Update". [cite news|url=http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/la-ca-feypoehler20apr20,0,863720.story|title=Fey and Poehler gamble with 'Baby Mama'|last=Brownfield|first=Paul|date=2008-04-20|publisher="LA Times"|accessdate=2008-05-21]

Returning host

On February 23, 2008, Fey hosted the first episode of "SNL" after the 2007 Writers Guild of America strike, becoming the third female cast member to return and host.

Fey's celebrity impressions during the episode included Ellen Page (as Juno MacGuff) and Mary Jo Buttafuoco.

arah Palin

On the 34th season premiere episode, aired September 13, 2008, Fey returned to "SNL" in the role of Republican Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin, alongside Amy Poehler as Hillary Clinton. Their repartee included Clinton needling Palin about her "Tina Fey glasses". It quickly became NBC.com's most-watched viral video ever, with 5.7 million views by the following Wednesday.cite web |url=http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/news/e3i8fcb5100629836e60f2b946f58f168aa |title=NBC's Web sites see surge in traffic |format= |work= The Hollywood Reporter |accessdate=2008-09-20|date=2008-09-18| author = Wallenstein, Andrew] In an interview SNL creator Lorne Michaels said "The whole world cast her in that role." Michaels said that she was unlikely to remain in the role for long. [Coyle, Jake. [http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5jPtCAjwm4PJCqoD7lgJ0qU3Ya1sgD935RIJ80 "Tina Fey 'likely' to play Sarah Palin on 'SNL'."] AP. September 13, 2008.] Palin's campaign said that Palin was amused, particularly because she had once dressed up as Tina Fey for Halloween, [cite web|url=http://www.cbsnews.com/blogs/2008/09/14/politics/fromtheroad/entry4448143.shtml |title=The Real Sarah Palin Laughs Along With Tina Fey's Impression|publisher=Cbsnews|accessdate=2008-09-21] though Palin later said she had seen the sketch without hearing the audio. John McCain's top economic advisor Carly Fiorina called the skit sexist. [citeweb
author=Mooney, Alexander
title="Fiorina calls SNL impersonation of Palin 'sexist'" CNN Political Ticker, September 15, 2008
] During the 2008 Emmy Awards, Fey said of the vice-presidential candidate (in what may be the only known political advocacy regarding the 2008 Presidential election on Fey's part), "I want to be done playing this lady November 5. So if anyone could help me be done playing this lady November 5, that would be good for me." [cite web|url=http://abcnews.go.com/Entertainment/story?id=5854504&page=1|title=In Politicized Emmys, Reality & Cable Rule|accessdate=2008-09-30|publisher=ABCNews Internet Ventures]

On September 27, she reprised her role as Palin, parodying the CBS News interview with Katie Couric, who was played by Poehler. Portions of the skit were direct quotes and gestures from interviews with Couric on September 24. On October 4, she played the role of Palin at the 2008 vice-presidential debate, with Jason Sudeikis playing Democratic Vice Presidential nominee Joe Biden and Queen Latifah as moderator Gwen Ifill. SNL executive producer Lorne Michaels, referring to the 50% audience increase in the 34th season, told the "New York Times", “I think the gods smiled on us with the Palin thing.”cite news |url=http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/09/arts/television/09live.html|title=No Need for a Recount Here — Political Comedy Is Winning on ‘Saturday Night Live,’ ‘Daily Show’ and ‘Colbert Report’ |format= |work= The New York Times|accessdate=2008-10-09|date=2008-08-09|author=Carter, Bill|page=C9]

"30 Rock"

Fey developed a sitcom, "30 Rock", for NBC's fall 2006 schedule. The show is produced by NBC and Broadway Video, with Lorne Michaels and two former producers of "The Tracy Morgan Show", David Miner, who is also her manager at 3 Arts, and Joann Alfano.Cite web | title = "30 Rock" (2006) | work = The Internet Movie Database | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | url = http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0496424/ ] Fey also writes and stars in the sitcom, said to be based on her experiences at "SNL".

The show made its debut with mostly positive reviews but weak ratings; ratings improved when NBC moved it to the Thursday night "Must See TV" comedy block. NBC renewed the series for a second season, which began in October 2007. [cite web|url=http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/17955445/|title=‘30 Rock’ renewed by optimistic NBC|date=2007-04-08|publisher=msnbc.msn.com|accessdate=2008-05-21]

In July 2007, Fey was nominated for an Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series Emmy for her role as Liz Lemon. The show itself won the 2007 Emmy for Outstanding Comedy Series. In 2008, she won the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Comedy or Musical, and won a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series on January 27.

Along with the rest of the show's writing staff, Fey participated in the 2007-08 Writers Guild of America strike, which began on November 5, 2007 and concluded on February 12, 2008. While picketing in Rockefeller Center on the first day of the strike, Fey was quoted as saying, "I'm a member of the Guild and I am here to support my fellow Guild members. This strike affects the show in which I work. We put our pens down yesterday, and we will not write until negotiations resume." [Cite news | last = Gorman | first = Steve | title = Hollywood writers start strike after talks collapse | work = Reuters.com | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2007-11-05 | url = http://www.reuters.com/article/ousivMolt/idUSN0420838420071105 ] Fey, however, continued with her acting and producing duties on "30 Rock", as required by her contract [Cite news | last = Zeitchik | first = Steven | title = High-profile writers Rock picket line in N.Y. | work = The Hollywood Reporter | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2007-11-06 | url = http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/news/e3iefdf9c6b642b692d87f46900cd3b4e77 ] Production on "30 Rock" ended Friday, November 9, [Cite web | last = Baldwin | first = Alec | title = What the Strike is Costing Us | work = The Huffington Post | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2007-11-11 | url = http://www.huffingtonpost.com/alec-baldwin/what-the-strike-is-costin_b_72120.html ] and resumed at the end of the writers strike.

Episodes written for "30 Rock"

So far, Fey has independently written eight episodes of "30 Rock" and co-written four episodes. They are:

* "Pilot"
* "The Aftermath"
* "Tracy Does Conan"
* "The Head and the Hair" (co-written with John Riggi)
* "Black Tie" (co-written with Kay Cannon)
* "Up All Night"
* "The C Word"
* "Hiatus"
* "SeinfeldVision"
* "Somebody to Love" (co-written with Kay Cannon)
* "MILF Island" (co-written with Matt Hubbard)
* "Cooter"

Feature films

As a recurring guest on "Late Night With Conan O'Brien", Fey had a running gag in which she would plug upcoming films that didn't really exist, substituting the promised clips with intentionally obviously unrelated footage. However, in 2004, she made her feature film debut as writer and co-star of "Mean Girls". Characters and behaviors in the movie are based on Fey's high school life [Cite interview | interviewer = Tonisha Johnson | last = Fey | first = Tina | title = Blackfilm.com interview with Tina Fey | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2004-04 | url = http://www.blackfilm.com/20040423/features/tinafey.shtml ] at Upper Darby High School and on the non-fiction book "Queen Bees and Wannabes" by Rosalind Wiseman. The cast includes other present and past cast members of "SNL" including Tim Meadows, Ana Gasteyer, and Amy Poehler. She also made a voice cameo in the animated film "Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film for Theaters" as the team's mother, a giant burrito.

Fey and former SNL castmate Amy Poehler starred in "Baby Mama", released April 25, 2008 and written and directed by Michael McCullers. The plot concerns a business woman (Fey) who wants a child but discovers she has only a million-to-one chance of getting pregnant then decides to find a surrogate, "Angie" (Poehler), a white-trash schemer. The movie had mixed reviews, with a rating of 62% at Rottentomatoes.com, and has made over $60 million dollars to date. [cite web|url=http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/baby_mama/ |title=Baby Mama Movie Reviews, Pictures - Rotten Tomatoes |publisher=Rottentomatoes.com |date= |accessdate=2008-09-21]

As of April 2006, Fey was working on a script for a Paramount Pictures film by the name of "Curly Oxide and Vic Thrill" that is said to be based loosely on the true story of a Hasidic rock musician.Cite news | issn = 0362-4331 | last = Steinberg | first = Jacques | title = Tina Fey's Brash Bid for Prime Time | work = The New York Times | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2006-04-06 | url = http://www.nytimes.com/2006/04/06/arts/television/06fey.html ] On the Internet Movie Database, Fey is still listed as writer of this film, which is still listed as "announced", with a projected release for 2009. [ [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0424920/ Curly Oxide and Vic Thrill (2009)] ]

Other work

In 2000, Fey partnered with fellow "SNL" cast member Rachel Dratch in the critically acclaimedCite web | last = Watson | first = Katie | title = What's a Featured Player? Dratch Explains | work = Saturday-Night-Live.com | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | url = http://www.saturday-night-live.com/snl/news/2000/november/whats-a.html ] two-woman show "Dratch & Fey" at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater in New York City, the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen, Colorado, and the Chicago Improv Festival. Lorne Michaels saw her at one of the performances, which led to her becoming the co-anchor of "SNL's Weekend Update". SNL's popular "Boston Teens" sketch originated at Second City in Chicago. Tina played Rachel Dratch's mother. She also appeared in "Martin & Orloff", a surreal comedy that premiered at Austin's SXSW.

In 2007, Fey was chosen as one of the 100 People Who Shape Our World by "Time" magazine. She placed seventh on that year's [http://www.afterellen.com/people/2007/6/hotlist?page=0%2C1 Hot 100 List] on AfterEllen.com, a website for lesbian women. She was ranked #80 on the "Maxim" Hot 100 Women of 2002 and she was included in the People Magazine's 50 Most Beautiful People 2003. Fey guest-starred on the August 13, 2007 "Sesame Street" episode, "The Bookaneers." [Cite web | title = "Sesame Street" (2007) | work = The Internet Movie Database | accessdate = 2007-08-13 | url = http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1127096/ ]

Fey appeared as a guest judge on the November 25, 2007 episode of the Food Network program Iron Chef America. She has appeared in Disney's campaign "Year of a Million Dreams" as Tinker Bell, along with Mikhail Baryshnikov as Peter Pan and Gisele Bündchen as Wendy Darling. [ [http://disneyparks.disney.go.com/disneyparks/en_US/index?name=Gallery Celebrity Photos Show Where Dreams Come True] from the Disney Parks & Resorts website within Go.com] She has also done commercials for American Express credit card. [cite web|url=http://home3.americanexpress.com/corp/pc/2007/tfey.asp|title=Writer, Performer Tina Fey Joins American Express' "Are You a Card Member?" Campaign|date=2007-09-05|publisher=americanexpress.com|accessdate=2008-05-21]

Personal life

Fey is married to Jeff Richmond, a composer on "SNL". They met at Chicago's The Second City and dated for seven years before marrying in a Greek Orthodox ceremony on June 3, 2001. [Cite news | last = Associated Press | title = Tina Fey Pregnant | work = CNN.com | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2005-04-28 | url = http://www.cnn.com/2005/SHOWBIZ/04/28/showbuzz/index.html ] They have a daughter, Alice Zenobia Richmond, who was born on September 10, 2005, in New York City. [Cite news | last = Associated Press | title = 'SNL' Star Tina Fey Gives Birth to Girl | work = SFGate.com | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2005-10-01 | url = http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/sfgate/detail?blogid=7&entry_id=786 ] [Cite news | last = Jevens | first = Darel | title = From the 'SNL' Update desk: Fey a new mom Chicago Sun-Times - Find Articles | work = Chicago Sun-Times | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2005-09-13 | url = http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4155/is_20050913/ai_n15666502 ]

Fey has a scar a few inches long on the left side of her chin and cheek. Responding to questions about its origin, Fey was quoted in the November 25, 2001, "New York Times" as saying: "It's a childhood injury that was kind of grim. And it kind of bums my parents out for me to talk about it." [Cite news | last = Witchel | first = Alex | title = COUNTERINTELLIGENCE; 'Update' Anchor: The Brains Behind Herself | work = New York Times | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2001-11-25 | url = http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9F03EFDF123AF936A15752C1A9679C8B63&sec=&spon=&pagewanted=all]

Fey is known as a committed environmentalist and has noted that, apart from recycling, she also drives a Lexus hybrid. [Cite interview | interviewer = Fred Topel | last = Fey | first = Tina | title = Craveonline.com: Tina Fey Gets The Gold | accessdate = 2007-11-17 | date = 2007-09-16 | url = http://www.craveonline.com/articles/filmtv/04648653/3/tina_fey_gets_the_gold.html] She has also supported humanitarian causes, such as the Mercy Corps World Hunger Center in New York City.


External links

*tv.com person|id=40079

NAME=Fey, Tina
ALTERNATIVE NAMES=Fey, Elizabeth Stamatina
SHORT DESCRIPTION=American comedy writer and actress
DATE OF BIRTH=May 18, 1970
PLACE OF BIRTH=Upper Darby, Pennsylvania, United States

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