Melissa Ann McCarthy (born August 26, 1970 in Plainfield, Illinois) is an American film and television actor, comedian, writer and producer.
McCarthy first gained recognition for her role as Sookie St. James on the television series Gilmore Girls, where she starred from 2000 to 2007. From 2007 to 2009, she portrayed Dena on the ABC sitcom Samantha Who?. McCarthy was then cast as Molly Flynn-Biggs on the CBS sitcom Mike & Molly, a role that earned her an Emmy Award win, as well as another subsequent nomination. McCarthy was also nominated for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series for her work as host on Saturday Night Live (where she is currently a recurring guest host).
McCarthy achieved major success and fame for her breakthrough role in the 2011 comedy hit Bridesmaids, which garnered her numerous award nominations including an Academy Award nomination, a BAFTA nomination and a Screen Actors Guild Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress, and marked the start of her regular collaborations with Paul Feig. She also appeared in the films The Nines, The Back-Up Plan, and Life as We Know It, and her 2013 roles include Identity Thief, The Heat, and The Hangover Part III.
She's also the cousin of Jenny McCarthy.
- Gilmore Girls (2000-07) and Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life (2016) as Sookie St. James
- Charlie's Angels (2000) (2000) as Doris
- Kim Possible (2002-05) as DNAmy (voice)
- Samantha Who? (2007-09) as Dena
- The Back Up Plan (2010) as Carol
- Life as We Know It (2010) as DeeDee
- Mike & Molly (2010-2016) as Molly Flynn-Biggs
- Bridesmaids (2011) as Megan, her Star-Making Role, which also got her an Oscar nomination.
- This Is 40 (2012) as Katherine
- The Penguins of Madagascar (2012) as Shelley (voice)
- Identity Thief (2013) as Diana
- The Hangover Part III (2013) as Cassy
- The Heat (2013) as Detective Shannon Mullins
- Tammy (2014) as Tammy, also screenwriter and co-director.
- St. Vincent (2014) as Maggie
- Spy (2015) as Susan Cooper
- The Boss (2016) as Michelle Darnell
- Central Intelligence (2016) as Darla McGuckian
- Ghostbusters (2016) as Abby Yates
- Saturday Night Live (2017) as Sean Spicer
- Life of the Party (2018) as Deanna
- The Happytime Murders (2018) as Detective Connie Edwards
- Can You Ever Forgive Me? (2018) as Leonore Carol "Lee" Israel
- Thunder Force (2021) as Lydia Berman aka "The Hammer"
- Thor: Love and Thunder (2022) as "Hela"
- The Little Mermaid (TBA) as Ursula
- Big Fun: A few of her roles make use of her comedic talent and her plus size.
- Cross-Cast Role: In a January 2017 episode of Saturday Night Live she made an unannounced guest appearance as White House press secretary Sean Spicer. It's fair to say that, up until then, nobody had noticed that Sean Spicer resembled Melissa McCarthy at her angriest. This became a recurring role for the rest of the season, and she would be nominated for an Emmy for the performance.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: A typical Melissa McCarthy role is an outwardly mousy woman in whose chest beats the heart of an Amazon Warrior...or an Ax-Crazy lunatic.
- Playing Against Type:
- She's usually cast in broad comedies, so her appearance in more serious pictures like St. Vincent and Can You Ever Forgive Me? can be surprising.
- Ursula in the live action Little Mermaid is very far from anything she's done before, but she's such a perfect physical match for the role that everyone loved it.
- Production Posse: She's been in four films directed by Paul Feig (Bridesmaids, The Heat, Spy and the 2016 reboot of Ghostbusters) and five by her husband Ben Falcone (Tammy, The Boss, Life of the Party, Superintelligence and Thunder Force), who has also cameoed in many of her films and in Gilmore Girls.
- She Cleans Up Nicely: A some of her film roles, like Identity Thief and Spy, play her up as a dumpy fat woman who is revealed to be rather pretty after a haircut and wardrobe upgrade.
- Slapstick Knows No Gender: Her film roles. For instance, her hosting appearance on Saturday Night Live included a sketch where she played an expy of Mae West and fell down the stairs repeatedly.
- Star-Making Role:
- She got famous among small screen viewers as Sookie St. James on Gilmore Girls.
- Megan in Bridesmaids launched her among film stardom in Hollywood.