O'Hara at the Los Angeles premiere of Frankenweenie in September 2012
|Born||Catherine Anne O'Hara
March 4, 1954
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
|Notable work(s)||Second City Television|
|Children||Matthew (b. 1994) and Luke (b. 1997)|
Catherine Anne O'Hara (born March 4, 1954) is a Canadian-American actress, writer and comedienne. She is well known for her comedy work on SCTV and her roles in the films After Hours, Beetlejuice, Home Alone, and The Nightmare Before Christmas, and also in the mockumentary films written and directed by Christopher Guest, including Waiting for Guffman, Best in Show, A Mighty Wind, and For Your Consideration.
O'Hara was born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Born into a large family of Irish descent, she was raised Roman Catholic. She attended Burnhamthorpe Collegiate Institute, where she first met Robin Duke, who went on to her own comedy career.
Catherine started her comedy career in 1974 as a cast member of The Second City in her native Toronto. She was an understudy for Gilda Radner until Radner left for Saturday Night Live. Two years later, this theatre troupe created the sketch comedy show SCTV, for which O'Hara became a regular performer. Her memorable characterizations on the show included Las Vegas scorcher Lola Heatherton, buzzer-happy game show contestant Margaret Meehan, raunchy nightclub comedian Dusty Towne, soap opera seductress Sue Ellen, and stage actress Sue Bopper Simpson.
In the late 1970s, O'Hara also provided voice-overs for a number of cartoons, which would continue throughout her career. During a short time in the early 1980s when SCTV was in between network deals, she was hired to replace Ann Risley when Saturday Night Live was being retooled in 1981. However, she quit the show without ever appearing on air, choosing to go back to SCTV when the show signed on with NBC. Her SNL position was then given to fellow Canadian Robin Duke, who had also replaced O'Hara for a season on SCTV.
O'Hara began her career on television, apart from SCTV, in the mid-Seventies. She has appeared in the 1976 television film The Rimshots, the children's television series Coming Up Rosie for a year, and television specials, such as Witch's Night Out and Intergalactic Thanksgiving. But it was her performances on SCTV that earned her fame in Canada, which is why she returned to the show, not only as an actress, but as a writer for both SCTV and SCTV Network 90, which earned her an Emmy Award for outstanding writing and two Emmy Award nominations. She also has written for SCTV Channel. O'Hara has appeared in a number of television series and television films, and continues to work in television. During the Nineties, she made guest appearances on Tales from the Crypt, Oh Baby, Morton & Hayes and The Larry Sanders Show. She served as actress and director on Dream On and The Outer Limits, the revival of the Sixties series of the same name. In the past decade, O'Hara has guest-starred on top-rated television series including Six Feet Under and Curb Your Enthusiasm. In May 2008, it was announced that she had signed on to star in the upcoming ABC dramedy Good Behavior. Her role on the 2010 television film Temple Grandin earned her three award nominations: a Primetime Emmy Award, a Satellite Award, and a Screen Actors Guild Award.
O'Hara has also had a successful career in film. She made her feature debut in the 1980 film Double Negative, which also starred her SCTV co-stars John Candy, Eugene Levy, and Joe Flaherty. Throughout the Eighties and Nineties, O'Hara appeared in many supporting roles, including Martin Scorsese's After Hours and Heartburn, with Meryl Streep. She had more notable roles in Beetlejuice, the blockbuster hit Home Alone and its sequel Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. In 1992, O'Hara worked alongside Jeff Daniels in the comedy There Goes the Neighborhood. O'Hara continued to appear in many films during the Nineties and the beginning of the twenty-first century. She received roles in four of Christopher Guest's mockumentary films, three of which earned her awards and nominations: Waiting for Guffman, Best in Show, A Mighty Wind and For Your Consideration. Her role in 1999's The Life Before This won her a Genie Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role. In 2006, she starred with Christina Ricci in the fantasy feature Penelope. O'Hara has served as a voice artist in a number of animated movies, including The Nightmare Before Christmas, Chicken Little, Over the Hedge, Monster House, Brother Bear 2, and Frankenweenie.
On June 9, 2007, O'Hara was inducted into Canada's Walk of Fame. On February 28, 2010, she spoke at the Closing Ceremonies of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics.
Celebrities impersonated on SCTV
A naturalized U.S. citizen, O'Hara married production designer Bo Welch in 1992, with whom she has two sons, Matthew (b. 1994) and Luke (b. 1997). She is the sister of critically acclaimed singer-songwriter Mary Margaret O'Hara, though she is a singer-songwriter in her own right, having written and performed songs in Guest's film A Mighty Wind.
|1976||The Rimshots||Television film|
|1976–1977||Coming Up Rosie||Myrna Wallbacker|
|1978||Witch's Night Out||Malicious||Voice; television film/television special|
|1979||Intergalactic Thanksgiving||Ma Spademinder||Voice; television short|
|1980||You've Come a Long Way, Katie||Mini-series|
|1980||Easter Fever||Scarlett O'Hare||Voice|
|1980||From Cleveland||Various||Television film|
|1981||The Steve Allen Comedy Hour||Various||1 episode|
|1981–1982||SCTV Network 90||Various||27 episodes|
|1984||The New Show||Various||3 episodes|
|1983–1984||SCTV Channel||Various||5 episodes|
|1985||The Last Polka||Lemon Twin||Television film|
|1985||George Burns Comedy Week||Episode: "The Dynamite Girl"|
|1986||Dave Thomas: The Incredible Time Travels of Henry Osgood||Marie Antoinette||Television film|
|1987||Really Weird Tales||Theresa Sharpe||Segment: "I'll Die Loving You"|
|1987||Trying Times||Rebecca||Episode: "Get a Job"|
|1988||The Completely Mental Misadventures of Ed Grimley||Miss Malone||13 episodes|
|1989||I, Martin Short, Goes Hollywood||Nancy Mae||Television film|
|1989||Andrea Martin... Together Again||Dee Lee
|1990||The Dave Thomas Comedy Show||1 episode|
|1990||Dream On||Irma||Episode: "555-HELL"|
|1991||Morton & Hayes||Amelia Von Astor
Mimi Von Astor
|Episode: "Daffy Dicks"|
|1991-1992||Saturday Night Live||Host||Episode: 16.17(Musical Guest R.E.M) 18.5(Musical Guest 10,000 Maniacs)|
|1992||The Larry Sanders Show||Herself||Episode: "Talk Show"|
|1993||The Hidden Room||Laurel Brody||Episode: "The First Battle"|
|1994||Tales from the Crypt||Gearldine Ferrett||Episode: "Let the Punishment Fit the Crime"|
|1997||The Outer Limits||Becka Paulson||Episode: "The Revelations of 'Becka Paulson"
Nominated — Gemini Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Guest Role in a Dramatic Series
|1997||Hope||Muriel Macswain||Television film|
|1999||Oh Baby||Roberta Hunter||Episode: "Discrimination"|
|1999||Late Last Night||Shrink||Television film|
|2000||MADtv||Woman on Blind Date||1 episode|
|2002||Bram & Alice||Ms. O'Connor||Episode: "Pilot"|
|2003||Odd Job Jack||Claudia Johnson||Episode: "Broke & Broker"|
|2004||The Wool Cap||Gloria||Television film|
|2003–2005||Six Feet Under||Carol Ward||4 episodes|
|2008||Good Behavior||Jackie West||Television film|
|2009||Curb Your Enthusiasm||Bam Bam||Episode: "Funkhouser's Crazy Sister"|
|2009||Made in Hollywood||Herself||Episode: #5.4|
|2010||Temple Grandin||Aunt Ann||Television film
Nominated — Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie
Nominated — Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film
Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Miniseries or Television Movie
|2011||Producing Parker||Irene Kovak||Guest role, 1 episode.|
|2009–present||Glenn Martin, DDS||Jackie Martin||38 episodes|
|2012||30 Rock||Mrs. Parcell||Guest role|
|2012||Leslie||Leslie||Episodes: "New York, 1995 - Part 1"; "New York, 1995 - Part 2"|
|2012–2013||Jake and the Never Land Pirates||Miss Jacques||Voice role|
|2013||To My Future Assistant||Magda||Television film|
|1991||Dream On||Episode: "And Your Little Dog, Too"|
|1998||The Outer Limits||Episode: "Glyphic"|
|1980||From Cleveland||Television film|
|1981–1982||SCTV Network 90||28 episodes
Emmy Awards for Outstanding Writing in a Variety or Music Show (SCTV Network 90)
Nominated — Emmy Awards for Outstanding Writing in a Variety or Music Program (SCTV Network 90)
|1983–1984||SCTV Channel||3 episodes|
|1987||Really Weird Tales||Television film; segment: "I'll Die Loving You"|
|1988||The Best of SCTV|
|1989||Andrea Martin... Together Again||Television film; special material|
Awards and nominations
- 1982 – Emmy Awards for Outstanding Writing in a Variety or Music Show (SCTV Network 90) *(episode: Moral Majority Show)
- 1995 – Gemini Awards: Earle Grey Award
- 2000 – Genie Awards for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role (The Life Before This)
- 2001 – American Comedy Awards for Funniest Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture (Best in Show)
- 2001 – Canadian Comedy Awards for Pretty Funny Female Performance in Film (Best in Show)
- 2003 – Seattle Film Critics Awards for Best Music (A Mighty Wind)
- 2004 – Florida Film Critics Circle Awards for Best Ensemble Cast (A Mighty Wind)
- 2006 – National Board of Review for Best Supporting Actress (For Your Consideration)
- 2007 – Kansas City Film Critics Circle Awards for Best Supporting Actress (For Your Consideration)
- 1982 – Emmy Awards for Outstanding Writing in a Variety or Music Program (SCTV Network 90) *(episodes: Cycle Two, Show Two and Christmas Show)
- 1983 – Emmy Awards for Outstanding Writing in a Variety or Music Program (SCTV Network 90) *(episode: The Christmas Show)
- 1998 – Gemini Awards for Best Performance by an Actress in a Guest Role in a Dramatic Series (The Outer Limits)
- 2001 – Satellite Awards: Golden Satellite for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role, Comedy or Musical (Best in Show)
- 2004 – Phoenix Film Critics Society Awards for Best Ensemble Acting (A Mighty Wind)
- 2004 – Satellite Awards: Golden Satellite for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role, Comedy or Musical (A Mighty Wind)
- 2006 – Gotham Awards for Best Ensemble Cast (For Your Consideration)
- 2007 – Independent Spirit Awards for Best Female Lead (For Your Consideration)
- 2007 – Broadcast Film Critics Association Awards: Critics Choice Award for Best Supporting Actress (For Your Consideration)
- 2007 – Chlotrudis Awards for Best Supporting Actress (For Your Consideration)
- 2010 – Emmy Awards for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or Movie (Temple Grandin)
- 2010 – Satellite Awards for Best Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television (Temple Grandin)
- 2011 – Screen Actors Guild Awards: Actor Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries (Temple Grandin)
- Onstad, Katrina (April 12, 2005)"Inductee: Mary Margaret O'Hara". CBC News. Retrieved 14 October 2011.
- "Catherine O'Hara". Yahoo! Movies. Retrieved 12 August 2010.
- Second City Toronto Alumni "The Second City". secondcity.com. Retrieved 14 October 2011.
- "Catherine The Great". thestar.com. Retrieved 14 October 2011.
- "SCTV Shoots For First". rickmoranisfanpage.com. Retrieved 14 October 2011.
- Waldman, Allison (2 May 2008) "Oh, good! Catherine O'Hara to star in ABC pilot". aoltv.com. Retrieved 14 October 2011. Catherine O'Hara to star in ABC pilot
- Catherine O'Hara Biography (1954-)
- "O'Hara calls up her inner Wild Thing". CBC News. 16 October 2009. Retrieved 14 October 2011.