Elizabeth Meriwether

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Elizabeth Meriwether
Elizabeth Meriwether(2).jpg
Elizabeth Hughes Meriwether

(1981-10-11) October 11, 1981 (age 38)
Miami, Florida, U.S.
EducationYale University (BA)
Juilliard School (GrDip)
OccupationPlaywright, screenwriter, television producer, showrunner
Years active2000–present
Notable work
New Girl
No Strings Attached

Elizabeth Hughes Meriwether (born October 11, 1981) is an American writer, producer and television showrunner.[1] She is known for creating the Fox sitcom New Girl, and for writing the play Oliver Parker! (2010) and the romantic comedy film No Strings Attached (2011). She also created the ABC sitcoms Single Parents and Bless This Mess.

Early life[edit]

Meriwether was born on October 11, 1981 in Miami, Florida. Her family moved from Miami to Detroit, Michigan when she was five years old, and then to Ann Arbor, Michigan, when she was 10.[2] Her father, Heath J. Meriwether, was the publisher of the newspaper Detroit Free Press, and her mother was a painter.[2]

Meriwether grew up aspiring to be an actor, but when she wrote her first play, she realized she wanted to be a playwright instead.[2] Meriwether attended Greenhills High School in Ann Arbor.


Meriwether graduated from Yale University in 2004 .[2]


Meriwether wrote the plays Heddatron (2006), The Mistakes Madeline Made (2006) and Oliver Parker! (2010).

She held a showcase of her plays in Los Angeles, in which a young Emma Stone was cast. Meriwether has credited the showcase and Stone's participation as an important point in her career trajectory.[3]

Upon moving to Los Angeles, Meriwether developed a play called Sluts. As part of a program to help aspiring playwrights adapt their scripts for television, she turned the idea into a television pilot.[3] The pilot, described as 'a raunchy, honest look at the messy dating lives of twentysomething women' was filmed for 20th Century Fox Television, but ultimately not picked up. However, it succeeded in establishing Meriwether as a distinctive comedic voice.[4]

In 2010, she wrote an episode of Adult Swim's Childrens Hospital.[5]

Meriwether wrote the 2011 romantic comedy film No Strings Attached, directed by Ivan Reitman and starring Natalie Portman and Ashton Kutcher.[6] The film's working title was Fuckbuddies.[4]

After her success with No Strings Attached, 20th Century Fox Television approached Meriwether about developing another television series.[6] Meriwether pitched an idea about an "offbeat girl moving in with three single guys",[7] inspired by her experience of "bouncing from Craigslist sublet to Craigslist sublet, for four years in L.A." when she was in her twenties.[8]

The show, New Girl, was greenlit in 2011 with an initial order of 13 episodes and Zooey Deschanel in the title role. It aired 146 episodes over seven seasons. It was well-received by critics and nominated for a number of awards, including five Golden Globe Awards and five Primetime Emmy Awards.

In 2013, she signed a multi-year overall deal with 20th Century Fox Television, to develop additional projects for the studio.[6]

The Fempire[edit]

Meriwether is part of 'The Fempire', a group of female screenwriters that includes Dana Fox, Diablo Cody and Lorene Scafaria.[9] In 2012, the Fempire received the Athena Film Festival Award for Creativity and Sisterhood at Barnard College in New York City.[10]

Meriwether is also a well-known feminist, who has done stand-up comedy, and performed for The Vagina Monologues in Las Vegas.[citation needed]



Year Title Notes
2011 No Strings Attached Co-producer


Title Year Credited as Network
Creator Writer Executive
2011–2018 New Girl Yes Yes Yes Yes Fox
2018–2020 Single Parents Yes Yes Yes No ABC
2019–2020 Bless This Mess Yes Yes Yes No


  1. ^ Bello, Grace (January 10, 2013). "When Women Run the Show".
  2. ^ a b c d Hinds, Julie (January 16, 2011). = ABS&date = Jan+16%2C+2011 "Former Detroiter aimed to craft a modern look at young love" Check |url= value (help). Detroit Free Press. Non-archivable Google cache temporarily available as of Feb. 24, 2011, at https://www.freep.com/article/20110116/ENT01/101160402/1372/FEATURES[permanent dead link]>
  3. ^ a b "New Girl creator Liz Meriwether: I owe my career to Emma Stone". EW.com. Retrieved 2018-01-11.
  4. ^ a b "Not That Kind of Girl". New Republic. Retrieved 2018-01-11.
  5. ^ "A Guide to Your Favorite Showrunners' First ShowsCarter Bays and Craig Thomas, Late Show with David Letterman". Complex. Retrieved 2018-01-11.
  6. ^ a b c Littleton, Cynthia (2013-07-16). "'New Girl' Creator Liz Meriwether in Overall Deal with 20th TV (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved 2018-01-11.
  7. ^ "New Girl's Elizabeth Meriwether". archive.is. 2013-09-10. Retrieved 2018-01-11.
  8. ^ "Zooey Deschanel and Liz Meriwether NEW GIRL Interview". Collider. 2012-01-15. Retrieved 2018-01-11.
  9. ^ Branch, Kate (May 17, 2010). "Liz Meriwether: Beginning and End of the Fempire". Interview.
  10. ^ The Athena Film Festival: http://athenafilmfestival.com/

External links[edit]