Mark McKinney

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Mark McKinney
McKinney in 2004
Mark Douglas Brown McKinney

(1959-06-26) June 26, 1959 (age 64)
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
  • Actor
  • comedian
Years active1985–present
SpouseMarina Gharabegian (divorced in 2017)

Mark Douglas Brown McKinney (born June 26, 1959) is a Canadian actor and comedian. He is perhaps best known as a member of the sketch comedy troupe The Kids in the Hall, which includes starring in the 1989 to 1995 TV series The Kids in the Hall and 1996 feature film Brain Candy. He was a cast member on Saturday Night Live from 1995 to 1997; and from 2003 to 2006, he co-created, wrote and starred in the series Slings & Arrows. He also appeared as Tom in FXX's Man Seeking Woman. From 2015 to 2021, he appeared as store manager Glenn Sturgis on NBC's Superstore.[1]

Early life[edit]

McKinney was born on June 26, 1959, in Ottawa, Ontario, to Chloe, an architectural writer, and Russell McKinney, a diplomat.[2][3] Because of his father's career, he did a lot of travelling when he was young. Some of the places he lived while growing up were Trinidad, Paris, Mexico, and Washington, D.C. He also attended Trinity College School, a boarding school in Port Hope, Ontario. For a short while, McKinney was a student at Memorial University of Newfoundland, where he was a political science major.


The Kids in the Hall at the 2008 Toronto International Film Festival

He started performing comedy with the Loose Moose Theatre Company in Calgary, Alberta. There, McKinney met Bruce McCulloch. Together they formed a comedy team called "The Audience." Eventually, McKinney and McCulloch moved to Toronto, and met Dave Foley and Kevin McDonald, who were in the process of forming a comedy troupe. Along with Scott Thompson, who joined after coming to a stage show, The Kids in the Hall was formed in 1985.

The troupe appeared in their own TV series, The Kids in the Hall, which was co-produced by Lorne Michaels and ran from 1988 to 1995. Notable characters on the show played by McKinney include the Chicken Lady, Darill (pronounced da-RILL), bluesman Mississippi Gary, and Mr. Tyzik the Headcrusher, an embittered Eastern European who pretended to crush the heads of passers-by between his thumb and forefinger.

After The Kids in the Hall, McKinney joined the cast of another Lorne Michaels sketch comedy show, Saturday Night Live, in the middle of the 1994–1995 season (season 20) as a repertory player. McKinney survived the cast overhaul that occurred at the end of season 20 and stayed on SNL until the end of the 1996–1997 (season 22). During his time on SNL, McKinney had six recurring characters (some of note include Ian Daglers from "Scottish Soccer Hooligan Weekly", Melanie, a Catholic schoolgirl, and Lucien Callow, a fop often paired with David Koechner's fop character Fagan) and twenty-seven celebrity impersonations (some of note include Mel Gibson, Barney Frank, Al Gore, Paul Shaffer, Mark Russell, Jim Carrey, Lance Ito, Tim Robbins, Steve Forbes, Wolf Blitzer, Bill Gates, and Ellen DeGeneres).[4]

He has appeared in several films, including the SNL spinoffs Superstar, The Ladies Man and A Night at the Roxbury. McKinney also starred opposite Isabella Rossellini in Guy Maddin's tragicomedy The Saddest Music in the World.[5] He also appeared in the Spice Girls' movie Spice World. In 1999 he appeared in the Canadian television film adaptation Jacob Two Two Meets the Hooded Fang.

McKinney cowrote and starred in the Kids in the Hall movie Kids in the Hall: Brain Candy, in which, among other roles, he spoofed SNL and KITH executive producer Lorne Michaels.


His theatre appearances include The Ugly Man with One Yellow Rabbit at the Edinburgh Fringe festival and Glasgow. He was in the cast of The Roundabout theatre production of Flea in her Ear and David Lindsay Abaire's Fuddy Meers for the Manhattan theatre club. During the fall of 2001 McKinney performed the one-man show Fully Committed at the Wintergarden theatre in Toronto and again in the summer of 2002 at the Centaur Theatre in Montreal.[6] In September 2022 he appeared in the European premiere of Eureka Day at The Old Vic theatre in London.[7]

Later appearances[edit]

He also appeared in the first season of Robson Arms, as well as on the Canadian comedy Corner Gas.

From 2003 to 2006, he co-created, co-wrote and starred in the TV series Slings & Arrows, about the backstage goings-on in a Canadian Shakespearean theatre company struggling with financial problems as they rehearse and present various productions.

In 2006–07 he both worked as a story editor on and a recurring role in NBC's Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip as Andy Mackinaw, a humourless widowed writer/story editor for the show-within-a-show.[8] He appeared as a cast member on the CBC comedy Hatching, Matching, and Dispatching and its 2017 follow up A Christmas Fury.

He directed the short film Not Pretty, Really for the 2006 anthology Shorts in Motion: The Art of Seduction.

As well, he directed and appeared on the CBC Radio post-apocalyptic comedy Steve, The First and its sequel, Steve, The Second, for his friend Matt Watts. He also wrote one episode of Watts' sitcom Michael, Tuesdays and Thursdays, which aired on CBC Television in fall 2011.[9]

In the summer of 2007, he became the show-runner and executive producer of Less Than Kind, a half hour comedy starring Maury Chaykin.

McKinney was in an episode of the Canadian children's TV show Dino Dan called "Prehistoric Zoo/Ready? Set? Dino!" He plays Dino Dan's track coach in the second part, "Ready? Set? Dino!", of this two-part episode released 4 October 2010 (Canada).[10]

He co-wrote and starred in the Kids in the Hall 2010 reunion project Death Comes to Town.[11]

In 2011, he was an executive producer of Picnicface, a sketch TV series from the Halifax comedy troupe of the same name produced for The Comedy Network.[12]

In 2013, he co-starred in Rocket Monkeys as the main antagonist, Lord Peel. In 2014, he appeared in the CBC television series The Best Laid Plans.[13] Beginning in 2015, he was a co-star on the NBC sitcom Superstore which was cancelled in 2021.

In 2020, he appeared as a guest on the Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip marathon fundraiser episode of The George Lucas Talk Show.

In 2022 he joined the other Kids in the Hall for an eight episode sixth season on Amazon Prime.



Year Title Role Notes
1994 The Passion of John Ruskin John Ruskin Short film
1996 Kids in the Hall: Brain Candy Don Roritor / Simon / Cabbie / Gunther / Cop #1 / Nina Bedford / Melanie / Drill sergeant / Sharisse (White-trash woman) Also writer
1997 The Wrong Guy Cameo Uncredited
1997 Hayseed Alien Doctor
1997 Spice World Graydon
1998 Fidelio Mark Short film
1998 The Last Days of Disco Rex
1998 The Herd Unknown
1998 Dog Park Dr. Cavan, Dog Psychologist
1998 A Night at the Roxbury Father Williams
1999 The Out-of-Towners Greg
1999 New Waterford Girl Doctor Hogan
1999 Jacob Two Two Meets the Hooded Fang Mr. Fish
1999 Superstar Father Ritley
2000 The Ladies Man Mr. White
2000 This Might Be Good Unknown Short film
2002 Toothpaste Husband Short film
2003 The Saddest Music in the World Chester Kent Also additional camera operator
2003 Falling Angels Reg and Ron
2006 Snow Cake Neighbour Uncredited
2006 Not Pretty, Really Interviewer Short film; also director
2006 Unaccompanied Minors Guard in the Hall #3
2008 Carfuckers Payette Short film; also writer
2009 High Life Jeremy
2017 Room for Rent Warren Baldwin
2018 Seven Stages to Achieve Eternal Bliss Cultist
2018 Doozy Clovis (voice)


Year Title Role Notes
1985–1990 Saturday Night Live Various voices 21 episodes; uncredited
1987 Seeing Things Unknown Episode: "Another Point of View"
1987–1990 Street Legal Stanley / Officer Robert Kaufman 2 episodes
1988 Dynaman Dynablue (voice) Unknown episodes
1988–1995; 2022 The Kids in the Hall Various 109 episodes; also writer and director
1995–1997 Saturday Night Live Various 48 episodes
2000 Twitch City Rex Reilly 3 episodes
2000 Strangers with Candy Lee Episode: "The Last Temptation of Blank"
2000 The Industry Dean Sutherland Episode: "Wrongly Convicted"
2001 Clerks Freak #2 (voice) Episode: "The Last Episode Ever"
2001 3rd Rock from the Sun Guy Episode: "My Mother, My Dick"
2001 Mentors Mack Sennett Episode: "Silent Movie"
2001 Dice Sam Cutter 6 episodes
2001 Criminal Mastermind Unknown TV movie
2003 Wanda at Large Mark 2 episodes
2003 Lilo & Stitch: The Series Bertley Pleakley (voice) Episode: "Fibber: Experiment 032"
2003 The Toronto Show Various Episode #1.1
2003–2006 Slings & Arrows Richard Smith-Jones 18 episodes; also creator and writer
2004 Puppets Who Kill Quiz Show Host Episode: "Rocko Gets a Lung"
2005 Corner Gas Bill Episode: "An American in Saskatchewan"
2005 Kevin Hill Professor Xavier Ambrose Episode: "Losing Isn't Everything"
2005 Robson Arms Tom Goldblum 3 episodes
2005 Burnt Toast Trevor TV movie
2005 Rick Mercer Report Driver in Responsible Drinking Commercial Episode #3.3
2005–2006 Hatching, Matching and Dispatching Todd 6 episodes
2006 Heyday! Bob Hope TV movie
2006–2007 Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip Andy Mackinaw 10 episodes; also writer
2010 The Kids in the Hall: Death Comes to Town Various 8 episodes; also writer
2010 Less Than Kind Gunman / The Bear 2 episodes; also writer, executive producer, and director
2010 Dino Dan Mr. Drumheller 2 episodes
2013 Rocket Monkeys Lord Peel (voice) 3 episodes
2013 Mother Up! Leland Episode: "Shoe I Am"
2014 The Best Laid Plans George Quimby 6 episodes
2013–2014 This Hour Has 22 Minutes Various 2 episodes; also writer
2014 Spun Out Alastair Episode: "Middle Aged Men in the Hall"
2014 Space Riders: Division Earth Chair 3 episodes
2014 Odd Squad General Pentagon Episode: "Crime at Shapely Manor"
2015–2017 Man Seeking Woman Tom 18 episodes
2015–2021 Superstore Glenn Sturgis Main cast, 113 episodes; also Director of “Love Birds”
2019 Where's Waldo (voice) Episode: "A Wanderer Christmas"
2020 The George Lucas Talk Show Himself Episode: "Stu-D2 1138 on the Binary Sunset Sith"
2021–2023 The Great North Morris / Jobiathan (voice) 2 episodes
2021 Corner Gas Animated Frank Shoddy (voice) Episode: "Parachute the Messenger"
2023 Son of a Critch Hudaro Episode: "Who Dares Dare Hudaro?"


  1. ^ "Mark McKinney on finding his Superstore voice and bringing back Slings and Arrows". The A.V. Club. 21 September 2016.
  2. ^ "Mark McKinney". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved July 26, 2023.
  3. ^ "Mark McKinney Biography (1959-)". Retrieved 2012-11-26.
  4. ^ "SNL Archives | Cast". 1995-01-14. Archived from the original on 2012-10-22. Retrieved 2012-11-26.
  5. ^ "The Saddest Music in the World". Amazon. Retrieved 20 October 2018.
  6. ^ Barratt, Amy (2002-07-11). "Kid makes good". Montreal Mirror. Retrieved 2008-07-18.
  7. ^ "Cast joining Helen Hunt in Old Vic's Eureka Day announced | WhatsOnStage". 29 July 2022. Retrieved 2022-08-21.
  8. ^ Kois, Dan (2006-10-23). "Can Studio 60 Be Saved?". Retrieved 2006-10-24.
  9. ^ "Camelot & cover songs: Inside CBC's new fall lineup" Archived 2013-01-29 at National Post, June 8, 2011.
  10. ^ "Dino Dan Episode Guide 2010 Season 1 - 'Twas a Dinosaur, Episode 17". Retrieved 2012-11-26.
  11. ^ "Nothing is sacred in new Kids in the Hall series" Archived 2010-03-24 at the Wayback Machine. Xtra!, December 28, 2009.
  12. ^ "Comedy Network Orders Picnicface TV Series". The Hollywood Reporter. 2010-12-03. Retrieved 2012-11-26.
  13. ^ Bill Brioux, "‘Best Laid Plans’ turns satiric focus on politics". Toronto Star, January 4, 2014.

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