Rudolph at the 2012 Paley Center
|Born||Maya Khabira Rudolph
July 27, 1972
Gainesville, Florida, U.S.
|Residence||San Fernando Valley, California|
|Alma mater||UC Santa Cruz|
|Partner(s)||Paul Thomas Anderson
Maya Khabira Rudolph (born July 27, 1972) is an American actress, comedian and singer. After becoming a member of The Groundlings improv troupe in the late 1990s, Rudolph joined the NBC television series Saturday Night Live, on which she was a cast member from 2000 to 2007. She then ventured into film, appearing in 50 First Dates (2004) and A Prairie Home Companion (2006).
Since leaving Saturday Night Live, Rudolph has appeared in Grown Ups (2010), Bridesmaids (2011), Grown Ups 2 (2013) and Sisters (2015). She has also lent her voice to the animated films Shrek the Third (2007) and Big Hero 6 (2014). In addition to her film appearances, Rudolph also starred as Ava Alexander on the NBC sitcom Up All Night from 2011 to 2012, and co-hosted her own variety show Maya & Marty.
Rudolph was born in Gainesville, Florida. She is the daughter of soul singer-songwriter Minnie Riperton and composer, songwriter, and producer Richard Rudolph. Her father is an Ashkenazi Jew, and her mother was African-American. Her paternal grandfather was Sidney Rudolph, a philanthropist who once owned all of the Wendy's and Rudy's restaurants in Dade County, Florida. Her great-grandfather, who was born in Vilnius, Lithuania, changed his surname from "Rudashevsky" to "Rudolph," and was one of the founding members of Congregation Beth Shalom, a Conservative Jewish synagogue in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Rudolph's parents moved to Los Angeles, California when she and her brother Marc were very young, and they grew up primarily in the Westwood neighborhood. Near the end of the "Lovin' You" track, Riperton can be heard singing "Maya, Maya, Maya, Maya, Maya, Maya, Maya, Maya". Riperton incorporated this into her performance of the song on The Midnight Special. Riperton died on July 12, 1979, at age 31, from breast cancer. Rudolph's godmother was R&B singer Teena Marie. In 1990, Rudolph graduated from Crossroads School in Santa Monica, California, where she became friendly with fellow students Gwyneth Paltrow and Jack Black, and continued her education at the University of California, Santa Cruz, where she graduated in 1995 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in photography from Porter College.
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Saturday Night Live
In May 2000, Rudolph joined the cast of Saturday Night Live as a featured player for the final three episodes of the 1999–2000 season, after a stint as a member of The Groundlings improv troupe, where she met future Saturday Night Live cast member Will Forte. Rudolph's musical talents were frequently employed on Saturday Night Live. She sang as Beyoncé Knowles in the Prince Show sketches, as the "Space Creature" in the Gays in Space sketches, except for the one on the season 31 episode hosted by Peter Sarsgaard, because it aired around the time Rudolph was on maternity leave. Friend Will Forte substituted for her during that episode. Her ability to change her looks and her command of many accents also led to her playing an unusually wide range of ethnicities on the show, often with only a change of wigs. As "Nooni Schoener," Rudolph, along with Fred Armisen, created a couple from an unspecified Scandinavian country, who have unplaceable accents and bewilderingly foreign manners. Rudolph was also able to play male characters such as Scott Joplin, Justin Guarini, and Mario Vazquez.
Her final episode as a cast member was on November 3, 2007, with host Brian Williams and musical guest Feist, the last episode before the writers' strike. She returned on October 25, 2008, in a featured guest appearance as Michelle Obama and sang a duet with Kenan Thompson about Amy Poehler's newborn. She then also appeared in the 2008 Christmas episode, where she reprised her role in the sketch Bronx Beat, with Amy Poehler. She also appeared in two sketches in the 2008–09 season finale with Will Ferrell. She appeared in a Weekend Update Thursday sketch during the fall 2009–10 season as Oprah Winfrey speaking on behalf of Chicago's bid for the 2016 Olympics. She also appeared on the show in May 2010 to perform in skits including "The Manuel Ortiz Show" with Betty White. She returned to Saturday Night Live for the season 36 premiere, hosted by Amy Poehler, performing the "Bronx Beat" sketch and that same season for episode 700, hosted by Tina Fey. On February 18, 2012 she returned to Saturday Night Live as a host for the first time and reprised her roles in sketches such as "Bronx Beat". She once again returned to SNL on December 19, 2015 for the Christmas episode hosted by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler to reprise her role in the "Bronx Beat" sketch. She appeared once more on the 41st season finale (hosted by Fred Armisen) as Dilma Rousseff on Weekend Update.
Rudolph's characters on the show have included "Attorney Glenda Goodwin" and "Megan" from the "Wake Up, Wakefield!" sketches. Rudolph has done a number of celebrity impressions on Saturday Night Live during her tenure, including Amanda Byram, Ananda Lewis, Barbra Streisand, Bern Nadette Stanis (as Thelma Evans on Good Times), Beyoncé, Charo, Christina Aguilera, Condoleezza Rice, Darcel Wynne, Diana Ross, Dilma Rousseff, Donatella Versace, Donna Fargo, Emily Robison, Fredricka Whitfield, Free, Gayle King, Griselda Blanco, Halle Berry, Ivanka Trump, Ja'net Du Bois (as Willona Woods on Good Times), Jennifer Lopez, Joyce "Fenderella" Irby, Justin Guarini, Kara Saun, La Toya Jackson, Lisa Kudrow, Lisa Ling, Liza Minnelli, Lucy Liu, Lynda Lopez, Macy Gray, Mario Vasquez, Mary Roach, Maya Angelou, Melinda Doolittle, Melissa Stark, Michelle Obama, Mýa, Nelly Furtado, Omarosa, Oprah Winfrey, Paris Hilton, Patti LaBelle, Phylicia Rashad (as Clair Huxtable on The Cosby Show), Rocsi, Scott Joplin, Teresa Heinz, Terra Patrick, Tina Turner, Tyra Banks, Valerie Simpson, Vanessa Hudgens (as Gabriella Montez from High School Musical 3), Wanda Sykes and Whitney Houston.
- Beertje Van Beers
- Britanica of Gemini's Twin
- Charli Coffee
- Cocktail Waitress
- Donatella Versace
- Glenda Goodwin
- Jodi Deitz (one of the co-hosts of "Bronx Beat")
- Leilani Burke
- Megan (one of the co-hosts of "Wake Up, Wakefield!")
- Mrs. Denmont
- Nuni Schoener
- Patti Sylviac
- Space Creature
Television and film
In addition to her work on Saturday Night Live, Rudolph has appeared on other television shows, including the CBS medical drama series City of Angels and Chicago Hope. She had small parts in Chuck & Buck, Gattaca, As Good as It Gets, Duplex and Duets; she was also a music supervisor for Duets. Her first prominent film role came in 2006 with A Prairie Home Companion. Earlier, she had costarred with Luke Wilson in the 2005 Mike Judge sci-fi comedy Idiocracy, although that film was shelved until September 2006 and then only given a limited release. She also guest-starred as Rapunzel in the DreamWorks animated film Shrek the Third. She guest-starred as Julia in The Simpsons episode "The Homer of Seville". Rudolph guest-starred as character Athena Scooberman in NBC's Kath & Kim, and starred in the film Away We Go with The Office star John Krasinski. In 2010, she appeared in Grown Ups starring Adam Sandler, where she played the wife of Chris Rock's character. In 2011, she appeared in Bridesmaids with Saturday Night Live colleague Kristen Wiig, and in 2013 she played a supporting role in The Way, Way Back as the girlfriend of Sam Rockwell's character. She co-starred in the NBC sitcom Up All Night, with Christina Applegate and Will Arnett. Rudolph's self-titled variety show television pilot aired on May 19, 2014, but the show did not go beyond that. It was later announced that she would star in an NBC variety series Maya & Marty with Martin Short, which debuted on May 31, 2016.
Prior to joining Saturday Night Live, Rudolph was backing singer (1995–99) and briefly a keyboardist in the band The Rentals, with whom she toured for a short time. She also appears in the music videos of the songs "Waiting" and "Please Let That Be You". She sang backing vocals for "Barcelona" and "My Head Is in the Sun," both from the album Seven More Minutes. In 2004, she recorded a track with The Rentals frontman Matt Sharp, including a cover of Tegan and Sara's "Not Tonight." Rudolph also performed "Together In Pooping" and "Little Roundworm" with Triumph the Insult Comic Dog (Robert Smigel) on his album Come Poop With Me. She is in a Prince cover band called Princess with her friend Gretchen Lieberum.
Rudolph has been in a relationship with director Paul Thomas Anderson since 2001. They live together with their children: Pearl (born 2005), Lucille (born 2009), Jack (born July 3, 2011) and Minnie (born 2013).
|1996–97||Chicago Hope||Nurse Leah Martine||5 episodes|
|1997||The Devil's Child||Holly||Movie|
|2000||Action||Phina||Episode: "Dead Man Floating"|
|2000||City of Angels||Nurse Grace Patterson||15 episodes|
|2000–07||Saturday Night Live||Various Characters||150 episodes|
|2006||Campus Ladies||Professor Theresa Winslow Fabre||Episode: "All Nighter"|
|2007||The Simpsons||Julia (voice)||Episode: "Homer of Seville"|
|2008–09||Kath & Kim||Athena Scooberman||5 episodes|
|2009||The Mighty B!||Cherry (voice)||Episode: "The Dragonflies"|
|2011–12||Up All Night||Ava Alexander||35 episodes|
|2012||Saturday Night Live||Herself/Host||Episode: "Maya Rudolph/Sleigh Bells"|
|2014||Portlandia||Anita||Episode: "Bahama Knights"|
|2014||The Maya Rudolph Show||Herself||Variety show|
|2014||Family Guy||Chloe (voice)||Episode: "The Book of Joe"|
|2015||Comedy Bang! Bang!||Herself||Episode: "Maya Rudolph Wears a Black Skirt and Strappy Sandals"|
|2015||The Spoils Before Dying||Fresno Foxglove||4 episodes|
|2015||Drunk History||Griselda Blanco||Episode: "Miami"|
|2016||The Grinder||Jillian||3 episodes|
|2016||Mike Tyson Mysteries||Dilma Rousseff (voice)||Episode: "Yves Klein Blues"|
|2016||Angie Tribeca||Jackie Wilder||Episode: "Organ Trail"|
|2016||Maya & Marty||Herself||6 episodes|
|2016||Brooklyn Nine-Nine||U.S. Marshal Karen Haas||2 episodes|
|2016||Documentary Now!||Anita||Episode: "Final Transmission"|
|2017||Michael Bolton’s Big Sexy Valentine’s Day Special||Herself||Variety special|
|2014||The Awesomes||Mrs. Malocchio||Voice, 5 episodes|
|2015||Bad Lip Reading||Princess Leia||Voice, 3 episodes|
Awards and nominations
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|2004||Satellite Awards||Best Actress in a TV Series – Comedy or Musical||Saturday Night Live||Nominated|
|2007||NAACP Image Awards||Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series||Nominated|
|2011||Satellite Awards||Best Supporting Actress in a TV Series, Mini Series or TV Movie||Up All Night||Nominated|
|2012||Emmy Awards||Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series||Saturday Night Live||Nominated|
|NAACP Image Awards||Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series||Up All Night||Nominated|
|Satellite Awards||Best Supporting Actress in a TV Series, Mini Series or TV Movie||Nominated|
- "Maya Rudolph". The Complete Marquis Who's Who (fee, via Fairfax County Public Library). Marquis Who's Who. 2010. Gale Document Number: GALE K2014901123. Retrieved September 24, 2011. Gale Biography In Context.
- "Maya Rudolph Biography (1972–)". Filmreference.com. Retrieved January 2, 2011.
- "The Essence of Lucinda". Ocala Star-Banner. June 6, 2001. Retrieved November 11, 2013.
- "Sidney J. Rudolph, Philanthropist and Restaurant Owner". Miami Herald. December 23, 1992.
- Stated by Henry Louis Gates on the Finding Your Roots episode "In Search of Freedom," January 19, 2016, PBS
- Itzkoff, Dave (September 9, 2011). "Juggling a Comedy Series About Juggling Life's Tasks". The New York Times. Retrieved September 10, 2011.
- Minnie Riperton (1975). Minnie Riperton - Lovin' You (Live 1975). The Midnight Special (TV series). Event occurs at 03:07. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
Maya, Maya, Maya
- "Top 10 little known facts about Teena Marie". CNN Entertainment. December 28, 2010. Retrieved May 13, 2011.
- Morris, Alex (May 8, 2014). "The New Carol Burnett: Maya Rudolph on Fulfilling Her Variety-Show Dream". Vulture. Retrieved August 17, 2014.
- "Maya Rudolph Biography". TVGuide.com. Retrieved May 15, 2011.
- McGlynn, Katla (May 8, 2011). "'SNL': Pregnant Tina Fey & Maya Rudolph Sing Duet About Doin' It". www.huffingtonpost.com. Retrieved May 9, 2011.
- Collins, Scott (May 19, 2014). "Maya Rudolph looks to spice up NBC with a variety show". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved May 19, 2014.
- Littleton, Cynthia (February 12, 2016). "NBC Greenlights Maya Rudolph-Martin Short Variety Show, Targets May Premiere (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved February 13, 2016.
- Stanhope, Kate (July 19, 2011). "It's a Boy for Maya Rudolph and Paul Thomas Anderson". TV Guide. Retrieved September 10, 2013.
- "Maya Rudolph Welcomes Fourth Child!". Us Weekly. Retrieved 2016-04-07.
- "Cast Announcement: Six Reasons We Can't Wait to See Big Hero 6". Oh My Disney. July 13, 2014. Retrieved July 14, 2014.
- Kit, Borys (August 4, 2016). "Maya Rudolph Joins Melissa McCarthy Comedy 'Life of the Party' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved August 4, 2016.
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