Kristen Wiig

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Kristen Wiig
Wiig smiling
Wiig in 2013
Kristen Carroll Wiig

(1973-08-22) August 22, 1973 (age 50)
Alma mater
  • Actress
  • comedian
  • screenwriter
  • producer
Years active2000–present
Hayes Hargrove
(m. 2005; div. 2009)
Avi Rothman
(m. 2020)
AwardsFull list

Kristen Carroll Wiig[1] (/wɪɡ/; born August 22, 1973) is an American actress, comedian, screenwriter, and producer. First breaking through as a performer with the Los Angeles comedy troupe The Groundlings, Wiig achieved stardom during her seven-season tenure on the NBC sketch comedy series Saturday Night Live from 2005 to 2012.[2]

During her stint at Saturday Night Live, she received four nominations for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series. Wiig also took on supporting roles in comedy films such as Knocked Up (2007) and Paul (2011). She co-wrote and starred in the comedy film Bridesmaids (2011), which was critically and commercially successful. It earned her nominations for a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress and the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. Time named her one of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2012.

Her other film credits include The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013), The Skeleton Twins (2014), The Diary of a Teenage Girl (2015), The Martian (2015), Ghostbusters (2016), Downsizing (2017), Mother! (2017), and Wonder Woman 1984 (2020). She has also lent her voice to the animated franchises How to Train Your Dragon (2010–2019) and Despicable Me (2010–2024). She was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress for her role in the comedy miniseries The Spoils of Babylon (2014).

Early life[edit]

Wiig was born on August 22, 1973,[3] in Canandaigua, New York,[1] the daughter of Jon Arne Joseph Wiig, who ran a lake marina in Western New York, and Laurie Day (née Johnston), an artist.[4][5] She has an older brother Erik. Her father has Norwegian and Irish ancestry, and her mother, English and Scottish.[6] The name Wiig comes from the area of Vik in Sogn og Fjordane in Norway.[7] Kristen's paternal grandfather, Gunnar Ove Wiig, emigrated from Norway to the United States as a child and grew up in Rochester, New York, where he was an accomplished broadcaster for the Rochester Red Wings baseball team, and later became an executive at WHEC radio, WHEC-TV, and WROC-TV.[8][9]

Wiig moved with her family to Lancaster, Pennsylvania at the age of three, and attended Nitrauer Elementary School and Manheim Township Middle School until eighth grade.[10] When she was 13, she and her family returned to Rochester[10] where she attended Allendale Columbia School for ninth and tenth grades[11] and graduated from Brighton High School.[12]

Wiig attended Roanoke College, but soon returned to Rochester. She attended community college and embarked on a three-month outdoor-living program. She had no performing ambitions at the time.[13] She then attended the University of Arizona, majoring in art. When she took an acting class to fulfill a course requirement, the teacher suggested she continue to act.[14] She was hired by a plastic surgery clinic to draw postsurgery bodies, but the day before the job began, in a bookstore she spoke with a psychic who said she should be acting and writing in Los Angeles decided to move to Los Angeles to pursue an acting career.[1][15]


SNL and early film roles (2000–2010)[edit]

Wiig relocated to Los Angeles to act while working odd jobs to support herself.[13][14] She performed with Empty Stage Comedy Theatre[16] and The Groundlings.[17] She felt improvisation was a better fit than acting, and being a part of the comedy group improved her skills.[18] In 2003, she appeared in Spike TV's The Joe Schmo Show, a spoof of reality television, in which she portrayed Dr. Pat, a quack marriage counselor. She auditioned for Mad TV.[19] While at The Groundlings, Wiig's manager encouraged her to submit an audition tape to Saturday Night Live. She played the Target Lady on part of her audition tape.[20] She debuted on SNL shortly into season 31, on November 12, 2005.[2] She survived an SNL budget cut[21] and became a full cast member at the beginning of season 32 in 2006.

A brunette woman wearing a black dress smiles
Wiig at an event for the 2008 Time 100

She was nominated for four Primetime Emmy Awards for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for her work on SNL (2009 to 2012).[22] Wiig headlined the 2009 Christmas special SNL Presents: A Very Gilly Christmas, featuring new sketches with her character Gilly and highlights of older SNL clips. She was featured in Entertainment Weekly's list of 15 Great Performances for her various impersonations on SNL[23] (December 2008) and in EW's list of the 25 Funniest Women in Hollywood (April 2009).[24] She voiced Lola Bunny in the series The Looney Tunes Show from 2011 to 2014.

Wiig made her film debut in the 2006 Christmas movie Unaccompanied Minors, and appeared in Judd Apatow's 2007 comedy Knocked Up as a passive-aggressive assistant. She also performed in Jake Kasdan's Walk Hard, another Apatow-produced film. Between 2008 and 2010, she had supporting roles in several studio comedies which had various degrees of success. She made a cameo appearance as Bear Trainer Girl in the 2008 comedy Semi-Pro, reuniting with SNL alum Will Ferrell. She played a yoga instructor in Forgetting Sarah Marshall and a self-involved surgeon in David Koepp's Ghost Town.

Wiig co-starred in Greg Mottola's 2009 coming-of-age dramedy Adventureland, voiced a beaver mom in the animated adventure film Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, played a roller derby competitor in Whip It (Drew Barrymore's directorial debut) and appeared as the wife of a flavoring-extracts company owner in Mike Judge's Extract. She had a brief role in Andrew Jarecki's 2010 drama All Good Things, starred opposite Will Forte and Ryan Phillippe in MacGruber, and voiced two big-budget animated films, Despicable Me and How to Train Your Dragon, that kicked off two highly profitable film franchises.[25][26]

Breakthrough (2011–2016)[edit]

2011 was a turning point in Wiig's career. The comedy Bridesmaids, which she wrote with fellow Groundlings performer Annie Mumolo, was released that spring by Universal Pictures to critical acclaim, making US$167 million in North America and US$280 million worldwide.[27][28] In her top-billed role, she played a single woman suffering a series of misfortunes after being asked to be her best friend's maid of honor. The New York Times wrote: "A lanky-limbed blonde who evokes Meg Ryan stretched along Olive Oyl lines, Ms. Wiig keeps her features jumping and sometimes bunching. She's a funny, pretty woman, but she's also a comedian, and she's wonderfully confident about playing not nice ... Ms. Wiig, a longtime cast member of Saturday Night Live, and Ms. Mumolo, a veteran of the Los Angeles comedy troupe the Groundlings, know what female moviegoers want: honest laughs with, and not solely about, women".[29] For her work in the film, Wiig was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Comedy or Musical and the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. Her last 2011 film was the romantic comedy Friends with Kids, where she played one half of a sex-obsessed couple, opposite Bridemaids collaborator Maya Rudolph. It received positive reviews, who deemed it "sharp, shrewd, and funny",[30] and was a success in limited release.[31]

In the 2010s, Wiig was a prominent figure in Hollywood, acting in leading and supporting roles. The little-seen dramedy Revenge for Jolly!, which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, was her first 2012 release. In the comedy Girl Most Likely, she headlined opposite Annette Bening as a playwright who stages a suicide in an attempt to win back her ex, only to wind up in the custody of her gambling-addict mother. Rotten Tomatoes gave it a 20% rating based on 85 reviews, with the site's consensus: "Largely witless and disappointingly dull, Girl Most Likely strands the gifted Kristen Wiig in a blandly hollow foray into scattershot sitcom territory."[32]

Her final performance as a cast member on Saturday Night Live was season 37, episode 22, which aired on May 19, 2012[33] and was hosted by Mick Jagger. The closing celebration of her time on the show included SNL alumni Amy Poehler, Chris Kattan, Chris Parnell, Will Forte, and Rachel Dratch, as well as Steve Martin and Jon Hamm. She has since returned to host the program several times.[34]

A brunette woman wearing a white dress with some lace detailing smiles
Wiig at the Sydney premiere of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty in 2013

Wiig again provided her voice for Despicable Me 2, released on July 3, 2013, and for the character of Sexy Kitten in the critically acclaimed sci-fi romantic drama Her (2013). She portrayed the love interest and co-worker of the titular character in the adventure dramedy The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (also 2013), alongside Ben Stiller and Sean Penn; it polarized critics and was a moderate success. The New York Daily News praised Stiller and Wiig's "sweet, mellow chemistry",[35] and Peter Travers of Rolling Stone found her to be "lovely, low-key" in the film, which he described as "uniquely funny and unexpectedly tender".[36] Her other 2013 film was the comedy sequel Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, in which she teamed with frequent collaborators Will Ferrell and Steve Carell. With Ferrell, she subsequently starred in the six-episode miniseries The Spoils of Babylon (2014), and its fellow-up The Spoils Before Dying (2015) as well as the Lifetime television movie A Deadly Adoption (2015).[37] Wiig was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie for her role in The Spoils of Babylon.

Hateship, Loveship (2014), her next theatrically released production,[38] was based on the 2001 short story "Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage" by Alice Munro. In it, she played a woman who must move to a new town to begin work as a housekeeper for an elderly man who needs help keeping house. Critics asserted that Wiig's "vibrant performance is almost worth the price of admission—and it has to be, because Hateship Loveship doesn't have much else going for it", as part of a mixed overall response.[39] In 2014, she also reprised her role in How to Train Your Dragon 2, and starred with Bill Hader in Craig Johnson's dramedy The Skeleton Twins, as estranged twins reuniting with the possibility of mending their relationship. The Skeleton Twins was an arthouse success,[40] with the Globe and Mail remarking: "Johnson's unfussy direction serves as a fine showcase for the two SNL veterans to demonstrate how their comic shorthand plays equally well in a slightly darker register".[41]

For singer-songwriter Sia's performance of her 2014 single "Chandelier" at the 2015 Grammy Awards, Wiig danced alongside child dancer Maddie Ziegler.[42]

In 2015, the dramedy Welcome to Me was released in selected theaters to a positive critical response. In it, Wiig played a multi-millionaire with borderline personality disorder who uses her newfound wealth to write and star in an autobiographical talk show. Rotten Tomatoes' consensus was: "A transfixing central performance by Kristen Wiig holds Welcome to Me together and compensates for its uneven stretches."[43] In her next film, another dramedy titled The Diary of a Teenage Girl, Wiig starred as a woman whose boyfriend starts a sexual relationship with her daughter. Like Welcome to Me, the film received a limited theatrical release and was favorably received by critics.[44] In 2015, she also played the director of media relations for NASA in the successful sci-fi drama The Martian, opposite Matt Damon, and starred as a family practitioner who is more interested in having a baby than having a boyfriend in the black comedy Nasty Baby, directed by Chilean filmmaker Sebastián Silva.[45]

In the comedy Zoolander 2 (2016), Wiig took on the role of a villain and the "Queen of Haute Couture", alongside Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, and Will Ferrell.[46] Zoolander 2 was a critical and commercial flop.[47] The controversial all-female reboot Ghostbusters (also 2016) featured Wiig as an author who bands with other paranormal enthusiasts to stop an otherworldly threat;[48] budgeted at over US$140 million, it made US$229 million.[49][50] In 2016, she also voiced a hot dog bun in the animated comedy Sausage Party, and played a woman planning a robbery in Masterminds.

Later roles (2017–present)[edit]

In 2017, Wiig provided her voice for Despicable Me 3 and appeared in the film Downsizing, reuniting with Damon.[51] She was scheduled to star in and executive produce an Apple comedy series with Reese Witherspoon,[52] but later withdrew from the project.[53] In 2020, she played the villain Cheetah in Wonder Woman 1984.[54]

Wiig and Annie Mumolo co-wrote and co-starred in the 2021 comedy Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar, which received positive reviews.[55] Also in 2021, she played Aunt Carlotta in the Netflix film A Boy Called Christmas.[56] In 2024, she produced and starred in Palm Royale.

Personal life[edit]

Wiig was married to actor Hayes Hargrove from 2005 to 2009, and dated The Strokes drummer Fabrizio Moretti from 2011 to 2013.[57]

In 2019, after three years of dating, she became engaged to actor Avi Rothman. In January 2020, she and Rothman became the parents of twins, a son and daughter, via surrogacy.[58][59][60] In February 2021, Wiig confirmed that she and Rothman had married.[61] The family lives in Pasadena, California.[62]



Denotes films that have not yet been released
Kristen Wiig film work
Year Title Role Notes
2000 Carnata Party Parent Short film
2003 Melvin Goes to Dinner Extra
2006 Unaccompanied Minors Carole Malone
The Enigma with a Stigma Tux Shop Employee
2007 Knocked Up Jill
Meet Bill Jane Whitman
The Brothers Solomon Janine
Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story Edith Cox
2008 Semi-Pro Bear Handler
Forgetting Sarah Marshall Yoga Instructor
Pretty Bird Mandy
Ghost Town Surgeon
2009 Adventureland Paulette
Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs Pudgy Beaver Mom Voice[63]
Whip It Maggie Mayhem
Extract Suzie Reynolds
2010 How to Train Your Dragon Ruffnut Thorston Voice[63]
Legend of the Boneknapper Dragon Ruffnut Thorston Voice, short film[63]
Date Night Haley Sullivan
MacGruber Vicki St. Elmo
Despicable Me Miss Hattie Voice[63]
All Good Things Lauren Fleck
2011 Paul Ruth Buggs
Bridesmaids Annie Walker Also writer
Friends with Kids Missy
Gift of the Night Fury Ruffnut Thorston Voice, short film[63]
2012 Revenge for Jolly! Angela
Girl Most Likely Imogene Duncan Also executive producer
2013 Despicable Me 2 Agent Lucy Wilde Voice[63]
Her SexyKitten Voice[63]
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty Cheryl Melhoff
Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues Chani
Hateship, Loveship Johanna Parry
2014 The Skeleton Twins Maggie
How to Train Your Dragon 2 Ruffnut Thorston Voice[63]
Welcome to Me Alice Klieg Also producer
2015 The Diary of a Teenage Girl Charlotte
Nasty Baby Polly
The Martian Annie Montrose
2016 Zoolander 2 Alexanya Atoz / Katinka
Ghostbusters Dr. Erin Gilbert
Sausage Party Brenda Voice[63]
Masterminds Kelly Campbell
Lightningface Katherine Voice, short film
2017 Despicable Me 3 Agent Lucy Wilde Voice
Downsizing Audrey Safranek
Mother! Herald
2019 How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World Ruffnut Thorston Voice
Where'd You Go, Bernadette Audrey Griffin
2020 Wonder Woman 1984 Barbara Ann Minerva / Cheetah [64]
2021 Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar Star / Sharon Gordon Fisherman Also writer and producer
A Boy Called Christmas Aunt Carlotta
2024 Despicable Me 4 Agent Lucy Wilde Voice; in production


Kristen Wiig television works
Year Title Role Notes
2003 The Joe Schmo Show Dr. Pat 9 episodes
2004 I'm with Her Kristy Episode: "The Heartbreak Kid"
2004 The Drew Carey Show Sandy Episode: "House of the Rising Son-in-Law"
2005–12 Saturday Night Live Herself/Various 135 episodes
2007 30 Rock Candace Van der Shark Episode: "Somebody to Love"
2009 Flight of the Conchords Brahbrah Episode: "Love Is a Weapon of Choice"
2009–10 Bored to Death Jennifer Gladwell 3 episodes[65]
2010 Ugly Americans Tristan Voice, episode: "So, You Want to Be a Vampire?"
2010 The Cleveland Show Mrs. Stapleton Voice, episode: "The Curious Case of Jr. Working at The Stool"
2011–14 The Looney Tunes Show Lola Bunny Voice, 25 episodes[63]
2011 The Simpsons Calliope Juniper Voice, episode: "Flaming Moe"
2011 SpongeBob SquarePants Madame Hag Fish Voice, episode: "The Curse of the Hex"
2012 Portlandia Gathy Episode: "Cat Nap"
2013 The Simpsons Annie Crawford Voice, episode: "Homerland"
2013–24 Saturday Night Live Herself (host) 5 episodes
2013 Arrested Development Young Lucille Bluth 7 episodes[66]
2013 Drunk History Patty Hearst Episode: "San Francisco"
2014 The Spoils of Babylon Cynthia Morehouse 6 episodes
2015 A Deadly Adoption Sarah Benson Television film
2015 The Spoils Before Dying Delores O'Dell 6 episodes
2015 Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp Courtney 3 episodes
2017 The Last Man on Earth Pamela Brinton 5 episodes
2017–18 Nobodies Herself 2 episodes
2017 Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later Courtney Episode: "Tigerclaw"
2017–22 Big Mouth Jessi's vulva / Beatrice Voice, 5 episodes
2018 The Royal Wedding Live with Cord & Tish! Sir Albert Langham-Kingsley HBO event coverage
2019–21 Bless the Harts Jenny Hart, Maykay Bueller Voice, 34 episodes
2021 MacGruber Vicki St. Elmo 8 episodes
2024 Palm Royale Maxine Dellacorte-Simmons Main role

Music videos[edit]

Year Artist(s) Title
2009 The Lonely Island "Like a Boss"
2020 Gal Gadot & Friends "Imagine"[67]


Kristen Wiig production work
Year Title Role Notes
2022 Big Gold Brick Executive producer


Kristen Wiig discography
Song Year Artist(s) Album
"President's Day" 2012 Kristen Wiig (as Lola Bunny) Songs from The Looney Tunes Show
"I'm Ready" Jeff Bergman (as Bugs Bunny), Kristen Wiig (as Lola Bunny)
"You've Got the Look" 2013 The Lonely Island, Hugh Jackman, Kristen Wiig The Wack Album
"I'm Ready" Rodrigo Amarante, Kristen Wiig (backing vocals) Cavalo
"Space Oddity (Mitty Mix)" David Bowie, Kristen Wiig The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
(Music From and Inspired By the Motion Picture)
"Can We Stay with You?" 2014 Fred Armisen, Jim Carrey, Kristen Wiig (as Taste of New York) Non-album single
"The Great Beyond" 2016 Kristen Wiig and the Sausage Party cast Sausage Party (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
"The Great Beyond Around the World"
"Palm Vista Hotel" 2021 Kristen Wiig, Annie Mumolo and the Barb and Star cast Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar
(Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)

Songwriting credits[edit]

Kristen Wiig songwriting
Year Artist(s) Album Song Co-written with
2021 Kristen Wiig, Annie Mumolo and
the Barb and Star cast
Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar
(Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
"Palm Vista Hotel" Andrew Feltenstein, Annie Mumolo, Dana Nielson,
Danny Dunlap, Jeremy Balliger, John Nau
Jamie Dornan, Amy Keys "Edgar's Prayer"
Richard Cheese "I Love Boobies" Andrew Feltenstein, Annie Mumolo, John Nau,
Mark Jonathan Davis, Noel Melanio
"My Friends From High School Recently Passed" Andrew Feltenstein, Annie Mumolo, John Nau
"I Love Boobies (Reprise) / Short Break" Andrew Feltenstein, Annie Mumolo, John Nau,
Mark Jonathan Davis, Noel Melanio
"I Love Boobies (Extended Version)"

Awards and nominations[edit]

  • She was named one of PETA's Sexiest Vegetarian Celebrities of 2011.[68]
  • She is part of Time's 2012 list of The 100 Most Influential People in the World.[69]


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  65. ^ The Alanon Case – Yahoo! TV
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  67. ^ Laura Smith-Spark (March 19, 2020). "Gal Gadot enlists celebrity help for coronavirus 'Imagine' video". CNN. Retrieved March 20, 2020.
  68. ^ Russell Brand, Kristen Wiig named PETA's sexiest vegetarians of 2011 New York Daily News. June 28, 2011. Retrieved January 12, 2017.
  69. ^ The World's 100 Most Influential People: 2012 Time. Retrieved on May 7, 2012

External links[edit]