PROFILE
Name:
Katie Finneran
Birth Date:
January 22, 1971
Birth Place:
Chicago, Illinois, USA
Nationality:
American
BIOGRAPHY
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Noises Off

Background:

Tony Award winning actress Katie Finneran rose to prominence with her humorous portrayal of Brooke Ashton on a 2002 revival of “Noises Off,” in which she won a Tony Award, a Drama Desk Award and an Outer Critics Circle Award for her performance. Other Broadway credits include “My Favorite Year,” “Cabaret,” “The Iceman Cometh,” Neil Simon's “Proposals,” “The Heiress,” “In the Summer House” and “Two Shakespearean Actors.” She has also acted in regional theater and several off-Broadway productions.

In addition to her stage work, Finneran has appeared in such movies as “Night of the Living Dead” (1990), “You've Got Mail” (1998), “Death to Smoochy” (2002), “Bewitched” and “Miss Congeniality 2: Armed & Fabulous” (both 2005), “Firehouse Dog,” “Staten Island,” “Walk the Talk” (all 2007) and “Baby on Board” (2009). On the small screen, the blonde, blue-eyed beauty is probably best known as attorney Sharon Tyler on the short-lived Fox series “Wonderfalls” (2004). Finneran also starred in CBS' “Bram and Alice” (2002) and “The Inside” (2005) and guest starred in such series as “Sex and the City,” “Frasier,” “Oz,” “Drive,” “Royal Pains,” “Mercy” and “Damages.”

Finneran will soon costar with Matt Bush in director Brian Herzlinger’s upcoming film “College Sucks.”


Chicago Native

Childhood and Family:

Kathleen Finneran, who would later be famous as Katie Finneran, was born on January 22, 1971, in Chicago, Illinois. She was raised in Miami, Florida, by her parents and enrolled at Pittsburgh's Carnegie Mellon University, but left after one year. She relocated to New York City at age 19 to study acting with the legendary Uta Hagen. She also studied drama at the DB Studio in Greenwich Village in New York City.


Wonderfalls

Career:

Katie Finneran showed an interest in the performing arts at an early age. After briefly attending a conservatory, she left college to launch a career in the entertainment industry. Her first break arrived in 1990 when she landed a lead role in the remake of George Romero's “Night of the Living Dead,” playing Judy Rose. The horror movie also starred Tony Todd, Patricia Tallman, Tom Towles and McKee Anderson. In order to find more work, she moved to New York City.

Known primarily for her stage work, Finneran appeared in regional theater in such productions as “Hedda Gabler” (with Kate Burton) and “The Smell of the Kill” (with Kristen Johnson) and in off-Broadway plays like “Arms and the Man,” “Bosoms and Neglect,” “Edith Stein,” “You Never Can Tell,” Encore's “Lil' Abner” and “A Fair Country.” During 1992-1993, she played the role of Tess in the Broadway play “My Favorite Year,” opposite Tim Curry. She also made a name for herself as a pin-up girl in Neil Simon's “Proposals,” Cora in “The Iceman Cometh” (1999), with Kevin Spacey, and Sally Bowles in the Broadway revival of “Cabaret,” in which she replaced Lea Thompson. She also portrayed Miss Wemyss in “Two Shakespearean Actors” and Maria in “The Heiress.”

Finneran returned to the big screen in 1998 when she appeared as Maureen on the Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan romantic vehicle “You've Got Mail.” The same year, she made her TV debut as Ellen in an episode of “Sex and the City” called “Models and Mortals.” She went on to appear in an episode of the long-running soap opera “All My Children” (1999) and have a recurring role in two episodes of “Frasier” (also 1999). Still in 1999, she was featured in Barry Levinson's “Liberty Heights,” a film starring Adrien Brody and Ben Foster.

After playing Patricia Galson in an episode of “Oz” (2000), Finneran had an unaccredited part in the Danny DeVito directed “Death to Smoochy” (2002), a box office flop starring Robin Williams and Edward Norton. It was also in 2002 that she enjoyed a breakthrough moment with her show-stealing performance as Broke Ashton on the Broadway comedy “Noises Off,” by Michael Frayn. Her performance was critically applauded and she was awarded the 2002 Tony, a Drama Desk and an Outer Critics Circle award for Best Featured Actress in a Broadway Play for her effort. Finneran left the show in July 2002 to start her work on the CBS sitcom “Bram and Alice” (2002), where she played Kate, a role created especially for her by Joe Keenan and Christopher Lloyd after they saw her on “Frasier.” The show, which also starred Alfred Molina and Traylor Howard, however, had a short life.

Two years later, Finneran revisited the small screen when she was cast in the regular role of lawyer Sharon Tyler on the Fox series “Wonderfalls” (2004), costarring Caroline Dhavernas. Although it earned praise from critics, the show only ran for one season before being canceled. The same year, she also supported Aidan Quinn and Rachel Griffiths in the made-for-TV film “Plainsong,” which marked her TV film acting debut.

In early 2005, Finneran took on the regular role of Special Agent Melody Sim on the crime series “The Inside,” opposite Rachel Nichols and Adam Baldwin. The show, however, was canceled after 13 episodes. She then appeared in the short “Live at Five” and the feature films “Miss Congeniality 2: Armed & Fabulous” with Sandra Bullock, and “Bewitched,” opposite Nicole Kidman (all 2005). 2006 saw the performer on the New York stage in a production of “Pig Farm.” Later that same year, she played the supporting role of Patsi in “Broken Bridges,” a dramatic musical starring Toby Keith as a fading country music star named Bo Price.

In 2007, Finneran appeared as Mrs. Dickenson in the comedy film “Staten Island,” directed by Aditya Chandora. She also acted in the independent film “Walk the Talk” with Evan Ellingson, Cary Elwes, Illeana Douglas, Katie Cassidy and Chris Pratt, and was featured in the Todd Holland directed action movie “Firehouse Dog” (both 2007). On television, Finneran could be seen making guest appearance in the series “Drive” (2007), “Royal Pains” (2009) and “Mercy” (2010). On November 15, 2007, Finneran appeared as one of the guest performers at “Don't Quit Your Night Job,” an evening of improvisation and comedy held at the Zipper Theater. Other guests in the show included Marc Kudisch, Sarah Saltzberg, Bob Saget, David Rossmer, John Ellison Conlee, Asmeret Ghebremichael and Alicia Witt.

Finneran will soon costar with Matt Bush in director Brian Herzlinger’s upcoming film “College Sucks.”


Awards:

  • Tony: Best Actress (Featured Role - Play), “Noises Off,” 2002

  • Drama Desk: Best Featured Actress in a Broadway Play, “Noises Off,” 2002

  • Outer Critics Circle: Best Featured Actress in a Broadway Play, “Noises Off,” 2002

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