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Catherine O'Hara

Catherine O'Hara

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Also Known As: Catherine Anne O'Hara Died:
Born: March 4, 1954 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Toronto, Ontario, CA Profession: actor, director, screenwriter, waitress

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Known for her offbeat film and television performances, Catherine O'Hara established herself as a talented comedic actor who could ably handle dramatic roles as well. The Canadian actress eschewed college in favor of Toronto's Second City improvisational comedy troupe where she quickly replaced Gilda Radner after the latter jumped ship to "Saturday Night Live" (NBC, 1975- ). O'Hara more than filled Radner's shoes, stealing scenes from such accomplished comedians as Martin Short, Eugene Levy and John Candy. Hot off of "SCTV" fame, she began a long and steady career in film with her debut in the Martin Scorsese feature, "After Hours" (1985), followed by a turn in the Mike Nichols feature, "Heartburn" (1986). In 1987 she played a supporting role in the horror-comedy feature, "Beetlejuice," and three years later she appeared in the blockbuster feature comedy, "Home Alone" (1990). She would later join the cast of Christopher Guest's ensemble feature comedy, "Waiting for Guffman" (1996), beginning an artistic relationship that would result in several more films with the Guest troupe of actors, including many of her former "SCTV" castmates. Though she had once received her big chance as understudy to the...

Known for her offbeat film and television performances, Catherine O'Hara established herself as a talented comedic actor who could ably handle dramatic roles as well. The Canadian actress eschewed college in favor of Toronto's Second City improvisational comedy troupe where she quickly replaced Gilda Radner after the latter jumped ship to "Saturday Night Live" (NBC, 1975- ). O'Hara more than filled Radner's shoes, stealing scenes from such accomplished comedians as Martin Short, Eugene Levy and John Candy. Hot off of "SCTV" fame, she began a long and steady career in film with her debut in the Martin Scorsese feature, "After Hours" (1985), followed by a turn in the Mike Nichols feature, "Heartburn" (1986). In 1987 she played a supporting role in the horror-comedy feature, "Beetlejuice," and three years later she appeared in the blockbuster feature comedy, "Home Alone" (1990). She would later join the cast of Christopher Guest's ensemble feature comedy, "Waiting for Guffman" (1996), beginning an artistic relationship that would result in several more films with the Guest troupe of actors, including many of her former "SCTV" castmates. Though she had once received her big chance as understudy to the legendary Radner, O'Hara's undeniable comedic gifts and a talent for picking consistently solid film and TV projects ensured her career was no joke some 30 years on.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Rememory (2013)
2.
 A.C.O.D. (2013)
3.
 Fortune (2013)
4.
 Frankenweenie (2012)
5.
6.
 In Time (2011)
7.
 Temple Grandin (2010)
8.
 Killers (2010)
10.
 Away We Go (2009)
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Appeared in commercials and on TV in Canada
1973:
Hired as a waitress at Second City
1974:
Made professional acting debut as a member of Second City in Toronto
1975:
Appeared on the Canadian children's show "Comining Up Rosie"
1976:
Co-created (also co-wrote and co-starred) "Second City Television"; left in 1981
1979:
Film debut, "Nothing Personal"
1980:
Appeared on NBC's "Steve Allen Comedy Hour"
1985:
First substantial feature supporting role, Martin Scorsese's "After Hours"
1986:
Appeared in "Heartburn" with Meryl Streep and Jack Nicholson
1988:
Co-starred in Tim Burton's "Beetlejuice"
1988:
Provided character voice on the animated "The Completely Mental Misadventures of Ed Grimley" (NBC)
1990:
Played supporting roles in "Dick Tracy" and "Betsey's Wedding"
1990:
Played Kevin MacAllister's mother in "Home Alone"
1991:
Directed an episode of HBO's "Dream On" entitled "And Your Little Dog, Too"
1992:
Reprised role of Mrs. MacAllister in "Home Alone 2: Lost in New York"
1993:
Voiced characters in "Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas"
1994:
Featured in Ron Howard's "The Paper" and Lawrence Kasdan's "Wyatt Earp"
1995:
Played Calamity Jane in "Tall Tale: The Unbelievable Adventures of Pecos Bill"
1996:
Co-starred with Fred Willard as a husband-wife pair of small town travel agents in Christopher Guest's "Waiting for Guffman"
1996:
Had leading role as Irish matriarch in "Last of the High Kings"
1997:
Portrayed the dance teacher coping with a drinking problem in TNT movie "Hope," directed by Goldie Hawn
1998:
Played a conniving, somewhat delusional woman who gets her two sons (Jake Busey, Luke Wilson) to scare her cheating husband to death in the quirky comedy "Home Fries"
1999:
Featured in the independent comedy "Late Last Night" (aired on Starz! in lieu of theatrical release)
1999:
Acted in the Canadian independent feature "Life Before This"
2000:
Reteamed with Guest, Willard, and fellow "SCTV" veteran Eugene Levy for "Best in Show"
2002:
Cast as a tipsy mom in "Orange County"
2003:
Reteamed with Michael McKean and Eugene Levy in the comedy "A Mighty Wind," written and directed by Christopher Guest
2004:
Cast in the TNT special "The Wool Cap," which starred William H. Macy and Don Rickles
2004:
Cast in "Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events," based on the children's books by Daniel Handler
2005:
Voiced Tina (Alien Mom) in the animated feature "Chicken Little"
2006:
Reunited with Guest in his comedy "For Your Consideration"; earned an Independent Spirit Award Nomination for Best Female Lead
2008:
Cast opposite Christina Ricci in "Penelope"; produced by and co-starred Reese Witherspoon
2009:
Voiced Judith in Spike Jonze's live-action adaptation of Maurice Sendak's children's book classic "Where the Wild Things Are"
2010:
Cast opposite Claire Danes in biographical drama "Temple Grandin" (HBO); earned an Emmy (2010) nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or Movie
2010:
Co-starred opposite Ashton Kutcher and Katherine Heigl in the action/comedy "Killers"
2010:
Nominated for the 2010 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or Movie ("Temple Grandin")
2011:
Nominated for the 2011 Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries ("Temple Grandin")
2012:
Reunited with director Tim Burton to voice Mrs. Frankenstein and other characters in animated film "Frankenweenie"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Burnhamthorpe Collegiate: Etobicoke , Ontario -

Notes

O'Hara displaying her trademark sense of humor, fielding the predictable "Do you have a dog?" question at a press engagement for "Best in Show": "My husband is allergic to airborne saliva, but we do have a lovely painting of a dog." --quoted in the Toronto Sun, September 10, 2000.

Companions close complete companion listing

husband:
Bo Welch. Production designer.

Family close complete family listing

sister:
Mary Margaret O'Hara. Singer.
son:
Matthew Welch.
son:
Luke Welch.

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