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Conan O'Brien

Conan O'Brien

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Also Known As: Conan Christopher O'Brien Died:
Born: April 18, 1963 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Brookline, Massachusetts, USA Profession: TV host, comedy writer, producer, actor

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Because of his witty, self-effacing comedic style, Conan O'Brien rose to the top of late night television fame as host of NBC's "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" (1993-2009). Even before landing that high-profile gig, this tall - standing at 6 feet 4 inches - gangly, carrot-topped comic was already revered in certain circles for his writing and producing talents on such comedy stalwarts as "Saturday Night Live" (NBC, 1975- ) and "The Simpsons" (Fox, 1990- ). Despite a shaky "Late Night" start in 1993 - many predicted he would be replaced by year's end and most had no idea who he even was - O'Brien not only persevered, but thrived, thanks to his sharp monologues, outlandish skits and easy rapport with co-host Andy Richter. The host quickly developed a large college-aged following which helped turn O'Brien into a household name. Wider recognition meant more opportunity - after hilariously hosting the 2002 Emmy Awards, he was named to succeed Jay Leno as host of "The Tonight Show," seemingly assuring O'Brien's stature as a late night heavyweight. Sadly, after taking over his dream job, he was forced to step down after his own program's low ratings and NBC's poor scheduling and ineffective management led...

Because of his witty, self-effacing comedic style, Conan O'Brien rose to the top of late night television fame as host of NBC's "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" (1993-2009). Even before landing that high-profile gig, this tall - standing at 6 feet 4 inches - gangly, carrot-topped comic was already revered in certain circles for his writing and producing talents on such comedy stalwarts as "Saturday Night Live" (NBC, 1975- ) and "The Simpsons" (Fox, 1990- ). Despite a shaky "Late Night" start in 1993 - many predicted he would be replaced by year's end and most had no idea who he even was - O'Brien not only persevered, but thrived, thanks to his sharp monologues, outlandish skits and easy rapport with co-host Andy Richter. The host quickly developed a large college-aged following which helped turn O'Brien into a household name. Wider recognition meant more opportunity - after hilariously hosting the 2002 Emmy Awards, he was named to succeed Jay Leno as host of "The Tonight Show," seemingly assuring O'Brien's stature as a late night heavyweight. Sadly, after taking over his dream job, he was forced to step down after his own program's low ratings and NBC's poor scheduling and ineffective management led him to leave the show after only seven months and relocating from New York to Los Angeles. His perceived mistreatment by the network after over 15 years of loyal service made O'Brien the underdog to the perceived villain, "Tonight Show" usurper (part deux), Jay Leno. The January 2010 late night scandal - tagged "Conan-Gate - ignited the ire of Conan's rabid "I'm with Coco" fanbase, who took to social networking sites and street protests in support of their late night hero, while fellow comics weighed in, mostly in support of O'Brien, whose next move to TBS became one of the hottest topics of the new year. Whatever O'Brien's future held, his legacy of melding together frat-boy foolishness with intelligent, twisted writing remained unparalleled, leaving his late night legacy intact.

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

2.
 Clear History (2013)
6.
7.
 Bewitched (2005)
8.
9.
 Storytelling (2001) Himself ("Nonfiction")
10.
 Pootie Tang (2001)
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1985:
Moved to Los Angeles after college
1985:
Joined the writing staff of HBO's "Not Necessarily the News"
:
Began performing with the Groundlings improv group in Los Angeles
1987:
Hired by producer Lorne Michaels as a writer for "Saturday Night Live" (NBC); earned Emmy nominations for Outstanding Writing from 1989-1991
1988:
Joined with SNL writers Bob Odenkirk and Robert Smigel for the improvisational comedy revue "Happy Happy Good Show" in Chicago
1991:
Co-wrote and produced (with Robert Smigel) the television pilot "Lookwell" (NBC) starring Adam West; pilot never went to series
1991:
Became a writer and supervising producer for "The Simpsons" (FOX)
1993:
Suggested by Lorne Michaels to succeed David Letterman as the host of "Late Night"; the show re-titled "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" (NBC) aired on September 13, with Andy Richter as his sidekick; earned consecutive Emmy nominations for Outstanding Writing from 1996-2009
2001:
Had cameo in the Todd Solondz-directed, "Storytelling"
2001:
Formed his own production company, Conaco
2002:
Hosted the 54th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards
2002:
Co-wrote and produced the FOX series, "Andy Richter Controls the Universe"
2004:
Negotiated a new contract with NBC to take over "The Tonight Show" from Jay Leno in 2009
2006:
Produced and co-wrote the pilot for the short-lived NBC sitcom, "Andy Barker, P.I."
2009:
Aired final episode of "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" on February 20
2009:
Premiered as host of "The Tonight Show" (NBC) in June of 2009; announced in January 2010 he would leave the show due to what he called "the destruction" of "The Tonight Show" in NBC's attempt to move the show to 12:05 to accommodate the Jay Leno Show at 11:35
2010:
Due to O'Brien's settlement with NBC, which forbid him from appearing on television for several months, O'Brien traveled to 30 cities with his live comedy tour entitled, "Legally Prohibited from Being Funny on Television Tour"
2010:
After his high-profile exit from NBC, he earned an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Variety, Music Or Comedy Series for "The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien"
2010:
Signed a deal for a new late-night program on TBS, the basic-cable network owned by Time Warner; the show "Conan" premiered in November 2010 to huge ratings
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Education

Brookline High School: Brookline , Massachusetts - 1981
Harvard University: Cambridge , Massachusetts - 1985
Harvard University: Cambridge , Massachusetts - 1985

Notes

"He always kept the staff entertained ... and if he can make a bunch of bitter, self-hating comedy writers laugh, then I'm sure he'll have no trouble making the rest of America laugh."---Matt Groening on Conan O'Brien's abilities to host "Late Night", from New York Newsday, April 28, 1993.

"I won an Emmy as a comedy writer on Saturday Night Live in 1989, so I have one of them, and that takes all the mystique away. It turns out that they're made of balsa wood and then spray-painted. And you can tell they recycle them. Mine says 'Conan O'Brien," but when yuou hold ot up to the light you can see lettering underneath that say's 'Robert Guillaume...for Benson.' "---O'Brien on winning an Emmy People September 30, 2002.

"I worry about that day when I've got my repertoire of silly things I've discovered over the years and that's it ... I'm done," he says. "The minute you think your done, that's , that's when the rot sets in. And that goes for any comedian."---O'brien to Emmy magazine, issue No.2, 2005.

Companions close complete companion listing

companion:
Lynn Kaplan. Guest booker. Together from 1990 to 1999.
wife:
Liza Powell. Advertising agency creative director. Born c. 1971; began dating c. 2000 after she appeared as a guest on his show; became engaged in July 2001; married on January 12, 2002 in Seattle.

Family close complete family listing

mother:
Ruth O'Brien. Lawyer.
father:
Tom O'Brien. Doctor.
brother:
Neal O'Brien. Antique car collector. Born c. 1960.
brother:
Luke O'Brien. Lawyer. Born c. 1961.
sister:
Kate O'Brien. Teacher. Born c. 1965.
sister:
Jane O'Brien. Scriptwriter. Born c. 1967; wrote for "Cybill".
brother:
Justin O'Brien. Business consultant. Born c. 1972.
daughter:
Neve O'Brien. Born October 14, 2003.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

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