Sep. 28th, 1964
Newton, New Jersey, USA
Guest TV Roles
Herself - Correspondent
Janeane Garofalo, the petite woman with the acerbic wit, was born in Newton, New Jersey, in 1964, and had many jobs before breaking into show biz. She worked as a bike messenger, a shoe salesperson (no doubt with Al Bundy's disposition), waitress and temp secretary. Watching David Letterman on TV inspired her to write comedy, and by 1985 she was doing stand up comedy. As such, Janeane has become a cult figure, giving a voice to a generation, venting her frustration at TV, dating, relationships, life in general and anything that ticks her off in particular.
Garofalo did sketches on The Ben Stiller Show (1992) (an Emmy winning, but canceled show). She would continue to collaborate with 'Ben Stiller' in future projects. Garofalo received 2 Emmy nominations for her work on The Larry Sanders Show (1992), developing her signature character: a smart, cynical woman with a razor wit. She was not happy with her Saturday Night Live (1975) stint in 1994, and was vocal about it (of course). Transferring her persona from TV to the big screen, she moved on to movies, basically playing the character she had defined for herself. In _Romy and Michele's High School Reunion (1997) she portrayed a smart, cynical, successful businesswomen with a razor wit, and this time with swear words (in the movie she had developed a brand of cigarettes with fast-burning paper, for the gal on the go; in real life it is alleged she smokes Marlboros). Janeane continues to work in TV and movies, often collaborating with Ben Stiller in a number of movies like Mystery Men (1999), his easygoing style being a counterpoint to her caustic nature.
- Hosted the _1996 MTV Movie Awards (1996) (TV)_ (qv) along with 'Ben Stiller' (qv).
- She has 15 tattoos.
- Was the original choice to play Monica on _"Friends" (1994)_ (qv), but turned down the role.
- In his DVD commentary for _Dogma (1999)_ (qv), director 'Kevin Smith (I)' (qv) said that in retrospect he wished he offered the role of Bethany to Garofalo instead of 'Linda Fiorentino' (qv), whom he found very difficult to work with and on some days, she in fact wasn't even speaking to him. Garofalo appeared in _Dogma (1999)_ (qv) as Liz at the abortion clinic.
- 'Laura San Giacomo' (qv)'s role (Maya Gallo) in _"Just Shoot Me!" (1997)_ (qv) is based on Garofalo.
- Traveled widely with 'Margaret Cho' (qv) on the comedy club circuit. They blamed each other for their bad smoking habits.
- Is of Italian and Irish descent.
- Is very good friends with 'Ben Stiller' (qv). Both had short lived tenures on _"Saturday Night Live" (1975)_ (qv), both starred on _"The Ben Stiller Show" (1992)_ (qv), they have collaborated on movies together, and have written and created other comedy shows together. Garofalo has said that she works well with Stiller because they are complete opposite personalities, hers being caustic and political while Stiller is more go with the flow and silly, and they are able to fill in the gaps the other person misses.