The incredibly versatile Allison Janney has taken her place among a select group of actors who combine a leading lady’s profile with a character actor’s art of performance. Currently starring alongside Anna Faris in the CBS/Chuck Lorre sitcom, “Mom,” Janney also received rave reviews for her turn as ‘Margaret Scully’ on Showtime’s groundbreaking drama “Masters of Sex.”
Janney won Emmys for both roles in the same year; a rare feat in Emmy history. She won a second Emmy for “Mom” the following year, bringing her total number of ATAS statues to seven. She was also recently honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In addition, Janney has continually taken on movie roles during her hiatus weeks from the sitcom. She’s completed filming “I, Tonya” with Margot Robbie for Miramax Films. Recently released movies include “Tallulah” which reunited her with Ellen Page, “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” marked her first time working with director Tim Burton and “Girl on the Train” saw her collaborating again with longtime friend, director Tate Taylor. Janney also appeared in two of the previous summer’s biggest box office titles: the adorably animated “Minions” and “Spy” with Melissa McCarthy. Prior feature work includes “The Duff,” Jason Bateman’s directorial debut “Bad Words,” the Dreamworks’ animated film “Mr. Peabody & Sherman,” and “The Way, Way Back” with Steve Carell and Toni Collette.
Additionally she co-starred in the much anticipated feature film "The Help," based on the best-selling novel of the same name. For their extraordinary performances, the cast won Ensemble awards from the Screen Actors Guild, National Board of Review and the Broadcast Film Critics. The film was also nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture. Janney has also delighted audiences with outstanding performances in the Oscar- winning ensemble hit “Juno” and in the movie version of the Tony Award winning play “Hairspray.” For her role in Todd Solondz's film "Life During Wartime," she was nominated for Best Supporting Actress by the Spirit Awards. She also appeared in Sam Mendes’ “Away We Go,” the comedy “Strangers with Candy,” and was heard as the voice of ‘Gladys’ in Dreamworks’ animated film “Over the Hedge” as well as ‘Peach’ in “Finding Nemo.” She received another Spirit Award nomination for her work in the independent feature “Our Very Own,” and starred opposite Meryl Streep in “The Hours,” which received a SAG Award nomination for Outstanding Ensemble Cast in a Motion Picture. Other feature credits include the Academy Award winning film “American Beauty” (for which she won a SAG Award for Outstanding Ensemble Cast in a Motion Picture) as well as “Nurse Betty,” “How to Deal,” “Drop Dead Gorgeous,” “10 Things I Hate About You,” “Primary Colors,” “The Ice Storm,” “Six Days Seven Nights,” “The Object of My Affection,” and “Big Night.”
Throughout her career Janney has made a handful of memorable guest-star appearances on television, but she is renowned for her starring role in the acclaimed NBC series "The West Wing," where she won a remarkable four Emmy Awards and four SAG Awards for her portrayal of White House Press Secretary ‘CJ Cregg.’
While a freshman studying acting at Kenyon College in Ohio, Janney auditioned for a play that Paul Newman was directing and got the part. Soon after, Newman and his wife Joanne Woodward suggested she study at the Neighborhood Playhouse in New York. She followed their advice and went on to make her Broadway debut in Noel Coward’s “Present Laughter” for which she earned the Outer Critics Circle Award and Clarence Derwent Award. She also appeared in Arthur Miller’s "A View from the Bridge," receiving her first Tony Award nomination and winning the Outer Critics Circle Award as well as the musical "9 to 5," for which she earned a Tony nomination and won the Drama Desk Award. Janney made her return to Broadway earlier this year in the revival of John Guare’s “Six Degrees of Separation” taking on the title role of ‘Ouisa’ alongside John Benjamin Hickey and Corey Hawkins.
Little Known Fact: She may be the most reluctant star you will ever meet, but she is also the most gifted. Welcome Allison Janney!