Neil Patrick Harris
Neil Patrick Harris was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on June 15, 1973. His parents, Sheila Gail (Scott) and Ronald Gene Harris, were lawyers and ran a restaurant. He grew up in Ruidoso, New Mexico, a small town 120 miles south of Albuquerque, where he first took up acting in the fourth grade. While tagging along with his older brother of 3 years, Harris won the part of Toto in a school production of The Wizard of Oz (1939).
His parents moved the family to Albuquerque in 1988, the same year that Harris made his film debut in two movies: Purple People Eater (1988) and Clara's Heart (1988), which starred Whoopi Goldberg. A year later, when Neil was 16, he landed the lead role in Steven Bochco's television series about a teen prodigy doctor at a local hospital, Doogie Howser, M.D. (1989), which launched Harris into teen-heartthrob status. The series lasted1989-1993 and earned him a People's Choice Award for Favorite Male Performer in a New Series (1990) and a Golden Globe Nomination (1990). Harris attended the same high school as Freddie Prinze Jr., La Cueva High School in Albuquerque. Neil acted on stage in a few plays while there, one of which was his senior play, Fiddler on the Roof (1971), in which he portrayed Lazar Wolf the butcher (1991).
When "Doogie Howser, M.D." stopped production in 1993, Harris took up stage acting, which he had always wanted to do. After a string of made-for-television movies, Harris acted in his first big screen roles in nine years, Starship Troopers (1997) with Casper Van Dien and then The Proposition (1998). In July 1997, Harris accepted the role of Mark Cohen for the Los Angeles production of the beloved musical, Rent (2005). His performance in "Rent" garnered him a Drama-League Award in 1997. He continued in the musical, to rave reviews, until January 1998. He later reprised the role for six nights in his hometown of Albuquerque, New Mexico, in December 1998.
In 1999, Harris returned to television in the short-lived sitcom Stark Raving Mad (1999), with Tony Shalhoub. He was also in the big-screen projects The Next Best Thing (2000) and Undercover Brother (2002), and he can be heard as the voice of Peter Parker/Spider-Man in the newest animated Spider-Man (2003) series. Harris has continued his stage work, making his Broadway debut in 2001 in "Proof." He has also appeared on stage in "Romeo and Juliet," "Cabaret," Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street in Concert (2001), and, most recently, "Assassins." In 2005, Harris returned to the small screen in a guest-starring role on Numb3rs (2005) and a starring role in the sitcom How I Met Your Mother (2005). Neil played the title role in the web-exclusive musical comedy Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog (2008), widely downloaded via iTunes to become the #1 TV series for five straight weeks, despite not actually being on television.
Matthew Lillard was born in Lansing, Michigan, to Paula and Jeffrey Lillard. He lived with his family in Tustin, California, from first grade to high school graduation. The summer after high school, he was hired as an extra for Ghoulies Go to College (1990). Matthew was the MC of the Nickelodeon program SK8 TV (1990) in 1989. He attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in Pasedena, California. Along with a friend, Matthew started the Mean Street Ensemble theater company that functioned until 1991, when Matthew moved to New York to attend the theater school Circle in the Square.
Manager Bill Treusch got Matthew auditions for Serial Mom (1994). Matthew was cast as Chip and began another theater company called the Summoners.
Amanda Peet was born and raised in New York City. She is the daughter of Penny (Levy), a social worker, and Charles Peet, a lawyer, and has an older sister. Her father was of mostly English and German ancestry, and her mother was from a Jewish family (from Germany, Russia, and Hungary). Peet's great-grandfathers were politician Samuel Levy and showbiz impresario S.L. Rothafel.
Peet made an unconventional stage debut at the age of three, when she jumped onto the stage during a play. Yet, despite this early start, she later studied acting more as a hobby than anything else. She studied history at Columbia University, where a drama professor convinced her to audition for acting teacher Uta Hagen, with whom she later went on to study for a four-year period. During this time, she participated in the off-Broadway revival of Clifford Odets's "Awake and Sing." She supported herself during the audition phase of her career by working as a waitress and with the residual checks she received from a Skittles candy commercial. Perseverance and hard work paid off, and, in 1995, she was cast in a guest-starring role on the hit series Law & Order (1990).
Her feature film debut came in 1995 with the movie Animal Room (1995). For a while afterward, Amanda continued to find steady work but also found herself appearing in a depressingly large number of indie films that were never picked up for distribution. She did, however, meet her boyfriend Brian Van Holt on the set of indie movie Whipped (2000). Her turn as the ditzy hit-woman with the heart of gold in the hit comedy The Whole Nine Yards (2000), opposite Bruce Willis, took her from supporting role status to leading lady. That same year she was voted one of the 50 Most Beautiful People in the World by "People" Magazine
After directing, writing and producing several Award Winning shorts and feature films (one starring Neil Patrick Harris, fresh off Doogie Howser fame), Singer went on to found FanLib and My2Centences, companies that predicted the integration of film with internet and social media. In 2008 he sold the companies to The Walt Disney Company, where he took a creative VP role - Disney Online Originals develops and produces series for Disney Online's sites and brands including Disney.com and Disney Family.
A dynamic, Emmy nominated, award-winning filmmaker and new media executive - Singer is a results-driven, strategic thinker and media visionary with decades-long media expertise. Known as a creative leader and clear communicator with an innate ability to identify and resolve problems with a trust building empowering management style. Singer has a proven record of successful launch strategies with an exemplary record of leading creative teams for small to large privately-held and public companies.
Singer has been recognized for comfortably interfacing at all levels of a vast global network and was nominated for an Emmy in the interactive fiction category in 2008. Singer's series have also been honored many times by both the Telly's and Webby's.