Inspire. Inform. Involve.  

William Emerson Arnett Biography,Career,Personal life and Honours

About William Emerson Arnett

William Emerson Arnett is a Canadian-American actor, voice actor and comedian. He is known for his role as George Oscar “Gob” Bluth II in the Fox series Arrested Development and Devon Banks in the NBC series 30 Rock, for which he was nominated for five Emmy Awards. He also appeared in the IFC series The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret, the NBC series Up All Night, and the CBS series The Millers, and in films such as Monster-in-Law, Semi-Pro, Blades of Glory, RV, Hot Rod, Let’s Go to Prison, The Rocker, Monsters vs. Aliens, The Brothers Solomon, When in Rome, Jonah Hex, The Lego Movie, The Nut Job, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows. Arnett is also known for his voice acting – he voices the title character of Netflix’s original animated series BoJack Horseman, and also portrays Batman in The Lego Movie and its spin-off The Lego Batman Movie. He currently stars in Netflix’s Flaked, a series he co-created with Mark Chappell.

Arnett was born in Toronto, Ontario, the son of Edith Alexandra “Alix” (née Palk) and Emerson James “Jim” Arnett, who was a corporate lawyer and brewer, among other occupations. His parents were originally from Winnipeg, Manitoba, and he has roots on both sides of his family in Manitoba going back many generations. Arnett has two older sisters and a younger brother. His father, a graduate of Harvard University and corporate lawyer, served as the president and CEO of Molson Breweries from 1997 to 2000.

Arnett briefly attended Lakefield College School in Lakefield, Ontario, but was asked not to return after a semester for being a troublemaker. The Subway Academy II allowed him to take theatre classes at the Tarragon Theatre. He eventually graduated from Leaside High School and attended Concordia University, Montreal for one semester, but dropped out. As a teenager, he was encouraged by his mother to pursue an acting career. He auditioned for commercials in Toronto and enjoyed acting. In 1990, he moved to New York City to study acting at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute. He appeared in plays in New York and his first acting role was in Felicity Huffman’s independent film Erie, which was filmed on the Erie Canal.

William Emerson Arnett Career

Arnett made his first television pilot with Kevin Pollak and his wife, Lucy Webb, for CBS, that was not picked up in February 1996. In the year 1999, Arnett starred in another pilot for The Mike O’Malley Show on NBC as the protagonist’s friend Jimmy. The show was picked up, but was canceled after only two episodes. Arnett has referred to 2000, the year after that show was cancelled, as “the darkest year of his life” and he admits that he “didn’t get a lot of work” and “drank those years away.” In summer 2000, a friend helped pull Arnett out of his battle with alcoholism, and he began to get his career back on track.

Arnett was cast in the CBS television pilot, Loomis as the slacker brother of a local news reporter (Cheri Oteri), that was not picked up in 2001. In 2002, Arnett was cast in a fourth television pilot which was for the CBS sitcom Still Standing, which was picked up and ran for several seasons, but his character was cut from the series after the pilot. Arnett became so frustrated, after his fourth failed pilot, that he “swore off pilots” altogether, until his agent persuaded him to audition for the pilot for Arrested Development.

Arnett found mainstream success in television in 2003, when he played George Oscar “Gob” Bluth II in the Fox comedy series, Arrested Development and in 2006 he was nominated for his first Emmy The show was cancelled after three seasons due to low ratings, despite its critical acclaim and cult following. He also played Max the Magician in Sesame Street, in a nod to Gob Bluth’s penchant for using Europe’s “The Final Countdown” during his magic shows. According to a 2006 interview with the Los Angeles Times, Arnett’s two favorite episodes of the show were “Pier Pressure” and “Afternoon Delight”. His exposure on Arrested Development led to a number of larger roles in feature films. Though having worked in drama, his role for Arrested Development is still comedy, and he often portrays smug antagonists. He “never considered himself a comic” and considers himself an “actor first”.

In 2002, prior to Arrested Development, Arnett guest-starred in The Sopranos and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit In 2006, Arnett starred in his first leading role in Let’s Go to Prison, directed by Bob Odenkirk, made on a budget of US$4 million. It earned more than US$4 million at the box office and more than US$13 million in rentals. In Blades of Glory, Arnett and his wife, Amy Poehler played brother/sister ice-skating pair with an incestuous relationship. The film was No. 1 at the U.S. box office during its first two weeks, and grossed approximately US$118 million domestically during its theatrical run. and US$36 million on home video. He guest-starred in King of the Hill and 30 Rock, in which he was nominated for four Emmy Awards for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series. Arnett also played supporting roles in the films Spring Breakdown, Hot Rod, The Comebacks, and On Broadway, where he once again worked with his close friend and director Dave McLaughlin. In The Brothers Solomon, he again teamed with Odenkirk and starred with Saturday Night Live member, Will Forte. He appeared in a major supporting role in the basketball comedy Semi-Pro, his second film with Ferrell.

William Emerson Arnett Photo

William Emerson Arnett Photo

He plays Lou Redwood, the commentator of the team, who is “a former player, a bit of a womanizer, and a boozer”. On November 17, 2009, it was announced that Arnett would try to win over real-life wife Amy Poehler in a guest spot on Parks and Recreation. Arnett played Chris, an MRI technician and possible love interest for Poehler’s Leslie Knope. Justin Theroux appeared in the same episode as yet another suitor. Arnett signed on for one episode, and the episode entitled “The Set Up” aired January 14, 2010. In 2010, Arnett and former Arrested Development co-star Jason Bateman created DumbDumb Productions, a production company focusing on digital content. Their first video was “Prom Date,” the first in a series of “Dirty shorts” for Orbit (gum).

Arnett also starred in running wilde which was cancelled in January 2011,due to poor ratings as well as The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret with David Cross. On March 23, 2011, Arnett appeared in the final episode in The Office season 7. She co-starred in the NBC television comedy series Up All Night, about a couple who struggle to balance their home lives (especially with their newborn child) and their work ones. He is currently the spokesman of a series of Hulu advertisements and his role in television spots deliberately recalls Devon Banks as a power-hungry manipulator. In March 2012, Mansome, Arnett’s first executive-producer credit with Jason Bateman, was announced as a Spotlight selection for the Tribeca Film Festival. The documentary, directed by Morgan Spurlock, is a comedic look at male identity as it is defined through men’s grooming habits featuring celebrity and expert commentary. He had been attached to play the lead role of David Miller in the 2013 comedy We’re the Millers, but had to pass due to “scheduling reasons”; the part went to Jason Sudeikis. He also co-starred as Vern Fenwick in the 2014 film Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and its 2016 sequel, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows. Arnett starred in the CBS sitcom The Millers, which lasted for two seasons. In 2016, he co-created, co-wrote and starred in the Netflix original series Flaked, which received praise from viewers and negative reviews from critics.

William Emerson Arnett Personal life

Arnett lists Steve Martin and Chevy Chase as his two biggest comic influences. He grew up watching sports in Canada, and is an avid follower of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Toronto Blue Jays. Arnett married Penelope Ann Miller in 1994, but they divorced in 1995. Arnett married Amy Poehler on August 29, 2003. They appeared together in four episodes of Arrested Development, one episode of Parks and Recreation, and the films Blades of Glory, Horton Hears a Who!, On Broadway, Spring Breakdown, and Monsters vs. Aliens. They have two sons named Archibald,born October 25, 2008 and Abel,born August 6, 2010. Arnett and Poehler separated in 2012, and their divorce was finalized in July 2016. Arnett is a dual citizen of Canada and the United States.

William Emerson Arnett Honors

In 2005, New York magazine named Arnett and then-wife Poehler “New Yorkers of the Year” during its annual New York Magazine Culture Awards. During a panel hosted by The Paley Center for Media in April 2007, talk show host Conan O’Brien and his writing staff named Will Arnett as one of their three all-time favorite guests, sharing the honor with Norm Macdonald and Harland Williams. Also in April 2007, Entertainment Weekly named Will Arnett a “Future King of Comedy.” In May 2007, Best Week Ever ranked Arnett No. 9 on its “Top 15 Sexiest Nerd Boys” poll. In July 2007, Premiere magazine named Arnett one of “The 20 Hottest New Faces in Comedy.”


Loading...