Megan Mullally

Active - 1981 - 2017  |   Born - Nov 12, 1958 in Los Angeles, California, United States  |   Genres - Comedy

Share on

Biography by Rovi

Actress Megan Mullally was born in Los Angeles in 1958, to a family with show business roots -- her father, Carter Mullally Jr., was an actor who became a contract player with Paramount Pictures during the 1950s. In 1965, with Carter's career on the wane, Mullally's parents pulled up roots and moved to Oklahoma City, OK, where her family had become quite wealthy raising livestock. Megan picked up the performing bug from her father, and developed a passionate interest in music and especially dance. By the time Megan was a high school student, she'd performed as a featured soloist with the Ballet Oklahoma troupe in Oklahoma City, and during summer vacations she studied with George Balanchine's School of American Ballet in New York City.

Her interest in classical dance eventually grew into a desire to act, and while attending Northwestern University, she began appearing in student theater productions. After graduating, Mullally moved to Chicago, where she immersed herself in the city's rich and varied local theater scene. In 1983, she won her first film role, playing a hooker in Risky Business, and in 1986 she relocated to Los Angeles after being cast on a television series, The Ellen Burstyn Show. However, the series proved short-lived, and Mullally was soon busying herself with guest spots on a number of different shows. Mullally continued to work in the theater, and in 1994 fulfilled a longtime dream when she scored a role in the Broadway revival of Grease. The next year, she earned a high-profile role in another noted Broadway musical, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (playing opposite Matthew Broderick), while continuing to work in television projects. Mullally's dedication and focus finally paid off in 1998, when she was cast as Karen Walker, a self-centered former socialite-turned-office assistant on the popular situation comedy series Will and Grace. A major ratings success, Will and Grace catapulted Mullally into the spotlight, and she won an Emmy Award, a Golden Globe, and an American Comedy Award for her work on the show. When not busy with Will and Grace, Mullally continues to pursue other projects, playing featured roles in the films Everything Put Together and Monkeybone and starring in a one-woman musical, Sweetheart, in which she shows off her talents as a singer. (Mullally has also released an album of songs from the show, which she produced herself.)

Mullally would continue her successful career on Broadway while enjoying the long running success of Will and Grace, and would go on to appear in other successful TV series as well, like In the Motherhood, Party Down, Childrens' Hospital, and Parks and Recreation.

Movie Highlights

See Full Filmography


  • Father was a contract player for Paramount and mother was a model.
  • Studied ballet from the age of 6 and performed with the American Ballet Theater in New York City in the summers while attending high school.
  • Attended Northwestern University and studied English Literature and Art History, but left college without graduating.
  • Had her own one-woman show titled Sweetheart in 1999.
  • Has been a singer and performer in her own singing group called The Supreme Music Program.
  • First film role was as a call girl in the movie Risky Business.