Who is Andy Samberg?
Andy Samberg is an award-winning American comedian, actor, musician, and filmmaker. With the dream of featuring on ‘NBC’ network's long-running late-night sketch comedy show 'Saturday Night Live' (SNL), he formed the comedy group 'The Lonely Island' with his friends, Jorma Taccone and Akiva Schaffer. He eventually became a permanent cast member on ‘SNL,’ and the trio popularized the segment 'Digital Shorts' in the show. As part of the show, he made a number of parody songs and worked with stars like Justin Timberlake and T-Pain. Samberg, who considers ‘SNL’ alumnus Adam Sandler as a role model, ended up working with him in movies like 'That's My Boy,' 'Hotel Transylvania,' and 'Grown Ups 2.’ Apart from appearing in a number of films like 'I Love You, Man,' 'Friends with Benefits,' and 'Celeste and Jesse Forever,’ he also did voice acting in 'Space Chimps,' 'Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs,' 'Hotel Transylvania,' and 'Storks.' He also starred in the pop music mockumentary 'Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping' with Taccone and Schaffer. Apart from acting, he also served as the mockumentary’s producer and writer.
Childhood & Early Life
Andrew David Samberg was born on August 18, 1978, in Berkeley, California, USA, to Marjorie and Joe Samberg. His mother is an elementary school teacher, while his father is a photographer. He shortened his name to ‘Andy’ when he was five.
He has two sisters, Johanna and Darrow, and the siblings were raised as Jews. His maternal grandfather, Alfred J. Marrow, who was an industrial psychologist and philanthropist, served as the executive chair of the ‘American Jewish Congress.’ However, Samberg is not overtly religious.
Samberg learned about 'Saturday Night Live' "by accident" when he was only eight. Since then, he wanted to be on ‘SNL,’ and even frustrated his teachers with his obsession with comedy.
He met his childhood friends, Jorma Taccone and Akiva Schaffer, in ‘Willard Junior High School’ in Berkeley. They later attended ‘Berkeley High School,’ from where they graduated in 1996. In school, he was mostly interested in writing.
After graduating from school, he and Schaffer enrolled at ‘University of California’ at Santa Cruz. However, two years later, he moved to the ‘New York University,’ and graduated from the university’s 'Tisch School of the Arts' in 2000 with a major in experimental film. After that, he moved to Los Angeles with his friends Taccone and Schaffer. They named their apartment 'The Lonely Island,' and soon after, formed a comedy troupe with the same name.
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Andy Samberg, along with his two friends, started to record short comedy sketches with a video camera. They then began sharing their work on the website ‘TheLonelyIsland.com.’ When the video sharing platform YouTube was launched, some of their ‘digital shorts,’ such as 'White Power,' 'Regarding Andy,' and 'Awesometown,' became very popular on the internet.
In the meantime, Samberg worked as an assistant on the sitcom 'Spin City' during 2001-02. His boss, after watching their show reel, helped them get an agent who landed them a writing job at the 2005 ‘MTV Movie Awards.’ Impressed by their original work and devotion to the craft, the host of the award show, Jimmy Fallon, introduced them to Lorne Michaels, the creator of 'Saturday Night Live.'
In 2005, they were offered an audition for 'SNL,' following which Andy Samberg was selected as a featured player while his two friends joined in as writers. Initially, he was offered less live performances, and appeared in prerecorded sketches, with some of his digital shorts being featured on 'SNL.' The short 'Lazy Sunday' became an instant hit, with millions of downloads after being aired on television.
The Lonely Island's growing popularity helped them land acting roles in the movie 'Hot Rod' in 2007. Samberg and Taccone starred in the film, while Schaffer starred and directed the film. Two years later, they released their debut album, 'Incredibad,' which was received well by the critics.
He went on to appear in a number of feature films in the following years. He worked with Paul Rudd in the comedy 'I Love You, Man' (2009), teamed up with Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis for 'Friends with Benefits' (2011), and was cast alongside his idol Adam Sandler in 'That's My Boy' (2012).
He voiced the character of ‘Brent McHale’ in the animated sci-fi comedy movie 'Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs.’ He also voiced the character of ‘Jonathan’ in the animated movie series 'Hotel Transylvania.'
In September 2012, he was cast in the lead role of the British comedy series 'Cuckoo,' which originally aired on ‘BBC Three.’ Around the same time, he appeared as himself in five episodes of the television series 'Comedy Bang! Bang!’
He landed a starring role in ‘FOX’ network's sitcom 'Brooklyn Nine-Nine' in September 2013. ‘FOX’ aired the series for five seasons. When ‘FOX’ canceled the show after five seasons, ‘NBC’ picked it up and continued airing the show.
In 2017, the actor was seen in the critically acclaimed comedy-drama ‘Brigsby Bear.’ He then reprised his voice role as ‘Jonathan’ in movies, such as ‘Puppy!’ (2017) and ‘Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation’ (2018). In 2018, he was cast to play ‘Nyles’ in a romantic comedy film titled ‘Palm Springs.’
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Apart from hosting ‘SNL,’ Samberg also hosted the 67th ‘Primetime Emmy Awards’ and the 76th ‘Golden Globe Awards.’
Andy Samberg is best known for appearing on ‘SNL’ for seven straight seasons, after which he left the show. While appearing on the show, he caught the attention of many with his digital shorts, namely 'Lazy Sunday,' 'Dick in a Box,' 'Motherlover,' and 'I'm on a Boat.' ‘I'm on a Boat’ received a 'Grammy Award' nomination for 'Best Rap/Sung Collaboration.'
His portrayal of ‘Detective Jake Peralta’ on 'Brooklyn Nine-Nine' received appreciation from the critics. The series was a commercial and critical success, with the first and second season receiving a score of 97% and 100% respectively on ‘Rotten Tomatoes.’
Awards & Achievements
Andy Samberg received his first award in 2007 for his comic duet with Justin Timberlake in the parody song 'Dick in a Box.' He won the 'Primetime Emmy Award' for 'Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics.'
In 2014, he won the 'Golden Globe Award' for 'Best Actor – Television Series Musical or Comedy' for his role in 'Brooklyn Nine-Nine.' He also won the 'American Comedy Award' for 'Best Comedy Actor – TV' for the role.
Personal Life & Legacy
Andy Samberg married pop classicist musician Joanna Newsom on September 21, 2013 in Big Sur, California, after five years of dating and seven months of engagement. His 'Saturday Night Live' co-star Seth Meyers served as the groomsman for the wedding. The couple was blessed with a daughter on August 2017.
Samberg and his family currently live in the Beachwood Canyon area of Los Angeles, California, where they bought the Moorcrest estate in March 2014. Their West Village home in Manhattan, New York is currently rented out.
Andy Samberg, who did impressions of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, met him when he did not have a Facebook account. He signed up for Facebook after requesting Zuckerberg to be his only friend on Facebook. He also said that he would not want friend requests from random people. Zuckerberg agreed and even helped him with the required technical support.
As a child, his favorite show was World Wrestling Federation's 'Saturday Night's Main Event.' While watching 'Saturday Night's Main Event,' he accidentally came upon the ‘NBC’ sketch comedy show 'Saturday Night Live.' He became so obsessed with the show that he even wrote about his dream to be on ‘SNL’ in his application to ‘NYU.’