Born on March 7, 1974 in Fort Wayne, Indiana, Jenna Fischer studied acting as a child and went on to do a variety of TV and film work before landing a role in the hit sitcom The Office. The show ran for nine seasons, with Fischer receiving a 2007 Emmy Award nomination. She's also starred in film projects like Blades of Steel, Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story and Hall Pass. She returned to comedic TV work with the 2015 series Apocalypse Slough.
Background and Early Career
Regina “Jenna” Marie Fischer was born on March 7, 1974 in Fort Wayne, Indiana. With her mother serving as her teacher, Fischer took to acting as a child, eventually studying theater at Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri. Fischer did a variety of jobs while pursuing her thespian dreams, including working as an administrative assistant.
Major Hit With 'The Office'
Fischer did a variety of TV and movie work for a time before landing guest spots on hit programs like That ‘70s Show and Six Feet Under as well as a small part in the 2005 film The 40-Year-Old Virgin. That year also saw Fischer debut in a role that would become iconic for her—that of receptionist Pam Beesley in the NBC sitcom The Office, based on the acclaimed British series of the same name.
The U.S. adaptation of the show, which also starred Steve Carrell and Mindy Kaling, would go on to become a certified hit as well. Fischer thus had the opportunity to develop her character Pam, who would engage in adorable and layered romance with office mate Jim Halpert (played by John Krasinski), with the two characters going on to marry and start a family.
For her work in the show, which ran for nine seasons, Fischer was nominated for a 2007 Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series. She also received multiple Screen Actors Guild Awards nominations as part of the show’s ensemble, with the cast winning 2006 and 2007 honors. Fischer was also able to take on a behind-the-scenes role as producer during The Office's final season.
Films and 'Apocalypse Slough'
Fischer had also continued to develop a presence on the big screen, co-starring in two John C. Reilly films: Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story (2007) and Promotion (2008). She’s also been seen in Blades of Glory, starring Will Ferrell and Jon Heder (2007), Solitary Man (2009), Hall Pass (2011) and The Giant Mechanical Man (2012), with the latter directed and written by husband Lee Kirk.
Fischer later rejoined the world of episodic TV as part of the cast of Apocalypse Slough, a comedic 10-part series about the earth’s impending doom slated to air in 2015 on NBC. Fischer plays a wrongly imprisoned librarian, with the show co-starring Rob Lowe and Megan Mullally.
Having been married previously to director/screenwriter James Gunn (Guardians of the Galaxy), with whom she made the 2004 satirical film LolliLove, Fischer later wed indie filmmaker Lee Kirk in 2010. The ceremony was officiated by Survivor host Jeff Probst. Fischer and Kirk have two children.
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