Jennifer Coolidge is an American actor, most notably for her major roles as Jeanine Stifler in American Pie, Paulette Bonafonte in Legally Blonde, and as Fiona in A Cinderella Story. The first of these films was one of the few animated comedies to be successful during the 1990s and spawned a franchise that has made numerous other movies since. Jennifer Coolidge is perhaps best recognized from her appearance as the cynical yet sweet love interest of Steve McQueen in the Batman franchise. Though her appearance did not catch on at the box office, the success of this film made her one of the biggest celebrity women of the decade. More importantly, the public’s perception of her was very positive and helped her raise millions of dollars for cancer charities.
Jennifer Coolidge was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the daughter of a well-to-do family and raised in a household that regarded itself as rather upper-class. Family members were quite happy to show her off as a child, and encouraged her interest in art and theater. As a result, Jennifer developed a keen sense of style, frequently dressed in clothes that were designed by her mother, and pursued a number of careers as an artist, writer, designer, and actress throughout her life.
In 2002, Jennifer Coolidge was one of the featured speakers at a fundraising gala for the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, along with other well-known people. At the gala, Coolidge spoke about her daughter, who had recently been diagnosed with leukemia. According to the Susan G. Komen Foundation, Coolidges’ estimated net worth is $8 million. Her career path can be traced back to a series of stints on stage, television, and various other endeavors in which she displayed her unique talents and range.
Jennifer Coolidge has not held down any acting career since her days on stage, however. She has appeared in a few comedy movies, including the 2011 film American Pie, but these films failed to attract audiences. Since American Pie, Coolidge has mostly focused her efforts on promoting philanthropy and teaching. Her charities include the Special Olympics, serving with the proceeds from American Pie helping to fund the building of sports facilities in underdeveloped countries.
The 2011 release of Zoolander and the Maid Wanted: No Limits version followed the similar plot of an aging, mustachio-voiced star seeking to get back into action after a string of injuries, including a car crash, that nearly ended his acting career. Although he was able to play the part well (he played the same role in the second installment of the same franchise), the role failed to impress audiences, even with a star-studded cast that included Will Ferrell and Adam Sandler. As it turns out, Jennifer Coolidge was actually quite the opposite, in that she did manage to capture the heart of yet another of her Zoolander co-stars, Ben Kingsley.
In the final minutes of the third episode of the third season of The America Show, Coolidge finally revealed to Dan Girard the role she had been cast to play: that of America’s Next Top Model hostess. While some people may have criticized the choice, especially considering how many years had passed since she last suited up on a TV stage, Coolidge still managed to capture the role, as well as those of the other three main stars of the show. Though she only played the final moments of one episode, she did manage to fan the flames of American Idol fans everywhere, as many are tuning in to the series for its third season. Jennifer Coolidge may not be as popular as America’s Next Top Model, but neither is she a bad choice for the starring role. Instead, she proves to be yet another example of how finding great roles can come about if you are willing to give your career all you can, with a bit of luck.