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Jenny McCarthy
Jenny McCarthy 2012.jpg
McCarthy at Fame at the Mansion in 2012
Jennifer Ann McCarthy

(1972-11-01) November 1, 1972 (age 51)
Other names Jennifer Wahlberg
Alma mater Southern Illinois University
  • Actress
  • model
  • television personality
  • activist
  • writer
Years active 1993–present
  • The Jenny McCarthy Show (1997)
  • Jenny
  • The Jenny McCarthy Show (2013)
  • Donnie Loves Jenny
  • The Masked Singer
John Asher
(m. 1999; div. 2005)
(m. 2014)
Partner(s) Jim Carrey
Children 1
Signature of Jenny McCarthy.png

Jennifer McCarthy Wahlberg (née Jennifer Ann McCarthy; born November 1, 1972) is an American actress, model, and television personality. She began her career in 1993 as a model. McCarthy then had a television and film acting career, beginning as a co-host on the MTV game show Singled Out (1995–1997) and afterwards starring in the eponymous sitcom Jenny (1997–1998), as well as films including BASEketball (1998), Scream 3 (2000), John Tucker Must Die (2006), and Santa Baby (2006). In 2013, she hosted her own television talk show The Jenny McCarthy Show, and became a co-host of the ABC talk show The View, appearing on the program until 2014. Since 2019, McCarthy has been a judge on the Fox musical competition show The Masked Singer.

McCarthy has written several books about parenting and has promoted research into environmental causes and alternative medical treatments for autism. She has promoted the disproven idea that vaccines cause autism.

Early life

McCarthy was born on November 1, 1972, at Little Company of Mary Hospital located in the southwest Chicago suburb of Evergreen Park, Illinois. She was born to a working-class Catholic family, and has German, Irish, and Polish ancestry. She lived in the West Elsdon neighborhood of Chicago. She is the second of four daughters – her sisters are named Lynette, Joanne, and Amy; actress Melissa McCarthy is her cousin. McCarthy's mother, Linda, was a housewife and courtroom custodian, and her father, Dan McCarthy, was a steel mill foreman.

As a teenager McCarthy attended Mother McAuley Liberal Arts High School and was a cheerleader at both Brother Rice High School and St. Laurence High School, although she has referred to herself as an "outcast" at her school and has said she was repeatedly bullied by classmates. She spent two years at Southern Illinois University.

Film career

In 1998, McCarthy's first major movie role was alongside Trey Parker and Matt Stone in the comedy BASEketball. The following year, she starred in Diamonds. In 2000, she had a role in the horror movie Scream 3, and three years later she parodied that role in horror film spoof Scary Movie 3.

In addition to her early TV fame on MTV and her short-lived, self-titled NBC sitcom, McCarthy has guest-starred in a variety of other television shows, including Stacked, Charmed, The Drew Carey Show, Wings, Fastlane, Two and a Half Men and Just Shoot Me!. She was the voice of Six in the third season of Canadian computer-animated science-fiction cartoon Tripping the Rift. In 2005, McCarthy hosted a show on E! called Party at the Palms. The reality show, which was filmed at The Palms Hotel in Las Vegas, featured hotel guests, party goers, and celebrities.

Jenny McCarthy at E3 2006
McCarthy in 2006

In 2007, McCarthy starred in a five-episode online series, called In the Motherhood, along with Chelsea Handler and Leah Remini.

On December 31, 2010, McCarthy began her decade-long tenure as correspondent in Times Square for ABC's Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve with Ryan Seacrest.

After 17 guest appearances, in July 2013, McCarthy was announced as a new co-host on ABC's The View, replacing former co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck. To tone down her looks, McCarthy always wore glasses on the show. Barbara Walters praised McCarthy's intelligence, warmth, humor and fresh point of view, and calling her a great addition to the show. She debuted as a co-host on September 9, 2013. The departures of McCarthy and co-host Sherri Shepherd from The View were announced in June 2014. The Wrap reported that ABC had decided not to renew McCarthy's contract.


Jenny McCarthy Addresses Audience
McCarthy speaking at the 2008 Ante Up for Autism benefit

In May 2007, McCarthy announced that her son, Evan, had been diagnosed with autism in 2005. McCarthy participated in fundraisers, online chats, and other activities for the non-profit organization to help families affected by autism spectrum disorders. Her first fundraiser for TACA, Ante Up for Autism, was held on October 20, 2007, in Irvine, California. She is a prominent spokesperson and activist for the Generation Rescue foundation.

McCarthy's book dealing with autism, Louder than Words: A Mother's Journey in Healing Autism, was published September 17, 2007. She said both in her book and during her appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show that her husband was unable to deal with their son's autism, which led to their divorce. In 2008, she appeared on a Larry King Live special dedicated to the subject and argued that vaccines can trigger autism.

McCarthy's claims that vaccines cause autism are not supported by any medical evidence, and the original paper by Andrew Wakefield that formed the basis for the claims (and for whose book McCarthy wrote a foreword) was based on manipulated data and fraudulent research.

In May 2014, McCarthy published an opinion-editorial addressing her position on vaccines:

"I am not 'anti-vaccine.' This is not a change in my stance nor is it a new position that I have recently adopted. For years, I have repeatedly stated that I am, in fact, 'pro-vaccine' and for years I have been wrongly branded as 'anti-vaccine.' ... Blatantly inaccurate blog posts about my position have been accepted as truth by the public at large as well as media outlets (legitimate and otherwise), who have taken those false stories and repeatedly turned them into headlines."

During a subsequent Daily Beast interview she said:

"I am not anti-vaccine, ... I'm in this gray zone of, I think everyone should be aware and educate yourself and ask questions. And if your kid is having a problem, ask your doctor for an alternative way of doing the shots. ... The ironic thing is my position has always remained the same. People just never listened to it."

Personal life

McCarthy dated manager Ray Manzella from 1994 until 1998 and began dating actor/director John Mallory Asher late in 1998. The couple was engaged in January 1999 and married on September 11 of that year. They have a son, Evan, born in May 2002, who was diagnosed with autism in May 2005. McCarthy and Asher divorced in September 2005.

In December 2005, McCarthy began dating actor Jim Carrey. They did not make their relationship public until June 2006. She announced on The Ellen DeGeneres Show on April 2, 2008, that she and Carrey were living together but had no plans to marry, as they did not need a "piece of paper". In April 2010, McCarthy and Carrey announced that they had split up.

In July 2013, McCarthy stated that she was dating singer and actor Donnie Wahlberg, known for being a member of New Kids on the Block and the television series Blue Bloods. On April 16, 2014, McCarthy announced on The View that she and Wahlberg were engaged, and they married on August 31, 2014.



Year Title Role Notes
1995 Things to Do in Denver When You're Dead Blonde Nurse
1996 The Stupids Glamorous Actress
1998 BASEketball Yvette Denslow
1999 Diamonds Sugar
2000 Scream 3 Sarah Darling
2001 Thank Heaven Julia
2002 The Perfect You Whitney
2003 Scary Movie 3 Katie
2006 John Tucker Must Die Lori
2008 Witless Protection Connie
2008 Tripping the Rift: The Movie Six (voice role) Direct-to-DVD
2008 Wieners Mrs. Isaac
2010 A Turtle's Tale: Sammy's Adventures Shelly (voice role)
2015 Tooken Herself


Year Title Role Notes
1994 Silk Stalkings Totally Positive Rush Model Episode: "The Deep End"; credited as Jennifer McCarthy
1995 Mr. Show with Bob and David Rhonda Episode: "The Cry of a Hungry Baby"
1995 Singled Out Co-host Lead role
1996 Baywatch April Morella Episode: "Freefall"
1996 Wings Dani Episode: "Maybe It's You"
1997 The Jenny McCarthy Show Host Lead role
1997–1998 Jenny Jenny McMillan Lead role
1999 Home Improvement Alex Episode: "Young at Heart"
2000 MADtv Herself Episode: "Episode: #6.8"
2000 Python Francesca Garibaldi Television film
2000 Live Girls Rebecca Television film
2000–2003 Just Shoot Me! Brandi / Covergirl 3 episodes; uncredited
2001 Going to California Amber Beamis Episode: "The Big Padoodle"
2001 Honey Vicarro Honey Vicarro Television film
2001, 2002 The Drew Carey Show Jenny McCarthy / Marlo Kelly 2 episodes
2003 Fastlane Gretchen Bix Episode: "Popdukes"
2003 Charmed Mitzy Stillman Episode: "The Power of Three Blondes"
2003 What's New, Scooby-Doo? Marcy (voice) Episode: "A Scooby Doo Halloween"
2003 Wanda at Large Leader Episode: "Clowns to the Left of Me"
2003 Less Than Perfect Dani 3 episodes
2003–2004 One on One Holly Spears 4 episodes
2003 Untitled Jenny McCarthy Project Portia Television film
2004 Wild Card Candy LaRue 2 episodes
2004 All About the Andersons Lauren Episode: "Face the Music"
2004 Hope & Faith Mandi Radnor 3 episodes
2004 The Brady Bunch 35th Anniversary Reunion Special:
Still Brady After All These Years
Host Television special
2005 What I Like About You Michelle Episode: "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying to Be a Lesbian"
2005 The Bad Girl's Guide JJ 6 episodes
2005 Stacked Eve Episode: "Two Faces of Eve"
2006 My Name Is Earl Wendy Episode: "Mailbox"
2006 Santa Baby Mary Class / Mary Claus Television film
2006 Untitled Patricia Heaton Project Hilary Television film
2007 Tripping the Rift Six (voice) Recurring role
2007−2011 Two and a Half Men Courtney Recurring role
2008 In the Motherhood Kelly Recurring role
2008 Sesame Street Herself Episode: "Firefly Show"
2009 Chuck Sylvia Arculin Episode: "Chuck Versus the Suburbs"
2009 Santa Baby 2: Christmas Maybe Mary Class / Mary Claus Television film
2010–present Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve Co-host Television special
2012 Love in the Wild Host Series regular
2013 The Jenny McCarthy Show Host Lead role; also executive producer
2013–2014 The View Co-host Series regular
2014 International Ghost Investigators Herself Episode: "Jenny McCarthy"
2014 Nashville Herself Episode: "Crazy"
2014–2017 Wahlburgers Herself 3 episodes
2015 Donnie Loves Jenny Herself Lead role; also executive producer
2016 The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills Herself Episode: "Spinning a Web"
2017 Return of the Mac Jenny Recurring role; also executive producer
2019–present The Masked Singer Judge Main role; credited as Jenny McCarthy Wahlberg
2019 Bar Rescue Herself/Recon assistant Episode: "All Blaze, No Glory"

Video games

Year Title Voice role Refs.
2008 Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 Special Agent Tanya

Awards and nominations

Film Award Category Result Ref
N/A Golden Apple Award 1997 Female Star of the Year Won
BASEketball 19th Golden Raspberry Awards Worst Supporting Actress Nominated
John Tucker Must Die 27th Golden Raspberry Awards Worst Supporting Actress Nominated
Witless Protection 29th Golden Raspberry Awards Worst Supporting Actress Nominated
Worst Screen Couple (shared with Larry the Cable Guy) Nominated
The View 40th People's Choice Awards Favorite New Talk Show Host Nominated

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Jenny McCarthy para niños

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