The Budding Acting Career of Judy Greer
Born Judith Laura Evans on July 20, 1975 in Livonia, Michigan, actress Judy Greer has won widespread recognition for her roles as supporting characters. She is best known for playing Julie Speer in “The Descendants” and for voicing Cheryl Tunt in the animated Séries Netflix comedy series “Archer.”
As a young child, Greer developed an interest in performing classical Russian ballet, which would ultimately lead to her pursuing a career in acting. For much of her childhood, she lived just a few short miles outside the city of Detroit. She was raised as a Catholic by her parents-her father worked as a mechanical engineer and her mum, a hospital administrator. During her teenage years, Greer attended Winston Churchill High School in her local suburb of Livonia as well as the Bunny Sanford Academy of Dance. She always wanted to become a ballet dancer when she grew up, but her priorities changed after graduating from high school. She stopped performing Russian ballet after ten years and instead focused on a career in acting.
To further her acting aspirations, Greer knew that she had to move out of state because of the limited acting opportunities available in Michigan. Before long, she secured a place at the Theater School in Chicago’s famed DePaul University. As the Midwest’s oldest theater training conservatory, DePaul’s Theater School offered Greer a chance to express herself and grow her acting abilities. Later in her life, she admitted she was extremely shy as a teenager and did not seek out the limelight.
Greer graduated from the esteemed theater program at DePaul University in 1997 and soon found a bit-part role in the romantic comedy film “Kissing a Fool.” Only three days out of college, this provided her with the break she needed. Throughout college, she had worked a variety of jobs in order to get by, such as a telemarketer and as an oyster shucker, but the role of Andrea in “Kissing a Fool” gave her a foot in the film-industry door. Acting alongside proclaimed Hollywood actors such as Jason Lee and David Schwimmer proved to be invaluable for her acting career. She flew to Los Angeles for the film’s premiere, and she stayed there permanently once she saw the acting opportunities that were available to her.
The following year saw Greer star in the dark comedy “Jawbreaker,” which opened up further acting opportunities for her. That same year she starred alongside Hollywood royalty in the form of George Clooney in “Three Kings.” The role involved a love scene with Clooney, and it quickly helped Greer get noticed by film executives and television producers alike. Not long after, she secured a recurring role as Puff Conklin in the short-lived American sitcom “Love & Money.” Although the series only lasted for one season, Greer appeared in all thirteen episodes that were produced.
In 2002, she voiced a character for the animated comedy show “Family Guy.” This would prove to be the first of many voice-only roles, with more opportunities to follow on “Family Guy” in later years. Greer largely took on supporting roles or was only offered such acting gigs; nonetheless, it allowed her to switch back and forth between film and television seamlessly. In 2004, Greer acted opposite Jennifer Garner in the romantic comedy flick “13 Going on 30” and also “The Village” along with Joaquin Phoenix, Adrien Brody, and Sigourney Weaver. At the same time, she was playing the recurring role of Kitty Sanchez in the television show “Arrested Development.” Appearing in only a handful of episodes over three seasons allowed her to fill up her schedule with other bit-part roles.
The following few years continued with a variety of roles in both television and film. In 2009, Greer secured a main role in the animation sitcom “Archer”; one of the few times where she has been included as a main character. Over a period of four seasons, she has appeared in forty-nine episodes, easily making it her most played television role to date.
Greer appeared alongside George Clooney once again, this time in the critically acclaimed 2011 film “The Descendents.” Later that year, she married “Real Time with Bill Maher” producer Dean E. Johnsen.