Cheat Sheet: Neil Patrick Harris


Neil Patrick Harris

Date of Birth:

15th June 1973

Place of birth:

Albuquerque, New Mexico

Special moves:

Acting, singing, fake doctoring, MAGICIANING

Films include:

Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle, Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay, A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs, Beastly , The Smurfs

What you probably already know:

Star of stage, screens both small and silver and forever taking the limelight of our hearts, it feels like the dapper and effortlessly charismatic Neil Patrick Harris has spent the last few years charming his way across Hollywood. But actually, this lad has been a staple of the fame game from his youth. You’ll probably know him best as loveable, womanising rogue Barney from the CBS comedy How I Met Your Mother, as the presenter of this year’s Tony awards (who could forget “Broadway: It’s Not Just For Gays Anymore”), as the lead in The Smurfs movie or as That Bloke Who Went Up Against Mr Shoo in Glee (not that we have the limited edition soundtrack, or anything).

His trademark wry delivery, sharp wit, dulcet tones and dancing skillz means he is basically all the kinds of threat there are, and his constant willingness to parody himself (as seen in his Harold And Kumar outings where he plays a fictionalised version of himself) make him a joy to watch. He’s recently been awarded a Hollywood star, he’s been littered with Emmy nominations and awards for his TV work and is happily engaged to his long-term boyfriend – actor/chef David Burtka. Actor/chef? WE ARE JEALOUS OF THE LIFE YOU MUST LEAD, NEIL PATRICK HARRIS.

What You Might Not Know

Sure he’s the people’s champion for his excellent work on meeting mothers and the mysteries therein, but did you know Mr Harris actually got a Golden Globe nomination aged 15? Yep, he starred in a film called Clara’s Heart alongside Whoopi Goldberg, winning him critical acclaim for his portrait of a young lad mistrustful of a new addition to his family. A Whoopi Goldberg shaped addition.

And if that wasn’t enough for the young teen, he then went on to star in tv show Doogie Howser: MD and got nominated THE VERY NEXT YEAR for ANOTHER Golden Globe. The show followed a sixteen year old doctor, and what would become his trademark self-assuredness won him the part, as well as three additional seasons. He’s also a Broadway staple, having treaded the boards in productions including Sweeney Todd, Cabaret and Assassins, and he’s also directed a production of Rent.

Did we mention that he’s a magician? He bloody is. He’s president of the Academy of Magical Art (one of our favourite academies) and presented the World Magic Awards in 2008 with his usual ridiculous charm:

The thing about Neil Patrick Harris is that he has an uncanny ability to get people onside even when he’s starring in the most ridiculously dreadful things. He was the only redeeming feature of this year’s Beastly, the only redeeming feature of Cats And Dogs 2: Kitty Galore and pretty much the only redeeming feature of The Smurfs (save a madly brilliant performance from Hank Azaria). So why do we continue to love him so god-damn much? This is why:

Neil Patrick Harris quote:

“Joss Whedon does weird Shakespeare readings every month or two in his backyard, and casts different people in different parts. Sometimes you’re “second page on the left,” and sometimes you’re Benvolio. So I admire that, especially in Los Angeles, which isn’t really a city known for creative outlets. It’s nice to have someone like Joss around that likes that bohemian way.”

What to say at a dinner party:

“It’s interesting to see how Neil Patrick Harris has embraced entertainment across all platforms, from his stage and TV work to his Hollywood blockbusters and internet comedy series – he truly represents what it is to capitalise on a wide range of talents in the information age.”

What not to say at a dinner party:

“Wait… But he likes girls, right?”

Final thought:

Typically, actors playing themselves on film are listed “as himself” in the film’s credits. In his role as himself in Harold & Kumar Get the Munchies and Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay, his credit reads Neil Patrick Harris: Neil Patrick Harris. Such is the power of his acting.

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