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JOAN CUSACK (Abby Mallard) gives a beautiful and grounded vocal performance as Chicken Little's sensible gal pal, Abby Mallard. A voracious reader of magazines, Abby is quick to share a bit of advice with her friends and is known to enjoy karaoke with her friends.

This is Cusack's second major starring role as an animated character for Disney, following her alternately hilarious and heartbreaking turn as Jessie the Cowgirl in the Disney/Pixar hit "Toy Story 2.”

Raised in Evanston, Illinois, Cusack studied acting at the Piven Theatre Workshop. While at the University of Wisconsin in Madison where she graduated with a degree in English, she appeared with the improv group "The Ark.” She made her screen debut in Tony Bill's film "My Bodyguard” in 1980, followed by "Class” in 1983 and John Hughes' "Sixteen Candles” in 1984, in which she stole scene after scene playing a near-silent geekish girl with a tragic set of orthodonture.

Cusack was picked to star in the cast of "Saturday Night Live” during the 1985-6 season, her first regular episodic television role. Her other TV credits include a starring role alongside Anne Bancroft in the BBC production of Paddy Chayefsky's "The Mother” in 1994; "It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie” for NBC in 2002; and the voice of the narrator in "Peep and the Big Wide World,” an animated science primer for youngsters from WGBH. In 2001-2 she starred in her own ABC sitcom, "What About Joan.”

The actress has appeared in such films as "Ice Princess” with Kim Cattrall, "Raising Helen” with her acting sibling John Cusack, "School of Rock” with Jack Black, "Arlington Road” with Jeff Bridges, "High Fidelity” from director Stephen Frears, "Cradle Will Rock” with Bill Murray, and "Where the Heart Is” with Natalie Portman. She has played comedic femme fatales in "Addams Family Values,” "Grosse Pointe Blank,” "Nine Months,” "The Cabinet of Dr. Ramirez,” "Corrina, Corrina,” "Toys,” "Hero,” "My Blue Heaven,” "Men Don't Leave,” "Broadcast News,” "Say Anything,” and "The Last Shot.”

Cusack's theatrical work includes the premiere of "Brilliant Traces” at New York's Cherry Lane Theatre, "The Road” at La Mama, and Imogen in "Cymbeline” at the Public Theatre in New York. She portrayed Helena in "A Midsummer Night's Dream” at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago, and was directed by Joanne Akalaitis in "Tis a Pity She's a Whore.”

Cusack has received two Academy Award® nominations, one for her portrayal of a Staten Island secretary in "Working Girl” from director Mike Nichols, and the other for her role as Kevin Kline's jilted bride in the critically-acclaimed "In & Out.” She won an American Comedy Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture for her role in "Runaway Bride” opposite Julia Roberts and Richard Gere. She also recently received a Daytime Emmy® Award nomination for her work in "Peep and the Big Wide World.”

The actress resides in Chicago with her husband, attorney Dick Burke, and their two sons, Dylan and Miles.


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