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JUDD APATOW (Written and Directed by/ Produced by) is considered one of the most sought-after comedy minds in the business. He has been closely associated with many of the biggest comedy films in recent years.

Last year was very busy for Apatow with three major successes, starting with Universal Pictures' Forgetting Sarah Marshall, which he produced with Shauna Robertson, and was directed by Nicholas Stoller and written by Jason Segel. The film, starring Segel, Jonah Hill, Mila Kunis and Russell Brand, went on to make more than $100 million worldwide. Next up, he produced Sony Pictures' Step Brothers, which was released in July and earned more than $100 million domestically. The film starred dynamic duo Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly, with Adam McKay as writer/director. Ferrell co-wrote the film, and Reilly shared a "story by” credit.

Apatow immediately followed Step Brothers by producing the action-comedy Pineapple Express, a film written by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg, from a story by Apatow. The film, starring Rogen, James Franco and Danny McBride, centers on two buddies who get mixed up with a drug gang. Sony Pictures released the film in August and it opened No. 1 at the box office, nearly reaching $100 million worldwide. Other Apatow projects released last year were You Don't Mess With the Zohan, (which Apatow co-wrote with Sandler and Robert Smigel and which made more than $200 million worldwide), as well as the Apatow produced Drillbit Taylor, starring Owen Wilson.

Born in Syosset, New York, Apatow aspired to become a professional comedian at an early age. While still in high school, he created a radio show and began interviewing comedy personalities he admired, including Steve Allen, Howard Stern and John Candy. Some of his interviewees also included such then-unknowns as Jay Leno, Jerry Seinfeld and Garry Shandling. Thus inspired, he began performing his own stand-up routines by the end of his senior year.

Following an appearance on HBO's Young Comedians Special, Apatow eventually stopped performing in favor of writing. He wrote for the Grammy Awards, as well as cable specials for Roseanne and Jim Carrey, before going on to co-create and executive produce The Ben Stiller Show. Although the critically acclaimed show was canceled after only 12 episodes, it brought Apatow an Emmy Award for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Writing in a Variety or Music Program. Fresh from his Emmy win, Apatow joined The Larry Sanders Show in 1993 as a writer and consulting producer, and he would later serve as a co-executive producer and director of an episode during the show's final season.

Apatow is perhaps best recognized for his work as a producer and a writer on some of the most acclaimed television shows. He served as an executive producer of the critically praised, award-winning series Freaks and Geeks, which debuted in the 1999–2000 season. He also wrote and directed several episodes of the series, which, while no longer on the air, still maintains a following through DVD sales.

Other television credits include consulting producer of the animated series The Critic and executive producer and creator of the series Undeclared. Wanting to head to the big screen, Apatow made his feature film directorial debut on the 2005 hit comedy The 40-Year-Old Virgin, which he also co-wrote with the film's star, Steve Carell, for Universal Pictures. The film opened No. 1 and spent two weeks in the top perch before proceeding to gross more than $175 million globally.

The film garnered numerous awards and nominations including being named one of AFI's 10 Most Outstanding Motion Pictures of the Year, and it took home Best Comedy Movie at the 11th annual Critics' Choice Awards. The film also earned Apatow a nomination for Best Original Screenplay from the Writers Guild of America and received four MTV Movie Award nominations, including a win for Carell for Best Comedic Performance.

In 2006, teaming with Will Ferrell and Adam McKay, Apatow produced the hit feature comedy Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, which earned close to $150 million domestically and co-stars Will Ferrell, John C. Reilly and Sacha Baron Cohen.

Not one to relax, in 2007, Apatow released Universal Pictures' Knocked Up, his directorial follow-up to The 40-Year-Old Virgin, which Apatow also wrote and produced. Knocked Up grossed more than $200 million internationally and was named one of AFI's 10 Most Outstanding Pictures of the Year and nominated for Best Original Screenplay by the Writers Guild of America.

Next, Apatow produced Superbad, starring Jonah Hill and Michael Cera: a story centering around two co-dependent high-school seniors (Hill and Cera) who are forced to deal with separation anxiety after their plan to stage a booze-soaked party goes awry. The film grossed more than $120 million domestically for Sony Pictures.

Other film credits for Apatow include producing The Cable Guy, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, executive producing Kicking & Screaming, co-writing Fun With Dick and Jane and producing and co-writing Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story, which was nominated for two Golden Globes: Best Original Song—Motion Picture and Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture—Musical or Comedy (John C. Reilly).

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