Alex Borstein

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Alex Borstein
Alex Borstein by Gage Skidmore 3.jpg
BornAlexandrea Borstein
(1973-02-15) February 15, 1973 (age 41)
Highland Park, Illinois, U.S.
EducationSan Francisco State University
ACME Comedy Theatre
Occupationactress, writer, producer, comedian
Years active1993–present
Spouse(s)Jackson Douglas
(m. 1999–present)
ChildrenBarnaby Borstein Douglas
Henrietta Borstein Douglas
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Alex Borstein
Alex Borstein by Gage Skidmore 3.jpg
BornAlexandrea Borstein
(1973-02-15) February 15, 1973 (age 41)
Highland Park, Illinois, U.S.
EducationSan Francisco State University
ACME Comedy Theatre
Occupationactress, writer, producer, comedian
Years active1993–present
Spouse(s)Jackson Douglas
(m. 1999–present)
ChildrenBarnaby Borstein Douglas
Henrietta Borstein Douglas

Alexandrea "Alex" Borstein (born February 15, 1973)[1] is an American actress, writer, producer, and comedian. She is well known for her long-running role as Lois Griffin on the animated television series Family Guy, and as a cast member on the sketch comedy series MADtv. A native of Deerfield, Illinois, Borstein is a graduate of San Francisco State University, where she studied rhetoric. She was trained in improvisational comedy at the ACME Comedy Theatre, near Hollywood, California, and was selected to join MADtv after being scouted by talent agents who noticed her work at the theatre. She was a writer and voice actor for several television shows, including Casper, Pinky and the Brain, and Power Rangers: Zeo, before joining the cast of MADtv as a featured player, and later as a repertory player in 1997.

Early life[edit]

Borstein was born in Highland Park, Illinois, a suburb north of the city of Chicago, in 1973 (according to her own official website), though some sources still say 1971. Borstein has two elder brothers. Her parents, Irv and Judy Borstein, are both mental health professionals. She and her family are Jewish.[2][3] She attended San Francisco State University in San Francisco, California.


Borstein trained in improv at the ACME Comedy Theater, where she met her writing partner and future husband Jackson Douglas. Shortly after they began working together on the animated series Casper and Pinky and the Brain, Borstein left her position at an ad agency – where she had written print ads for Barbie – to become a full-time writer. In 1996, while still writing for Casper, Borstein worked on the show Power Rangers Zeo as the voice of Queen Machina, the queen of the Machine Empire.

In 1997, Borstein became a cast member on the third season of the sketch comedy show MADtv. She originally joined the cast as a featured player, but was upgraded to the repertory mid-season.

Borstein was perhaps best known on MADtv for her character Ms. Swan; her other recurring characters included Eracist Anne, "Stick Chick" Echo, singer Jasmine Wayne-Wayne, child prodigy Karen Goddard, lounge singer Shaunda, News at Six outside-the-studio reporter Sue Napersville, and Cordo the GAP troll. When Seth Green made recurring appearances on the show as mean boss Mr. Brightling, Borstein would play his mother, Mama Brightling.

While working on MADtv, Borstein met Seth MacFarlane, who was then preparing to launch the animated sitcom Family Guy on FOX (MacFarlane was originally supposed to create animated shorts for MADtv, but declined in favor of creating an independent series). MacFarlane cast Borstein as the voice of key character Lois Griffin. After the show's debut in January 1999, Family Guy was cancelled by the network in 2002 but returned in 2005; as well as her role as the voice performer for Lois and several other characters throughout the series (including a brief appearance as Ms. Swan in a 2005 episode), Borstein is also a producer and staff writer. She has made at least three guest appearances, once as Lois Griffin, on the Comedy Central animated program Drawn Together.

In 2000, Borstein was cast as Sookie St. James in the WB drama Gilmore Girls. She portrayed Sookie in the pilot, but her MADtv contract prevented her from continuing in the role, which was recast with Melissa McCarthy. Borstein made recurring appearances on Gilmore Girls throughout the show's run, first as the harpist Drella.

As an actress, she has made appearances in such films as Killers and Dinner for Schmucks. She played the school principal in The Lizzie McGuire Movie, the best friend of Halle Berry's character in Catwoman, and an employee at CBS News in Good Night, and Good Luck. She also had an uncredited cameo in the Will Ferrell movie Kicking & Screaming as an obnoxious coffee shop patron. She also had a small role in the movie Bad Santa.

Borstein was a co-host of GSN's Celebrity Blackjack in 2004. In addition, she also appeared as a comedian contestant on IFC's short-lived, comedy-driven game show Bunk in 2012.

Borstein was cast as a press secretary in the 2007 sitcom pilot The Thick of It, but the series was not picked up for broadcast. She can be seen in the upcoming comedy For Christ's Sake, which is directed by her real-life husband Jackson Douglas.[4]

Borstein at 2012 Comic-Con

In 2010, Borstein joined the first season staff of the Showtime comedy-drama Shameless, as a writer and supervising producer. In its second season she held the position of writer and consulting producer. She also guest starred in the first season episode "But at Last Came a Knock", as Lou Deckner.

Borstein's production company is called Crackerpants, Inc. In 2007, they released the DVD Drop Dead Gorgeous (In a Down-to-Earth Bombshell Sort of Way), a recording of a live performance at the Alex Theatre, with opening act Teddy Towne. The title comes from one of many actual female character breakdowns Borstein reads from to illustrate sexism in the industry.[5]

Borstein was nomminated for an Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Voice-Over Performance for her Family Guy episode "Lois Comes Out of Her Shell" (2013). Borstein is currently appearing in an American version of the comedy Getting On.

Personal life[edit]

Borstein is married to actor and writer Jackson Douglas, whom she met while studying improv at the ACME Comedy Theatre. Douglas proposed to her during the taping of a MADtv skit; the couple married in 1999. In the DVD commentary for the Family Guy episode "Stewie Kills Lois" – at the time, she was pregnant – she joked about the possibility of naming her baby Stewie. The have a son named Barnaby Borstein Douglas (born c. 2008) and a daughter named Henrietta Borstein Douglas (born October 1, 2012).[6]


2000Coyote UglyBidding Auction WomanUncredited
2003The Lizzie McGuire MovieMiss Ungermeyer
Bad SantaMilwaukee mom
2004Seeing Other PeopleTracy
2005Kicking & ScreamingObnoxious Hummer LadyUncredited
Stewie Griffin: The Untold StoryLois Griffin, Various charactersDirect-to-DVD; Voice Artist, Writer
DVDX Award for Best Screenplay (for a DVD Premiere Movie) (2006)
Good Night, and Good LuckNatalieNominated - Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture (2006)
2006Little ManJanet
2007The LookoutMrs. Lange
2009For Christ's SakeMrs. Marcus
2010KillersLily Bailey
Dinner for SchmucksMartha
2012TedHelen Bennett
ParaNormanMrs. HenscherVoice role

1993-1994Mighty Morphin Power RangersMadame WoeVoice role; 4 episodes
1996Power Rangers ZeoQueen MachinaVoice role; 42 episodes
Big Bad BeetleborgsCataclawsVoice role; Episode: "Yo Ho Borgs"
1997-2009MADtvHerself, Various characters124 episodes
Family GuyLois Griffin, Various charactersVoice Artist, Writer, Producer
Nominated - Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Voice-Over Performance (2013)
Nominated - Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Animated Program (2008)
2000-2005Gilmore GirlsVarious characters8 episodes
2002TitusNickyEpisode: "Bachelor Party"
2002-20033 SouthBeckyVoice role; 3 episodes
2003FriendsBitter Woman on StageEpisode: "The One with the Soap Opera Party"
FrasierEvelynEpisode: "Farewell, Nervosa"
2004Celebrity Blackjackas herselfas co-host of Season 1 only
2005–presentRobot ChickenVarious charactersVoice role; 9 episodes
2006American Dad!Doctor GuptaVoice role; Episode: "Roger 'n' Me"
Drawn TogetherJelly Donuts Leader, Lois Griffin, AIDS Walk CoordinatorVoice role; 2 episodes
2007Slacker CatsLatoyahVoice role; 2 episodes
2008-2009Seth MacFarlane's Cavalcade of Cartoon ComedyVarious charactersVoice role; 3 episodes
2009-2013The Cleveland ShowLois Griffin, Various charactersVoice role; 16 episodes
2009Glenn Martin, DDSClerkVoice role; Episode: "Deck the Malls"
2011–presentShamelessLou DecknerWriter, Consulting Producer
2011Night of the HurricaneLois GriffinVoice role; TV Special
2012Hot In ClevelandPreshiEpisode: "Rubber Ball"
Bunkas herselfas comedian contestant
2012, 2014WorkaholicsMontez's Wife2 Episodes
2012Robot Chicken DC Comics SpecialWonder Woman, Various charactersVoice role; TV Special
2012Family Guy: 200 Episodes LaterHerselfTV Special
2012-2013BunheadsSweetie Cramer, Hooker2 episodes
2013-presentGetting OnDawn Forchette6 Episodes

Video games
2006Family Guy Video Game!Lois Griffin, Various charactersSpike Video Game Award for Best Cast (2006)
2012Family Guy: Back to the MultiverseLois Griffin, Various characters


  1. ^ "FAQ (first question)". Retrieved July 25, 2012. 
  2. ^ Phipps, Keith (2006-11-20). "Random Rules: Alex Borstein". A.V. Club. Retrieved 2006-11-21. 
  3. ^ It's a MAD World. (2002-10-19). Retrieved on 2012-07-25.
  4. ^ For Christ's Sake (2010).
  5. ^ Drop Dead Gorgeous (In a Down to Earth Bombshell Sort of Way), Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, 2007
  6. ^ "Alex Borstein Welcomes Baby No. 2: Henrietta". Celebrity Baby Scoop. October 8, 2012. Retrieved April 23, 2014. 

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