Arleen Sorkin (born October 14, 1955) is a retired American actress, screenwriter, presenter and comedian. Sorkin is known for portraying Calliope Jones on the NBC daytime serial Days of Our Lives and for inspiring and voicing the DC Comics villain Harley Quinn in Batman: The Animated Series and the many animated series and video games that followed it.
|Born||October 14, 1955|
Washington, D.C., U.S.
|Occupation||Actress, screenwriter, comedian, presenter|
Life and careerEdit
Born in Washington, D.C., Sorkin began her career in cabaret in the late 1970s and early 1980s as a member of the comedy group The High-Heeled Women, alongside Mary Fulham, Tracey Berg, and Cassandra Danz. Sorkin is Jewish.[better source needed]
From 1987 to 1989, Sorkin had the role of Geneva, a sexy maid to yuppie couple Richard and Linda Phillips, on the Fox dramedy series Duet. She would reprise this role on one episode of Open House, the sequel series to Duet. In 1990, she went on to be the original female co-host on America's Funniest People. She also wrote for Tiny Toon Adventures.
In 1992, Sorkin was dismissed from America's Funniest People by Vin Di Bona. In response, Sorkin filed a lawsuit against Di Bona, claiming she was dismissed from the show due to her race, after ABC Chairman Dan Burke had suggested to Di Bona that Sorkin be replaced by an African-American or a person of another ethnic minority. Sorkin sought $450,000 for lost earnings, and an additional unspecified amount for harm to her professional reputation and emotional injury. She additionally claimed that after she denounced the move as being racially motivated, Di Bona changed plans and hired new cohost Tawny Kitaen, who is also white.
One of her more prominent roles was the wacky but lovable Calliope Jones, as seen on Days of Our Lives. She played this part from 1984 to 1990 and made return visits in 1992 and 2001. She reprised her role on the soap for the fourth time on February 24, 2006. She returned to Days for a limited run beginning on May 5, 2010.
She provided inspiration for and voiced the animated character Harley Quinn, the Joker's jester sidekick and lover, created by Paul Dini, a college friend of Sorkin's who created Harley for the DC Comics TV series Batman: The Animated Series. Harley went on to appear in DC comic books and in further animated TV series including The New Batman Adventures, Static Shock, and Justice League, as well as Gotham Girls, an internet cartoon series. Sorkin also voiced Harley in the animated film Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker and multiple video games. Following DC Universe Online, Sorkin retired from voicing Harley Quinn and therefore did not reprise her role in any subsequent DC projects. Sorkin was succeeded by several voice actresses, usually Tara Strong or Hynden Walch, in various media.
For the series Frasier, produced by her husband Christopher Lloyd, Sorkin would perform as a caller to Frasier Crane's radio show; the lines would later be dubbed over by a celebrity caller. In the final episode of Frasier, Sorkin had an onscreen part as the owner of a monkey.
|1983||Trading Places||Woman at Party||Uncredited|
|1985||From Here to Maternity||Judy||Television film|
|1986||Odd Jobs||Diner Waitress|
|1987||Paul Reiser Out on a Whim|
|Ted & Venus||Marcia|
|I Don't Buy Kisses Amymore||Monica|
|1993||Perry Mason: The Case of the Killer Kiss||Peg Ferman||Television film|
|Batman: Mask of the Phantasm||Ms. Bambi (voice)|
|2000||Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker||Harley Quinn / Harleen Quinzel (voice)||Direct-to-video|
|2004||Comic Book: The Movie||Ms. Q (Studio Secretary)|
||Days of Our Lives||Calliope Jones|
|1986–1989||The New Hollywood Squares||Panelist|
|1987||The New Mike Hammer||Traci Baskin||Episode: "The Last Laugh"|
|1989||Open House||Episode: "Parade of Homes"|
|1990||Dream On||Donna di Angelo||Episode: "Angst for the Memories"|
|Room for Romance||Episode: "Fool's Good"|
|1990–1992||America's Funniest People||Co-host|
|1991||Taz-Mania||Veronica (voice)||Episode: "Bewitched Bob"|
|1992–1994||Batman: The Animated Series||Harley Quinn / Harleen Quinzel (voice)||9 episodes|
|1997–1999||The New Batman Adventures||6 episodes|
|1997||Superman: The Animated Series||3 episodes|
|2000–2002||Gotham Girls||25 episodes|
|2003||Static Shock||Episode: "Hard as Nails"|
|Justice League||2 episodes|
|2004||Frasier||Rachel||Episode: "Goodnight, Seattle: Part 2"|
|1994||The Adventures of Batman & Robin||Harley Quinn / Harleen Quinzel||Sega CD version|
|2009||Batman: Arkham Asylum|||
|2011||DC Universe Online|
|1997||Picture Perfect||Screenplay, story|
Awards and nominationsEdit
|2009||Spike Video Game Awards||Best Voice||Batman: Arkham Asylum (as "Harley Quinn")||Nominated|
|1988||Daytime Emmy Awards||Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series||Days of Our Lives||Nominated|
|1985||Soap Opera Digest Awards||Outstanding Actress in a Supporting Role in a Daytime Serial||Won|
|Outstanding New Actress in a Daytime Serial||Won|
|1986||Outstanding Comic Relief Role on a Daytime Serial||Won|
|1988||Outstanding Comic Performance by an Actress: Daytime||Won|
|2011||Peabody Awards||Shared with Jessica Hernández (editor)||Bhutto||Won|
|2011||International Documentary Association||Video Source Award
Shared with Duane Baughman (director/producer)
Johnny O'Hara (director/writer)
Mark Siegel (producer)
Glenn Aveni (executive producer)
- "Arleen Sorkin". BehindTheVoiceActors.com. Archived from the original on June 18, 2016. Retrieved June 22, 2016.
- "Mark Hamill Pays Tribute to Original Harley Quinn Arleen Sorkin".
- @TheAnimatedBat (14 October 2020). "Happy Birthday to the Legendary..." (Tweet) – via Twitter.
- Arielle Kaplan (July 31, 2021). "For a Show About a Jewish Anti-Hero, 'Harley Quinn' Sure Has a Lot of Anti-Semitic Tropes". alma.
- "Former TV Co-Host Suing Producer". Buffalo News. 1993-04-18. Archived from the original on 2012-11-05. Retrieved 31 October 2010.
- Riesman, Abraham (February 17, 2015). "The Hidden Story of Harley Quinn and How She Became the Superhero World's Most Successful Woman". Vulture.com (New York). Archived from the original on February 18, 2015. Retrieved June 22, 2016.
- Jankiewicz, Pat (n.d.). "Quinn-tessentials: Interview with Arleen Sorkin". Starlog via Harley-Quinn.com. Archived from the original on May 16, 2008.
- Sorkin in Kevin Smith podcast "Fatman on Batman", July 7, 2012.
- Whipp, Glenn (August 22, 2014). "Christopher Lloyd's award-winning funny bones". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on August 22, 2014.
- "The art of writing and making films: Flushed Away". "About the Filmmakers", Flushed Away press kit, via The Writing Studio. Archived from the original on February 25, 2007.
- on YouTube
- The character also appears in Batman: Arkham City but is instead voiced by Tara Strong, who played Batgirl in the animated series