Melissa Villaseñor

Melissa Anne Villaseñor[1] (/ˌvjəsɪnˈjɔːr/ VEE-yə-sin-YOR; born October 9, 1987)[2] is an American actress, stand-up comedian, impressionist, visual artist and singer. She is a cast member on Saturday Night Live, having joined in the 42nd season in 2016.[3] Her other credits include voice work on several episodes of OK K.O.! Let's Be Heroes and Adventure Time and a contestant on the sixth season of America's Got Talent.

Melissa Villaseñor
Melissa Villasenor (Sad People Talking) 6843626905.jpg
Villaseñor in Los Angeles, California in February 2012
Born (1987-10-09) October 9, 1987 (age 33)
Whittier, California, U.S.
MediumStand-up, film, television, music, art
NationalityAmerican
Years active2010–present
Websitemelissavillasenor.com
Villaseñor playing ukelele onstage
Villaseñor onstage
Villaseñor guesting on a web series, discussing BurgerTime in a rideshare

Early lifeEdit

Villaseñor was born and raised in Whittier, California, and attended the Catholic Ramona Convent Secondary School in Alhambra, California.[4] She is of Mexican descent.[5][6] At fifteen, Villaseñor started stand-up at the Laugh Factory Comedy Camp in Hollywood, California.[7]

CareerEdit

Villaseñor was a semi-finalist in season 6 of America's Got Talent.[6] Previously, she was selected for the New Faces lineup in the 2010 Just for Laughs Montreal Comedy Festival. She has also done voice work for the animated shows Adventure Time, Family Guy and TripTank.[8] Villaseñor appeared on the second season of HBO's Crashing.[9]

Villaseñor also makes visual art and released her debut album Dreamer in October 2019.[10]

Villaseñor helped Rob Cantor create his viral "29 Celebrity Impressions, 1 Original Song" video to promote his album, Not a Trampoline; she sang impressions of Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, and Björk.[11]

Saturday Night LiveEdit

Villaseñor was introduced as a featured player on the October 1, 2016, episode of SNL, alongside Mikey Day and Alex Moffat.[12] Her debut was an impression of Sarah Silverman in the Family Feud: Political Edition sketch.[12] Villaseñor is the second Latina cast member after Noël Wells, who is a quarter Mexican,[13] and the first Latina to be promoted to repertory status.[14] She was promoted to the cast of repertory players in season 44.[15] She previously auditioned for the show in 2009. She did several impressions but was not hired. Instead, Nasim Pedrad and Jenny Slate were hired.[16]

Personal lifeEdit

After Villaseñor became a cast member of SNL in 2016, she deleted tweets she had previously written that some viewed as racist. Most of the tweets uncovered by media publications had been posted in 2010 and 2011. Villaseñor wrote tweets such as, "A bossy black lady at my temp looks exactly like steve erkel. Ugly". SNL and Villaseñor declined to comment on the alleged racist tweets.[17][18][5] Villaseñor defended the tweets as "trying to be edgy," and said she didn't regret the deletions.[15] In 2018, she told Elizabeth Blair on Weekend Edition Saturday, "I'm flawed like everyone else, and yeah, I just wanted to make sure I was perfect."[15]

Celebrity impressionsEdit

Villaseñor describes herself as a comedian and impressionist.[19] She has performed various impressions for America's Got Talent, First Impressions, her YouTube channel, and SNL including Owen Wilson, Gwen Stefani, Jennifer Lopez, Kristen Wiig,[20] Christina Aguilera, Britney Spears and Sarah Silverman.[21]

FilmographyEdit

Film

Year Title Role Notes
2010 The 41-Year-Old Virgin Who Knocked Up Sarah Marshall and Felt Superbad About It[22] Sarah
2016 Laid in America[6] Ms. Hopkins
2018 Ralph Breaks the Internet[23] Taffyta Muttonfudge (voice) Replaces Mindy Kaling
2019 Toy Story 4[24] Karen Beverly (voice)
2020 Hubie Halloween Cat Owner Karen

Television

Year Title Role Notes
2011 America's Got Talent[6] Herself/contestant Semi-finalist
2012 Family Guy[22] Nora Ephron (voice) Episode: "Tom Tucker: The Man and His Dream"
2012–16 Adventure Time[22] Various/Additional voices 11 episodes
2014–16 TripTank[22] Various (voice) 4 episodes
2015 Pickle and Peanut[22] Darla (voice) Episode: "Francine/Cell Phone Tree"
2016 First Impressions[25] Herself/contestant Episode: "Yvette Nicole Brown"
2016–present Saturday Night Live[22][15] Herself/various 85 episodes
2017 F Is for Family[26] Additional voices 2 episodes
2017–19 OK K.O.! Let's Be Heroes[15] Various voices 25 episodes
2017 The David S. Pumpkins Halloween Special Additional voices Television Special
2018 Crashing[9] Herself Episode: "NACA"
2018 Barry[27] Waitress Episode: "Chapter One: Make Your Mark"
2018–19 American Dad![26] Various voices 2 episodes
2019 Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee[28] Herself Episode: "Melissa Villaseñor"
2020 Awkwafina Is Nora from Queens[29] Performer Episode: "Paperwork"

Awards and nominationsEdit

Year Work Award Result
2017 OFTA Television Award for Best Ensemble in a Variety, Reality or Non-Fiction Program Saturday Night Live Won
2018 Won
BTVA Television Voice Acting Award for Best Vocal Ensemble in a New Television Series OK K.O.! Let's Be Heroes Nominated
BTVA Voice Acting Award for Breakthrough Voice Actress of the Year Nominated
2019 OFTA Television Award for Best Ensemble in a Variety, Reality or Non-Fiction Program Saturday Night Live Won
2020 Won
OFTA Television Award for Best Female Performance in a Variety Program Nominated

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Melissa Anne Villasenor, Born 10/09/1987 in California | CaliforniaBirthIndex.org". www.californiabirthindex.org.
  2. ^ Mountford, Jayne (October 2, 2016). "Who Is Melissa Villaseñor? Watch SNL Cast Member's Jennifer Lopez Impression". Latin Times. Archived from the original on July 28, 2020.
  3. ^ Wilstein, Matt (September 12, 2016). "SNL's First Latina Cast Member Melissa Villaseñor Is an Impression Machine". The Daily Beast. Retrieved October 1, 2016.
  4. ^ Amorosi, A. D. (August 6, 2018). "SNL star Melissa Villaseñor reveals the secret behind her celebrity impressions". Metro Philadelphia.
  5. ^ a b Blay, Zeba (September 23, 2016). "First 'SNL' Latina Cast Member Caught Deleting Racist Tweets". HuffPost. Retrieved November 4, 2019.
  6. ^ a b c d Andrews, Travis M. (September 23, 2016). "Melissa Villaseñor, of 'America's Got Talent' fame, becomes SNL's first Latina cast member". The Washington Post. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
  7. ^ Staff. "Melissa Villasenor". USA Network. USA Network. Retrieved April 4, 2018.
  8. ^ Slead, Evan (September 12, 2016). "Who is Melissa Villaseñor? Get to know SNL's newest cast member". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved October 1, 2016.
  9. ^ a b White, Chad (February 26, 2018). ""NACA" Crashing Review". C+ Comedy. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
  10. ^ Contreras, Felix; Garsd, Jasmine (January 10, 2020). "SNL's Melissa Villaseñor on the Pop Punks and Pop Divas That Inspired Dreamer". NPR. Retrieved May 10, 2020.
  11. ^ "29 Celebrity Impressions Music Video Was a Hoax; Singer Reveals 'Making Of' Video". yahoo.com. Retrieved June 14, 2020.
  12. ^ a b Evans, Greg (October 2, 2016). "'SNL' Surprise: Newcomers Mikey Day, Alex Moffat & Melissa Villaseñor Actually Make Good, Strong Impressions". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
  13. ^ https://www.laweekly.com/snl-hires-its-first-latina-cast-member-and-shes-from-l-a/ LA Weekly
  14. ^ Villafañe, Veronica (September 30, 2016). "SNL Starts New Season With Debut Of First Latina Cast Member, Latino Writer And Lin-Manuel Miranda". Forbes. Retrieved March 21, 2017.
  15. ^ a b c d e Blair, Elizabeth (September 29, 2018). "A Top Impressionist, Melissa Villaseñor Is Finding Her Own Voice On 'SNL'". NPR. Weekend Edition Saturday. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
  16. ^ "Ep 12 - Comedy and Depression | SNL's Melissa Villasenor". YouTube. The Gray Escape. March 10, 2016. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
  17. ^ "'SNL's' Latina Cast Member Controversy: Melissa Villaseñor Deleted Racist Tweets". IndieWire. September 24, 2016. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
  18. ^ Jones, Marcus (September 22, 2016). "The First Latina "SNL" Cast Member Has Been Deleting Offensive Tweets". BuzzFeed News. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
  19. ^ "Impressions". melissavillasenor.com.
  20. ^ "Meet the New 'SNL' Castmembers: Who are Mikey Day, Alex Moffat and Melissa Villasenor?". The Hollywood Reporter.
  21. ^ "A Top Impressionist, Melissa Villaseñor Is Finding Her Own Voice On 'SNL'". NPR. September 29, 2018. Retrieved August 6, 2020.
  22. ^ a b c d e f Jones, Adrienne (September 12, 2016). "SNL Just Added Two More Brand New Cast Members". Cinema Blend. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
  23. ^ Desta, Yohana (November 21, 2018). "Ralph Breaks the Internet's Cast List Is Full of Fun, Surprising Easter Eggs". Vanity Fair. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
  24. ^ DeBruge, Peter (June 13, 2019). "Film Review: 'Toy Story 4'". Variety. Retrieved June 14, 2019.
  25. ^ "Melissa Villaseñor". USA Network. Retrieved May 10, 2020.
  26. ^ a b Haring, Bruce (June 14, 2018). "SNL's Melissa Villaseñor Signs With WME". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
  27. ^ Serota, Maggie (March 26, 2018). "HBO's Barry Plays on the Subtler Charms of Bill Hader". Spin. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
  28. ^ Guzmán, Rafer (July 19, 2019). "'Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee' review: Affable entertainment from Jerry Seinfeld and pals". Newsday. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
  29. ^ Ferguson, LaToya (December 2, 2019). "Awkwafina Is Nora from Queens in Comedy Central's Official Trailer". Indie Wire. Retrieved May 10, 2020.

External linksEdit