That 70s Show Amy Adams

A Star is Born

5 Stars Who Got Their Start on That ’70s Show

Catch back-to-back That '70s Show episodes tonight starting at 6P.

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When That ’70s Show premiered back in 1998, the most famous cast member was probably Kurtwood Smith, who’d earned some notoriety for trying to kill Robocop. The teens responsible with carrying the series were largely unknown. Of course, they wouldn’t remain that way for long. The show would become a hit, and the cast would become big stars. Even today, names like Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis are more famous for their tabloid exploits and award nominations than their sitcom roots. But the casting department that struck gold pulling together this ensemble didn’t quit after the pilot. For eight seasons, That ’70s Show managed to cast future stars in small roles. Here are a few of our favorite celebrities who got their start back in the ’70s.

5. Reid Scott

Carsey-Werner Productions

Reid Scott may be best known as the narcissistic, career-obsessed Deputy Assistant to the Vice President on the Emmy winning HBO sitcom Veep, but That ’70s Show was actually his first gig on TV. He guest starred on the season 5 episode “Over the Hills and Far Away” as Eric’s competition for college girls. As you can imagine Eric lost that particular battle.


4. Jim Rash

Carsey-Werner Productions

Jim Rash may be an Academy Award-winning screenwriter (and the scene-stealing standout of the cult comedy Community), but he was still a journeyman actor and member of the Groundlings comedy troupe when he booked a recurring role on That ’70s Show as the flamboyant landlord of Fez and Kelso’s apartment building. Fenton and Fez were mortal enemies, and while their hatred was never explained on the show, one popular theory was that they shared a tryst gone bad, meaning Dean Pelton wasn’t Rash’s first character with fluid sexuality.


3. Erika Christensen

Carsey-Werner Productions

Erika Christensen was still a child actress in search of a grown-up part when she booked a guest star spot on That ’70s Show back in 2001. She played a charming Pricemart cashier who Red wants to set up with Eric, until she starts coming on to him. After a childhood spent playing precocious kids on shows like Touched by an Angel, and a Leave It To Beaver reboot, this would be her coming out as a grown woman, leading to parts like Julia Braverman-Graham on the long running NBC drama Parenthood.


2. Jimmy Pardo

Carsey-Werner Productions

While not a household name, Jimmy Pardo has carved out a niche as Conan O’Brien’s in-house comedian, warming up the crowd and popping up on the show in a variety of ways. He’s also the host of the popular podcast Never Not Funny, which has hosted everyone from “Weird Al” Yankovic to Jon Hamm. But early in his career, he got a break playing Stan, the sexiest radio station manager who fires Donna for not doing an ad in a bikini. Unfortunately, his role would be overshadowed by another guest star on the episode, Eliza Dushku, playing radio station assistant “Sizzling Sarah.” Maybe if he’d been willing to appear in that bikini himself, it would have made more of an impression.


1. Amy Adams

Carsey-Werner Productions

Amy Adams, Oscar nominee and modern day Lois Lane, only had a couple of parts to her name when she popped up in the season 2 episode “Burning Down the House,” as an unwanted guest at a party gone out of control. She would soon run through a litany of guest starring roles, on everything from Buffy the Vampire Slayer to West Wing, before getting her big break in the indie hit Junebug.

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Home Run

Hank Azaria Gets Thrown A Curve Ball

Brockmire Premieres April 5 at 10P

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Photo Credit: Everett Collection

Unless you’ve somehow missed every episode of the Simpsons since 1989, then surely you know that Hank Azaria is one of the most important character actors of our time. He’s so prolific and his voice is so dynamic that he’s responsible for more iconic personalities than most folks realize. Basically, he’s the great and powerful Oz — except that when you pull back the curtain the truth is actually more impressive. And now Hank is coming to IFC to bring yet another character to the TV pop culture hive mind in the new series Brockmire. Check out the trailer below.

Based on the following Funny or Die short and co-starring Amanda Peet, Brockmire follows the story of imploded major league sportscaster Jim Brockmire as he tries to resurrect his career by calling plays for a floundering minor league team in a podunk town.

The series is written by Joel Church-Cooper (Undateable) and produced by Funny or Die’s Mike Farah and Joe Farrell, meaning that there’s funny in front of the camera, funny behind the camera–funny all around. Sounds like a ball to us.

Brockmire premieres April 5 at 10P on IFC.

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Car Notes

Portlandia On People Who Can’t Park

Portlandia returns tonight at 10P on IFC.

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If flagrant bad parking takes nerve, then retaliatory note writing takes neuroses. Watch Fred and Carrie take passive aggression to next level in Car Notes, the new Portlandia web series presented by Subaru. The first episode is yours right here and now, and you can see every installment of Car Notes anytime online, on the IFC app and on demand.

Portlandia returns tonight at 10P on IFC.

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Nick Kroll and John Mulaney To Host Spirit Awards

The Spirit Awards Air February 25 LIVE on IFC.

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The 2017 Spirit Awards have finally found their frontmen: Nick Kroll and John Mulaney. And it’s no wonder. Just marvel in their splendid chemistry back when they appeared on Comedy Bang! Bang!:

The pair are prolific within the performing arts community: television (Kroll in The League and The Kroll Show, Mulaney as a writer of IFC’s own Documentary Now!), theater (including Broadway’s current Oh Hello Show), and stand-up comedy. In fact, it’s entirely possible that emceeing an awards show is one of the few remaining line items on their professional bucket lists.

It’s important to caveat this announcement, however. Unlike the bigger and more ubiquitously known awards shows, the Spirit Awards are not, well…boring. (We’re talking to you, Oscar.)

They’re funny. They’re honest. They have quality to match the red-carpet fanfare. And that’s alarmingly special. Last year’s show included some legitimately historic moments, like when transgender actress Mya Taylor won best supporting female, or Kate McKinnon’s hilarious and timely parody of Carol. See more highlights here to get the flavor of the Spirit Awards and read all about Film Independent to dig deeper.

The 2017 Spirit Awards air live February 25 at 5P ET exclusively on IFC.

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