Carrie Brownstein is the co-creator, co-writer and co-star of Portlandia as well as an author and musician. She made her television career debut with the start of the show in 2011, and in 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2016 she received an Emmy® nomination in the category of “Outstanding Writing for a Variety Series.” In 2015 Carrie was nominated for a Critics’ Choice Award in the category of “Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series,” and the show has been nominated for an Emmy from 2015-2017 in the category of “Outstanding Variety Sketch Series.” In 2014 and 2018 Brownstein, along with the other writers, garnered a Writers Guild Awards nomination for “Outstanding Comedy/Variety Series” and they won in 2013. The show also received the prestigious Peabody Award for excellence in 2011.
Upcoming, Carrie will star as ‘Alice’ in Ike Barinholtz’s satirical thriller The Oath alongside Tiffany Haddish. The film – set in a near-future America in which citizens are required to take a loyalty oath — follows a man trying to make it through the Thanksgiving holiday without destroying his family. She also recently guest starred in the ninth season of HBO’s Golden Globe winning sitcom Curb Your Enthusiasm.
Recently, Brownstein has demonstrated her talents behind the camera. In 2016, she directed and wrote the six-minute short comedy The Realest Real for fashion brand Kenzo’s fall-winter campaign, starring Natasha Lyonne and Mahershala Ali. The Realest Real received high praise and became a finalist for the 2017 Tribeca X Award. The award highlights excellence in creative, original and authentic storytelling that is sponsored or underwritten by a brand. Also in 2017, she directed and acted in Comedy Centra’’s comedy series Idiotsitter, directed two episodes of the Golden Globe nominated hit series Casual, and two episodes of season seven of Portlandia. Additionally, Carrie will also be directing upcoming episodes for season eight of Portlandia and several episodes of A.P. Bio, a new comedy series from NBC about a former philosophy professor who takes a job teaching AP biology and uses his students to get back at the people in his life who have wronged him.
Brownstein will soon make her feature directorial debut with MGM’s fantasy comedy Fairy Godmother from a script by Chiara Atik, becoming the sixth female director to be hired by MGM in the last ten years. When sought-after Fairy Godmother Faye is hired by a mind-bogglingly gorgeous teenage client, Kenzie, to find her true love with the hottest prince in the land, Faye finds herself facing an unfamiliar challenge when the prince starts falling for her instead. The film, still in the early stages of development will be produced by Helen Estabrook, credited for Whiplash.
In 2015, Brownstein appeared in Todd Haynes’ six-time Academy Award nominated film Carol, starring Cate Blanchett, Rooney Mara, Kyle Chandler and Sarah Paulson. Brownstein was also a recurring role on Amazon’s Emmy and Golden Globe winning dramedy series Transparent and guest starred on FX’s hit animation show, Archer, as Dr. Sklodowska.
In 2015 Brownstein wrote her memoir, New York Times Notable Book Hunger Makes Me A Modern Girl, which is an intimate and revealing narrative of her escape from a turbulent family life into a world where music was the means toward self-invention, community, and rescue. Along the way, Brownstein chronicles the excitement and contradictions within the era’s flourishing and fiercely independent music subculture, including experiences that sowed the seeds for the observational satire Portlandia. The book received tremendous reviews. Los Angeles Times expressed Brownstein is “an American indie culture avatar — funny, smart and always on point.” Time Magazine’s Nolan Feeney praises the book, “If hipsters had a patron saint, it would be Carrie Brownstein…Hunger doesn’t try to enumerate every hat she’s ever worn, only what emboldened her to keep experimenting.”
Brownstein is writing Columbia Pictures’ Lost In Austen, a remake of the British TV miniseries. The original script was written by the late Nora Ephron and Sam Mendes is set to produce the film adaption alongside the miniseries original producer, Mammoth Screen. Set in modern-day New York, the film follows Amanda, an avid Jane Austen fan, who swaps lives with Austen’s fictional character, Elizabeth Bennet.
Brownstein first rose to prominence as a member of the critically acclaimed rock band Sleater-Kinney which became well known during the defining feminist punk-rock movement in the 1990s. Legendary music critic Greil Marcus cited Sleater-Kinney as “America’s best rock band” in 2001. Brownstein was named one of the top female electric guitarists by Elle Magazine and Rolling Stone Magazine lists Sleater-Kinney’s song “Dig Me Out” as “One of the 50 Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time.” In 2015 Sleater-Kinney released their eighth album, titled No Cities To Love.
Brownstein’s writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Believer, Slate and numerous anthologies on music and culture.