Ellen Lee DeGeneres (/dᵻˈdʒɛnərəs/; born January 26, 1958) is an American comedian, television host, actress, writer, and producer. DeGeneres starred in the popular sitcom Ellen from 1994 to 1998 and has hosted her syndicated TV talk show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, since 2003.
Her stand-up career started in the early 1980s, culminating in a 1986 appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson. Carson likened her to Bob Newhart, and invited her for an onscreen chat after her set; DeGeneres was the first female comedian invited by the iconic host to join him for such a discussion, at a time when such an invitation was widely regarded as one of the most influential endorsements available for a comic. As a film actress, DeGeneres starred in Mr. Wrong (1996), appeared in EDtv (1999), and The Love Letter (1999), and provided the voice of Dory in the Pixar animated films Finding Nemo (2003) and Finding Dory (2016); for Nemo, she was awarded the Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress, the first time an actress won a Saturn Award for a voice performance. In 2010, she was a judge on American Idol for its ninth season.