Date of Birth : Jun 17th 1963
Academy Award-nominated American actor and television personality, who rose to stardom as the first host of E!’s Talk Soup.
Born in Logansport, Indiana, the son of Suzanne, a homemaker, and Edward Kinnear, a career diplomat who worked for the US State Department. He has two brothers–one named James, Vice President-Investments at Wachovia Securities in Arizona (born in 1957), and one named Steve, a business manager who works for the Billy Graham Training Center in North Carolina (born in 1959). As a child, Greg and his family moved around a lot, from places as far as Beirut, Lebanon to Athens, Greece, and was therefore part of a group sometimes referred to as Foreign Service Brats. While a student at the American Community Schools in Athens, Greece, Greg first ventured into the role of talk show host with his radio show “School Daze With Greg Kinnear”. Returning to the States for a college education, he attended the University of Arizona in Tucson, where he graduated in 1985 with a degree in broadcast journalism.
From Arizona, Kinnear headed out to Los Angeles, where he landed his first job as a marketing assistant with Empire Entertainment. Following this job he auditioned to be an MTV VJ, but failed and became a host and on-location reporter for the channel. When that job went under he had bit parts on such television shows as L.A. Law and Life Goes On. Later, he would host a short-lived game show, College Mad House, which was spun-off from the kids’ show, Fun House. After that, he would later become the creator, co-executive producer, and host of Best of the Worst which aired from 1990 to 1991. He then received his breakthrough when he became the first host of Talk Soup until 1995, when he left the show for the NBC late-night talk show, Later with Greg Kinnear (1994). Ironically while working as a reporter, he was on location at the 1989 premeire of the film Batman, he would later star in As Good As It Gets with Jack Nicholson who played the Joker in Batman.
It was also in 1994 that Kinnear had his first big screen role, as a talk show host yet again in the Damon Wayans comedy Blankman. In 1995 he won the part of the David Larrabee in Sydney Pollack’s remake of Billy Wilder’s 1954 classic Sabrina. He then received the lead role in the 1996 comedy Dear God. In 1997, Greg was cast in James L. Brooks’ blockbuster comedy-drama As Good as It Gets, for which he received an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor. His next film, the romantic comedy A Smile Like Yours, had him starring opposite Lauren Holly as part of a couple trying to have a baby. The film met with lukewarm reviews and a low box office, but his next film, You’ve Got Mail, struck gold. He played Meg Ryan’s significant other, a newspaper columnist wholly unlike what was to be his next character, that of Captain Amazing in the 1999 summer action film Mystery Men. His next films were Nurse Betty, Loser, and Someone Like You.
In 2002, Kinnear starred in the movie Auto Focus about the life and murder of actor Bob Crane. In 2006, Kinnear co-starred with Steve Carell in the Oscar-winning comedy-drama Little Miss Sunshine, and with Mark Wahlberg in Invincible, based on the true story of a bartender who tries out for the Philadelphia Eagles football team. He also appeared in Fast Food Nation, playing a fast food executive who finds out some shocking secrets about his company.