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Rosie O'Donnell

Biography

One of the few stand-up comedians to find success in both movies and television, Rosie O'Donnell has become one of America's most beloved entertainers. At the age of 10, Rosie O'Donnell lost her mother to cancer. It has been said that after her mother's death, O'Donnell spent many, many hours watching TV in near-isolation, which fueled her love for big-name movie stars, a thing that would later come in handy when she had her own talk show. O'Donnell graduated from Long Island's Commack High School South, where she was named not only Most Popular, but was also named Homecoming Queen. She enrolled in Boston University but dropped out after a year to pursue comedy and acting on a more professional level. She was cast in television shows such as Gimme a Break and was picked to host VH1's Stand Up Spotlight. It was here that O'Donnell got a chance to showcase her own material and also prove herself in front of the camera. She handled both duties with aplomb and was hired on by VH1 as a regular VJ. From there, roles in movies such as A League of Their Own and the Flintstones followed. In the mid-1990s O'Donnell was tapped to host her own talk show. Where others had failed in this medium, O'Donnell thrived. America took to her down-to-earth nature and genuine enthusiasm in meeting celebrities and, of course, her sense of humor. O'Donnell used her celebrity to make the country aware of issues close to her heart: everything from Broadway openings to adopting children to gun control received airtime on the Rosie O'Donnell show. With her adoptive children growing up, O'Donnell decided to end her Emmy award-winning talk show and concentrate on raising her family. She still can be found lending her time and considerable talent to children's charities and various political causes.

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