|Born||April 15, 1963|
Joliet, Illinois, U.S.
|Occupation||Comedy writer, producer, actress|
Paula Pell (born April 15, 1963) is an American comedy writer, producer, and actress, best known for her work writing for the sketch series Saturday Night Live.
Pell was a writer for Saturday Night Live from 1995 to 2013. She is credited with creating some of its memorable characters such as Debbie Downer, the Culps, Justin Timberlake’s Omeletteville mascot, and the Spartan Cheerleaders, among others. She also was a producer and writer for the sitcom 30 Rock, and is credited with writing the episodes "Argus" and "Floyd". In 2006, a pilot she wrote, Thick and Thin, was picked up by NBC for 13 episodes, with Pell as executive producer, but it never aired in the United States. Pell has worked with Judd Apatow providing additional writing for the films Bridesmaids and This is 40.
As an actress, Pell appeared in several episodes of 30 Rock as the wife of Pete Hornberger, and played the mother of Ron Swanson in a 2011 episode of Parks and Recreation. She has also appeared as an extra or in bit parts in dozens of SNL sketches. Pell voices Gadget Gal in the Hulu original series The Awesomes.
She has a small cameo in the 2013 comedy film Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues. She co-created web series Hudson Valley Ballers with fellow SNL writer and long time friend James Anderson with whom she also co-stars. Tina Fey produced and starred in Pell's first feature screenplay, Sisters (2015). Pell also played the dream producer and Mom's Anger in the 2015 Pixar film Inside Out. In 2016–2018, she guest-starred in the TV series Love as Erika. She also played a character based on Elaine Stritch in the mockumentary musical episode Co-op on Documentary Now! She played Helen Henry DeMarcus on the show, A.P. Bio. She also plays Aunt Mo in the Showtime series SMILF.
Pell co-starred alongside several other Saturday Night Live alumnae in the 2019 Netflix original comedy Wine Country.
On August 10, 2020, the comedy-mystery Mapleworth Murders, which she also co-wrote and executive produced, aired on Quibi.
In 2021, she currently stars as Gloria McManus in the Peacock comedy series Girls5eva.
Pell was born in Joliet, Illinois. She has stated she wanted to be an actor from an early age and studied acting and visual art at Orlando's Seminole Community College and the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. She took a job at Walt Disney World, working in the nightclubs of the adults-only Pleasure Island section of the park.
Pell is openly gay, and was married for 17 years before getting divorced. She later married Janine Brito on November 13, 2020.