All right, that’s more like it, people–stepping back up after a somewhat wimpy outing last week. I asked what actor was in Starship Troopers, Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle, and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs: 42 of you guessed and 42 of you got it correct. Woot!
But getting it correct first was one of our favorite members of the redblog reader family, Moviegoer123! She’s been a very enthusiastic young commenter around these parts for several years and an avid quiz player–and yesterday she hopped in there and beat the usual Threes champ 2sa by almost 15 minutes. Get to work on that homemade construction-paper medal, Moviegoer! Another regular quiz player and friend of redblog, Paul N., was in third. Congrats all!
NPH’s on-screen debut was as the cute, precocious kid (a sort pre-Jonathan Lipnicki) in Clara’s Heart, a 1988 movie starring Whoopi Goldberg for which Harris received a Golden Globe supporting actor nomination. The following year, 16-year-old Neil entered all our lives (and hearts!) in the title role of TV’s Doogie Howser, MD.
But after Doogie went off the air in 1993, Harris slipped under the radar for a few years, mostly appearing in TV movies and the occasional short-lived series, such as Capitol Critters. In fact the next time many of us got a good look at NPH was in 1997 satiric masterpiece (I truly believe that) Starship Troopers, where all of a sudden he looked more like Doogie Howser, Head of the SS.
The ’00s brought another one-season-and-done TV series (Stark Raving Mad) and some superhero cartoon voicework. Meanwhile Harris was appearing on Broadway in Proof, Cabaret and Assassins. But in 2004 the world was finally exposed to the full-blown NPH awesomeness, when he played “himself” in Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle as an out-of-control party guy rolling on E and chasing strippers.
The following year Harris tweaked that self-mocking image to play the smug cad Barney on How I Met Your Mother, and then came his brilliance in Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog and hosting awards shows like the Tonys and Emmys.
And two years ago he reached (to me, at least) a career high as the voice of Stevie the Monkey in one of my favorite animated movies of the past few years, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. (Still available at redbox!)
Up next is a starring role this summer as the human foil in The Smurfs and appearances this coming holiday season in The Muppets and, of course, A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas.