Alyson Hannigan

Alyson Hannigan Headshot

Actress

Birth Name: Alyson Lee Hannigan

Birth Date: March 24, 1974

Age: 50 years old

Birth Place: Washington, D.C.

Spouses: Alexis Denisof

Often playing socially awkward but ultimately lovable characters, actress Alyson Hannigan carved a niche for herself in some of the more popular television and film franchises of the day. After making her film debut in the Dan Aykroyd comedy "My Stepmother Is an Alien" (1988), she quickly landed the first of her many fan-favorite roles, beginning with wallflower Willow Rosenberg on the popular genre series, "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" (The WB, 1997-2001; UPN, 2001-03).

In addition to making regular appearances on the "Buffy" spin-off, "Angel" (The WB, 1999-2004), Hannigan also voiced one of the most-quoted lines of film dialogue of the decade in the teen sex comedy "American Pie" (1999). The surprise hit of the year, it quickly spawned several sequels, "American Pie 2" (2001), "American Wedding" (2003) and "American Reunion" (2012).

Still riding the wave of popularity enjoyed by the "Pie" cast, she switched gears and returned to television with the hit sitcom, "How I Met Your Mother" (CBS, 2005-14), starring alongside another talented cast that included Neil Patrick Harris and Jason Segel. Quirky, yet endearing, Hannigan had both the talent and appeal to ensure a lengthy career as an in-demand ensemble player.

Born March 24, 1974 in Washington D.C. to Albert Hannigan and Emilie Posner, Hannigan grew up in Atlanta, GA with her real estate agent mother after her parents' divorce in 1972. The camera loved this auburn-haired actress from an early age. At only three months old, she was featured in an instructional film, "Active Parenting" (1974).

Hannigan began to model as a child, posing for close to 100 print advertisements before making the transition into commercial acting. At the age of four, Hannigan landed her first commercial, promoting Duncan Hines cookie mix. She was later featured in a number of national TV commercials, including campaigns for McDonald's and Oreo cookies.

Growing up in Atlanta, Hannigan attended the Northside School of the Performing Arts. With her burgeoning success in commercial acting, the 11-year-old Hannigan and her mother relocated to Los Angeles so that she could pursue her career more seriously.

Hannigan's first breakthrough role came in 1988 when she was cast as Dan Aykroyd's suspicious daughter in the misbegotten comedy, "My Stepmother Is an Alien." She then landed a regular role on the ABC sitcom, "Free Spirit" (1989-90) and went on to land a number of other small television roles while still in school, including spots on "Roseanne" (ABC, 1988-1997), "The Torkelsons" (NBC, 1991-93), "Touched by an Angel" (CBS, 1994-2003) and "Picket Fences" (CBS, 1992-96).

After graduating high school at North Hollywood High in 1992, Hannigan took some time off to attend college at California State University, where she majored in psychology. Returning to work in 1997, Hannigan landed her biggest break yet when she was cast as Willow Rosenberg, Buffy's (Sarah Michelle Gellar) quirky best friend on Joss Whedon's cult TV series, "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" (The WB, 1997-2001; UPN, 2001-03).

With her newfound recognition, Hannigan started landing roles in a number of films geared towards a teenage audience, including "Dead Man on Campus" (1998), "Boys and Girls" (2000), and her biggest film to date - the unexpected teen sex comedy hit, "American Pie" (1999). Playing off her natural geekiness in the latter, Hannigan portrayed the sweetly perverted, flute-playing band geek Michelle Flaherty opposite love interest Jason Biggs.

Hannigan uttered the franchise's most infamous line: "One time, at band camp," culminating in a hilariously X-rated explanation of what really did happen at band camp with that flute. The actress reprised her "Pie" role in the sequels "American Pie 2" (2001) and later, more prominently in the disappointing "American Wedding" (2003).

Crossing over to the "Buffy" spin-off, "Angel" (The WB, 1999-2004), Hannigan reprised her role as Willow Rosenberg, appearing on the series in a number of episodes. In 2004, Hannigan made her stage debut opposite Luke Perry, starring in a stage adaptation of "When Harry Met Sally" at the Theatre Royal Haymarket in London's West End.

Returning to series television in 2005, Hannigan guest-starred on "Veronica Mars" (UPN, 2004-07) and landed a regular spot on the CBS sitcom hit "How I Met Your Mother" (2005-14) portraying kindergarten teacher Lily Aldrin. With such a workload, Hannigan found time to return to the big screen in the 2006 send-up of cheesy romantic chick flicks, "Date Movie," a modest hit.

Primarily occupied with her regular work on her ongoing hit "How I Met Your Mother," Hannigan made room in her schedule to guest star in a 2011 episode of "The Simpsons" (Fox, 1989- ), as a potential love-interest for a decidedly indifferent Bart.

Briefly back on the big screen after a five year absence, she popped up with a small supporting role in the romantic-comedy, "Love, Wedding, Marriage" (2011) alongside real-life husband and former "Buffy/Angel" co-star, Alexis Denisof. As "How I Met Your Mother" enjoyed continued success in its seventh season as one of network TV's most popular sitcoms, Hannigan and the old gang from East Great Falls returned once more to relive past infamies and endure fresh embarrassments in "American Reunion" (2012), the third sequel to the raunchy sex-comedy franchise which saw all the original cast back on board.

Credits

Office RaceStream

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Pat
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AdorablenessStream

Self
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Martha Gets Down and Dirty

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The Drew Barrymore ShowStream

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Earth to Ned

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83%

Girl Scout Cookie ChampionshipStream

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Reality
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OutmatchedStream

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Beth
Series
2020
22%

Flora and Ulysses

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Phyllis Buckman
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2020

The Kelly Clarkson ShowStream

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Talk
2019

Access Daily

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Show
2019

Pure Secrets, Sin and Salvation

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Kim Possible: Extras

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Dr. Ann Possible
Movie
2019

Abducted: The Mary Stauffer Story

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2019

MasterChef Junior: Celebrity Showdown

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2018

Today 3rd Hour

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2018

Fancy NancyStream

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Claire
Series
2018

Penn & Teller: April Fool Us Day

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2018

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Chuck
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2018

The Gong Show

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2017

The $100,000 PyramidStream

Guest
Game Show
2016

Do You Take This Man

Actor
Rachael
Movie
2016

The McCarthysStream

Guest Star
Pam
Series
2014
58%

How I Met Your Mother: Extras

Actor
Show
2014

The Queen Latifah Show

Guest
Talk
2013

Whose Line Is It Anyway?Stream

Guest
Series
2013

Hollywood Game Night

Guest
Game Show
2013

Sofia the FirstStream

Guest Voice
Winter
Series
2012

Live! With Kelly and Michael

Guest
Talk
2012

The Making Of: American Reunion

Actor
Show
2012

American ReunionStream

Actor
Michelle
Movie
2012
45%

Penn & Teller: Fool UsStream

Host
Reality
2011

The Talk

Guest
Talk
2010

Gordon Ramsay: Cookalong Live

Guest
Show
2009

Watch What Happens Live With Andy CohenStream

Guest
Talk
2009

The Goode Family

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Show
2009

Late Night With Jimmy Fallon

Guest
Talk
2009

The Bonnie Hunt Show

Guest
Talk
2008

Chelsea Lately

Actor
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2007

The Better Show

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2007

Rachael Ray ShowStream

Guest
Talk
2006

Date Movie

Actor
Julia
Movie
2006

How I Met Your MotherStream

Actor
Lily Aldrin
Series
2005
84%

The Martha Stewart Show

Guest
Reality
2005

Dancing With the StarsStream

Contestant
Reality
2005

Robot ChickenStream

Guest Voice
Series
2005

American DadStream

Guest Voice
Peasant Daughter
Series
2005

American DadStream

Voice
Lexie
Series
2005

The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson

Guest
Talk
2005

Veronica MarsStream

Guest Star
Series
2004
91%

The Ellen DeGeneres Show

Guest
Talk
2003

Pepsi Smash

Host
Show
2003

Jimmy Kimmel Live!Stream

Guest
Talk
2003

American WeddingStream

Actor
Michelle
Movie
2003
53%

Last Call With Carson Daly

Guest
Talk
2002

Live With Regis and Kelly

Guest
Show
2001

American Pie 2Stream

Actor
Michelle
Movie
2001
50%

Beyond the City Limits

Actor
Lexi
Movie
2001

Boys and Girls

Actor
Beth
Movie
2000

AngelStream

Guest Star
Series
1999

The Daily Show With Jon StewartStream

Guest
Talk
1999

American PieStream

Actor
Michelle
Movie
1999
61%

Hayley Wagner, Star

Actor
Jenna Jakes
Movie
1999

The Wild ThornberrysStream

Guest Voice
Series
1998

That '70s ShowStream

Guest Star
Series
1998

Dead Man on Campus

Actor
Lucy
Movie
1998

The View

Guest
Talk
1997

Buffy the Vampire SlayerStream

Actor
Willow Rosenberg
Series
1997
85%

King of the HillStream

Guest Voice
Stacey Gibson
Series
1997

For My Daughter's Honor

Actor
Kelly
Movie
1996

Touched by an AngelStream

Guest Star
Series
1994

Inside the Actors Studio

Guest
Talk
1994

Late Night With Conan O'Brien

Guest
Talk
1993

Late Show With David Letterman

Guest
Talk
1993

The Torkelsons: Almost Home

Guest Star
Show
1993

RugratsStream

Guest Voice
Cynthia P.I.
Series
1991

The SimpsonsStream

Guest Voice
Melody Juniper
Series
1989
85%

Free Spirit

Actor
Jessie Harper
Show
1989

RoseanneStream

Guest Star
Jan
Series
1988
76%

My Stepmother Is an Alien

Actor
Jessie Mills
Movie
1988

J'ai épousé une extra-terrestre

Actor
Movie
1988

Good Morning America

Guest
News
1975

Today

Guest
News
1952

News aboutAlyson Hannigan

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red_heads

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