Simon Helberg

Simon Helberg Headshot

Actor • Comedian

Birth Date: December 9, 1980

Age: 43 years old

Birth Place: Los Angeles, California

Simon Helberg made a career out of playing lovable nerds, but always with a twist. He honed his skills on the long-running sketch comedy series "MADtv" (Fox, 1995-2009) and on the fictional show-within-a-show "Studio 60 on the Sunset Trip" (NBC, 2006-07), where he did impressions of more experienced comics like Ben Stiller and Jimmy Fallon. But it was his turn as the bowl-cut physics nerd Howard Wolowitz on "The Big Bang Theory" (CBS, 2007- ) that made Helberg a star. His overly confident character fancied himself a ladies' man, and sported a look that the actor once described as "Jewish mod": super-tight pants, bright turtlenecks and Vans shoes. The series steadily gained mass appeal, as did Helberg, whose wacky antics and slow, believable shift from a would-be cad into a devoted husband gave Hollywood plenty of reasons to expect a long and successful career out of the talented comedian.

Simon Maxwell Helberg was born on Dec. 9. 1980 in Los Angeles to father, actor Sandy Helberg, and his mother, Harriet B. Helberg, a casting director. He started off his career as a musician, playing the piano for a number of jazz and rock bands in Los Angeles. At 16, Helberg landed a minor part in a local production of "The Children's House" as a delivery boy. He had a mere five lines in the dramatic scene, but he said them with such conviction that it made the audience laugh.

Helberg moved to New York to attend New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. While still at NYU, he landed a guest role on the college-centric comedy, "Undeclared" (Fox, 2001-03), directed by Judd Apatow. The role led to more guest spots on shows like "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch" (ABC, 1996-2003), the teen drama "Popular" (The WB, 1999-2001), and in features like "Van Wilder" (2002), in which he played a geeky student for whom the title character (Ryan Reynolds) throws a party for.

In 2002, Helberg's fortunes began to shift when he became a regular on "MADtv." It was on the popular sketch show that he fine-tuned his comic skills by impersonating fellow comedians like Jimmy Fallon and parodying hit shows like the drama "7th Heaven" (The WB, 1996-2007). A natural at playing socially inept characters, Helberg guest starred on sitcoms such as "Less Than Perfect" (ABC, 2002-06), the cult favorite, "Arrested Development" (Fox, 2003-06), and had a recurring role on "Reno 911!" (Comedy Central, 2003-09) as a young man addicted to prostitutes.

In 2007, Helberg scored a lead role on the Web-based series "Derek and Simon: The Show" (TBS, 2007), which he also wrote and co-produced opposite comedian Derek Waters. Shot documentary-style mostly in bars, it featured the duo and their friends talking about their woes with women. He also developed a huge fan base for his appearance in the Internet-released short, "Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog" (2008), director Joss Whedon's popular Web series about an aspiring villain (Neil Patrick Harris) who comes up with wacky inventions to rule the world. Helberg played Moist, Dr. Horrible's friend who was always wet.

Helberg was a regular on the ratings-challenged Aaron Sorkin offering, "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip," a behind-the-scenes look at a sketch comedy show where he did spot-on impressions of Nicolas Cage, Tom Cruise, and Stiller. Helberg's stint on the fledgling Sorkin series almost made him pass up the chance to appear on "The Big Bang Theory," but he eventually decided to give the new sitcom a shot. The move paid off. Helberg finally became a household name as Howard Wolowitz, a socially awkward mechanical engineer who fancies himself a Casanova. The series, in spite of its lack of big-name stars, turned out to be one of the era's most watched comedies.

Between seasons, Helberg worked on the big screen, taking roles in the Coen brothers' "A Serious Man" (2009), quirky comedy "Let Go" (2011), and indie drama "I Am I" (2013). His first film as leading man, writer and director, the romantic farce "We'll Never Have Paris" (2014), co-starred Melanie Lynsky and Zachary Quinto. Helberg next co-starred in Stephen Frears' "Florence Foster Jenkins" (2016) opposite Meryl Streep and Hugh Grant in the true story of a notoriously bad opera singer.

Credits

Poker FaceStream

Guest Star
Luca
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98%

As They Made UsStream

Actor
Nathan
Movie
2022
81%

Space OddityStream

Actor
Dimitri
Movie
2022
56%

AnnetteStream

Actor
Le chef d'orchestre
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2021
71%

The Big Bang Theory: Couple Goals

Actor
Howard Wolowitz
Show
2019

The Big Bang Theory: Your Takeover

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Howard Wolowitz
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2019

Elvis Goes There

Executive Producer
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2019

Shatterbox

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2018

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Little Man
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2018

Today's Take

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2016

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Guest
Show
2016

Florence Foster JenkinsStream

Actor
Cosme McMoon
Movie
2016
88%

The Late Show With Stephen ColbertStream

Guest
Talk
2015

The Late Late Show With James Corden

Guest
Talk
2015

The Late Late Show

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Show
2015

Extra Big Bang

Actor
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2014

The Tom and Jerry ShowStream

Actor
Series
2014

Quelli di Joi

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Show
2014

We'll Never Have Paris

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Quinn
Movie
2014

We'll Never Have Paris

Director
Movie
2014

We'll Never Have Paris

Producer
Movie
2014

We'll Never Have Paris

Screenwriter
Movie
2014

The Queen Latifah Show

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Talk
2013

Drunk HistoryStream

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Series
2013

The Big Bang Theory: Cast and Creators Live at PALEYFEST

Guest
Show
2013

I Am I

Actor
Seth
Movie
2013

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Executive Producer
Movie
2013

Live! With Kelly and Michael

Guest
Talk
2012

Larry King NowStream

Guest
Talk
2012

Comedy Bang! Bang!Stream

Guest Star
Series
2012

Drama On 4

Voice
James
Show
2012

Just for Laughs: A Tribute to Nerds

Actor
Show
2011

CBS Fall Preview

Host
Show
2011

Dish Nation

Guest
Talk
2011

Let Go

Actor
Frank
Movie
2011

ConanStream

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2010

The Talk

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2010

Kick Buttowski: Suburban DaredevilStream

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2010

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Lopez Tonight

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2009

Watch What Happens Live With Andy CohenStream

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Talk
2009

A Serious ManStream

Actor
Rabbi Scott
Movie
2009
89%

Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog

Actor
Show
2008

The Big Bang TheoryStream

Actor
Howard Wolowitz
Series
2007
81%

Mama's Boy

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2007

Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox StoryStream

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Dreidel L'Chaim
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2007
75%

Studio 60 on the Sunset StripStream

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2006
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Rachael Ray ShowStream

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2006

The Pity Card

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2006

American DadStream

Voice
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2005

The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson

Guest
Talk
2005

Joey

Guest Star
Series
2004
50%

The Soup

Actor
Talk
2004

A Cinderella StoryStream

Actor
Terry
Movie
2004
11%

Arrested DevelopmentStream

Guest Star
Jeff
Series
2003
75%

The Ellen DeGeneres Show

Guest
Talk
2003

RENO 911!Stream

Guest Star
Series
2003

Old SchoolStream

Actor
Jerry
Movie
2003
60%

Less Than PerfectStream

Guest Star
Series
2002

Last Call With Carson Daly

Guest
Talk
2002

The Weber Show

Guest Star
Show
2000

The View

Guest
Talk
1997

MADtvStream

Actor
Series
1995
43%

Late Show With David Letterman

Guest
Talk
1993

Charlie RoseStream

Guest
Talk
1991

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