Prominent roles of his career include the title role in Doogie Howser, M.D., Colonel Carl Jenkins in Starship Troopers, the womanizing Barney Stinson in How I Met Your Mother, a fictionalized version of himself in the Harold & Kumar series, and the title role in Joss Whedon's musical web series Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog.
He also hosted the 63rd Tony Awards on June 7, 2009, and the 61st Primetime Emmy Awards on September 20, 2009. On March 7, 2010, he made a surprise appearance at the 82nd Academy Awards, delivering the opening musical number, and on August 21, 2010 he won two Emmy Awards at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards ceremony. On December 11, 2010, Harris hosted Spike's Video Game Awards.
He was named as one of Time magazine's 100 most influential people in 2010.
In June 2010, it was announced that Harris would receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2011.
Early lifeHarris was born June 15, 1973 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and grew up in Ruidoso, New Mexico. His parents, Sheila and Ron, ran a restaurant. He attended La Cueva High School in Albuquerque and was active in school plays and musicals there. Harris was an honors student, and graduated with honors in 1991.
CareerHarris began his career as a child actor, and was discovered by playwright Mark Medoff at a Drama Camp in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Medoff cast him in his 1988 film Clara's Heart, a drama with Whoopi Goldberg based on the novel of the same name by Joseph Olshan, that won him a Golden Globe nomination. In 1988, he also starred in Purple People Eater, a children's fantasy. The following year, he won the lead in Doogie Howser, M.D., for which he was again nominated for a Golden Globe. After Doogie Howser's four-season run ended in 1993, Harris played a number of guest roles on television series such as Murder She Wrote, before taking his first film role as an adult in 1995 in the little-seen shocker Animal Room. Since then, his film work has included supporting roles in The Next Best Thing, Undercover Brother, and Starship Troopers. In the Harold and Kumar stoner comedy films (Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle and Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay), he plays a drug-crazed, lecherous version of himself.
From 1999 to 2000, Harris starred with Tony Shalhoub in the sitcom Stark Raving Mad, which lasted 22 episodes. He has taken lead roles in a number of made-for-television features, including Snowbound: The Jim and Jennifer Stolpa Story in 1994, My Ántonia in 1995, The Christmas Wish in 1998, Joan of Arc in 1999, The Wedding Dress in 2001, and The Christmas Blessing in 2005, as well as series guest roles.
Harris has worked on Broadway in both musical and dramatic roles. He played Tobias Ragg in 2001 concert performances of Sweeney Todd. In 2002, he performed on Broadway beside Anne Heche in Proof. In 2003, he took the role of the Emcee in Cabaret, alongside Deborah Gibson and Tom Bosley. As a result of his critically acclaimed performance in Cabaret, Harris was named the top-drawing headliner in the role of the Emcee by GuestStarCasting.com, topping fellow celeb stars John Stamos and Alan Cumming.
In 2004, he performed a dual role of the Balladeer and Lee Harvey Oswald on Broadway in the controversial musical revival of Stephen Sondheim's Assassins. He also sang the role of Charles (first played by Anthony Perkins) on the Nonesuch recording of Sondheim's Evening Primrose. He has also portrayed Mark Cohen in the touring company of the musical RENT, a character who he mockingly reprised on the January 10, 2009, episode of Saturday Night Live, which he hosted. Since fall of 2005, Harris has played Barney Stinson, a serial womanizer, in the CBS ensemble sitcom How I Met Your Mother. The Stinson role earned him 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series nominations.
In 2007, Harris worked with Mike Nelson on an audio commentary for RiffTrax. The two riffed on the film Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory. Harris is a big fan of the cult TV series Nelson worked on, Mystery Science Theater 3000 and was interviewed for a 1992 Comedy Central special hosted by Penn Jillette, who did voiceovers for Comedy Central's programming at that time, about the series and its fans, This Is MST3K. In 2008, Harris took the title role in Joss Whedon's musical web series, Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog, alongside Nathan Fillion and Felicia Day. The first episode of the series debuted July 15, 2008. In 2008, Harris also guest-starred on Sesame Street as the Sesame Street Fairy Shoe Person. On April 26, 2009, Harris hosted the 7th Annual TV Land Awards.
After a highly successful preview at the San Diego Comic-Con, a musical episode of Batman: The Brave and the Bold, featuring Harris as the villainous Music Meister, premiered on October 23, 2009, on Cartoon Network. As a character who could make anyone do his bidding by singing, he spent most of the episode singing several original songs.
Harris starred in the movie Beastly alongside Alex Pettyfer and Vanessa Hudgens. He played a blind tutor named Will. The film was originally set for release on July 30, 2010, but was pushed back to March 4, 2011.
He also plays the lead in the upcoming indie comedy The Best and the Brightest as a carefree father who uproots his family from Delaware to move to New York City's Upper East Side.
Harris appeared as a guest judge on Season 9 of American Idol in August 2009 auditions taped in Dallas, Texas.
English stage producer Cameron Mackintosh has voiced interest in producing a Broadway revival of the musical Barnum (which originally starred Michael Crawford and Jim Dale) with Harris in the title role.
Harris provided his voice for the role of the adult Dick Grayson (Nightwing) for the animated film Batman: Under the Red Hood. It was released July 27, 2010.
Harris also voiced the beagle Lou in the film Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore that was released July 30, 2010.
He directed a production of the rock musical Rent. The stage production ran from August 6 – 8, 2010 at the Hollywood Bowl. Harris cast his Beastly co-star Vanessa Hudgens as Mimi.
Harris won an Emmy for his performance as Bryan Ryan in the television series Glee in the episode titled "Dream On."
On November 8, 2010, it was revealed that Harris had provided his voice to the Disney California Adventure attraction California Screamin'.
Harris will perform the lead role of Bobby, in Stephen Sondheim's Company from April 7–9, 2011 with the New York Philharmonic in concert opposite Patti LuPone and others.
|David Burtka & Neil Patrick Harris|
Harris attended the Emmy awards in September 2007 with his partner David Burtka, later confirming the relationship, which began in 2004, in an interview on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. On August 14, 2010, Harris announced that he and Burtka were expecting twins via a surrogate mother. Fraternal twins Gideon Scott, a boy, and Harper Grace, a girl, were born on October 12, 2010.
Harris is a fan of magic and is a magician similar to his character on How I Met Your Mother. He serves on the Board of Directors of Hollywood's Magic Castle. Harris won the Tannen's Magic Louis Award in 2006 and hosted the 2008 World Magic Awards on October 11, 2008. Additionally, Harris was the celebrity guest of honor for Top Chef Masters, which took place at the Magic Castle, and included Burtka as a fellow guest. Harris also performed magic in his Emmy-winning performance on Glee.
|2000||Sweeney Todd: Live in Concert||2000 New York Concert Cast|
|2001||Evening Primrose||Studio Cast|
|2004||Assassins||Revival Cast Recording|
|2006||Wall to Wall: Stephen Sondheim||Concert Cast|
|2008||Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog||Original Cast Recording|
|Year||Single||Peak chart positions||Sales||Album|
|2010||"Nothing Suits Me Like a Suit"||113||76||—||50||—||—||How I Met Your Mother season 5|
|"Dream On" (Featuring Matthew Morrison)||91||24||44||47||26||84,000 (US)||Glee: The Music, Volume 3 Showstoppers|
|1988||Clara's Heart||David Hart||Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor - Motion Picture |
Nominated— Young Artist Award for Best Young Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama
|1988||Too Good to Be True||Danny Harland||TV movie|
|1988||Purple People Eater||Billy Johnson|
|1989||Cold Sassy Tree||Will Tweedy/Narrator||TV movie|
|1989||Home Fires Burning||Lonnie Tibbits||TV movie|
|1991||Stranger in the Family||Steve Thompson||TV Movie|
|1993||For Our Children: The Concert||Himself (Presenter)||TV movie|
|1993||A Family Torn Apart||Brian Hannigan||TV movie|
|1994||Snowbound: The Jim and Jennifer Stolpa Story||Jim Stolpa||TV movie|
|1995||The Man in the Attic||Edward Broder||TV movie|
|1995||Animal Room||Arnold Mosk|
|1995||Not Our Son||Paul Kenneth Keller||TV movie|
|1995||My Antonia||Jimmy Burden||TV movie|
|1995||Legacy of Sin: The William Coit Story||William Coit||TV movie|
|1997||Starship Troopers||Carl Jenkins|
|1998||The Proposition||Roger Martin|
|1998||The Christmas Wish||Will Martin||TV movie|
|1999||Joan of Arc||The Dauphin||TV movie|
|2000||The Next Best Thing||David|
|2001||The Wedding Dress||Travis Cleveland||TV movie|
|2001||Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street in Concert||Tobias Ragg||TV movie|
|2004||Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle||Neil Patrick Harris|
|2005||The Christmas Blessing||Nathan Andrews||TV movie|
|2008||Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay||Neil Patrick Harris|
|2008||Beyond All Boundaries||1st Lt. David Hettema||Voice only|
|2008||Justice League: The New Frontier||Barry Allen/The Flash||Voice only|
|2009||Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs||Steve||Voice only|
|2010||Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore||Lou the Beagle||Voice only|
|2010||The Best and the Brightest||Jeff||Post-production|
|2010||Batman: Under the Red Hood||Dick Grayson/Nightwing||Voice only|
|2011||A Very Harold and Kumar Christmas||Neil Patrick Harris||Filming|
|2011||The Smurfs||Patrick Winslow||Pre-production|
|1989||Hallmark Hall of Fame||Lonnie Tibbetts||Episode: "Home Fires Burning"|
|1989||B.L. Stryker||Buder Campbell||Episode: "Blues for Buder"|
|1989–1993||Doogie Howser, M.D.||Douglas 'Doogie' Howser||97 Episodes |
Young Artist Award for Best Young Actor Starring in a Television Series (1990–1992)
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – TV Series Musical or Comedy (1992)
|1991||Blossom||The 'Charming' Derek Slade||Episode: "Blossom – A Rockumentary"|
|1991||The Simpsons||Himself as Bart Simpson||Episode: "Bart the Murderer"|
|1992||Roseanne||Dr. Doogie Howser||Episode: "Less Is More"|
|1992||Captain Planet and the Planeteers||Todd Andrews||Episode: "A Formula for Hate"|
|1993||Quantum Leap||Mike Hammond||Episode: "Return of the Evil Leaper – October 8, 1956"|
|1993||Murder, She Wrote||Tommy Remsen||Episode: "Lone Witness"|
|1992–1995||Capitol Critters||Max||13 Episodes|
|1996||The Outer Limits||Howie Morrison||Episode: "From Within"|
|1997||Homicide: Life on the Street||Alan Schack||Episode: "Valentine's Day"|
|1999–2000||Stark Raving Mad||Henry McNeeley||22 Episodes|
|2000||Will & Grace||Bill||Episode: "Girls, Interrupted"|
|2001||Static Shock||Johnny Morrow||Voice Only |
|2001||Son of the Beach||Loverboy||Episode: "Queefer Madness"|
|2001||The Legend of Tarzan||Moyo||Episode: "Tarzan and the Challenger"|
|2001||Ed||Joe Baxter||Episode: "Replacements"|
|2002||Touched by an Angel||Jonas||Episode: "The Princeless Bride"|
|2002||Justice League||Ray Thompson||Episode: "Legends: Part 1" |
Episode: "Legends: Part 2"
|2003||Boomtown||Peter Corman||Episode: "Monster's Brawl"|
|2003||Spider-Man: The New Animated Series||Peter Parker / Spider-Man||13 Episodes|
|2004||Law & Order: Criminal Intent||John Tagman||Episode: "Want"|
|2005||Numb3rs||Ethan Burdick||Episode: "Prime Suspect"|
|2005||Jack & Bobby||Prof. Preston Phelps||Episode: "Querida Grace"|
|2005–present||How I Met Your Mother||Barney Stinson||Main Role |
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – TV Series (2009–2010)
Nominated—People's Choice Award for Favorite Scene Stealing Star (2008)
Nominated—Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series (2007–2010)
Nominated—Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor – TV Series (2009)
Nominated—Teen Choice Award for Choice TV Actor: Comedy (2007–2008)
Nominated— Television Critics Association Award for Achievement in Comedy (2009)
|2006||Me, Eloise||Unknown||Voice only |
Episode: "Eloise Goes to School"
|2007||Family Guy||Barney Stinson||Episode: "No Chris Left Behind"|
|2008||Sesame Street||The Fairy Shoeperson||Episode: "Telly's New Shoes"|
|2008||Anytime with Bob Kushell||Himself||Guest star|
|2008||Million Dollar Password||Himself||Guest Star|
|2009||Batman: The Brave and the Bold||The Music Meister||Episode: "Mayhem of the Music Meister!"|
|2009||Robot Chicken||Various||Episode: "President Hu Forbids It" |
Episode: "The Ramblings of Maurice"
|2009||Carrie Underwood: An All-Star Holiday Special||Ace||Voice only|
|2009||Yes Virginia||Dr. Philip O'Hanlon||Voice only|
|2009||Family Guy||Barney Stinson||Episode: "Peter's Progress"|
|2010||Glee||Bryan Ryan||Episode: "Dream On (Glee)" |
Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series
|2010||The Penguins of Madagascar||Dr. Blowhole||Episode: "Dr. Blowhole's Revenge"|
|1997||Rent||Mark Cohen||2nd National Tour-LA, San Diego|
|1998||Romeo and Juliet||Romeo Montague||Old Globe Theatre, San Diego|
|2001||Sweeney Todd||Tobias Ragg||San Francisco Symphony Orchestra concert version|
|2004||The Paris Letter||Young Anton/Burt Sarris|
|2004||Assassins||Lee Harvey Oswald/The Balladeer||Broadway|
|2005||Tick, Tick... BOOM!||Jon||Menier Chocolate Factory, London|
|2006||All My Sons||Chris Keller||Geffen Playhouse, Los Angeles|
|2006||Amadeus||Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart||Hollywood Bowl|
|2010||Rent Live At The Hollywood Bowl||Director|
|2011||Company||Robert||New York Philharmonic Concert Version|
|2008||Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog||Dr. Horrible (Billy)|
|2008||Prop 8: The Musical||A Very Smart Fellow|
|2008||Saints Row 2||Veteran Child||voice over|
|2009||Eat Lead: The Return of Matt Hazard||Wallace "Wally" Wellesley||voice over|
|2010||Rock of the Dead||Unnamed character||voice over|
|2010||Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions||Peter Parker / Amazing Spider-Man||voice over|
|2010–Present||California Screamin'||Victorian Carnival Character||safety spiels and launch countdown|
|1989||Young Artist Award||Best Young Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama||Nominated||Clara's Heart|
|1989||Golden Globe Award||Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture||Nominated||Clara's Heart|
|1990||Young Artist Awards||Best Young Actor Starring in a Television Series||Won||Doogie Howser, M.D.|
|1991||Young Artist Awards||Best Young Actor Starring in a Television Series||Won||Doogie Howser, M.D.|
|1992||Young Artist Awards||Best Young Actor Starring in a Television Series||Won||Doogie Howser, M.D.|
|1992||Golden Globe Award||Best Performance by an Actor in a TV-Series – Comedy/Musical||Nominated||Doogie Howser, M.D.|
|2007||Teen Choice Awards||Choice TV Actor: Comedy||Nominated||How I Met Your Mother|
|2007||Emmy Award||Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series||Nominated||How I Met Your Mother|
|2008||People's Choice Awards||Favorite Scene Stealing Star||Nominated||How I Met Your Mother|
|2008||Emmy Award||Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series||Nominated||How I Met Your Mother|
|2009||Golden Globe Award||Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television||Nominated||How I Met Your Mother|
|2009||Emmy Award||Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series||Nominated||How I Met Your Mother|
|2009||Bravo A-List Awards||A-List Male Actor||Won|
|2009||Streamy Awards||Best Male Actor in a Comedy Web Series||Won||Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog|
|2010||Golden Globe Award||Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television||Nominated||How I Met Your Mother|
|2009–2010||Golden Icon Award||Best Performance by an Actor in a Comedy Television Series||Won||How I Met Your Mother|
|2010||Emmy Award||Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series||Nominated||How I Met Your Mother|
|2010||Emmy Award||Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series||Won||Glee|
|2010||Emmy Award||Outstanding Special Class Program||Won||63rd Annual Tony Awards|
|2010||Spike Video Game Awards||Best Performance by a Human Male||Won||Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions|
|2011||People's Choice Awards||Favourite TV Comedy Actor||Won||How I Met Your Mother|