Jennifer Ann McCarthy is an American actress, model, television host, author and screenwriter. She began her career in 1993 as a nude model for Playboy Magazine and was later named their Playmate of the Year. McCarthy parlayed her Playboy fame into a television and movie acting career, starting as a co-host on the MTV game show Singled Out. Take a look below for 30 more fun and interesting facts about Jenny McCarthy.
1. McCarthy is a former co-host of the ABC talk show The View.
2. She has written books about parenting and has become an activist promoting research into environmental causes and alternative medical treatments for autism.
3. McCarthy has publicly spoken about the idea that vaccines cause autism and has claimed that chelation therapy cured her son of autism. However, both claims are unsupported by medical consensus, and her son’s autism diagnosis has been questioned.
4. She’s been described as, “the nation’s most prominent purveyor of anti-vaxxer ideology,” but she has denied the charge, stating, “I am not anti-vaccine.”
5. She was born on November 1, 1972, in the southwest Chicago suburb of Evergreen Park, Illinois.
6. She was born into a working class Catholic family and has Irish, German and Polish ancestry.
7. She is the second of four daughters, her sisters are named Lynette, Joanne and Amy. Actress Melissa McCarthy is her cousin.
8. Her mother, Linda, was a housewife and courtroom custodian, and her father, Dan, was a steel mill foreman.
9. As a teenager, she attended Mother McAuley Liberal Arts High School, whose school sweater she wore in the pages of Playboy.
10. She was a cheerleader at both Brother Rice High School and St. Laurence High School, although she referred to herself as an outcast at her school and has stated that she was bullied often by her classmates.
11. In 1993, Playboy Magazine offered her $20,000 to pose for its October issue. She ended up becoming Playmate of the Month for October of 1993.
12. Playboy publisher Hugh Hefner cited McCarthy’s wholesome Catholic girl persona as the unique quality for which she was selected out of 10,000 applicants.
13. She once modeled for Candie’s, a shoe company. In one magazine ad, McCarthy posed on a toilet seat with her underwear near her ankles.
14. McCarthy dated manager Ray Manzella from 1994 until 1998 and began dating actor and director John Mallory Asher in late 1998.
15. McCarthy and Asher became engaged in January, 1999, and married on September 11, 1999. The couple divorced in September, 2005.
16. McCarthy and Asher have a son, Evan Joseph Asher, who was born on May 18, 2002, and who was diagnosed with autism on May 10, 2005.
17. In December, 2005, McCarthy began dating actor Jim Carrey. They didn’t announce their relationship until June 2006.
18. In July, 2013, McCarthy stated that she was dating Donnie Wahlberg. On April 16, 2014, she announced on The View that the two were engaged. On August 31, 2014, they got married.
19. She auditioned for the role of Nomi in Showgirls, however, the part went to Elizabeth Berkley.
20. McCarthy has won a Golden Apple Award, which was presented by the Hollywood Women’s Press Club, in 1997 for Female Star of the Year.
21. She has published several books, including Louder Than Words in 2007 in which she spoke about her experiences with her son’s autism. She also coauthored Healing and Preventing Autism with Dr. Jerry Kartzinel in 2009.
22. She dropped out of nursing school to become an actress.
23. McCarthy has won a number of Razzie Awards for Worst Actress, Worst Screenplay and Worst Picture for her work in Dirty Love, which also earned her husband at the time, John Asher, a Razzie for Worst Director.
24. Her younger sister Amy also posed for Playboy. She was Cyber Girl of the Week for September 27, 2004, and Cyber Girl of the Month for January, 2005.
25. Her new Playboy pictorial comes out nearly two decades after the first Playboy appearance in 1993.
26. She has had her breast implants removed in 1998.
27. McCarthy has her own daily radio talk show on Sirius XM called Dirty, Sexy, Funny.
28. In 2000, she didn’t want to be in Scary Movie, however, in the same year, she starred in Scream 3.
29. She wanted Cameron Diaz’s role in the 2000 movie Charlie’s Angel.
30. She had the yearly tradition of kissing a random person she’d find on New Year’s Eve while she hosted New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest.