Arleen Sorkin Wiki Bio
Arleen Sorkin was born in Washington DC, USA, on 14 October 1956 – her zodiac sign is Libra, and she holds American nationality. She’s a former actress and a comedian, perhaps known best for her role as Calliope Jones, in the NBC soap opera “Days of Our Lives”, as well as for voicing the DC Comics villain Harley Quinn, in “Batman: The Animated Series”.
Early life and education
Arleen was born into a Jewish family. Her father worked at a bank, while her mother was a tailor. Not a lot is known about her siblings, as they prefer to be left out of the public eye.
Before her acting career took off, Arleen was a member of ‘The High-Heeled Women’, the comedy group, alongside Mary Fulham, Cassandra Danz and Tracey Berg.
They were active in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s, and performed live in cabarets. She also worked as a shoe model for a while.
Roles in TV series
Arleen made her TV series debut in 1982, when she appeared in an episode of the comedy sketch TV show “Saturday Night Live”. Two years later, she joined the cast of the NBC soap opera “Days of Our Lives”, created by Ted and Betty Corday – the series’ storyline mainly focuses on two wealthy families, the Hortons and the Bradys, and is one of the longest-running TV series of all time, having been airing nearly every weekday since 8 November 1965. In the series, Arleen played the character Calliope Bradford, known for her endearing sense of humor. Calliope was a recurring character until 1990, making several short appearances in later seasons, with her final appearance having been in 2010.
Between 1987 and 1989, Arleen played the role of the seductive maid Geneva, in the Fox comedy drama “Duet”, created by Ruth Bennett and Susan Seeger, and which also starred Peter Baldwin, Gabrielle Baeumont and Lee Shallat-Chemel. In 1989, she reprised her role as Geneva, in three episodes of the “Duet” spin-off series, “Open House”.
In the following year, Arleen became the original female host of the ABC reality show “America’s Funniest People”, however, she was dismissed from the show in 1991. In response, Arleen filed a lawsuit against the producers, claiming that the decision was based on her race, because they planned to replace her with an African-American host. She sought $450,000 in lost earnings, as well as additional reparations, but the court ruled in the producers’ favor.
Between 1992 and 1994, Arleen voiced Joker’s sidekick, Harley Quinn, in “Batman: The Animated Series”.
The character of Harley was inspired by Arleen, and was created by her college friend and comic book creator, Paul Dini. Harley was very popular with the fans of the animated series, and was later featured in numerous other DC Comics projects, including comic books, movies and video games. Arleen reprised her voiceover role of Harley in 1997, in “Superman: The Animated Series”, between 1997 and 1999 in “The New Batman Adventures”, and in “Gotham Girls” between 2000 and 2002. She also voiced Harley in video games, such as “Batman: Vengeance” (2001), “Batman: Arkham Asylum” (2009) and “DC Universe Online” (2011).
In the late 1990’s and early 2000’s, Arleen made appearances in several TV series, such as “Dream On”, “Room for Romance” and “Taz-Mania”. In 2004, she was the owner of a monkey, in the final episode of the sitcom “Frasier”, which was produced by her husband, Christopher Lloyd.
Arleen retired from acting in 2012, to focus on her personal life.
Roles in movies
Arleen made her movie debut in 1983, when she had a small role in the comedy “Trading Places”, written by Timothy Harris and Hershel Weingrod, directed by John Landis, and which starred Eddie Murphy, Dan Aykroyd and Ralph Bellamy. Two years later, she appeared alongside Carrie Fisher and Lauren Hutton in the TV comedy “From Here to Maternity”, following three women on a quest to become mothers.
In 1986, Arleen had a role in another comedy, entitled “Odd Jobs”, directed by Mark Story. In 1991, she appeared in the crime comedy “Oscar”, based on a play by Claude Magnier, and which starred Sylvester Stallone, and in the same year played the role of Marcia in the romantic comedy drama “Ted & Venus, about a woman who is being stalked.
In 1992, Arleen starred in the romantic comedy “I Don’t Buy Kisses Anymore”, directed by Robert Marcarelli. Five years later, she voiced Harley Quinn in the animated movie “The Batman Superman Movie: World’s Finest”, since when she hasn’t appeared in any movies.
In 1997, Arleen wrote and produced the pilot of the sitcom “Fired Up”, which starred Sharon Lawrence, Leah Remini and Jonathan Banks. She then wrote two more episodes for the series, and was credited as the co-executive producer for two others.
Arleen was one of the writers of the 1997 romantic comedy “Picture Perfect”, alongside Paul Slansky and May Quigley. The film starred Jennifer Aniston and Jay Mohr, in the story centered on a young businesswoman pretending to be engaged to a guy whom she has just met, just to impress her boss.
It received mixed reviews from the critics, and was a mild commercial success, earning more than $44 million at the box-office worldwide.
Arleen produced “Bhutto”, the 2010 award-winning documentary about the assassinated Pakistani politician, Benazir Bhutto.
Awards and accolades
Arleen received four Soap Opera Digest Awards for her performance in “Days of Our Lives”, including in 1985 for Outstanding Actress in a Supporting Role in a Daytime Serial, and in 1988 for Outstanding Comic Performance by an Actress: Daytime.
In 2010, she was rewarded with a Video Source Award, for her work as a producer on the documentary “Bhutto”, and in the following year, she won a Peabody Award for the same film.
Love life and husband
Arleen has been married to the screenwriter and producer, Christopher Lloyd, since 1999.
They have two children together, sons Eli and Owen.
Christopher is perhaps known best for being the co-creator of the popular mockumentary sitcom “Modern Family”. He’s worked as a screenwriter on a number of other comedy TV series, including “Golden Girls”, “Wings” and “Frasier”, of which he was also the executive producer. He has received 12 Primetime Emmy Awards, for his work on “Frasier” and “Modern Family”, and holds the record for being the comedy series producer who has won the most Emmys.
Hobbies and interesting facts
Arleen’s friend, Paul Dini, got the idea to create the character Harley Quinn while he was watching a scene from “Days of Our Lives”, in which Arleen was dressed as a jester. He soon called the actress, asking her if she wanted to voice her in the upcoming animated series.
She has stated in an interview that her favorite episodes of “Batman: The Animated Series” are “Harley and Ivy” and “Harley’s Holiday”.
She is a big fan of the baseball team Washington Nationals. She became interested in the sport during her teenage years, and was a member of her high school’s women’s baseball team.
After she retired from acting, Arleen took the chance to travel around the world with her husband. They have been to many countries, including Italy, Iceland and Brazil.
Appearance, age and net worth
Arleen is 64 years old. She has long blonde hair and brown eyes, is 5ft 4ins (1.63m) tall, and weighs around 120lbs (55kgs).
As of July 2021, her net worth is estimated at more than $1.5 million.