Wendi McLendon-Covey

Wendi McLendon-Covey

She was born Wendy Anne McLendon in Bellflower, CA. The future star earned her bachelor's degree in liberal studies and creative writing from California State University, Long Beach prior to joining the L.A.-based improv group The Groundlings. Spending seven years with the celebrated comedy troupe allowed McLendon-Covey to create and develop a colorful range of characters, which she eventually adapted into in her mainstream acting projects. One such character was a raging nymphomaniac named Clementine. In 2003, McLendon-Covey was cast on the Comedy Central series "Reno 911!" about a wacky group of police officers and criminals in Nevada. Shot documentary style, "Reno 911!" parodied the long running series "COPS" (Fox, 1989-) and starred a cast of improv actors such as Thomas Lennon (as sexually ambiguous and short-shorts-wearing Lieutenant Jim Dangle) and Niecy Nash (playing loudmouthed Deputy Raineesha Williams). McLendon-Covey played Deputy Clementine Johnson, a promiscuous, marijuana-smoking, cleavage-baring police officer. The buxom blonde was based on the actress' popular Groundlings character Clementine, a role that earned her the title of "Queen of Improv" from TV Guide. "Reno 911!" spent six years on air and often featured guest stars, including Rainn Wilson, Zach Galifianakis and Paul Rudd.McLendon-Covey made her feature film debut opposite Will Ferrell, Nicole Kidman and Shirley MacLaine in the Nora Ephron-directed comedy "Bewitched" (2005), in which she made a cameo as an entertainment reporter. McLendon-Covey's improv background helped her land a featured role on "Lovespring International" (Lifetime, 2006). The series centered on the employees of a Southern California-based matchmaking service. The show also starred a pre-"Glee" (Fox, 2009-) Jane Lynch, who played the manager of the fictional dating company. In 2007, McLendon-Covey reprised her Deputy Johnson role in "Reno 911!: Miami," a big screen adaptation of the comedy series that finds the Reno police department patrolling the streets of Miami Beach, FL. The hardworking actress made several guest appearances on critically acclaimed TV shows such as "The Office" (NBC, 2005-13) and "Cougar Town" (ABC, 2009-12; TBS, 2013-15). She also wrote, produced and starred in the Web series "GILF" (2008). In 2011, McLendon-Covey returned to the big screen, along with a who's-who of Hollywood comediennes, in "Bridesmaids." The Judd Apatow-produced film starred "Saturday Night Live" (NBC, 1975-) alum Kristen Wiig as the maid of honor of her best friend's (Maya Rudolph) wedding. As one of the bridesmaids in the wedding party, McLendon-Covey's character often expressed how much she hated being a wife and mother of three children. McLendon-Covey's next major role came as mother Beverly Goldberg in '80s-set sitcom "The Goldbergs" (ABC 2013-). Between seasons, she hosted the hidden-camera prank series "Repeat After Me" ABC 2015) and appeared in the films "Blended" (2014), "Think Like A Man Too" (2014), and the Sally Field-starring comedy-drama "Hello, My Name Is Doris" (2015). In 2018, McLendon-Covey starred in the family comedy "Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween" (2018).