Friday, June 14, 2024

Jennifer Coolidge in 2012 in Bercy, France. (Photo: Thibault via Flickr)

With the selection of Jennifer Coolidge as 2023 Woman of the Year Award, the Hasty Pudding Theatricals’ calendar is set for the year. The actor, seen recently in the television series “The White Lotus” and “The Watcher,” is expected to lead a parade Feb. 4 through Harvard Square, be roasted afterward by the Harvard students and be presented the organization’s Pudding Pot, then attend the opening night of the Hasty Pudding Theatricals’ 174th production, “Cosmic Relief.”

Coolidge will be in town two days after the 2023 Man of the Year: writer, producer, actor and author Bob Odenkirk, whose selection was announced Thursday.

The Woman of the Year Award is the Hasty Pudding Theatricals’ oldest honor, bestowed annually on performers who have made lasting and impressive contributions to the world of entertainment. Established in 1951, the award has gone to entertainers from Meryl Streep to Kerry Washington; last year, Jennifer Garner was honored as the 72nd Woman of the Year.

For Coolidge, this is a kind of homecoming: She was raised in Norwell and went to the Cambridge School of Weston and to Emerson College in Boston. Her first acting role was in a 1993 episode of “Seinfeld,” and her breakthrough role was in “American Pie” (1999) as, legendarily, Stifler’s mom. She has some 125 acting credits, including “Legally Blonde” movies in 2001 and 2003, and splits her time between Los Angeles and New Orleans.

“We are so excited to welcome Jennifer Coolidge back to her hometown and to Harvard, the iconic setting of ‘Legally Blonde.’ Her glittering personality and comedic presence are so Pudding,” said Man & Woman of the Year student event coordinator Maya Dubin. “We know she’ll fit right into the Pudding’s musical spectacular.”

Producer Sarah Mann called it is “an absolute dream” to honor Coolidge “on the heels of her recent accolades for The White Lotus. We know our Pudding Pot will look phenomenal alongside her new Golden Globe.”

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Bob Odenkirk is Hasty Pudding Man of the Year