Worked With:

Jason Schwartzman

Conan O'Brien

Jason Biggs

Aidan Quinn

Jimmy Fallon

Zac Efron

Ben Affleck

Grant Bowler

Michelle Trachtenberg

Meryl Streep

Taylor Schilling Biography

Home > Actresses > S > Schilling, Taylor > Biography

Birth Name: Taylor Schilling
Born: 07/05/1969
Birth Place: Los Angeles, California, USA

The apple didn't fall far from the tree when it came to the career of Jenji Kohan. She built a CV for herself almost as storied as that of her father, Buz Kohan, whose credits included such mainstream family entertainment favorites as "The Carol Burnett Show," "The Odd Couple" and a healthy list of awards shows and Christmas specials. Jenji Kohan, however, followed a completely different course. She became synonymous with complex and groundbreaking adult-themed comedies that dealt with prison, drugs, murder and transgression.

As the daughter of writer/producer Buz Kohan and writer/actress Rhea Kohan, Kohan was primed for success from the start, but the path she forged was a testament to her finely tuned eye for up-and-comers. In 1992 she kicked off her career as a producer on the hit sitcom created by comedian Paul Reiser and starring an up-and-coming Helen Hunt, "Mad About You" (NBC 1992-99). Kohan also wrote a teleplay in 1994 for an episode of the show that launched rapper Will Smith's acting career, "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" (NBC 1990-96).

By 1996 Kohan had also penned one episode for "Boston Common" (NBC 1996-97), a short-lived sitcom created by her brother David Kohan and his producing partner Max Mutchnick, whose follow-up project was the hit show "Will & Grace" (NBC 1998-2006). That same year Kohan began a long association with comic Tracey Ullman, serving as writer, producer and supervising producer on "Tracey Takes On... "(HBO 1996-99), a show that featured the UK virtuoso playing characters of varying genders and races. Throughout her tenure on the one-woman comedy sketch show, Kohan produced 12 episodes and wrote 18 of them.

During this period Kohan also did one-offs on a variety of other comedies. In 1997 she rejoined with collaborator Paul Reiser and wrote one episode of "Mad About You." The following year, she was the storywriter on the first season of a show that was soon to become a cultural phenomenon, "Sex and the City" (HBO 1998-2004). In 2000 Kohan signed on to the comedy-drama "Gilmore Girls" (The WB, 2000-07), and during the next year served as writer on one episode and producer on 12 more of this critical favorite. In 2002 Kohan was the writer and executive producer on a pilot for a failed Ally Walker sitcom "My Wonderful Life" (ABC 2002).

After this decade-long crescendo of notable projects and collaborations, Kohan eventually struck pay dirt in 2005 as creator, writer and executive producer of "Weeds" (Showtime 2005-2012), a series in which the protagonist takes up the drug trade on order to financially survive the premature death of her husband. The show planted Kohan firmly on the map and became the crown jewel in Showtime's lineup, garnering critical accolades as well as a Golden Globe for Mary-Louise Parker and a Writers Guild of America award for Kohan.

Many show creators might have had trouble following up such a solid success, but in 2013 Kohan panned for gold again as creator of another complex and transgressive cult dramedy, "Orange Is the New Black" (Netflix 2013 -). The series, based on the prison memoir by former inmate Piper Kerman, proved wildly popular with both critics and audiences, and developed an immediate cult following with LGBT viewers due in part to the work of transgender actress Laverne Cox.