Neil Patrick Harris, who rose to fame playing teen doctor Doogie Howser and currently stars in the CBS series "How I Met Your Mother," recently received a star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame.
The 38-year-old actor received his honor at a ceremony on Thursday. He was joined by life partner David Burtka, "How I Met Your Mother" co-star Jason Segel and Joss Whedon, who directed Harris in the 2008 online musical "Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog" and in a 2009 episode of "Glee."
Harris posed on his star, located at 6243 Hollywood Boulevard, with Burtka. The two have been together since about 2004 and welcomed a twin son and daughter via a surrogate in October 2010.
"Right now my twins Gideon and Harper are too young to quite understand this honor. They spend most of their time peeing and vomiting on me, which let's be honest, is probably going to happen nightly to my star," Harris joked during his acceptance speech, referring to how the sidewalks that make up the Hollywood become crowded with bar and nightclub patrons in the evenings.
"But somebody when they're older, I will take my children here with my heart bursting with pride and I'll say, 'Kids, your old man was the 587th Hollywood star in the television category and God, that sounds good!'" Harris said.
Harris' honor comes weeks before the DVD release of the sixth season of "How I Met Your Mother" on September 27. The show is set to begin its seventh season on September 19.
"He's quite simply the most wildly talented person I've ever been around," Segel said during his speech at the star ceremony. "He can act and he can sing and he can dance and he's a magician and he can host and he can direct."
Harris directed a 2010 episode of "How I Met Your Mother" as well as a new television comedy project starring Michelle Trachtenberg from "Buffy The Vampire Slayer."Whedon, who created the cult show, joked: "Neil has never let anybody walk all over him. As his reward, now everyone can."
Harris was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico and began his acting career when he was 3, playing Toto the dog in a school production of "The Wizard of Oz." He made his on-screen debut in 1988, appearing in the movies "Purple People Eater" and "Clara's Heart," which starred Whoopi Goldberg and earned him a Golden Globe nomination.
His breakout role came in 1989, when he began playing the title role in the drama series "Doogie Howser." The show ran for four seasons and ended in 1993. It was co-created by Steven Bochco and David E. Kelley of "Ally McBeal" fame.
Harris' character, a teenage prodigy working as a medical doctor, typically ended every episode by typing and narrating a retrospective diary entry on his computer - a gimmick also seen on the 1990s HBO series "Sex and the City," which starred Sarah Jessica Parker as New York newspaper sex columnist Carrie Bradshaw. It was also spoofed on the FOX animated show "The Simpsons."
Harris went on to voice the character of Max in the FOX animated series "Capitol Critters," which was co-created by Bochco. Harris also voiced Peter Parker in an MTV animated "Spider-Man" series that aired for one season in 2003.
Throughout the 1990s, Harris starred in several television movies and shows, including in an episode of the sitcom "Will & Grace." He appeared opposite "Monk" star Tony Shaloub on the short-lived sitcom "Stark Raving Mad," which debuted in 1999 and aired one season.
Harris later played himself in the 2004 comedy film "Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle." He also starred in its 2008 sequel, "Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay," and will appear in a third film, "A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas," which is set for release on November 4.
Harris, known for his sense of humor, also worked with "Mystery Science Theater 3000" star Mike Nelson on a snarky audio commentary of the 1971 musical film "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory" for his online series RiffTrax. It is meant to be played simultaneously with the film so that the pair's comments compliment the dialogue.
But it is perhaps in "How I Met Your Mother" that he showcases his comedic skills best. Harris plays party-loving Barney Stinson, known for the catchphrase, "Legen...dary." Harris has starred in the show, which depicts a group of zany friends, since it debuted in 2005. The series has earned the actor four Emmy nominations, including one this year. The 2011 Emmy Awards ceremony is set to take place on Sunday. (Check out a list of nominations.)
Harris has won two Emmys in the past. Last year, he received one for a guest performance on the FOX musical comedy series "Glee" and shared another Emmy with the producers of the 2009 Tony Awards, which he hosted and which won the award for Outstanding Special Class Programs. Harris also hosted the 2011 Tony Awards as well as the 2009 Emmys.
Harris made his Broadway debut in 2000 in the play "Proof." Before that, he starred in a Los Angeles production and tour of the musical "Rent." He directed a Hollywood Bowl production of "Rent" in 2010.
Harris has also appeared in the Broadway revivals of the musicals "Cabaret" and Stephen Sondheim's "Assassins," which saw him playing the dual role of the Balladeer and Lee Harvey Oswald. In April of this year, he starred alongside Stephen Colbert, Jon Cryer of the CBS series "Two and a Half Men" and "Mad Men" actress Christina Hendricks in the New York Philharmonic's production of the Sondheim musical "Company."
Harris continues to make movies and appears in films such as the upcoming "Muppets" movie, set for release on November 23, and "Beastly," a 2011 adaptation of "Beauty and the Beast." It features Vanessa Hudgens, who starred in the Hollywood production of "Rent" that Harris had helmed.