amy poehler before emmys 'Parks and Recreation's' Amy Poehler: Before the Emmys, 'Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo' and 'Undeclared'

Amy Poehler scored her fourth Emmy nomination in a row this year for playing Leslie Knope on NBC’s “Parks and Recreation” — making it her sixth career Emmy nomination overall.

The nomination is extremely well-deserved: Poehler consistently serves up a character that makes you cry — with both laughter and tears — at her outrageous life while still remaining like-able and real. But when we hear the name Amy Poehler, her “Parks and Rec” role and memorable stint on “Saturday Night Live” are not the first things to pop into our heads. Nope, Poehler will forever be the poor girl afflicted with an extreme case of Tourette’s Syndrome in “Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo.”

Welcome to Before They Were Emmy Nominees. Each Tuesday and Wednesday between now and the Emmy Awards on Sept. 22, we’re going to look back at some early, obscure, and favorite roles of a few of this year’s acting nominees. (See Zap2it‘s Before They Were Nominees photo gallery.)

Poehler’s role in the 1999 Rob Schneider movie, “Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo” was small, but extremely memorable. Who else can get away with screaming out as many swear word and inappropriate phrase combinations in public? No one … unless, of course, you actually suffer from an extreme case of Tourette’s Syndrome like Ruth. 

But her swear-word shouting, baseball-game-loving Ruth isn’t the only role of Poehler’s we loved before she hit it big with “Parks and Rec” and “SNL.” 

Who can forget the time she totally blew off Seth Rogen for a young Charlie Hunnam (a.k.a. your new Christian Grey in the “Fifty Shades of Grey” film adaptation) in Judd Apatow‘s college-themed series, “Undeclared?” Yeah, we don’t blame her one bit, considering how Hunnam turned out.

Before her divorce, Poehler made up one half of comedy’s golden couple with Will Arnett. The two took their unique and hilarious brand of comedy to the seriously underrated figure-skating movie, “Blades of Glory.” And while they played devious, manipulative siblings, they didn’t tone down their PDA, making for one hilariously awkward pair of villains. 

Poehler’s other earlier film and TV roles include “Wet Hot American Summer,” “Mean Girls,” “Arrested Development,” “Southland Tales,” and “Baby Mama.” When do you remember first seeing her on screen, and which role of hers is your favorite?

Posted by:Sydney Bucksbaum