Enrollment in the improv troupe The Groundlings led to his discovery by SNL, where he excelled in impersonating President George W. Bush. Ferrell made his movie debut (along with SNL costar Chris Kattan) in 1998 in A Night at the Roxbury. Other movies followed, but it wasn't until Zoolander and Old School in 2003 that Ferrell truly hit his comic stride.
In 2004, Ferrell scored a grand slam as an oversized elf in Elf and followed that up with the title role in Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, another box office winner. Ferrell married Swede Viveca Paulin in 2000.