Comedy Impact Report 2011: Bigscreen Bigshots

Boasting $286 million in global box office and only now unleashing its potential on homevid, “Bridesmaids” has registered as perhaps the biggest sleeper hit of the past year.

Debut feature writers Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo met nearly a decade ago as members of L.A. comedy troupe the Groundlings and finished the first draft of “Bridesmaids” in six days.

While Wiig certainly had the higher profile of the two, neither had shown her full potential: Wiig was a dutiful team player on “SNL,” while Mumolo was a mostly bit-part actress with such credits as “gonorrhea patient” and “Bed Bath and Beyond shopper” to her credit.

That sense of quiet triumph infuses the wackier moments of “Bridesmaids” with a strong sense of feminine solidarity that helped deepen the film far beyond its bridezilla and bathroom-humor trappings.

“We wanted to tell a friendship story, and it really resonated with us,” Mumolo told the L.A. Times when the pic was released. “Our relationship survived a lot — things that could easily tear two people apart. This process could really cause trouble between two people. You have to make big decisions together. Big ones. You have to consider the other person.”

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