Janet Varney | Biography 2021
Janet Varney | Biography 2021

Quick Information

  • Full Name Janet Varney
  • Occupation Comedian, Actress
  • Nationality America
  • Birthplace Arizona, USA
  • Born Year And Birthday February 16, 1976
Voice of Korra

Janet Varney | Biography 2021

As the voice of Korra in Nickelodeon's animated series 'The Legend of Korra,' Varney initially thought the whiny and obnoxious character of Korra very disturbing but fell in love as the days went by and began supporting it.

Quick Information
  • Full Name Janet Varney
  • Occupation Comedian, Actress
  • Nationality America
  • Birthplace Arizona, USA
  • Birth Date February 16, 1976

Janet Varney is an American actress known as Korra's voice-comedian in The Legend of Korra, an animated Nickelodeon series.

Who is Janet Varney?

Janet Varney is the co-founder of the SF Sketchfest, the San Francisco Comedy Festival in 2001. 

From 2012 to 2014, Varney voiced Korra on Nickelodeon's hit show, The Legend of Korra. She also hosts The JV Club Podcast since 2012, featuring over 400 celebrities on their teen years.

Writing and performing a series of humorous audio commentaries for movies, Varney and fellow SF Sketchfest co-founder Cole Stratton with Michael J. Nelson officially sanctioned it for the RiffTrax website under the RiffTrax Presents branding.

Varney has also appeared in TBS' Dinner & Movie for seven years since 1995, HBO's Entourage (2004), and a cameo on How I Met Your Mother (2005), Bones (2005), Psych (2006), Chelsea Lately (2007), Key and Peele (2012), and Huffpost Live (2012).

In 2021, Janet Varney has earned recurring roles in Netflix's multi-camera comedy series Country Comfort.

Early life

Janet Varney was born on February 16, 1976, in Tucson, Arizona. She graduated from Rincon High School in 1993 and studied theater at San Francisco State University. Varney pursued her career in interior design for some time before returning to acting. Varney had been brought up in Mormon but left the church at 17 and is now an agnostic. 

SF Sketchfest

Along with David Owen and Cole Stratton, Janet Varney co-founded the SF Sketchfest, the San Francisco Comedy Festival in 2001 to showcase the talents of sketch comedy groups in the Bay Area. It became one of North America's largest and most celebrated events. The crew had been doing sketch comedy from their Totally False People comedy group for just a year when they founded the festival. 

Varney served as a producer and creative director for SF Sketchfest and simultaneously co-programming comedy for the Outside Lands Music Festival. 

Prior to her participation in SF Sketchfest, Varney worked as the buyer and merchandise manager for Filamento, a posh luxury home furnishings store in Pacific Heights, San Francisco. 

She was also a member of a rock band that had just disbanded due to a member's relocation. Varney had also performed with the Los Angeles and in San Francisco-based group Sequel 4000.

'The Legend of Korra'

From 2012 to 2014, Varney has been lucky enough to be Korra's award-winning voice on the highly acclaimed hit The Legend of Korra aired on Nickelodeon. The character Korra was the new iteration of the characters Avatar and Aang. The character was born and raised in the Southern Water Tribe and had the multitasking capability of controlling all four Earthly elements: water-bending, earth-bending, fire-bending, and air-bending

To Varney, voicing Korra was shocking and almost unreal. She further explained, "Oh absolutely! I would have been excited to be any part of that show at all; the fact that I got to voice Korra was just so shocking and wonderful and kind of unbelievable."

After four years of playing the character, Varney got connected with Korra so much that she defended the criticism of the character. Korra was hated during the first season of The Legend of Korra as she was a whiny and obnoxious adolescent.

Varney initially thought Korra was frustrating for some people, but later she started to love Korra and her journey.

The show ended on December 19, 2014. At the end of the broadcast, the two bisexual characters - Korra and Asami turned and clasped hands, gazing lovingly into each other's eyes as they were in love and everything seemed to be perfect for a brief moment. The Legend of Korra's final beats seemed to be a meager contribution to LGBTQ+ inclusion.

However, the fourth season did not focus on the bisexual aspect. The voice actress had a view on this subject. She saiid, "I think that things have really come a long way in the last few years and that at the time, it was a really big deal that Korra and Asami ended up together at all. And I really appreciate Nickelodeon being on board for it, and they were. But I also feel again that an envelope was being pushed on the kind of drama and trauma side of things, and that was really what the fourth season was focusing on."

The JV Club Podcast

Janet Varney has been hosting the JV Club Podcast since 2012, featuring more than 400 interviews with celebrities about their adolescent years.

Getting to know about the overwhelming and confusing times of the celebrities, Varney began to understand that everyone came from a place of vulnerability and found that puberty was a great way to discover what people have in common with one another.


With fellow SF Sketchfest co-founder Cole Stratton, Varney wrote and performed a number of satirical audio commentaries for movies. RiffTrax creator and Mystery Science Theater 3000 alumnus Michael J. Nelson had formally sanctioned these commentaries on the RiffTrax website under the Rifftrax Presents branding. Footloose, Poltergeist, Ghost, Dirty Dancing, Jaws 3-D, Flatliners, and The Lost Boys Dreamscape are some of the films for which Varney appeared doing RiffTraxcommentaries.

Other Television projects

Varney got featured in several other television shows. She hosted Dinner & Movie for TBS from 1995 to 2001, starred in HBO's Entourage in 2004, and appeared regularly on the E! and Yahoo series Burning Love (2012) – seasons 1 and 3. Later, she played Becca in the FX live-action series You Are the Worst in 2014.

She also made her guest appearances on the shows How I Met Your Mother (2005), Bones (2005), Psych (2006), Chelsea Lately (2007), Key and Peele (2012), Huffpost Live (2012), and @midnight (2013). 

Varney can also be seen in movies - Drillbit Taylor (2008), Still Waiting (2009), Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer (2011).

Recent Projects

In 2021, Janet Varney and Eric Balfour got recurring roles in Netflix's multi-camera comedy series Country Comfort, starring Katharine McPhee and Eddie Cibrian. Varney portrays Summer, Beau's girlfriend, in the series.

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