The funniest movie stars in rough order
Edward Regan Murphy was born April 3, 1961 in Brooklyn, New York, to Lillian, a telephone operator, and Charles Edward Murphy, a transit police officer who was also an amateur comedian and actor. After his father died, his mother married Vernon Lynch, a foreman at a Breyer's Ice Cream plant. His siblings are Charlie Murphy
and Vernon Lynch
John William Ferrell was born in Irvine, California, to Betty Kay (Overman), a teacher, and Roy Lee Ferrell
, Jr., a musician. His parents were both originally from Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina. A graduate of the University of Southern California, Ferrell became interested in performing while a student at University High School in Irvine...
Benjamin Edward Meara Stiller was born on November 30, 1965, in New York City, New York, to legendary comedians Jerry Stiller
and Anne Meara
. His father is of Austrian Jewish and Polish Jewish descent, and his mother was of Irish ancestry (she converted to Judaism). It's not surprising that...
Jim Carrey, Canadian-born and a U.S. citizen since 2004, is an actor and producer famous for his rubbery body movements and flexible facial expressions. The two-time Golden Globe-winner rose to fame as a cast member of the Fox sketch comedy In Living Color
but leading roles in Ace Ventura: Pet Detective
, Dumb & Dumber
and The Mask
established him as a bankable comedy actor...
Highly influential, and always controversial, African-American actor/comedian who was equally well known for his colorful language during his live comedy shows, as for his fast paced life, multiple marriages and battles with drug addiction. He has been acknowledged by many modern comic artist's as a key influence on their careers...
“ A major star in the 70s and 80s and huge influence on Eddie Murphy and many others, Richard Pryor was a very funny guy, and his films are still funny. With strong collaborations with Gene Wilder, they featured in a handful of defining comedies including Silver Streak and Stir Crazy and See No Evil, Hear No Evil. But he was as much a one man show as a partner, he made 3 big stand up movies including Live on the Sunset Strip which is one of the highest grossing Stand Up movies in history. Brewsters Millions was a big hit in 1985, and the 7th biggest opening Weekend in that year to solidify him among the greats and in the top ten. He sadly passed away in 2005 aged 65. ” - mishrust
John Cleese was born on October 27, 1939, in Weston-Super-Mare, England, to Muriel Evelyn (Cross) and Reginald Francis Cleese. He was born into a family of modest means, his father being an insurance salesman; but he was nonetheless sent off to private schools to obtain a good education. Here he was often tormented for his height...
Jack Black was born Thomas Jacob Black in Santa Monica, California, to Judith Love (Cohen) and Thomas William Black, both satellite engineers. He is of British-German (father) and Russian Jewish (mother) ancestry. Black attended the University of California at Los Angeles. While at UCLA, he was a member...
Bill Murray is an American actor, comedian, and writer. The fifth of nine children, he was born William James Murray in Wilmette, Illinois, to Lucille (Collins), a mailroom clerk, and Edward Joseph Murray II, who sold lumber. He is of Irish descent. Among his siblings are actors Brian Doyle-Murray
, Joel Murray
Adam Richard Sandler was born September 9, 1966 in Brooklyn, New York, to Judith (Levine), a teacher at a nursery school, and Stanley Alan Sandler, an electrical engineer. He is of Russian Jewish descent. At 17, he took his first step towards becoming a stand-up comedian when he spontaneously took the stage at a Boston comedy club...
Often credited as the greatest comedian of all time, Peter Sellers was born to a well-off English acting family in 1925. His mother and father worked in an acting company run by his grandmother. As a child, Sellers was spoiled, as his parents' first child had died at birth. He enlisted in the Royal Air Force and served during World War II...
John C. Reilly
Character actor, dramatic leading man, or hilarious comic foil? With an astonishing range of roles already under his belt, John C. Reilly has played a eclectic host of rich characters to great effect over the years, from seedy ne'er-do-wells, to lovable, good-natured schlepps. The fifth of six children...
Christopher Crosby Farley was born on February 15, 1964, in Madison, Wisconsin, to Mary Anne (Crosby) and Thomas Farley, who owned an oil company. Among his siblings are actors Kevin P. Farley
and John Farley
. He was of Irish heritage. Farley studied theatre and communications on Marquette University...
John Belushi was born in Chicago, Illinois, USA, on January 24, 1949, to Agnes Demetri (Samaras) and Adam Anastos Belushi, a restaurant owner. His father was an Albanian immigrant, from Qytezë, and his mother was also of Albanian descent. He grew up in Wheaton, where the family moved when he was six...
Charlie Sheen was born Carlos Irwin Estévez on September 3, 1965, in New York City. His father, actor Martin Sheen
(born Ramon Antonio Gerard Estevez), was at the time just breaking into the business, with performances on Broadway. His mother, Janet Sheen
(née Templeton), was a former New York art student who had met Charlie's father right after he had moved to Manhattan...
“ Mr Charlie Sheen has gone big on the television through two and a half men but before that he appeared in some great comedies namely Hot Shots and Hot Shots part deux. His success at the Box Office was almost always with comedy, The Three Musketeers, Money Talks and Scary Movie 3 were all a success, his part in these making them funnier. A sarcastic actor who can play serious when mayhem surrounds him like Leslie Nielsons schtick made the Hot Shots movies up there with the greatest, in part thanks to Zucker and Abrahams. His move into TV started with Spin City and ended with Anger Management, with that aforementioned small show inbetween, has for now stopped, with a new role for him in the upcoming Machete Kills flick. Lets hope he continues to keep up his funnny business. ” - mishrust
Steve Carell, one of America's most versatile comics, was born Steven John Carell on August 16, 1962, in Concord, Massachusetts. He is the son of Harriet T. (Koch), a psychiatric nurse, and Edwin A. Carell, an electrical engineer. His mother is of Polish descent and his father is of Italian and German ancestry (Steve's grandfather had changed the surname from "Caroselli" to "Carrell")...
Leslie William Nielsen was born in Regina, Saskatchewan, and raised in Tulita (formerly Fort Norman), Northwest Territories. His mother, Mabel Elizabeth (Davies), was Welsh. His father, Ingvard Eversen Nielsen, was a Danish-born Mountie and a strict disciplinarian. Leslie studied at the Academy of Radio Arts in Toronto before moving on to New York's Neighborhood Playhouse...
“ For So long, Leslie Nielson played a straight guy, just check his resume. But when Jim Abrahams and David Zucker cast him in Airplane! his career took a dramatic turn in a comedic direction. His first lead role was the unforgettable Naked Gun movie, which spawned two sequels and still is a great comedy. Spoof comedy it seemed had a champion at the height of its era. But though his highs were met with some major lows like 2001: A Space Travesty, and Mr Magoo, the spoof movies in between like Spy Hard and Wrongfully Accused were hilarious. Scary Movie 3 and 4 rounded off his career nicely. He passed away recently at the age of ” - mishrust
Gene Wilder was born Jerome Silberman in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, to Jeanne (Baer) and William J. Silberman, who manufactured miniature whiskey and beer bottles. His father was a Russian Jewish immigrant, while his Illinois-born mother was of Russian Jewish descent. Wilder caught his first big break playing...
Christopher Julius Rock was born in Andrews, South Carolina and raised in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, New York. He is the son of Rosalie (Tingman), a teacher and social worker for the mentally handicapped, and Julius Rock, a truck driver and newspaper deliveryman, whose own father was a preacher. Rock has been in stand-up comedy for several decades...
Paul Stephen Rudd was born in Passaic, New Jersey. His parents, Michael and Gloria, both from Jewish families, were born in the U.K. He has one sister, who is three years younger than he is. Paul traveled with his family during his early years, because of his father's airline job at TWA. His family eventually settled in Overland Park...
It's not surprising that Ryan Stiles would feel comfortable doing a comedic turn in the role of Lewis, one of Drew Carey
's ever-present friends in the new comedy The Drew Carey Show
. After all, the first job Stiles ever had was that of a stand-up comedian. Although he was a good student, Stiles admits...
Eric Idle is an English comedian, actor, author, singer, playwright, director and songwriter. Co-creator of Monty Python on TV, stage and five films, including The Life of Brian and The Holy Grail, which latter he adapted for the stage with John Du Prez as Monty Python's Spamalot, winning the Tony Award for Best Musical in 2005...
Robin McLaurin Williams was born on Saturday, July 21st, 1951, in Chicago, Illinois, a great-great-grandson of Mississippi Governor and Senator, Anselm J. McLaurin. His mother, Laurie McLaurin (née Janin), was a former model from Mississippi, and his father, Robert Fitzgerald Williams, was a Ford Motor Company executive from Indiana...
Self-proclaimed troublemaker Owen Wilson was born in Dallas, to Irish-American parents originally from Massachusetts. He grew up in Texas with his mother, Laura (Cunningham), a photographer; his father, Robert Andrew Wilson, an ad exec; and his brothers, Andrew Wilson
(the eldest) and Luke Wilson
Paul Hogan became a worldwide success with his irresistible comic performance in Crocodile Dundee
, which he created and co-wrote. This earned him a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor as well as an Academy Award nomination (for Best Screenplay). The versatile actor got his start in Australian television in a recurring role as comic relief on A Current Affair
Multi-talented Jason Jordan Segel was born in Los Angeles, California, where he was raised by his parents, Jillian (Jordan), a homemaker, and Alvin Segel, a lawyer. His mother is of English, Scottish, and Irish ancestry, and his father is of Ashkenazi Jewish descent. He was educated at St. Matthew's Parish School in Pacific Palisades...
Chevy Chase was born Cornelius Crane Chase in Lower Manhattan, New York, to Cathalene Parker (Browning), a concert pianist and librettist, and Edward Tinsley "Ned" Chase, an editor and writer. His parents both came from prominent families, and his grandfathers were artist and illustrator Edward Leigh Chase and admiral Miles Browning...
At one point in time, Chris Tucker was the highest paid actor in Hollywood. Tucker was born in Atlanta, Georgia, to Mary Louise (Bryant) and Norris Tucker, who owned a janitorial service. After graduating from high school, Tucker made a change to move to Hollywood from Georgia to pursue a career in show business...
Billy Crystal was born on March 14, 1948 in Long Beach, Long Island, New York. He is the youngest of three sons born to Helen (Gabler) and Jack Crystal. His father was a well-known concert promoter who co-founded Commodore Records and his mother was a homemaker. His family were Jewish immigrants from Russia...
Ken Jeong is a Korean-American actor, comedian, and physician. He is best known for his roles as Ben Chang on the critically acclaimed NBC/Yahoo! sitcom Community and gangster Leslie Chow in The Hangover Trilogy. He appeared in Michael Bay's Pain & Gain (2013), as Johnny Wu, a motivational speaker...
Comic brat extraordinaire David Spade was born on July 22, 1964, in Birmingham, Michigan, the youngest of three brothers. He is the son of Judith J. (Meek), a writer and editor, and Wayne M. Spade, a sales rep, and is of German, English, Irish, and Scottish descent. Raised in both Scottsdale (from age four) and Casa Grande...
An actor, comedian and writer, Seth Rogen has come a long way from doing stand-up comedy as a teen. Rogen was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, to Sandy (Belogus), a social worker, and Mark Rogen, who worked for non-profits. His father is American-born and his mother is Canadian. He is of Russian Jewish descent...
Daniel Edward Aykroyd was born on July 1, 1952 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, to Lorraine Hélène (Gougeon), a secretary from a French-Canadian family, and Samuel Cuthbert Peter Hugh Aykroyd, a civil engineer who advised prime minister Pierre Trudeau
. Aykroyd attended Carleton University in 1969, where he majored in Criminology and Sociology...
Vincent Anthony Vaughn was born on March 28, 1970, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA, and was raised in Lake Forest, Illinois. His parents are Vernon Vaughn
, a salesman, and Sharon Vaughn
(née Sharon Eileen DePalmo), a real-estate agent and stockbroker. They divorced in 1991. He has two older sisters...
Charles Peckham Day was born in New York City, NY, and raised in Middletown, Rhode Island. His parents are both music teachers - his mother, Mary (Peckham), is a piano teacher, and his father, Dr. Thomas Charles Day, is a professor of Undergraduate Performing Arts at Salve Regina University in Newport...
Zach Galifianakis was born in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, to Mary Frances (Cashion), who owned a community arts center, and Harry Galifianakis, a heating oil vendor. His father is of Greek descent and his mother is of mostly English and Scottish ancestry. Zach moved to New York City after failing his last college class by one point...
Jonah Hill was born and raised in Los Angeles, the son of Sharon (Chalkin), a fashion designer and costume stylist, and Richard Feldstein
, a tour accountant for Guns N' Roses
. His siblings are music manager Jordan Feldstein
and actress Beanie Feldstein
. He graduated from Crossroads School in Santa Monica and went on to The New School in New York to study drama...
Steve Martin was born on August 14, 1945 in Waco, Texas, USA as Stephen Glenn Martin to Mary Lee (née Stewart; 1913-2002) and Glenn Vernon Martin (1914-1997), a real estate salesman and aspiring actor. He was raised in Inglewood and Garden Grove in California. In 1960, he got a job at the Magic shop of Disney's Fantasyland...
Seann William Scott
Seann William Scott was born in Cottage Grove, Minnesota, to Patricia Anne (Simons) and William Frank Scott, a factory worker. He was discovered at a talent competition in Los Angeles, and almost immediately was flown to New York by ABC to test for All My Children
. His face has also been seen from his...