Arthur Steven Lange grew up a child of a middle class family in Union, New Jersey. At Union High School, Lange excelled in baseball, becoming an All County third baseman. Working long afternoons with his loving contractor father, Artie developed a comical view of social classes, and his place in life as a barrel-chested Italian boy. After Artie completed high school, his father, who was a cable installer, fell off a roof and became a quadriplegic. Artie changed his college plans to be near his family, taking up odd jobs as a clerk, laborer and cab driver. After his fathers' death four years later, Artie quit his Port of Newark longshoreman's' job to play his first gig at New York's Improv in Hell's Kitchen. Gaining steadying success Artie pursued sketch comedy, helping to create the popular improvisation group, "Live On Tape". Doing improvisation landed Artie his major break. He was cast as an original member of Fox's "MADtv" (1995) in 1995. Hollywood success would bring down the comic with substance abuse and a possession for cocaine arrest. Mad TV fired him in 1997. After rehab, depression and a 40-pound weight gain, Lange found himself out of work until "Saturday Night Live" (1975)comedian Norm MacDonald remembered him. Lange played MacDonald's sidekick in both Dirty Work (1998) and ABC's "Norm" (1999). As a guest during a promotional tour with MacDonald,Howard Stern first heard and liked Lange. Years before, Artie and his father listened daily to the Howard Stern Show. Artie joined the nationally syndicated "The Howard Stern Radio Show" (1998)in 2001, bringing impressions and an average guy prospective to the radio and E network shows. However, his troubled past re-emerged through his years on the Stern show and Artie had fights with various staff members and splits with the show on several occasions up until his suicide attempt in 2010 when he left the show for good. Artie spent 7 months in a rehab center in Florida and emerged stating that he was finally clean and sober. Artie returned to radio in 2011 when, along with his friend Nick DiPaolo, they inked 3-year deals for a nationally syndicated radio show on Fox Sports. The show is called "The Nick and Artie Show".IMDb Mini Biography By: MikeAnglin<theAnglins@earthlink.net>
Impressions of Italians and Southerners
Darkly funny stories about his personal life
Sarcastic catchphrase "Waaah!"
Avid fan of the New York Yankees.
Was an All-County baseball player, as a third baseman for Union High School in Union, New Jersey
His indulgences in food and alcohol provide almost daily comic fodder for the rest of the "Howard Stern" (1994) cast. There are few foods high in calories, fat, carbohydrates, salt or sugar that Artie doesn't eat in excess and his drunken exploits are legendary. Mr. Lange maintains a good sense of humour about his shortcomings, and enjoys his role as comic foil on the show.
[August 21, 2003] The results of a DNA test taken on the "Howard Stern" (1994) Show, show that Lange is 1/4 American Indian. He is Neapolitan Italian on his mother's side, but his father's full heritage has always been a "grey area". He had only previously known of his German ancestry on that side of his family.
At Howard Stern's now-defunct official bulletin board, there were more members with user names created in his honor than any other regular on the show, including Stern himself. Among those named after the comedian were Artie Lange dead at 37, Artie Lange's Liver, Artie's Dead Dad and Filthy Drunk Artie.
Is of Italian, German and American Indian descent.
Had a small role in Jerry Maguire (1996) but his scene was deleted.
Claims he has seen The Godfather (1972) so many times that he can recite the entire movie. When director Francis Ford Coppola visited The Howard Stern Show on June 8, 2009, Stern asked Coppola to request a scene from The Godfather for Artie to recite, he chose the scene between Michael Corleone and Carlo Rizzi before Rizzi's assassination. Lange performed the scene with only two minor errors and was applauded by Coppola and the cast. He later compared the experience to "singing Born To Run for Springsteen.".
Both he and his predecessor, Jackie Martling, appear in the 2003 film Mail Order Bride, though they have no scenes together.
Contrary to popular belief, he had not met either David Spade or Norm MacDonald prior to making films with them; he has, however, become close friends with them in the years since.
Known for his impersonations of Notorious B. I. G., Anne Murray, Brian Johnson, the Iron Sheik, Henry Hill, Larry Flint and numerous others.
Has said that Richard Lewis's specials in the 1980s were what inspired him to become a stand-up comedian.
Followed comedian George Carlin, whom he considers to be the all-time greatest, during his first ever talk show appearance on "The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn." He immediately said "it's easy to follow the funniest guy, ever!".
Autobiography "Too Fat To Fish," featuring a forward by Howard Stern, debuted at number one on the New York Times Bestseller List.
Has frequently joked about his bad luck with movies, naming "Mystery Men" (where he has a small role in the beginning) as his worst film, he claims his mother and sister called him from the movie theater to ask if he had any other scenes because they wanted to leave.
Don't do drugs to be cool, do 'em because you hate yourself.
It's a life of five-card draw, and you know what? When God asked me - I'm fine with the card I got. I'm gonna play this.
[on allegations of homophobia] I have gay friends, I support gay rights, I have nothing against the gay community, but when I see two guys kissing, I think it's gross. And, by the way, it's gross when 99% of straight people do it, too.
I once dealt with a prima donna on a movie set. I won't say who, but his first name is a country. A communist country. Run by Fidel Castro.
I was in five movies that got a total of four stars from The Daily News. And the reviews of "Beer League" were nothing compared to "Dirty Work." The review in my home town paper, The Star Ledger, said that I "had all the charm of a date rapist." I felt really bad about that, then Norm [MacDonald]; he's trying to cheer me up, being totally serious; says "well, a date rapist has to have way more charm than a regular rapist!"
The Howard Stern Show is a big hit because it entertains dumb and smart people at the same time for different reasons. There's a couple of shows like that, The Simpsons is another one, smart people and stupid people love The Simpsons for totally different reasons; that's why it's a big hit, everybody's either smart or stupid so a lot of people watch it. Our show, smart people and stupid people love it for different reasons and early on in my career I made a commitment to myself; I refuse to cater to stupid people. What we do on the air is just try to be funny and hope that the smart people listen more than the dumb people.
[on Howard Stern] Howard's unbelievably nutty, politically incorrect style is probably the single biggest influence on me.
I had a job that people in this business would absolutely kill for on the sitcom I was on, I was working with one of my best friends. Laurie Metcalf was in the cast, really talented people on the Warner Brothers lot in LA. I was a supporting character making 35 grand a week, some weeks I'd have two lines. I had a job making 35 grand a week where I didn't have to take anything to work; I didn't have a briefcase or a piece of paper. I had ridiculously lame, easy jokes to memorize; like the jokes on that show would be I'd go to Norm MacDonald and say 'Are you thinking what I'm thinking?' and he'd say 'No, I'm not thinking of cheeseburgers,' then I'd make a face like 'oh, you got me' and then I'd walk out and then I'd get 35 grand on a Friday. So I had a convertible Mercedes, I was living in a four-thousand dollar a month condo on Willshire and Beverly Hills, I was healthy, I was thin, I had a tan. Even with that life, creatively I was empty inside, I couldn't stand it, after two years I had to get out of there, I was going crazy pulling the hairs out of my head.
[His opinion of Howard Stern's Wack Pack] There's times when it's heartbreaking to see some of the people get on the air and speak about their lives. This is a very difficult subject because the one argument is you're giving some sort of wonderful gift to these people that their becoming mini-celebrities. Beetlejuice is an example, he's a retarded, black midget who drinks all the time and has got bad teeth. The guy's a rock star, he makes over six figures a year doing appearances because the show made him famous and I really think he's having a good time with it; he seems happy, he seems to like the attention and all the partying and everything. Whereas, without that his life would be lonely and pathetic and everything. Now, that's me justifying what we do, that's the positive argument. He could go home and have really dark, dark times thinking about 'oh, their laughing at me and I'm being exploited.' But he gets paid a lot of money and the people that handle him seem to be good, honest people and I hope that they take care of him. But look, we don't see him 24 hours a day, he seems to be fine with it. But if I knew that one of these people that comes on our show all the time was really hurting about it and felt exploited and was sad; to be honest with you, that would really make me upset and I would question having them on again if that were the case. I genuinely think that the people that come on our show enjoy it, enjoy the attention and I think it enriches their lives that would have been really boring, mundane and, for lack of a better word, horrible without this love.
[on John Belushi] He was so powerful on SNL that every sketch show since then needs a Belushi guy. I was the Belushi guy on MADtv.
[on his drug and alcohol addiction] I wish I was this dark genius artist - like Richard Pryor or something. There's that story about how Eric Clapton saw Jimi Hendrix play, and he supposedly went home and cried because he could never be that good. I would never do anything that fruity, but I can relate to that. I wish I was as great as other guys, and that sucks. So I get the blues, and I self-medicate.
[on Clay Aiken's fans' negative reaction to his coming out of the closet] That just shows you how immature they are. I was like 28 when I found out Elton John was gay and I didn't care, I kept buying his albums.
[on techno music] When you're on that ecstasy shit, this sounds like "Hey Jude".
|"The Howard Stern Radio Show" (1998)||$450,000|
(June 2002) Sidekick/Writer on the Nationally syndicated "The Howard Stern Radio Show" (1998).
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