Stephen Colbert (pronounced "col-BEAR") was born on May 13, 1964, and grew up in Charleston, South Carolina.
He studied acting at Northwestern and performed with the Second City comedy troupe in Chicago before teaming up with fellow cast members Amy Sedaris and Paul Dinello to create the sketch comedy "Exit 57" (1995) for Comedy Central. During its two-season run in the mid-1990s, it garnered five CableACE nominations for best writing, performing, and comedy series. After the demise of "Exit 57" (1995) from 1997 (until his departure in October 2005), Stephen was a correspondent on "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" (1996), then hosted by Craig Kilborn. Initially billed as "The New Guy," Stephen became the show's longest-running correspondent before getting his own show, "The Colbert Report" (2005), which has done well in its slot following "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" (1996).
At the time he left "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" (1996), Stephen had been its longest-running and most diverse correspondent. In addition to his role as Senior Political Correspondent, he was one of the hosts of "Even Stepheven," a point-counterpoint assault featuring co-correspondent Steve Carell, and the host of "This Week in God," a recurring segment in which he reported on all things theological with the assistance of the "God Machine."
Stephen helped "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" (1996) win numerous Emmy and Peabody Awards and contributed to "America (The Book): A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction" (Warner Books) which immediately topped the New York Times bestseller list and stayed there for 15 consecutive weeks.
His personality, intelligence, and leftist political satire could only have led him to "The Colbert Report" (2005), a half-hour nightly platform for him to give his tongue-in-cheek take on the issues of the day, and more importantly, to tell you why he thinks everyone else's take is just plain wrong.
His other notable credits include serving as both writer and cast member on "The Dana Carvey Show" (1996), writing for "Saturday Night Live" (1975), and providing the voice of Ace in Robert Smigel's "Ambiguously Gay Duo," which originated on "The Dana Carvey Show" (1996) and was a semiregular feature in Smigel's "TV Funhouse" segment on SNL. He was also featured on "Mr. Goodwrench" commercials (2003-2005).
Stephen lives in northern New Jersey with his wife and three children.
|Evelyn McGee||(? - present) 3 children|
Parodies of well known political and media figures
Delivers ridiculous lines of dialogue with complete seriousness and sincerity
An alumnus of the Second City and Annoyance Theatre in Chicago, Illinois. Graduated from Northwestern University in 1986.
Provided the voice of Ace for "Saturday Night Live" (1975)'s "The Ambiguously Gay Duo" segments. The voice of Gary is provided by fellow "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" (1996) correspondent Steve Carell.
Is deaf in his right ear.
The youngest of eleven children.
Is a huge Lord of the Rings fan and has an encyclopedic knowledge of the series. Specifically recited the entire biography of LOTR character Aragorn from memory when Viggo Mortensen appeared on "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" (1996). Mortensen kindly sent Colbert a platter full of LOTR characters carved out of chocolate.
Most of the shows he has been a part of are on Comedy Central. These shows are "Exit 57" (1995), "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" (1996), "Strangers with Candy" (1999), and "The Colbert Report" (2005).
Was included in the Peabody Award given to [error] and "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart: Indecision 2002: Election Night (#7.55)" (2002) for "offering biting political satire, these scintillating segments had something droll and amusing to say about almost everything and everyone associated with American politics and the presidential election.".
All of his three children have appeared on "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" (1996).
His father and two of his brothers died in a plane crash when he was ten years old. On September 11, 1974, they were on an Eastern Airlines DC-9 that crashed in dense fog during its approach to Charlotte, N.C. Of the 82 people on board, 72 were killed. In its report, the NTSB concluded that "the probable cause of the accident was the flight crew's lack of altitude awareness at critical points during the approach due to poor cockpit discipline in that the crew did not follow prescribed procedures.".
He was briefly a correspondent on "Good Morning America" (1975).
Began a career in comedy by joining the Second City improv group in Chicago.
Voiced several characters on Comedy Central's "Crank Yankers" (2002).
"Truthiness," a word he coined, was declared the Word of the Year 2005 by the American Dialect Society.
His show, "The Colbert Report" (2005), averages 1.2 million viewers.
Has stated that not all of his family members say "Colbert" the way he does. Some pronounce the "T" at the end.
Has three children: Madeline, Peter, and John.
Is currently in the process of putting together news pieces about every district in the United States.
Teaches Sunday School every weekend at his church and teaches his own specific story of salvation and has the children learn spiritual songs.
As a result of the plane crash that killed his father and two of his brothers, the Federal Aviation Administration established the "sterile cockpit" rule, which prohibits flight crews from engaging in any conversation or activities apart from their flying duties while the aircraft is below 10,000 feet.
As a result of an operation he had when he was young, he can fold his right ear inside out and can pop it out when he squints his eye.
Received an honorary doctorate in fine arts by Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois, in 2006.
Is of Irish descent.
His siblings from oldest to youngest are: Jimmy, Eddie, Mary, Billy, Margo, Tommy, Jay, Lulu, Paul, and Peter. Stephen is the youngest of the eleven.
Stephen often sings and dances in television performances. He has said in interviews that he studied voice and ballet in college.
In January 2008, Colbert began a campaign on his show to have a portrait of his character hung in the "Treasures of American History" exhibit at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of American History in Washington, DC (pieces shown in that exhibit included a top hat worn by' Abraham Lincoln', an original light bulb made by Thomas A. Edison, a Greensboro, North Carolina, lunch counter that was the scene of a seminal civil rights sit-in, Lewis and Clark's compass, and Kermit the Frog). When the National Museum of American History refused the portrait, Colbert next offered it to the National Portrait Gallery (also a Smithsonian museum), which accepted it on a temporary basis and hung it between the bathrooms adjacent to the Hall of Presidents. After the portrait's term at the National Portrait Gallery was up, the National Museum of American History did agree to hang the portrait - next to a Dumbo car from the original Dumbo the Flying Elephant ride at Disneyland.
His older sister, Elizabeth Colbert Busch (aka Lulu), is the 2014 South Carolina Democratic congressional candidate. Her Republican opponent will be Gov. Mark Sanford [April 2013].
[on what he would like to ask former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean] The media tries to portray you as an angry candidate. Doesn't that piss you off?
[To Howard Kurtz on CNN's "Reliable Sources" (1992) January 25, 2004] We have no desire to make anybody look like a blithering idiot, but we do love it when they do. Because we get it off the AP feed and, then, we don't have to write anything for the next five minutes. We can just roll the tape.
[Deseret Morning News (Salt Lake City, UT), January 23, 2004] Since there's not more news than there used to be, but there's way more time, and more channels doing it all the time, so that analysis has become much more than news . . . They really have to fill and they go, "(Expletive), we'll just have analysis for the next three hours," because there's no more new on the story. And then . . . the first person with a semi-cogent thought, they go, "(Expletive), I'll say that, too." And then that analysis becomes accepted dogma because analysis is the bulk of what you're getting. You're not really getting any more news.
[The Union Leader (Manchester NH, January 25, 2004, when asked why people should watch "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" (1996)] You shouldn't listen to us at all if you're looking for information. We don't take ourselves seriously on any level; we're just comedians . . . I'm a huge news junkie. I love what the news does. And we're a shadow, a reflection, of what's happening in the real news.
[on his mock "crusade" against the Associated Press regarding his claim that coined the word "truthiness"] It's a sin of omission, is what it is. You're not giving people the whole story about truthiness. It's like Shakespeare still being alive and not asking him what "Hamlet" is about.
The fact that they looked it up in a book just shows that they don't get the idea of truthiness at all. You don't look up truthiness in a book, you look it up in your gut.
[about the Washington press corps] But, listen, let's review the rules. Here's how it works. The President makes decisions, he's the decider. The Press Secretary announces those decisions, and you people of the press type those decisions down. Make, announce, type. Put them through a spell check and go home. Get to know your family again. Make love to your wife. Write that novel you got kicking around in your head. You know, the one about the intrepid Washington reporter with the courage to stand up to the administration. You know, fiction.
[on his creativity] I wrote things for the school's newspaper, and - like all teenagers - I dabbled in poetry.
[on writing] I used to write things for friends. There was this girl I had a crush on, and she had a teacher she didn't like at school. I had a real crush on her, so almost every day I would write her a little short story where she would kill him in a different way.
[stating that the best moment in the 2004 campaign for Democratic presidential nominee was Howard Dean's post-Iowa speech] Because clearly everybody was captivated by it. I think that's an argument why he should be President, because he can capture everyone's attention. Listen, George W. Bush was a cheerleader. I'm sure he screamed like that when he was at Yale, and I don't see why that disqualifies someone from being President. But George Bush did it in a human pyramid.
When Jon Stewart got "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" (1996), [Colbert's wife Evelyn McGee] said, "Wait a second--he wasn't the funny one in our group. He was the quiet one in the corner with a beer".
I was never interested in political comedy: "Ted Kennedy 's hitting the bottle again!'" Jon Stewart taught me how to do it so it would be smart. He encouraged everyone to have a point of view. There had to be a thought behind every joke.
[Remembering the 2000 presidential election recount] We all had such blue balls from the jokes we wanted to do when Al Gore eventually conceded. And the night it happened, here we were doing them. I turned to Jon Stewart and said, "This is the most fun job on TV right now".
Citizens United said that transparency would be the disinfectant, but (c)(4)'s are warm, wet, moist incubators. There is no disinfectant.
My brother Billy was the joke teller. My brother Jim had a really sharp, cutting wit. And the teller of long stories, that was my brother Ed. As a child, I just absorbed everything they said, and I was always in competition for the laughs.
[In his junior year in high school]: I was probably still Colbert to a lot of people. But in my mind I was coal-BARE."
The trouble with the jokes is that once they're written, I know how they're supposed to work, and all I can do is not hit them. I'm more comfortable improvising. If I have just two or three ideas and I know how the character feels, what the character wants, everything in between is like trapeze work.
As executive producer of this show, I get to ask my character to do whatever I want.
My character is a patriot, and he believes that the Olympics are war. It's a way to prove who's got the best country. Only nobody gets hurt.
My character isn't ironically detached, he's ironically a-ttached; things are important to him.
[In 2009] I know what you're thinking: "Isn't the Iraq War over?" That's what I thought, too. I hadn't seen it in the media for a while, and when I don't see something, I assume it's vanished forever, like in that terrifying game peekaboo. We stopped seeing much coverage of the Iraq War back in September when the economy tanked, and I just figured the insurgents were wiped out because they were heavily invested in Lehman Brothers. Turns out there are still 135,000 troops in Iraq, which I don't understand because we've already won the war. And we've won it so many times. We should win something for the number of times we've won it. We eliminated the weapons of mass destruction by having them not exist. We took out Saddam Hussein-or a really convincing and committed Saddam Hussein double. We helped write the Iraqi Constitution and clearly gave Iraqis the right to bear a lot of arms. And by August of next year we'll withdraw every single one of our troops, leaving behind only memories and 50,000 troops. But despite our continued victories, Americans have many lingering questions about Iraq. For example: where is Iraq? My guess is somewhere near Paraguay.
I don't accept the status quo. I do accept Visa, MasterCard, or American Express.
(October 2007) Release of his book, "I Am America (And So Can You!)".
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