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Bill Maher

Bill Maher

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D.C. Cab DVD A fun comedic film is sometimes the perfect remedy to a long day, and "D.C. Cab"... more info $9.99was $9.99 Buy Now

Religulous DVD Travel with comedian Bill Maher and director Larry Charles on a pilgrimage of a... more info $14.98was $14.98 Buy Now

Also Known As: William Maher Jr. Died:
Born: January 20, 1956 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: New York City, New York, USA Profession: stand-up comedian, television host, political commentator, actor, author

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Controversial comedian Bill Maher was known as the driving force behind edgy panel discussion shows "Politically Incorrect" (Comedy Central, 1993-96; ABC 1997-2002) and "Real Time with Bill Maher" (HBO, 2003- ). He eventually developed into one of the top political comedians of the 1990s and beyond, bringing the much-needed format of open political debate and a wide array of viewpoints to the TV airwaves. The comedian's personal approach - broaching taboo subjects or critiquing long-revered institutions - however, was the center of the proceedings, with Maher seemingly offending viewers, networks, policymakers and advertisers at every turn. For all the outcry surrounding his controversial points of view, Maher did instigate valuable debates on such critical topics as the war in Iraq and the Bush administration - and through his show, as well as stand-up specials and humorous books, helped present the issues of the day in a digestible format for the masses.

Controversial comedian Bill Maher was known as the driving force behind edgy panel discussion shows "Politically Incorrect" (Comedy Central, 1993-96; ABC 1997-2002) and "Real Time with Bill Maher" (HBO, 2003- ). He eventually developed into one of the top political comedians of the 1990s and beyond, bringing the much-needed format of open political debate and a wide array of viewpoints to the TV airwaves. The comedian's personal approach - broaching taboo subjects or critiquing long-revered institutions - however, was the center of the proceedings, with Maher seemingly offending viewers, networks, policymakers and advertisers at every turn. For all the outcry surrounding his controversial points of view, Maher did instigate valuable debates on such critical topics as the war in Iraq and the Bush administration - and through his show, as well as stand-up specials and humorous books, helped present the issues of the day in a digestible format for the masses.

Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:


CAST: (feature film)

1.
2.
 Iron Man 3 (2013)
3.
 Campaign, The (2012)
4.
5.
 Religulous (2008)
6.
 Religulous (2008)
7.
 Swing Vote (2008)
8.
 Heckler (2008)
9.
 Fuck (2005)
10.
 Inside Deep Throat (2005) Cast
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1979:
Host of the New York City comedy club Catch a Rising Star
1982:
Began appearing on "The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson" (NBC) and "Late Night with David Letterman" (NBC)
1983:
Made film debut in "D.C. Cab"
1985:
TV debut as a series regular on the NBC sitcom "Sara"
1986:
Made TV-movie debut in "Club Med" (ABC)
1989:
First lead role in the cult classic film, "Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death"
1990:
Hosted the short-lived CBS talk show "The Midnight Hour"
1992:
First appearance in a comedy special on HBO, as part of the network's "One Night Stand" series
1993:
Served as moderator of "Politically Incorrect With Bill Maher" (aired on Comedy Central and later ABC); show was not renewed by ABC after he made a controversial on-air remark on Sept. 17, 2001, about the 9/11 terrorists
1995:
Second HBO special, "Bill Maher: Stuff That Struck Me Funny"
1997:
Appeared in the HBO special, "Bill Maher: The Golden Goose Special"
2000:
Aired the HBO special "Bill Maher: Be More Cynical" just months before the 2000 US presidential election
2002:
Wrote the book, <i>When you ride ALONE you ride with bin Laden</i>; nominated for a Grammy for Best Spoken Word Album
2003:
Made his Broadway debut in "Bill Maher: Victory Begins at Home" (sixth stand-up special to air on HBO); received a Tony nomination
2003:
Hosted the weekly HBO talk show, "Real Time with Bill Maher"; earned an Emmy (2010) nomination for Outstanding Variety, Music Or Comedy Series
2005:
Joined as a contributing blogger at <i>The Huffington Post</i>
2005:
Headlined the HBO Comedy Special Event, "Bill Maher: I'm Swiss"
2006:
Hosted an internet-exclusive talk show on Amazon.com entitled "Amazon Fishbowl"
2007:
Appeared in his eighth HBO stand-up comedy special, "Bill Maher: The Decider"
2008:
Produced and starred in the documentary, "Religulous"
2010:
Earned an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Variety, Music Or Comedy Special and Outstanding Writing For A Variety, Music Or Comedy Special (for the HBO comedy special "Bill Maher...But I'm Not Wrong")
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Pascack Hills High School: Montvale , New Jersey -
Cornell University: Ithaca , New York - 1978
Cornell University: Ithaca , New York - 1978

Notes

"Bill is a first-rate social satirist."---Ralph Nader quoted in People, July 24, 1995.

"He's a great ringleader. He knows when to stir things up, when to agree and not agree. I like fighting with him. He calls me his feminist nemesis."---Roseanne in People, July 24, 1995.

"I told the first AIDS joke: The punchline was, 'I just want to meet an old fashioned girl with gonorrhea.' It released a collective tension. Johnny [Carson] said, 'That's one of the longest laughs I've ever heard.'"---Bill Maher

"The whole point of the show is that there's something funny about everything. And not letting the sadness of life overtake you."---Maher in People, July 24, 1995.

"I said f*** in front of the President. You're not supposed to do that, I found out. He was shocked. He actually never heard the word before and asked me what it meant. No, seriously, he was great. He has such a good sense of humor and obviously enjoys comedy."---Bill Maher in Us, December 1995.

Maher got into trouble in October 1998 for calling former US President Ronald Reagan "a crazy, reckless liar." Some felt it was inappropriate given Mr. Reagan's diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease while others, especially Mr. Reagan's son Michael (a radio host) were not pacified by Maher's apology.

The following is a transcript of the comments made on the September 17, 2001 broadcast that landed Maher in hot water: Dinesh D'Souza: "Bill, there's another piece of political correctness I want to mention. And, although I think Bush has been doing a great job, one of the themes we hear constantly is that the people who did this are cowards."

Bill Maher: "Not true."

Dinesh: "Not true. Look at what they did. First of all, you have a whole bunch of guys who are willing to give their life. None of 'em backed out. All of them slammed themselves into pieces of concrete."

Bill: "Exactly."

Dinesh: These are warriors. And we have to realize that the principles of our way of life are in conflict with people in the world. And so, I mean, I'm all for understanding the sociological causes of this, but we should not blame the victim. Americans shouldn't blame themselves because other people want to bomb them."

Bill: "But also, we should, we have been the cowards lobbing cruise missiles from 2,000 miles away. That's cowardly. Staying in the airplane when it hits the building, say what you want about it, it's not cowardly. You're right.

Maher later apologized on air for his comments, stating "In no way was I intending to say, nor have I ever thought, that the men and women who defend our nation in uniform are anything but courageous and valiant, and I offer my apologies to anyone who took it wrong.

"My criticism was meant for politicians who, fearing public reaction, have not allowed our military to do the job they are obviously ready, willing and able to do, and who now will, I'm certain, as they always have, get it done."

"Even people who disagree rarely start screaming at each other, they only do that when they're on camera."---Bill Maher to CNN.com, May 12, 2005.

Companions close complete companion listing

companion:
Stacie. Financial analyst. Together 1988-93.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Bill Maher. NBC news editor. Irish Catholic; died in 1992 of cancer.
mother:
Julie Maher. Retired nurse. Jewish.
sister:
Kathy Maher. English teacher. Older.

Bibliography close complete biography

"True Story: A Comedy Novel"
"Does Anyone Have a Problem With That? Politically Incorrect's Greatest Hits"

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