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Damon Wayans

Damon Wayans

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Bulletproof DVD Damon Wayans and Adam Sandler star in this comedic adaptation of “The Defiant... more info $9.99was $9.99 Buy Now

Major Payne DVD Upon his retirement from the Marine Corps, it would appear that Major Benson... more info $9.99was $9.99 Buy Now

I'm Gonna Git You Sucka... This1988 hilarious parody of blaxploitation films stars Keenen Ivory Wayans, who... more info $14.98was $14.98 Buy Now

Katt Williams: 9 Lives... In this fascinating profile of the meteoric rise of one of the funniest Kings of... more info $9.99was $9.99 Buy Now

The Last Boy Scout DVD In this entertaining early '90s classic, a former Secret Service agent teams up... more info $14.98was $14.98 Buy Now

4 Film Favorites: Bruce Willis... From action-adventure to comedy to Westerns, whether he's playing a good guy or... more info $14.99was $14.99 Buy Now



Also Known As: Died:
Born: September 4, 1960 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: New York City, New York, USA Profession: screenwriter, actor, comedian, producer, TV writer, mail clerk

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Although oldest brother Keenen Ivory Wayans ran things behind the scenes on the family's hit urban-flavored sketch show "In Living Color" (FOX, 1990-94), and youngest brothers Marlon and Shawn became increasingly visible in recent years as a big screen comedy team, it was Damon Wayans who brought the Wayans into the mainstream with a variety of high profile roles both on the big and small screen. After finding success by pushing the envelope early in his career - such as playing Homey the abusive clown on "In Living Color" - he found it again by embracing more conventional comedic work more than a decade later on his family friendly sitcom, "My Wife and Kids" (ABC, 2001-05).Damon Kyle Wayans was born Sept. 4, 1960 in New York City, NY, the third of 10 extremely talented and truly funny children. His childhood in the Fulton Housing Projects was difficult - born with a clubfoot, he was tormented by other children, and would later tell interviewers about physical abuse he suffered from his Jehovah's Witness parents (Wayans himself never practiced the faith). Coming from such a large but economically strapped family provided its share of pros and cons: given the size of his family, his parents were also...

Although oldest brother Keenen Ivory Wayans ran things behind the scenes on the family's hit urban-flavored sketch show "In Living Color" (FOX, 1990-94), and youngest brothers Marlon and Shawn became increasingly visible in recent years as a big screen comedy team, it was Damon Wayans who brought the Wayans into the mainstream with a variety of high profile roles both on the big and small screen. After finding success by pushing the envelope early in his career - such as playing Homey the abusive clown on "In Living Color" - he found it again by embracing more conventional comedic work more than a decade later on his family friendly sitcom, "My Wife and Kids" (ABC, 2001-05).

Damon Kyle Wayans was born Sept. 4, 1960 in New York City, NY, the third of 10 extremely talented and truly funny children. His childhood in the Fulton Housing Projects was difficult - born with a clubfoot, he was tormented by other children, and would later tell interviewers about physical abuse he suffered from his Jehovah's Witness parents (Wayans himself never practiced the faith). Coming from such a large but economically strapped family provided its share of pros and cons: given the size of his family, his parents were also frequently unable to put food on the table, but the sheer number of siblings provided him with instant friends and a degree of protection from outsiders. Nevertheless, he left school after ninth grade.

Following in his brother Keenen's comedy footsteps, in 1982, he tried his hand at stand-up comedy, and after finding a degree of success, subsequently began his acting/performing career by touring in national comedy club circuits until he earned a featured slot on the comic holy grail - "Saturday Night Live" (NBC, 1975- ). Unfortunately for young Wayans, it was a featured slot during the one season critics and fans agreed then (and still agree now) was the most inexcusably bad season in the show's history. Nothing good, apart from a paycheck and another entry on the comic resume, resulted from Wayan's brush with this particular comic institution. After landing a memorable cameo in "Beverly Hills Cop" (1984), Wayans hit the ground running with roles in notable films including "Hollywood Shuffle" (1987), "Roxanne" (1987), and "Colors" (1988), as well as guesting on the hit sitcom, "A Different World" (NBC, 1987-1993). Doing the typical L.A. stand-up scene starting in 1982, he toured in national comedy club circuits until

"Hollywood Shuffle," written by big brother Keenen, was the first collaboration between the two siblings, but far from the last. In 1988, Damon appeared in the slapstick blacksploitation spoof "I'm Gonna Git You Sucka," written and directed by Keenen, and in 1990, the family hit the mother lode by creating their very own urban-style sketch show, "In Living Color." Wayans, along with newcomer and resident "white guy" Jim Carey, was one of the show's biggest breakout stars, appearing hilariously as Homey the Clown, homeless TV personality Anton Jackson, the Head Detective, and half of the slightly effeminate "Men on Film" (alongside David Alan Grier) among dozens of others. He left the show after its third season to pursue opportunities in film, though being the good brother, he would return for occasional guest appearances during the fourth season.

His film career, however, was just getting started. He had starring or co-starred roles in a series of films, none of which were family-related, beginning with 1991's "The Last Boy Scout," co-starring Bruce Willis; "Mo' Money" (1992), inspired by an "In Living Color" sketch known as "The Homeboy Shopping Network;" and continuing on through 1996's "Bulletproof" opposite fellow comic, Adam Sandler.

After writing the book, Bootleg, a humorous compilation of his own observations with regards to family, children, marriage and politics, he found himself atop the New York Times Bestseller List in 1999.

After appearing in a few relatively minor films, including "Bamboozled" (2000) and "Marci X" (2003), Wayans returned to television in a big way with his second sitcom, "My Wife and Kids" (ABC, 2001-06). True to form, the show became a Wayans ensemble production, with virtually every family member appearing in front of or behind the camera at one time or another. The family friendly show enjoyed a successful five-year run, during which fans were able to see a still funny, but matured Wayans brother in top form.

After "My Wife and Kids" was cancelled in 2006, Wayans lost a protracted legal battle to trademark the word "Nigga" for use as the name of a clothing line and store. He also became involved - presumably reprising his "In Living Color" role as the titular character - in the upcoming film, "Homey the Clown," revisiting the role that really, put the comic actor on the map over a decade ago.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

1.

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Marmaduke (2010)
2.
 Behind the Smile (2006)
3.
 Marci X (2003) Dr S
4.
 Bamboozled (2000) Pierre Delacroix
5.
 Passing Glory (1999) "Snow" Lurcher
8.
 Great White Hype, The (1996) James 'The Grim Reaper' Roper
9.
 Celtic Pride (1996) Lewis Scott
10.
 Bulletproof (1996) Keats
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Born in Harlem; first lived in tenement on 145th Street near Amsterdam Avenue; moved to Fulton house projects (17th St. And 10th Avenue)
:
Born with a clubfoot; had several operations and had to wear corrective shoes
:
Worked in mailroom of a credit-card company where he got into unspecified trouble with the law
:
Followed older brother Keenen to California in the early 1980s
1982:
Began career as a standup comic at Los Angeles comedy clubs and touring the national club circuit
1984:
Feature film acting debut, "Beverly Hills Cop"
1986:
Hired by "Saturday Night Live"; fired for switching a character in the middle of a sketch
1989:
Co-star and writer on "In Living Color"
1989:
Directorial debut, Joyce Irby's video, "She's Not My Lover"
1990:
Replaced Richard Pryor as the voice of Eddie in "Look Who's Talking Too"
1991:
Executive produced and starred in HBO comedy special, "Damon Wayans: The Last Stand"
1991:
First major feature film role, in "The Last Boy Scout", opposite Bruce Willis
1992:
Feature debut as producer and co-writer, "Mo' Money" (also starred)
:
Formed Nu Systems Productions
:
Executive produced the short-lived Saturday morning cartoon "Waynehead" (The WB)
1997:
Created and executive produced the Fox drama "413 Hope St."
1998:
Starred in the Fox sitcom "Damon"
2000:
Had featured role in "Bamboozled", directed by Spike Lee
2001:
Served as executive producer and star of the ABC midseason sitcom "My Wife and Kids"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Murry Bergtraum High school: New York , New York -

Notes

"Damon Wayans's humor at times has a nasty quality. There's a suggestion of menace about his characters on "In Living Color. In a television special broadcast on HBO in 1989, Damon made fun of mentally handicapped people and described, in some detail, how he finds his wife sexually repellent when she is pregnant." --Dinitia Smith (NEW YORK, October 8, 1990)

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Lisa Wayans. Married in April 1984; separated in May 2000; she filed for divorce in August 2000.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Howell Wayans. Supermarket manager. Jehovah's Witness.
mother:
Elvira Wayans.
brother:
Dwayne Wayans. Actor. Born c. 1957; production assistant and cast member of "In Living Color"; oldest brother.
brother:
Keenen Ivory Wayans. Actor, producer, director, writer. Born June 8, 1958.
sister:
Kim Wayans. Actor. Born in the 1960s; cast member, "In Living Color"; won a scholarship to Wesleyan and graduated cum laude after writing a book of short stories for her senior thesis.
brother:
Shawn Wayans. Actor. Born c. 1971; cast member, "In Living Color".
sister:
Deidre Wayans.
brother:
Marlon Wayans. Actor. Born July 23, 1972; entered Howard University c. 1991.
son:
Damon Wayans Jr. Born c. 1981; appeared in "Blankman" (1994).
son:
Michael Richard Wayans. Born in March 1984; appeared in "Blankman" (1994); mother, Lisa Wayans.
daughter:
CaraMia Dianne Wayans. Born in April 1987; mother, Lisa Wayans.
daughter:
LisaKyla Alexandria Wayans. Born in November 1990; mother, Lisa Wayans.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

Bibliography close complete biography

"Bootleg" HarperCollins

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