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Chris Rock (1965)

Christopher Julius Rock III

Type :  

  Summary  

Christopher Julius "Chris" Rock III is an American comedian, actor, screenwriter, television producer, film producer and director. He was voted in the US as the 5th greatest stand-up comedian of all time by Comedy Central. He was also voted in the UK as the 9th greatest stand-up comic on Channel 4's 100 Greatest Stand-Ups in 2007, and again in the updated 2010 list as the 8th greatest stand-up comic.

  Biography  

 early life
Rock was born in Andrews, South Carolina. Shortly after his birth, his parents moved to Crown Heights, Brooklyn, New York. A few years later, they relocated and settled in the working-class area of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. His mother, Rosalie (née Tingman), was a teacher and social worker for the mentally handicapped; his father, Julius Rock, was a former truck driver and newspaper deliveryman. Julius died in 1988 after ulcer surgery. His younger brothers Tony, Kenny and Jordan are also in the entertainment business. His older half-brother, Charles, died in 2006 due to a long struggle with alcoholism. Rock has said that he was influenced by the performing style of his paternal grandfather, Allen Rock, a preacher.

Rock was bused to schools in predominately white neighborhoods of Brooklyn where he endured bullying and beatings from white students. As he got older, the bullying became worse and Rock's parents pulled him out of James Madison High School. He decided to drop out of high school altogether and later received a GED. Rock worked menial jobs at various fast-food restaurants.

 career
 Early career
Rock began doing stand-up comedy in 1984 in New York City's Catch a Rising Star. He slowly rose up the ranks of the comedy circuit in addition to earning bit roles in the film I'm Gonna Git You Sucka and the TV series Miami Vice. Upon seeing his act at a nightclub, Eddie Murphy befriended and mentored the aspiring comic. Murphy gave Rock his first film role in Beverly Hills Cop II.

George Carlin has been probably the biggest influence for him. Other major influences have been Sam Kinison, with whom he managed to hang out with, Richard Pryor and Eddie Murphy. Other influences have been Mort Sahl, Rodney Dangerfield, Bill Cosby, Woody Allen, Bill Hicks, Redd Foxx, Dick Gregory, Flip Wilson, Steve Martin and Pigmeat Markham. Among the contemporaries, in 2008 he said he enjoys Chris Tucker and Adam Sandler.

 Saturday Night Live
Rock became a cast member of the popular sketch comedy series Saturday Night Live in 1990. He and other new cast members Chris Farley, Adam Sandler, Rob Schneider and David Spade became known as the Bad Boys of SNL. In 1991, he released his first comedy album Born Suspect and won acclaim for his dramatic role as a crack addict in the film New Jack City. His tenure on SNL gave Rock national exposure.

 Standup success
A frustrated Rock left Saturday Night Live in 1993, appearing instead as a "special guest" star on the predominantly African American sketch show In Living Color. The show, however, was canceled months later. Rock then decided to concentrate on a film career. He wrote and starred in the mockumentary CB4 but the film was not a success. Acting jobs became scarce, and Rock abandoned Hollywood to concentrate on stand-up comedy.

Rock starred in his first HBO comedy special in 1994 titled Big Ass Jokes. But it was his second stand-up special, 1996's Bring the Pain, that reinvented Rock as one of the best comedians in the industry. For it Rock won two Emmy Awards and gained large critical acclaim. The segment on race in America, in which Rock used the "N word" extensively was most talked about. Adding to his popularity was his much-publicized role as a commentator for Comedy Central's Politically Incorrect during the 1996 Presidential elections which earned him another Emmy nomination. Rock also was the voice for the "Lil Penny" puppet who was the alter ego to basketball star Penny Hardaway in a series of Nike shoe commercials from 1994–1998, and hosted the '97 MTV Video Music Awards.

Rock later had two more HBO comedy specials: Bigger & Blacker in 1999, and Never Scared in 2004. Articles relating to both specials called Rock "the funniest man in America" in Time and Entertainment Weekly. HBO also aired his talk show, The Chris Rock Show, which gained critical acclaim for Rock's interviews with celebrities and politicians. The show won an Emmy for writing. His television work has won him a total of three Emmy Awards and 15 nominations. By the end of the decade, Rock was established as one of the preeminent stand-up comedians and comic minds of his generation.

During this time, Rock also translated his comedy into print form in the book Rock This! and released the Grammy Award-winning comedy albums, Roll with the New, Bigger & Blacker and Never Scared.

Rock's fifth HBO special, Kill the Messenger, premiered on September 27, 2008, and won him another Emmy for outstanding writing for a variety or music program.

 Film and television
It was not until the success of his stand-up act in the late 1990s that Rock began receiving major parts in films. These include roles in Dogma, Beverly Hills Ninja, Lethal Weapon 4, Nurse Betty, The Longest Yard, Bad Company, and a starring role in Down to Earth. Rock has also increasingly worked behind the camera, both as a writer and director of Head of State and I Think I Love My Wife. In the fall of 2005, the UPN television network premiered a comedy series called Everybody Hates Chris, based on Rock's school days, of which he is the executive producer and narrator. The show has garnered both critical and ratings success. The series was nominated for a 2006 Golden Globe for Best TV Series , a 2006 People's Choice Award for Favorite New Television Comedy, and two 2006 Emmy Awards for costuming and cinematography.

Following the release of his first documentary, 2009's Good Hair, Rock is working on a documentary about debt called Credit is the Devil.

 Academy Awards
In early 2005, Rock hosted the 77th Academy Awards ceremony. The decision to have Rock host the awards was seen by some as a chance to bring an "edge" to the ceremony, and to make it more relevant or appealing to younger audiences. Jokingly, Rock opened by saying "Welcome to the 77th and LAST Academy Awards!" During one segment Rock asked, "Who is this guy?" in reference to actor Jude Law seemingly appearing in every movie Rock had seen that year and implied Law was a low-rent Tom Cruise (he made a joke about filmmakers rushing production when unable to get the actors they want: "If you want Tom Cruise and all you can get is Jude Law, wait !"). Subsequently, a defensive Sean Penn took the stage to present and said, "In answer to our host's question, Jude Law is one of our finest young actors." (At the time, Penn and Law were shooting All the King's Men.) Law was not the only actor that Rock poked fun at that evening, however—he turned the joke on himself at one point, saying, "If you want Denzel and all you can get is me, wait!" Older Oscar officials were reportedly displeased with Rock's performance, which did not elevate ratings for the ceremony. Rock was also criticized for referring to the Oscars as "idiotic", and asserting that heterosexual men do not watch them, in an interview prior to Oscar night.

 Music videos
Rock's first music video was for his song "Your Mother's Got a Big Head" from his album Born Suspect. Rock also made videos for his songs "Champagne" from Roll With the New and "No Sex " from Bigger & Blacker. Chris Rock also directed and appeared in the music video for the Red Hot Chili Peppers song "Hump de Bump".

Rock appeared in the Big Daddy Kane music video "Smooth Operator" as a guy getting his hair cut.

He also appeared in Johnny Cash's "God's Gonna Cut You Down", one of the many celebrities seen lip-synching the song.

 Stage plays
In 2011, Rock appeared on Broadway in Stephen Adly Guirgis' play The Motherfucker with the Hat with Bobby Cannavale and Annabella Sciorra. Rock was nominated for a Drama League Award.

 personal life
Rock has been married to Malaak Compton-Rock since November 23, 1996. She is the founder and executive director of StyleWorks, a non-profit, full-service salon that provides free services for women leaving welfare and entering the workforce. They have two daughters together, Lola Simone and Zahra Savannah .

In November 2006, the entertainment news website TMZ.com reported that Rock was filing for divorce after nearly ten years of marriage to Malaak. Two weeks later, however, TMZ reported that Rock had not filed divorce papers, and that it appeared that the couple had been able to work out their differences and stay together. In response to the reports, the Rocks released a statement to the press denouncing them as "untrue rumors and lies".

In 2007, freelance journalist and former actress Kali Bowyer filed a paternity suit against Chris Rock, claiming he was the father of her son, and in need of hospitalization. DNA testing proved that Rock was not the child's father.

Rock resides in Alpine, New Jersey.

In 2008, Rock's family history was profiled on the PBS series African American Lives 2. A DNA test showed that he is descended from the Udeme people of northern Cameroon. Rock's great-great-grandfather, Julius Caesar Tingman, was a slave for 21 years before serving as part of the United States Colored Troops until 1866; Tingman fought in the American Civil War. During the 1940s, Rock's grandfather, Alan Rock, moved from South Carolina to New York City to become a taxicab driver and preacher.

Show more

  Albums 

  Tracks  

Name Duration Released
Real People of Ignorance 01:02 2005
Black Poet 01:48 2005
K-Rock ID #2 00:05 2005
Off the Pole 05:57 2005
The War 03:01 2005
Women Hate Women 02:42 2005
Thug Radio Intro 00:25 2005
Tip Your Hat to Whitey 01:19 2005
The Morning After 00:21 2005
Thug News 00:34 2005
Don't Cheat 01:29 2005
Jacksons Gone Wild 10:05 2005
Affirmative Action 07:50 2005
Get Lower (featuring Lil' Jon) 02:38 2005
Drugs, Donuts, & Wealth 09:42 2005
K-Rock 00:12 2005
Ballmart 00:38 2005
Smack Her With A Dick 09:25 2005
Feed Other Countries 01:38 2005
Marriage 07:42 2005
Race 04:17 1999
Insurance 08:17 1999
Taxes 01:57 1999
No Sex 04:22 1999
Porno PSA 01:32 1999
Crazy White Kidz 08:26 1999
Black Mall 03:47 1999
Women 07:54 1999
Two Women 04:07 1999
Poor Whites 02:56 1991
Born Suspect 02:00 1991
Busboys, McDonald's and Minimum Wage 02:28 1991
My Father 01:25 1991
Crack Mayor 04:56 1991
Driving Too Slow 00:51 1991
Weaves/Color Contacts 03:59 1991
Prisons 02:49 1991
The South 00:46 1991
Teenage Suicide 01:18 1991
Intro 00:28 1991
Uncle Bobby 01:28 1991
Blacks Aren't Crazy 02:58 1991
Rocky IV/Indians 01:50 1991
Your Mother's Got a Big Head 04:37 1991

  Movie

  TV show

  TV show season

  TV show episode

  Album

  Crew    

  Companies    

  Photos    

  Videos  

  Press reviews    

  User reviews

  Sources

Whole or part of the information contained in this card come from the Wikipedia article "Chris Rock", licensed under CC-BY-SA full list of contributors here.