One of the finest comedians of all time, Robin Williams began his career as a stand-up comedian and soon moved to act in television and films. Though widely recognised for his comedic skills, the immensely talented Williams proved his versatility by taking up and successfully performing more serious roles in films like Good Will Hunting and The Fisher King.
British comedian and actor Rowan Atkinson has entertained audience globally with his brilliant performance as the eponymous character in the Mr. Bean series and its film adaptations. Earlier, he established himself as a fine comedy actor with Blackadder and then went on to work in movies like Never Say Never Again, The Witches and Four Weddings and a Funeral.
Will Ferrell rose to fame in the mid-1990s when he acted in a comedy show Saturday Night Live. He then went on to act in a series of comedy films such as Talladega Nights, Step Brothers and The Other Guys. He’s considered part of the ‘Frat Pack’, essentially meaning Hollywood comic actors who emerged in the late 1990s and 2000s.
Famous American actor, Bill Murray, began as a comedic performer and gained fame with the variety show, Saturday Night Live, and movies, Caddyshack and Ghostbusters. Later, his seriocomic roles in movies like Rushmore, Lost in Translation and St. Vincent earned him rave reviews. The actor has also lent his voice to many animation movies like Garfield and The Jungle Book.
American comedian, writer and actor, Dave Chappelle, is best known for the Chappelle’s Show, the acclaimed Comedy Central show which brought him much popularity before he decided to call it quits in its third season. He later released award winning comedy specials with Netflix. Dave has also featured in numerous films like Half Baked and A Star Is Born.
One of the most popular actresses of the 1950s and 1960s, Lucille Ball created the sitcom, I Love Lucy, in 1951. In 1962, she started managing the Desilu Productions, becoming the first woman to run a major TV studio. The recipient of two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Lucille Ball was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame in 1984.
An actress and comedian, Julia Louis-Dreyfus has won more Screen Actors Guild Awards and more Emmy Awards than any other artist in American television history. In 2016, she was named in Time magazine's 100 most influential people in the world list. In 2018, she was presented with America's highest comedy honor - The Mark Twain Prize for American Humor.
Saturday Night Live (SNL) has been a great platform for many exceptional comedians and actors, including Jason Sudeikis. Born with anosmia, Jason Sudeikis does not have the ability to detect smells. Nevertheless, one can say that he is blessed with the ability to smell out good scripts as many of his films have been major box office hits.
One of the most popular comedic actors of his generation, Ben Stiller is part of the famous group The Frat Pack – he has been described as the leader of the group, which involves names like Will Ferrell, Owen Wilson and Steve Carell. A popular and successful actor, his movies have grossed over $2.6 billion in the USA and Canada.
Taika Waititi is an actor, filmmaker, and comedian. One of the most popular New Zealand film personalities of all time, Waititi is renowned for directing films like Thor: Ragnarok and Boy. He has won prestigious awards including a BAFTA Award, an Academy Award, and a Grammy Award. In 2022, Waititi was included in Time magazine's 100 most influential people list.
A popular actor and comedian, Chris Farley's struggle with alcohol and drug addiction led to his suspension from the cast of Saturday Night Live (SNL) on many occasions. He eventually died of a drug overdose at the age of 33, much like his idol John Belushi, who too died of a drug overdose at the same age!
An actor, singer, and comedian, Dean Martin earned the nickname The King of Cool for his effortless self-assurance and charisma. One of the most popular entertainers of the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s, Dean performed in nightclubs and concert stages and appeared in film and TV productions. Such is his popularity that his songs continue to be featured across popular culture.
Betty White, American actress and comedian, is considered as the pioneer of television and has had the longest television career of any entertainer, straddling more than 80 years. She’s known for her award-winning performances in shows like The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Golden Girls and Hot in Cleveland.
The actor, comedian, writer and musician, Andy Samberg, is a member of the comedy music group The Lonely Island and has also acted in several films like Hot Rod, That's My Boy and Palm Springs. Plus, he has starred in television sitcoms like the Brooklyn Nine-Nine and has been part of Saturday Night Live as a featured player.
Perhaps the most loved Willy Wonka of them all, Gene Wilder was one of the main reasons for the popularity of the iconic character, which he played in the 1971 film Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. Apart from acting and writing, Gene was also instrumental in promoting cancer awareness through his organization Gilda Radner Ovarian Cancer Detection Center.
The co-founder of Upright Citizens Brigade, an improvisational-comedy troupe, Amy Poehler went on to utilize her comedic skills to establish herself as a prominent Hollywood personality. Over the years, she has played a crucial role in enhancing the popularity of American television, for which she was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Ricky Gervais is one of the best known comedians in the world. He attained fame after starring in the British television series The Office. Later, he ventured into a successful stand-up comedy career. He has performed at many shows and has also acted in several films. However, his dark comedy has often been called insensitive and offensive by several critics.
One of the original cast members of the popular TV show Saturday Night Live, John Belushi was known for his great comic skills. Unfortunately, he struggled in his personal life with drug addiction and eventually died of combined drug intoxication at the age of 33. He posthumously received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Christopher Walken is one of the highest-grossing American actors as his films have generated over $1 billion in the US alone. He has a unique distinction of appearing in over 100 films and TV programs. A man of many talents, Christopher Walken is also known for his comedic, singing, screenwriting, directing, and dancing skills.
Counted amongst the most influential stand-up comedians, George Carlin was known for his dark comedy. His comedy routine, Seven Dirty Words, was hugely controversial and played a critical role in Supreme Court’s ruling to censor offensive material on broadcast media. In his career, he released many comedy albums, starred in 14 HBO special, authored books and acted in numerous films.
Tim Allen is an actor who has had a major impact on the lives of many children because of his work on The Santa Clause and the Toy Story franchises, for which he was named a Disney Legend in 1999. He is also a respected comedian who deals with subjects, such as social awkwardness, politics, gender differences, and everyday life.
John Candy was an important Canadian comedian and actor. In 2006, he was honored by Canada Post as he was featured on a postage stamp. Also a sports enthusiast, Candy was the co-owner of Toronto Argonauts, a football team that participates in the Canadian Football League. Under his ownership, the team won the 1991 Grey Cup.
Carol Burnett inspired a lot of women and set off a chain reaction by hosting her groundbreaking show The Carol Burnett Show. Regarded as one of USA's most cherished entertainers, Carol continues to enhance the lives of millions, for which she was honored with the Presidential Medal of Freedom. She has also won the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor.
Will Arnett is widely regarded as one of the most handsome and best-looking comedians of all time; he has been named in lists like Top 15 Sexiest Nerd Boys and The 20 Hottest New Faces in Comedy. Famous for his smooth baritone voice, Will is also a popular voice actor. In 2019, he became a Canada Walk of Fame inductee.
Mainly known for his comic roles, Canadian actor Eugene Levy has had a career spanning over six decades, with Splash, Father of the Bride, Waiting for Guffman, American Pie and American Pie 2 being some of his memorable films. He has also acted in television and found success with the hit series, Schitt's Creek. He is also a writer and director.
Primetime Emmy-winning Canadian-American actor and comedian Catherine O'Hara soared to fame with the sketch-comedy show SCTV. She is known for her frequent appearances in the films of Tim Burton and Christopher Guest. She is the sister of singer Mary Margaret O'Hara and is herself a fairly decent singer.
Bob Odenkirk began his career as an SNL writer but shot to fame only after starring as Saul Goodman in Breaking Bad and its spin-off, Better Call Saul. He has also been part of critically acclaimed movies such as Nebraska and The Post, and has directed and produced several shows.
Phil Hartman was a Canadian-American actor and comedian. He is credited with helping Paul Reubens develop his famous character, Pee-wee Herman, as part of his contribution to the popular comedy group The Groundlings. After he was murdered in 1998, Hartman was honored with several awards. In 2015, Rolling Stone named him one of the greatest Saturday Night Live cast members.
Conan O’Brien is an American comedian, writer, television host, podcaster, and producer. Over the years, he has played an important role in NBC, hosting the network's successful shows like The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien and Late Night with Conan O'Brien, and writing for Saturday Night Live. His work has influenced comedians like Mindy Kaling, Seth Meyers, and Kumail Nanjiani.
Bob Saget was an American actor, director, television host, and stand-up comedian. Renowned for his adult-oriented stand-up comedy routine, Saget hosted popular TV shows, such as America's Funniest Home Videos. Also known for his charity work, Bob Saget served as one of the members of the board of the non-profit organization, Scleroderma Research Foundation.
Dan Aykroyd is a Canadian comedian, actor, musician, and filmmaker. He is credited with co-founding the popular blues and soul revivalist band The Blues Brothers along with legendary comedian John Belushi. The Blues Brothers was conceived as a musical sketch for Saturday Night Live; its popularity turned it into an actual band and was later made into a film.
A multifaceted personality, Rob Schneider is an actor, comedian, screenwriter, and director. Beginning his career with the NBC sketch comedy series Saturday Night Live, he proceeded to act in films, first appearing in supporting roles and then graduating to starring roles. He is an outspoken critic of childhood vaccinations. His daughter, Elle King, is a popular musician.
Nick Offerman, best known for his award-winning performance as Ron Swanson in Parks and Recreation, is also a professional wood craftsman. He has voiced characters in films such as Hotel Transylvania 2 and Ice Age: Collision Course, hosted a Netflix documentary and a reality series, and written three semi-autobiographical books.
One half of the popular American comedy duo Martin & Lewis, Jerry Lewis was nicknamed The King of Comedy for his comedic skills. Also a filmmaker, Jerry Lewis helped develop video assist and went on to popularize the system, which is widely used today. Also a humanitarian, Lewis worked closely with the Muscular Dystrophy Association, raising awareness about muscular dystrophy.
Kevin James’s performance as Doug in The King of Queens earned him an Emmy Award nomination. He was active in wrestling and football in school and is also known for delivering the 2007 Pepsi 400 NASCAR command. He has also voiced characters in films such as the Hotel Transylvania series.
American actor, voice actor, and comedian, Pat Morita first gained recognition with drama series Happy Days, though it was his inspiring performance as Mr. Miyagi in The Karate Kid film series that really skyrocketed his fame. The Asian-American actor was also known for his TV movie Amos and animated movie Mulan and Mulan II where he voiced the Chinese Emperor.
Rainn Wilson is an actor and writer who used his popularity to make his YouTube channel, SoulPancake, a success. Also a climate change advocate, Wilson made a documentary titled The Idiot’s Guide to Climate Change, based on his trip to Greenland. He is known for his charitable works and has adopted a vegan diet since adopting Vietnamese pot-bellied pigs.
American stand-up comedian Bob Newhart is renowned for his slightly stammering delivery style and dry humor for which he was honored with the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor in 2002. Over the years, his comedic style has influenced many comedians. Also an actor, he was ranked 17th on TV Guide's list of 50 Greatest TV Stars of All Time.
Simon Pegg is a British actor, comedian, producer, and screenwriter. Simon Pegg achieved popularity and is best known for playing nerdy characters. Apart from being a popular actor, he is also an ardent supporter of HeForShe, a feminist campaign. In 2020, he signed an open letter urging the wealthiest to pay more tax to help fight inequality.
African-American comedian and actress, Tiffany Haddish, gained fame with the ensemble comedy film Girls Trip. Earlier, a difficult childhood turned her towards comedy. After appearing in a comedy competition, sketch comedies and numerous minor roles in films and television, she made the heads turn with her brilliant performance in television series, Real Husbands of Hollywood, If Loving You Is Wrong and The Carmichael Show.
One half of the famous comedy duo Fry and Laurie, Stephen Fry is an English actor and comedian. Considered a living legend by many, Stephen Fry has made major contributions to the field of entertainment and literature. An openly gay man, Fry serves as an inspiration to the LGBT community. He is also known for his charitable activities.
Canadian actor Seth Rogen established himself as a bankable and popular comic actor when he starred in Hollywood films Knocked Up in 2007 and Funny People in 2009. His other notable films are Steve Jobs, The Interview, Like Father, Long Shot and An American Pickle. He is active in raising awareness about Alzheimer's disease and is an open marijuana user.
Martin Lawrence is a German born-American actor and comedian. Despite being traumatized after witnessing his parents' divorce at the age of eight, Lawrence went on to succeed as a comedian and later as a leading Hollywood actor. After a problematic 1990s, which included episodes of arrests, lawsuits, and health problems, he bounced back with several hit films.
Six-time Emmy Award-winner Johnny Carson was known for hosting NBC’s The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson. After serving in World War II, Carson started hosting radio shows and then graduated to TV. He also won the Presidential Medal of Freedom and is said to have inspired David Letterman.
An actress, writer, singer, and comedian, Lisa Kudrow gained international fame for portraying the iconic character Phoebe Buffay in one of the most popular American sitcoms of all time - Friends. She is also one of the highest-grossing film actresses as her movies have grossed more than $2 billion worldwide.