Chris Farley Biography

Chris Farley was an American comedian and actor who made millions of people laugh with his lively comic acts. This biography of Chris Farley provides detailed information about his childhood, life, achievements, works & timeline.

Chris Farley
Quick Facts

Birthday: February 15, 1964

Nationality: American

Famous: Quotes By Chris Farley Died Young

Died At Age: 33

Sun Sign: Aquarius

Also Known As: Chris Farley

Born in: Madison


mother: Mary Anne

siblings: Barbara, John, Kevin, Tom Jr.

Died on: December 18, 1997

place of death: Chicago

U.S. State: Wisconsin

Diseases & Disabilities: Depression

Cause of Death: Drug Overdose

More Facts

education: Marquette University

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The much adored comedian and actor, Chris Farley was born as Christopher Farley in a middle class American household. His love for comedy stemmed from his childhood desire to amuse his parents and siblings with his clumsy and idiotic antics. He is most well-known for the series of different characters he portrayed on the television show ‘Saturday Night Live’ on NBC. Farley had first been cast on ‘Saturday Night live’ in 1990 with fellow comedian Chris Rock. He performed an ensemble of roles on the show winning the hearts of millions as he went about his comic buffoon acts. He became a significant member of a group of comedians including Adam Sandler, Chris Rock and David Spade - a group lovingly nicknamed ‘Bad Boys of SNL’. His biggest influence was John Belushi, one of the original cast members of the ‘Saturday Night Live’ show. In order to leverage his success as an SNL star cast, he entered movies doing small roles at first. He acted in about ten movies and appeared in several television shows in cameo appearances before his untimely death at the age of 33. An on-screen comedian, Farley was also known to have played pranks in real life.

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Chris Farley
Childhood & Early Life
  • Chris Farley was born to Irish-Americans Thomas Farley Sr. and Mary Anne. His father owned an oil company while his mother was a housewife.
  • He attended the Edgewood High School of the Sacred Heart among other Catholic schools.
  • He enrolled at Marquette University and graduated with a degree in communications and theater in 1986.
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  • The first job he did after the completion of his college degree was at the Scotch Oil Company where he worked with his father.
  • His professional stage career started at Chicago’s Improv Olympic Theatre’s Ark improvisation troupe where he performed comedies with the theatre’s group.
  • Eventually, he got an opportunity to perform at Chicago’s Second City Theatre as part of their touring group. His goofy performances soon ensured that he got promoted to the main stage.
  • During a stage performance, he caught the eye of Lorne Michaels, the producer of NBC’s ‘Saturday Night Live’ show, who decided to cast the young man for the 1990-91 season of the show.
  • He made his television debut along with Chris Rock in the 1990-91 season of the ‘Saturday Night Live’ where he collaborated with other actors like Adam Sandler, Rob Schneider and David Spade. They appeared together quite often, earning the name ‘Bad Boys of SNL’.
  • In the sketch ‘The Chris Farley Show’ from ‘Saturday Night Live’, he portrayed a parody of himself wherein he conducted meaningless interviews of various celebrities, often asking highly irrelevant questions.
  • As a performer on the ‘Saturday Night live’, he had personified several real-life celebrities like Rudy Giuliani, Norman Schwarzkopf, Roger Ebert, and Hank Williams. His contract with NBC ended in 1995.
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  • He made his film debut in 1992 with the comedy ‘Wayne’s World’ in which he played the role of a security guard. The film was based on a ‘Saturday Night Live’ sketch by the same name.
  • In 1993, he starred in ‘Coneheads’, which was also based upon ‘Saturday Night Live’ sketches. The movie got mostly negative reviews and did not do well.
  • The sequel to ‘Wayne’s World’, titled ‘Wayne's World 2’ was released in 1993. Farley played the character of Milton in the movie which found moderate success.
  • He portrayed Officer Wilson in the comedy film ‘Airheads’ which was released in 1994. The movie revolved around the adventures of a band of loser musicians. The film gained a cult following even though it did not do well at the box office.
  • In 1995, he acted in Lorne Michaels’s ‘Tommy Boy’ along with his friend David Spade. Farley played an emotionally immature man who embarks on a journey towards knowledge and maturity.
  • He again appeared with David Spade in ‘Black Sheep’ (1996), a comedy film revolving around the silly antics of a politician’s brother. Farley’s real life brothers also played small roles in the movie.
  • His 1997 movie ‘Beverly Hills Ninja’ revolves around the life of a white orphan boy found by a group of ninjas and raised by them. It was the last film to be released during his life time.
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  • He played his last lead role in ‘Almost Heroes’, a 1998 adventure comedy that was released months after his death.
Major Works
  • He is mainly known for the ensemble of roles he portrayed in NBC’s ‘Saturday Night Live’ show from 1990 till 1995. He appeared in 100 episodes of the show, performing a variety of parodies in several hilarious sketches.
  • His 1995 movie ‘Tommy Boy’ is one of his better known movies. The movie opened at No.1 in the U.S. and went on to become a commercial success.
Awards & Achievements
  • He received the MTV Movie Award for Best On-Screen Duo in 1996 for his movie ‘Tommy Boy’ which he shared with David Spade.
  • He was posthumously awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2005.
Personal Life & Legacy
  • He led a very wild and undisciplined life. He regularly hired prostitutes and was notorious for his gluttony and heavy drinking problems. He also had a history of drug abuse.
  • He died of a drug overdose in 1997 at the age of 33.
  • Both he and his idol John Belushi died under eerily similar circumstances – an overdose of drugs at the age of 33.
  • Two of his brothers are also actors.
  • He had been in rehab many times due to his heavy drinking problems.

1. Tommy Boy (1995)

  (Adventure, Comedy)

2. Wayne's World (1992)

  (Comedy, Music)

3. Black Sheep (1996)


4. Billy Madison (1995)


5. Airheads (1994)

  (Comedy, Music, Crime)

6. Dirty Work (1998)


7. Wayne's World 2 (1993)

  (Comedy, Music)

8. Beverly Hills Ninja (1997)

  (Action, Comedy)


MTV Movie & TV Awards
1996 Best On-Screen Duo Tommy Boy (1995)

See the events in life of Chris Farley in Chronological Order

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Article Title
- Chris Farley Biography
- Editors,
Last Updated
- September 13, 2017

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