Childhood & Early Life
Damon Kyle Wayans Jr. was born on November 18, 1982, in Huntington, Vermont, US, as the eldest child of Damon Wayans and Lisa Thorner. His siblings include brother, Michael Wayans, and sisters, Cara Mia Wayans and Kyla Wayans.
Wayans Jr. hails from the well-known ‘Wayans Family’ that has produced directors, screenwriters, actors, and comedians. Some notable members of the family are Keenen Ivory Wayans, Marlon Wayans, Shawn Wayans, and Kim Wayans.
Wayans Jr. was raised by his grandparents in Los Angeles. He took acting lessons at the ‘Otis College of Art and Design’ and ‘New York Film Academy.’ He followed the footsteps of his father and other family members and endeavoured into the world of entertainment as a child actor.
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He made his film debut, alongside Damon Wayans and David Alan Grier, in the 1994 superhero comedy parody film ‘Blankman.’
He featured as ‘John, the best friend of ‘Junior’ (played by George O. Gore II), in the series ‘My Wife and Kids,’ which also featured his father. He played the role in eight episodes of the series (during seasons 2–3, between 2002 and 2004). He also contributed as a writer. The character of ‘Junior’ is said to be based on Wayans Jr.
In late 2006, he starred with his father and also contributed as a writer in the comedy series ‘The Underground.’ His debut feature in the Russell Simmons produced television series ‘Def Comedy Jam’ got him rave reviews.
He played the role of ‘Thomas Uncles’ in the 2009 musical-comedy film ‘Dance Flick.’ The film marked the directorial debut of his cousin, ‘Damien Dante Wayans.’ It was produced and written by some of his family members and became a blockbuster hit.
He lent his voice to ‘Thunder’ in the 2010 family comedy film ‘Marmaduke.’ Later that year, he featured as ‘Detective Fosse’ in another hit film ‘The Other Guys,’ a buddy cop action comedy starring Will Ferrell, Mark Wahlberg, and Dwayne Johnson among others.
His big break came in the role of ‘Brad Williams’ in the sitcom television series ‘Happy Endings,’ which starred Eliza Coupe, Casey Wilson, Adam Pally, Zachary Knighton, and Elisha Cuthbert. He featured in the critically acclaimed series in all its three seasons, from April 13, 2011 to May 3, 2013. He earned ‘Critics' Choice Television Award’ nomination for ‘Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series,’ ‘NAACP Image Award’ nomination for Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series,’ and ‘Teen Choice Award’ nomination for ‘Choice TV Male Scene Stealer’ for his performance in the series.
Meanwhile, he briefly featured as ‘Coach’ in the ‘Pilot’ episode of television sitcom series ‘New Girl’ that originally aired on ‘Fox,’ on September 20, 2011. He thereafter appeared in the role as a recurring character from 2013 till the end of season 4 in 2014 and later returned and guest featured in the character.
He reprised the role of ‘Brad Williams’ from ‘Happy Endings’ in its spin-off, ‘Happy Endings: Happy Rides.’ The series ran on ABC.com from February 29, 2012 to April 4, 2012.
He starred with Tyler Labine, Hayes MacArthur and Lucy Punch in the 2014 rom-com film ‘Someone Marry Barry.’ The same year he appeared in the role of ‘Justin G. Miller’ in blockbuster hit buddy cop action comedy film ‘Let's Be Cops.’
He lent his voice to ‘Wasabi’ in the 2014 3D computer animated superhero film ‘Big Hero 6.’ This critically and commercially successful Oscar-winning film emerged as the highest-grossing animated film of the year. He has also voiced ‘Wild Arms’ in the 2016 direct-to-video animated feature film ‘The Land Before Time: Journey of the Brave.’ It was the 14th film in ‘The Land Before Time’ series.
His next notable film was the 2016 hit romantic comedy ‘How to Be Single’ in which he co-starred with Dakota Johnson and Rebel Wilson among others.
He played the main role of ‘Jake Davis’ in the television sitcom series ‘Happy Together’ that premiered on CBS on October 1, 2018, and ran for a season till January 14, 2019.
He features in the mystery drama television miniseries ‘The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair.’ The show is based on Joël Dicker’s novel of the same name. It was sold and premiered in international markets, before making its US debut. It is planned for an ‘Epix’ premiere.
He will star in the comedy film ‘Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar’ which is planned for a July 31, 2020, release.
Besides his writing and acting pursuits, Wayans Jr. also does stand-up acts, travelling and performing in different comedy clubs across the US.