Parker in April 2013
|Born||Randolph Severn Parker III
October 19, 1969
Denver, Colorado, U.S.
|Education||Evergreen High School|
|Alma mater||Berklee College of Music
University of Colorado Boulder
|Occupation||Actor, animator, writer, producer, comedian, recording artist, director|
|Known for||South Park, South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut, Team America: World Police, The Book of Mormon|
|Spouse(s)||Emma Sugiyama (m. 2005; div. 2008)|
Randolph Severn "Trey" Parker III (born October 19, 1969) is an American actor, animator, screenwriter, director, producer, comedian, and recording artist. He is best known for being the co-creator of South Park along with his creative partner and best friend Matt Stone, as well as co-writing and co-directing the 2011 musical The Book of Mormon, which won nine Tony Awards, include the award for Best Musical.
Parker started his film career in 1989 when he created the film Giant Beavers of Southern Sri Lanka. In 1992 he and Matt Stone made a holiday short titled Jesus vs. Frosty, which was an early forerunner of South Park. His first success came from Cannibal! The Musical. From there he made another short titled Jesus vs. Santa, which led him and college friend Stone to create South Park, which first aired in 1997. He has won five Primetime Emmy Awards for his work on South Park, winning one award for Outstanding Animated Program (for Programming One Hour or More) and four for Outstanding Animated Program (for Programming Less Than One Hour) (of eleven nominations).
Parker was born in Denver, Colorado, the son of Randy (a geologist) and Sharon (an insurance broker). The two share the first names and occupations of South Park characters Randy and Sharon Marsh. He has an older sister named Shelly, which is also the name of Stan Marsh's older sister. In the sixth grade, Parker wrote a sketch titled The Dentist and appeared in his school's talent show. He played the dentist and had a friend play the patient. The plot involved what can go wrong at the dentist; due to the amounts of fake blood involved, Parker's parents were called and were upset. "The kindergartners were all crying and freaking out," Parker recalled. As a teenager, Parker developed a love for musical theatre, and joined the Evergreen Players, a venerable mountain community theater outside of Denver. At 14, he performed his first role as chorus member in The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, Flower Drum Song and went on to also design sets for the community theater's production of Little Shop of Horrors. Parker attended high school at Evergreen High, where he continued his musical endeavors through starring as Danny Zuko in Grease. He also played piano for the chorus and was president of the choir counsel.
While in school, Parker had a part-time job in a pizza restaurant and was described as a film geek and music buff.
In 1992, Parker and Stone created Jesus vs. Frosty. It included four boys, two resembling Stan Marsh and Kyle Broflovski, one called Kenny who looked like Cartman, and a fourth unnamed boy who looked like Kenny. Both Jesus vs. Frosty and Cannibal! The Musical were made while they were students at the University of Colorado film school, studying under both Stan Brakhage and Jerry Aronson. Afterwards, the two friends set off for Hollywood in hopes of making more movies. Brian Graden, then an executive at Fox, put Parker to work making a pilot for a musical children's television series called Time Warped. The pilot, called "Rom and Jul," was a love story about a Homo erectus and an Australopithecus. Fox passed on the series, but Graden paid Parker and Stone $1,200 to make a new version of The Spirit of Christmas he could send out as a video Christmas card.
They came up with two worthwhile ideas; one a sequel to Jesus vs. Frosty, titled Jesus vs. Santa, and one about a character that would later be recurring in South Park, Mr. Hankey. They chose to write about the four boys. The result was The Spirit of Christmas, an animated short film that centered on four crude-acting, blob-shaped third-grade boys forced to intervene in a nasty fistfight between Jesus Christ and Santa Claus. The tape was a smash, passed around and copied endlessly in media circles in Los Angeles and New York City. The video landed in the hands of Doug Herzog of Comedy Central. "It literally was the funniest thing I'd ever seen," he said in a 2006 interview. "We said, 'Develop a show.' So they went off and developed the show." Stone and Parker produced 13 episodes for season 1. As of 2007, Parker is credited with directing and writing the vast majority of South Park episodes, and voicing most of the regular and guest characters. South Park is currently still under contract to produce new episodes through 2016.
Voices on South Park
In September 1997, they also released Orgazmo, a movie rated NC-17. In July 1998, they starred in (but did not write or direct) BASEketball, another feature film, while being renewed for a second season of South Park. In June 1999, Parker and Stone made South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut, which gave the series a new level of prominence. He was nominated for an Academy Award as the co-writer of one of the film's songs, "Blame Canada," but did not win. In 2001, the duo announced they would do 39 shorts between the lengths of 2 and 5 minutes. Although originally thought to be South Park related, they decided they would do something different. The result was the shorts Princess. The content was so extreme that it was cancelled after two shows aired. In 2001, they also created That's My Bush!, another television series, which was cancelled after one season. In 2004, they made a film, titled Team America: World Police. The film was not considered a box-office success, grossing 51 million dollars in theaters, despite largely positive reviews.
Trey claimed to have been on acid with Matt Stone at the time of the 72nd Academy Awards in 2000, where they wore dresses popularized by Jennifer Lopez and Gwyneth Paltrow at previous awards shows.
In April 2010, Trey Parker and Matt Stone received a "warning" from Zachary Adam Chesser for representing the Prophet Muhammad in a bear costume: "We have to warn Matt and Trey [South Park creators] that what they are doing is stupid and they will probably wind up like Theo van Gogh for airing this show." It was revealed in the next episode that the person in the bear costume was really Santa Claus and not the Prophet Muhammad.
On January 14, 2013, Parker and Stone announced that they would be starting a film production company called Important Studios. Inspired by the production work of Lucasfilm and DreamWorks, Parker and Stone considered founding the studio for approximately two years before committing. The initial financial assets of the studio are valued at $300 million, with the majority of the money originating from South Park and The Book of Mormon, plus a $60-million investment from Joseph Ravitch of the Raine Group, giving him a 20 percent minority stock.
On January 24, 2013, Parker and Stone announced that they would be producing a fishing show. The show will star Dean Ween and Les Claypool and that the show will "fuse sportfishing with music and comedy." The premise of the show is that Deaner and Claypool will bring celebrity guests out on the water for fishing trips. Other than mentioning it will be a "cable" show, there’s no word yet on what station the show to air on.
Parker and Stone have collaborated with Avenue Q composer Robert Lopez on a musical about Mormons; it is titled The Book of Mormon, and initially starred Andrew Rannells and Josh Gad. It has been produced by Scott Rudin and Anne Garefino. It opened at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre on March 24, 2011, following previews from February 24, 2011. The Book of Mormon won nine Tony Awards in 2011 including that of Best Direction of a Musical for Parker and co-director Casey Nicholaw. As of March 2013, Parker and Stone are developing a movie version of the musical.
In 2006, Parker married Emma Sugiyama. The officiant was 1970s sitcom producer Norman Lear. That marriage ended in 2008. In March 2013, Parker had been dating Boogie Tillmon and living with her, and her then-11-year-old son, for the previous few years. It was reported that Tillmon was pregnant and expecting to give birth later that year.
In a September 2006 edition of the ABC News program Nightline, Parker expressed his views on religion, stating that he believes in "a God" and that "there is knowledge that humanity does not yet possess" while cautioning that it would take a long time to explain exactly what he meant by his belief in God. Parker believes all religions are "silly". He states that "All the religions are superfunny to me... The story of Jesus makes no sense to me. God sent his only son. Why could God only have one son and why would he have to die? It's just bad writing, really. And it's really terrible in about the second act." Parker further remarked, "Basically... out of all the ridiculous religion stories which are greatly, wonderfully ridiculous — the silliest one I've ever heard is, 'Yeah... there's this big giant universe and it's expanding, it's all gonna collapse on itself and we're all just here just 'cause... just 'cause'. That, to me, is the most ridiculous explanation ever."
- Baseketball (soundtrack) (1998)
- Orgazmo (soundtrack) (1998)
- Chef Aid: The South Park Album (1998)
- South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut (soundtrack) (1999)
- Mr. Hankey's Christmas Classics (1999)
- Team America: World Police (soundtrack) (2005)
- The Book of Mormon: Original Broadway Cast Recording (soundtrack) (2011)
|1998||South Park||Stan Marsh, Eric Cartman, Various voices|
|1999||South Park: Chef's Luv Shack||Stan Marsh, Eric Cartman, Various voices|
|South Park Rally||Stan Marsh, Eric Cartman, Various voices|
|2009||South Park Let's Go Tower Defense Play!||Stan Marsh, Eric Cartman, Various voices||Spike Video Game Award for Best Game Based On A Movie/TV Show|
|2012||South Park: Tenorman's Revenge||Stan Marsh, Eric Cartman, Various voices|
|2014||South Park: The Stick of Truth||Stan Marsh, Eric Cartman, Various voices||Writer
Game Critics Award for Best Role Playing Game
Nominated—Spike Video Game Award for Most Anticipated Game
Nominated—VGX Award for Most Anticipated Game
|2000||"Even If You Don't"||Ween||Co-Director|
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