Biff Henderson in New York City.
|Born||James Jackson Henderson, Jr.
October 3, 1946
Durham, North Carolina
|Occupation||Stage manager for Late Show with David Letterman.|
James Jackson "Biff" Henderson, Jr. (born October 3, 1946) is an American comedian and television personality best known for his work on the Late Show with David Letterman. He is the show's stage manager and appears in occasional humorous segments, often involving interviewing people he meets in public places or at well-attended public events. He acquired the nickname "Biff" from his mother when her friend had a dream involving a boy named "Biff".
Early life and education
Henderson was born in Durham, North Carolina in the Hayti District. He graduated Hillside High School in Durham, and earned a degree in business administration from Hampton Institute. He also served in the United States Army during the Vietnam War. As a youth, he played a tennis tournament against Randy Newman.
Henderson worked as a stage manager on the 1969 version of To Tell the Truth and then joined NBC in the early 1970s working first for the NBC Radio sales department and then returned to television production working as stage manager during NBC's coverage of the World Series and coverage of various NASA missions. His association with David Letterman, which spanned 35 years, began in 1980 as a stage manager on The David Letterman Show (NBC). He rejoined Letterman with the launch of Late Night with David Letterman (NBC) in 1982 remaining with it and Late Show with David Letterman (CBS) for their entire runs. Henderson frequently participated in the on-screen antics and sometimes was the star of short segments recounting his humorous adventures in New York. Henderson's "theme" on the show was "Milestones" by Miles Davis.
Late Show with David Letterman
One of Henderson's most notable roles has been his appearance during the CBS Mailbag segments. David Letterman would read the sender's name and hometown for each of the viewers' letters. Henderson would then find the hometown on a large map and stick a colorful pushpin in its location. Henderson's appearance during this segment became so popular that it led to the creation of the Late Show CBS Mailbag 2002 Biff Henderson's Map Across America Summer Tour. Henderson and his map traveled across the country and appeared via satellite from such locations as Mount Rushmore, Niagara Falls and the Grand Canyon. One segment Henderson performed in was a take-off of the MTV show Punk'd called "Biff'd". The segment resembled Candid Camera. In the segment Henderson would come out of nowhere, either startle or scare the person, and say the catchphrase "you just got Biff'd." In one of Henderson's more memorable segments, Letterman sends Henderson to Camp Towanda, a sleepaway camp and films his stay.
During the taping of the February 8, 2010 Late Show, Henderson injured his right leg. Henderson was playing catch with a football thrown by Letterman during a break, he tripped off the stairs at the edge of the stage and landed on his right leg. Henderson was transported by ambulance to the hospital with his leg in a brace.
- "Late Show Cast: Biff Henderson". CBS TV. CBS. Retrieved May 19, 2015.