Chris Tucker

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Chris Tucker
Chris Tucker 2012.jpg
Tucker in March 2012
Birth name Christopher Tucker
Born (1971-08-31) August 31, 1971 (age 44)
Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.
Years active 1992–present
Genres Blue comedy, black comedy, insult comedy, observational comedy
Influences Richard Pryor[1]
Eddie Murphy[1]
Website [1]

Christopher "Chris" Tucker (born August 31, 1971) is an American actor and stand-up comedian. He is known for playing the role of Smokey in Friday and as Detective James Carter in the Rush Hour film series. Tucker became a frequent stand up performer on Def Comedy Jam in the 1990s. He also appeared in Luc Besson's The Fifth Element.

Early life and education[edit]

Tucker was born on August 31, 1971,[2][3][4] in Atlanta, Georgia, the youngest son of Mary Louise (née Bryant) and Norris Tucker.[3] His father was an independent businessman who owned a janitorial service.[5][6] Tucker grew up in Decatur, Georgia; and, after graduating from Columbia High School in Decatur, he moved to Los Angeles, California, to pursue a career in comedy and acting.


In 1992, at the age of 20, Tucker was a frequent performer on Def Comedy Jam.[7] He made his cinematic debut in House Party 3,[8] and gained greater film recognition alongside rapper Ice Cube in the 1995 film Friday.[8] In 1997, he co-starred with Charlie Sheen in Money Talks, and alongside Bruce Willis in The Fifth Element.

Along with Jackie Chan, Tucker later starred in the 1998 martial arts action comedy Rush Hour and its sequels, Rush Hour 2 and Rush Hour 3, in which he played Detective James Carter, an LAPD detective. After the commercial success of the first Rush Hour film, Tucker held out for a $20 million salary for Rush Hour 2 and was paid $25 million salary for Rush Hour 3.[9] The latter was part of a $40 million two-movie contract with New Line Cinema that also included an unnamed future film. He was also to receive 20% of the gross against his salary from the Rush Hour 3.[10]

Tucker did not reprise his role as Smokey in Next Friday (2000) or in Friday After Next (2002) because he had become a born-again Christian after filming Money Talks (1997).[11] He starred in Michael Jackson's video "You Rock My World" and made a cameo appearance in Tupac Shakur's "California Love".[12] On February 13, 1999, Tucker participated in the NBA All-Star Weekend's Celebrity Game. Other celebrities participating include rapper Master P, NBA Hall of Famers Clyde Drexler and Dominique Wilkins, wide receiver Terrell Owens, and four Harlem Globetrotters.

Tucker was announced in 2007 to star in the New Line drama film Mr. S: My Life with Frank Sinatra, directed by Brett Ratner and based on George Jacobs' autobiography of working as Frank Sinatra's valet during the Rat Pack era of 1953–1968.[13]

In 2011, Tucker made a comeback to stand-up comedy. The next year, Tucker returned to film in the Academy Award winning drama Silver Linings Playbook, co-starring Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence and Robert De Niro. Tucker's performance in the film was well received by critics and audiences alike.[citation needed] The film itself received numerous nominations and awards; Tucker was among the winners of the Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Cast in 2012. He also hosted the 2013 BET Awards.

Personal life[edit]

Tucker has a son named Destin, who lives with his mother in Los Angeles. He divides his time among Bel Air, Los Angeles; Las Vegas, Nevada; and Atlanta, Georgia.

Tucker is good friends with fellow Rush Hour star Jackie Chan, and was also close friends with the singer Michael Jackson, introducing and dancing with him at his 30th Anniversary Special, and appearing in Jackson's video "You Rock My World" from his 2001 album Invincible and attending Jackson's memorial service. Tucker's career was also influenced by Jackson, as he is seen dancing and singing to Jackson's song "Don't Stop 'til You Get Enough" in a scene in Rush Hour 2 and imitating Jackson's dancing style in Friday. A friend of Bill Clinton, Tucker has traveled with the former President overseas, and endorsed Barack Obama in the 2008 primaries.[14][15]

Tucker participated in a PBS documentary on the genetic makeup of African Americans. He found he has African, European, and Native American ancestry.[16] Through DNA tests (as aired on the 2006 PBS documentary African American Lives), Tucker's patrilineal ancestry was traced back to the Ambundu ethnic group of Angola and one line of his mother's to the Bamileke of Cameroon.[17][18][19] He also managed to trace his family tree back to the 1830s.[20] Tucker was shown visiting Angola, the birthplace of some of his ancestors, with the program's host, Henry Louis Gates.[21]



Year Title Role Notes
1993 The Meteor Man MC in Hall
1994 House Party 3 Johnny Booze
1995 Friday Smokey Nominated – MTV Movie Award for Best Comedic Performance
Nominated – MTV Movie Award for Best Breakthrough Performance
Nominated – MTV Movie Award for Best On-Screen Duo (with Ice Cube)
1995 Panther Bodyguard
1995 Dead Presidents Skip
1997 Money Talks Franklin Hatchett Nominated – Razzie Award for Worst New Star
1997 The Fifth Element Ruby Rhod Nominated – Razzie Award for Worst New Star
1997 Jackie Brown Beaumont Livingston
1998 Rush Hour Detective James Carter Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Favorite Duo – Action/Adventure (with Jackie Chan)
MTV Movie Award for Best On-Screen Duo (with Jackie Chan)
Nominated – Image Awards for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Motion Picture
Nominated – Kid's Choice Awards for Favorite Movie Actor
Nominated – MTV Movie Award for Best Comedic Performance
Nominated – MTV Movie Award for MTV Movie Award Best Fight (with Jackie Chan)
2001 Rush Hour 2 Detective James Carter Kid's Choice Award for Favorite Movie Actor
MTV Movie Award for Best Fight (with Jackie Chan)
Nominated – MTV Movie Award for Best Comedic Performance
2007 Rush Hour 3 Detective James Carter Nominated – MTV Movie Award for Best Fight (with Jackie Chan and Sun Mingming)
2012 Silver Linings Playbook Danny McDaniels Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Cast
Nominated – Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
2015 Chris Tucker – Live Himself Netflix Exclusive Standup Special[22]
2016 Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk Albert Post-Production


Year Title Role Notes
1992 Hangin' with Mr. Cooper Rapper
1992 Def Comedy Jam Himself 2 episodes
2001 Michael Jackson: 30th Anniversary Special Himself Guest
2001 Diary
2006 African American Lives

Music videos[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1995 California Love from Tupac Shakur feat. Dr.Dre & Roger Troutman Guest
2001 You Rock My World from Michael Jackson Gangster
2008 Shake It Off from Mariah Carey Car passenger


  1. ^ a b Chris Tucker – Movie and Film Biography and Filmography – Retrieved on October 19, 2011.
  2. ^ Stated on African American Lives, 2006
  3. ^ a b Gates, Jr., Henry Louis (January 2009). In Search of Our Roots: How 19 Extraordinary Blacks Reclaimed Their Past. Crown. p. 397. ISBN 0-307-38240-0. 
  4. ^ Official Bio
  5. ^ Chris Tucker Biography – Yahoo! Movies.[dead link]
  6. ^ Chris Tucker Biography
  7. ^ mirobo1 Added (August 31, 2006). "Def Comedy Jam on". Retrieved January 11, 2011. 
  8. ^ a b Chris Tucker at the Internet Movie Database
  9. ^ Grossberg, Josh. "Chris Tucker's Taxing Situation", E! News, July 28, 2010
  10. ^ "Chris Tucker signs onto Brett Ratner's Rush Hour 3"., May 5, 2005. Retrieved August 5, 2007.
  11. ^ Anthony Miccio (December 8, 2010). "New Chris Tucker Movie Rumored, Plus 4 Other Comedy Recluses". TheFABlife. Retrieved January 11, 2011. 
  12. ^ You Rock My World at the Internet Movie Database
  13. ^ Giles, Jeff. "Chris Tucker, Brett Ratner Reteam for Sinatra", Rotten Tomatoes, September 20, 2007.
  14. ^ Nedra Pickler (January 22, 2008). "Obama sees rock-star power in action". Yahoo! News. Retrieved January 28, 2008. [dead link]
  15. ^ Candace Newson (January 26, 2008). "On the trail: Stars talk politics, endorsements as they 'stand for change' with Obama". The Times and Democrat. Retrieved January 28, 2008. 
  16. ^ Richard Willing (February 1, 2006). "DNA rewrites history for African-Americans". USA Today. Retrieved August 5, 2008.  Check date values in: |year= / |date= mismatch (help)
  17. ^ "African Ancestry & DNA Tests: The Results".
  18. ^ Kam Williams. "Chris Tucker 'Rush Hour 3' Interview with Kam Williams". 
  19. ^ Chris Tucker and Brett Ratner The A.V. Club.
  20. ^ African Ancestry & DNA Tests.
  21. ^ Oprah, Bishop Jakes, Chris Tucker Trace Roots On PBS. January 31, 2006. Retrieved April 18, 2015.
  22. ^ "Chris Tucker Live". 

External links[edit]