Dax Shepard

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Dax Shepard
Dax Shepard at the Paley Center for Media's PaleyFest in 2013 in Los Angeles
Shepard at PaleyFest 2013 in Los Angeles
Born Dax Randall Shepard
(1975-01-02) January 2, 1975 (age 42)
Highland, Michigan, U.S.
Education Walled Lake Central High School
Alma mater UCLA
Occupation Actor, comedian, writer, director
Years active 1994–present
Spouse(s) Kristen Bell (m. 2013)
Children 2

Dax Randall Shepard (born January 2, 1975)[1] is an American actor, comedian, writer, and director. He is best known for his work in the feature films Employee of the Month (2006), Without a Paddle (2004), Idiocracy (2006), Let's Go to Prison (2006), and Hit and Run (2012), the last of which he also wrote and directed, and the MTV practical joke reality series Punk'd (2003). He portrayed Crosby Braverman in the NBC comedy-drama series Parenthood from 2010 to 2015.

Early life[edit]

Shepard was born in Highland, Michigan, in suburban Detroit.[2] He is the son of Laura LaBo,[3][4] who worked at General Motors, and Dave Robert Shepard, Sr. (deceased),[5][6][7] who was a car salesman.[6][8] His parents divorced when he was 3 years old.[2]

Shepard's mother ended up growing a huge business by the time he was in high school.[3] She worked car shows with traveling events at race tracks. She started as a janitor on the midnight shift at General Motors,[9] then worked in fleet management at the proving grounds where all the cars in Milford are designed, then hosted hospitality days for all the GM family members, eventually moving into public relations at an ad agency.[8] She went back to GM, ending up owning four shops that managed publicity events for magazine journalists. From the age of 14 to 28, Shepard worked for his mother on the road, going from racetrack to racetrack.[2] For about 2 years, Shepard had a stepfather who was an engineer on the Corvette.[2][8] Shepard's mother has been married four times—Shepard said he's had three stepfathers.[10]

According to Shepard, his mother named him for the rich playboy Dax (Diogenes Alejandro Xenos), in Harold Robbins' novel The Adventurers.[11] He has an older brother, David Shepard, who lives in Oregon,[6] and a younger half-sister, Carly Hatter,[2] whom he cast in his 2012 film Hit and Run.[12][13]

Shepard has said that he was raised in Milford,[2] although he lived in a lot of places in suburban Detroit, growing up primarily in Walled Lake, Michigan. He graduated from Walled Lake Central High School in 1993[14] before enrolling in The Groundlings school.[15] After attending Santa Monica Community College and West Los Angeles College, Shepard transferred to UCLA, where he graduated magna cum laude with a B.A. in Anthropology.[16] He had a deal with his mother that if he went to college she would pay his rent.[2]

Shepard has said he wasn't interested in child-acting per se. He was a class clown in school, had a sense he was funny, and wanted to do stand-up. Although he had friends who did stand-up in Detroit, he was too scared. Shepard thought if he moved to California "that commitment would force him to do it."[2]


Shepard at the 2008 Tribeca Film Festival in New York City

After a year in Santa Barbara, California, Shepard moved to Los Angeles in 1996. He found out about The Groundlings improv troupe from a friend from Santa Barbara, Kareem Elseify, ended up auditioning (the first time he acted), and took classes while also attending UCLA. After about five years of classes, he got into the Sunday Company of The Groundlings—in a group that included Melissa McCarthy, Tate Taylor and Nat Faxon.[2]

From 2003 onwards, Shepard became known from his work in the improv Candid Camera-type show, Punk'd, with Ashton Kutcher. When the show had its 2012 revival, he continued to appear. Shepard said he auditioned for Punk'd and while doing the pilot became friendly with Kutcher, who arranged for him to get an agent.[2] He auditioned unsuccessfully for 10 years before he landed the role.[2]

In 2004, Shepard starred in the comedy Without a Paddle, alongside Seth Green and Matthew Lillard. The film received negative reviews but was a commercial success, grossing $69,631,118 worldwide.[17] In 2005 he starred as The Astronaut in Zathura, a science fiction adventure fantasy film. In 2006, he appeared with Dane Cook and Jessica Simpson in the comedy Employee of the Month and in Mike Judge's film Idiocracy

During the same time, Shepard began appearing in more films and landed his first main character role in Let's Go to Prison (2006), alongside Will Arnett and Chi McBride. He also had a main role in the 2008 comedy Baby Mama, starring opposite Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. Shepard wrote the script for the Paramount venture Get 'Em Wet, in which he again appeared with Arnett. In 2010, he wrote, directed and starred in the low-budget satirical mockumentary feature Brother's Justice; the film won an Audience Award at the 2010 Austin Film Festival. He also had a supporting role in the 2010 romantic comedy film When in Rome, which also starred his future wife Kristen Bell.

From 2010 to 2015, Shepard has been part of the main cast of the NBC drama Parenthood, playing Crosby Braverman.[18][19][20]

Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard

Shepard wrote, produced, co-directed, and starred in the 2012 low-budget film Hit and Run alongside Bell and his close friend Bradley Cooper.[21][22] He said the movie, which includes numerous car chases and fast driving scenes, allowed him to live out his Smokey and the Bandit fantasy.[2]

Shepard had a supporting role in the 2014 film The Judge, which starred Robert Downey Jr., Robert Duvall and Vera Farmiga.[23]

In September 2014, Dax starred with his wife, Kristen Bell, in a commercial for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S.[24] It was so popular (with over 20 million YouTube views) that they did another commercial for the holiday season.[25] The ad agency McKinney was behind both.[26]

Shepard is working on a big-screen version of CHiPs, which he will write, direct, and star as Officer Jon Baker alongside Michael Peña as Frank "Ponch" Poncherello.[23] The project will be at Warner Bros.[27][28][29]

Personal life[edit]


Shepard met actress Kristen Bell, also a native of Detroit's northern suburbs, at the birthday party of a mutual friend; they began dating in late 2007. The couple announced their engagement in January 2010.[30] However, they decided to delay marriage until the state of California passed legislation legalizing same-sex marriage.[31] After section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court on June 26, 2013, Bell asked Shepard to marry her through Twitter,[32] which he accepted.[33] They were married at the Beverly Hills County Clerk's Office on October 17, 2013.[34] They have two daughters: Lincoln Bell Shepard (born March 28, 2013)[35] and Delta Bell Shepard (born December 19, 2014).[36]

As of January 2012 both were vegan.[37] In June 2013 they both were named Sexiest Vegetarian Celebrities of 2013 by PETA. In a tweet Shepard said he could not accept the award because he had begun eating meat again six months before.[38]


Shepard has said that, except for a year in high school when he used drugs (in 1992, leading to the police and his mother getting involved), he did not have a substance abuse problem until he was 18 years old.[2] After many struggles, Shepard got sober in September 2004.[2]

Interests and charity work[edit]

Shepard races motorcycles at Buttonwillow Raceway, including his Ducati Hypermotard 1100S and Suzuki GSX-R1000.[39] He donates much of his time to the Hollenbeck Youth Center, an after-school program that provides opportunity to at-risk inner-city youth. He has served as their official Master of Ceremonies, along with his friend Tom Arnold, for the Inner-City Games and Hollenbeck Youth Center's Miracle on 1st Street Toy Giveaway Program in East Los Angeles.[40][41]

He is an avid car enthusiast[42] and can rebuild an engine (pre-computer). He has a 1967 Lincoln Continental (which he made the movie Hit and Run about) and races off-road.[2]

Shepard and his wife are advocates of no-kids paparazzi.[43] Bell said: "We're not saying that we can't be newsworthy. We're saying that our child is not newsworthy."[44] California Senate Bill 606[45] passed in 2013, with testimony by actors Halle Berry and Jennifer Garner.[43]

Shepard practices the Transcendental Meditation program.[46]



Year Title Role Notes
1998 Hairshirt Guy Vomiting at Party Credited as Dax Sheppard
2003 Cheaper by the Dozen Camera Crew Member
2004 Without a Paddle Tom Marshall
2005 Sledge: The Untold Story SFX Coordinator
2005 Zathura Walter the Astronaut
2006 Employee of the Month Vince Downey
2006 Idiocracy Frito Pendejo
2006 Let's Go to Prison John Lyshitski
2007 The Comebacks Sheriff
2007 Smother Noah Cooper
2008 Baby Mama Carl
2008 Confessions of an Action Star Bucky
2009 Old Dogs Gary Uncredited
2010 When in Rome Gale
2010 The Freebie Darren
2010 Brother's Justice Himself Also writer, director, stunt coordinator
2012 Hit and Run Charlie Bronson/Yul Perrkins Also writer, director, editor
2014 Veronica Mars Overconfident Club Boy Cameo
2014 This Is Where I Leave You Wade Beaufort
2014 The Judge C.P. Kennedy
2015 Motorcycle vs. Car Drift Battle 3 White Fang Short film
2017 CHiPS Jon Baker Also writer, director and producer
2018 S.C.O.O.B.[47] In production, director and writer


Year Title Role Notes
2003-2012 Punk'd Himself 56 episodes
Dr. Iskarr 1 episode
2004–08 King of the Hill Zack (voice) 2 episodes
Asa (voice) 1 episode
2005 My Name Is Earl Dirk 1 episode
2005, 2016 Robot Chicken Various voices 4 episodes
2007 The Naked Trucker and T-Bones Show Joe Sands 1 episode
2007 Halfway Home Ben 1 episode
2009 The Goode Family Steve (voice) 1 episode
2010–2015 Parenthood Crosby Braverman Main role, 90 episodes
director, 1 episode
2011 Good Vibes Jag Knullerbrod (voice) 1 episode
Smilin' Mike (voice) 1 episode
2012–2013 A.N.T. Farm Derby 10 episodes
2013 Hollywood Game Night Himself 1 episode
2014–2015 About A Boy Crosby Braverman 2 episodes
2014–2015 Web Therapy Abel Jans 3 episodes
2015 It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia Jojo 1 episode
2015 Parks and Recreation Hank Muntak 1 episode
2015 Comedy Bang! Bang! Himself 1 episode

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Work Result
2003 Teen Choice Award Choice TV Reality/Variety Star – Male Punk'd Nominated


  1. ^ "Dax Randall Shepard – United States Public Records, 1970–2009". FamilySearch. Retrieved September 20, 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o Maron, Marc (September 15, 2014). "Episode 533 – Dax Shepard" (Audio interview (podcast)). WTF with Marc Maron. Retrieved September 20, 2014. 
  3. ^ a b Sammons, Mary Beth (January 30, 1994). "Car Firm Shows Off For Celebrities, Press". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved September 20, 2014. 
  4. ^ Jewett, Dale (July 11, 2012). "Dax Shepard goes full throttle: Actor's hot-rod Lincoln, desert racer are stars in new movie". Autoweek. Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  5. ^ "David R Shepard – United States Social Security Death Index". FamilySearch. December 30, 2012. Retrieved September 20, 2014. 
  6. ^ a b c Shepard, Dax (March 20, 2013). "My Father's Horniness". Don't Try: Dax Tumbler. Retrieved September 20, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Dax Shepard Writes Emotional Post About His Late Father And Kristen Bell (Photo)". Huffington Post. March 22, 2013. Retrieved April 10, 2014. 
  8. ^ a b c "Dax Shepard: Motor City hit and run man". The New Zealand Herald. September 6, 2012. Retrieved October 30, 2013. 
  9. ^ Turchiano, Danielle (December 9, 2014). "Dax Shepard Talks Directing 'About a Boy's' Take on 'A Christmas Carol'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved December 10, 2014. 
  10. ^ Stern, Howard (September 16, 2010). "Thursday, September 16, 2010". Howard Stern Show. Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  11. ^ Aukerman, Scott (June 26, 2009). "Comedy Death Ray Radio with Scott Aukerman – Episode 9 – Chip Pope, Dax Shepard, Neil Hamburger, Paul F. Tompkins" (Audio interview (podcast)). Comedy Bang! Bang!. Retrieved December 17, 2010. 
  12. ^ Olya, Gabrielle (July 28, 2013). "Dax Shepard: Being a Father Is Like Falling in Love for the First Time". People. Retrieved July 28, 2013. 
  13. ^ Ellwood, Gregory (August 21, 2012). "Dax Shepard gives his friends a career showcase in 'Hit and Run'". HitFix. Retrieved July 28, 2013. 
  14. ^ "Dax Shepard pays tribute to FOX 2 anchor in new movie". WJBK. July 9, 2012. Retrieved November 30, 2013. 
  15. ^ "Performers – Dax Shepard". The Groundlings. Retrieved November 30, 2013. 
  16. ^ D., Spence (August 19, 2004). "Dax Shepard and Matthew Lillard". IGN. Retrieved November 30, 2013. 
  17. ^ "Without A Paddle (2004)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved September 1, 2009. 
  18. ^ "First impressions – "Parenthood"". Variety. July 6, 2009. Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  19. ^ Lowry, Brian (February 25, 2010). "Review: 'Parenthood'". Variety. Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  20. ^ Goldberg, Lesley (May 11, 2014). "NBC Renews 'Parenthood' for Sixth and Final Season". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  21. ^ Debruge, Peter (August 20, 2012). "Review: 'Hit & Run'". Variety. Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  22. ^ DeFore, John (August 19, 2012). "Hit and Run: Film Review". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  23. ^ a b Buchanan, Kyle (September 5, 2014). "Dax Shepard Will Flash His Anus While Acting If That's What It Takes". Vulture. New York Magazine. Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  24. ^ "Galaxy Tab S – What You Really Need". https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnEdfCdbxJJ9ouWKLSRCRRw. Samsung Mobile USA YouTube. Retrieved December 29, 2014.  External link in |website= (help)
  25. ^ "Kristen & Dax: Home for the Holidays". https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnEdfCdbxJJ9ouWKLSRCRRw. Samsung Mobile USA YouTube. Retrieved December 29, 2014.  External link in |website= (help)
  26. ^ "Samsung work page". mckinney.com. McKinney. Retrieved December 29, 2014. 
  27. ^ Couch, Aaron (September 2, 2014). "Dax Shepard Making 'CHiPS' Movie for Warner Bros.". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  28. ^ Fowler, Matt (September 3, 2014). "Dax Shepard, Michael Peña to Star in CHiPS Movie". IGN. Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  29. ^ Modell, Josh (September 3, 2014). "Dax Shepard will turn '70s cop show CHiPs into a movie". The A.V. Club. Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  30. ^ "Exclusive: Kristen Bell Is Engaged To Dax Shepard!". US Magazine. January 31, 2010. Retrieved February 1, 2010. 
  31. ^ "'Hit & Run' Couple Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard Won't Marry Until Same-Sex Marriage is Legal in California". Celebuzz. August 14, 2012. Retrieved December 21, 2014. 
  32. ^ "Kristen proposes to Dax Shepard via Twitter after DOMA falls". Twitter. June 26, 2013. Retrieved June 26, 2013. 
  33. ^ "Dax Shepard accepts Kristen Bell marriage proposal after DOMA falls.". Twitter. June 26, 2013. Retrieved June 26, 2013. 
  34. ^ Ravitz, Justin (October 17, 2013). "Kristen Bell, Dax Shepard Get Married in "No Frills" Wedding at County Clerk's Office". Us Weekly. Retrieved October 19, 2013. 
  35. ^ "Dax Shepard and Kristen Bell Welcome Daughter Lincoln". People. March 28, 2013. Retrieved March 29, 2013. 
  36. ^ "Dax Shepard and Kristen Bell Welcome Daughter Delta". People. December 19, 2014. Retrieved December 19, 2014. 
  37. ^ "Kristen in the Kitchen". Women's Health. March 8, 2012. Retrieved March 8, 2012. 
  38. ^ Lewis, Hilary (June 28, 2013). "Dax Shepard 'Can't Accept' PETA's 'Sexiest Vegetarian' Title Because He Eats Chicken". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved November 30, 2013. 
  39. ^ Carolla, Adam (August 12, 2009). "Dax Shepard" (audio interview (podcast)). Adam Carolla's CarCast. Retrieved September 21, 2014. [permanent dead link]
  40. ^ Chong, Michele (December 16, 2008). "Hollenbeck Gym Hosts Toy Giveaway". MyBoxingFans.com. Archived from the original on January 17, 2010. Retrieved September 20, 2014. 
  41. ^ "Picture – Tom Arnold and Dax Shepard – Photo 586706". Contactmusic.com. December 15, 2007. Retrieved April 10, 2014. 
  42. ^ Hunkins, Johnny (January 8, 2013). "1967 Lincoln Continental – Lincoln Stuntinental". Popular Hot Rodding. Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  43. ^ a b Shepard, Dax (January 30, 2014). "Why Our Children Should Be Off Limits to the Paparazzi". Huffington Post. Retrieved September 20, 2014. 
  44. ^ Saad, Nardine (January 31, 2014). "Kristen Bell, Dax Shepard urge boycott on celebrity kid photos". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 20, 2014. 
  45. ^ "Senate Bill No. 606, Chapter 348". California Legislative Information. September 24, 2013. Retrieved September 20, 2014. 
  46. ^ Majewski, Lori (October 1, 2013). "31 things you didn't know about Kristen Bell". Women's Health (Australia). Archived from the original on October 2, 2015. Retrieved December 20, 2014. 
  47. ^ http://variety.com/2016/film/news/dax-shepard-scooby-doo-animated-movie-1201856156/

External links[edit]