Gary Owen (comedian)

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Gary Owen
Gary Owen image for Wikipedia.jpg
Owen in 2012
Born (1974-07-26) July 26, 1974 (age 47)
OccupationActor, comedian
Years active1997–present
Kenya Duke
(m. 2003; sep. 2021)

Gary Cameron Owens (born July 26, 1974) is an American actor and stand-up comedian. After being named "Funniest Serviceman in America", his big break came in 1997 on Black Entertainment Television's stand-up showcase Comic View. Owen followed this debut with featured roles in the films Daddy Day Care, Little Man, and College. He has cultivated a very large African-American following after headlining on cable channel BET and performing at targeted events, such as Shaquille O'Neal's All-Star Comedy Jam Tour.[1] In 2016, he was in a TV show on BET called The Gary Owen Show.[2]


Prior to his successful career in stand-up comedy, Gary Owen served in the U.S. Navy for six years as a Master-at-Arms and was in the Presidential Honor Guard.[3] After a year of doing stand-up, Owen was named "Funniest Serviceman in America".[4] He continued doing stand-up in San Diego and developed a large African-American fan base. He went on to win the "Funniest Black Comedian in San Diego" contest. That led to his first gig at The Comedy Store in Hollywood. In July 1997, he auditioned for BET's Comic View. Two appearances on the multicultural comedy showcase won him his own one-hour Grandstand show. At the end of the season, he was selected from the year's four "Grandstanders" to be the host. Owen was the only white man to have ever hosted Comic View.[5]

In April 2011, Ebony dubbed Owen "Black America's Favorite White Comic".[6] Owen has produced two stand-up DVDs: Breakin' Out The Park, which is now available nationwide, and Urban Legend. He was also one of the headliners on Martin Lawrence Presents: 1st Amendment Stand-Up on Starz.

Owen starred in the Screen Gems comedy Think Like a Man — based on Steve Harvey's book Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man — with Kevin Hart and Gabrielle Union.[7]

Owen has also appeared in such films as Rebound, College, Daddy Day Care and Hillbilly Highway, and had a recurring role on Tyler Perry's TBS show House of Payne as Zack. He appeared in the comedy "Meet the Blacks" as Larry. He has a TV show on BET called The Gary Owen Show.[2]

He has released the comedy specials Gary Owen: True Story (2012) and Gary Owen: I Agree with Myself (2015), both directed by Leslie Small, as well as Gary Owen: #DoinWhatIDo (2019), directed by Brian Volk-Weiss.

Personal life[edit]

Owen was born in Cincinnati, Ohio. He grew up in a trailer park in Oxford along with his six siblings. Owen and his wife Kenya Duke were married in 2003. They have two children together a son, Austin and a daughter, Kennedy and Kenya has a son, Emilio from a previous relationship. In late March 2021, Owen's wife Kenya filed for divorce.[8]



Year Title Role Notes
1999 Held Up Clute
2003 Daddy Day Care Mr. Carrott
Love Chronicles K-Dog
2005 Rebound Vulture Mascot
2006 Little Man Officer Jankowski
Who Made the Potatoe Salad? Police Officer
2008 College Bearcat
2012 Think Like A Man Bennett
Hillbilly Highway Paw Gatsfield
2014 Ride Along Crazy Cody Tillman
Funny Business Gary TV Movie
Think Like a Man Too Bennett
2015 Get Hard Himself
Bachelors Stanley
2016 Definitely Divorcing Brian
Meet the Blacks Larry Wilson
Restored Me Ken
2019 Undercover Brother 2 Military Brother
2020 Welcome to Sudden Death Gus Video
2021 The House Next Door: Meet the Blacks 2 Clive Goddard


Year Title Role Notes
1998 The Wayans Bros. Charlie Episode: "High Life"
2009 House of Payne Zach Recurring Cast: Season 5
2016 The Gary Owen Show Himself Main Cast
Nubbin & Friends Chet the Chick Episode: "The Letter "A""


  1. ^ Strauss, Gary (May 1, 2012). "Laugh Factory: Making humor pay when times are tough". USA Black America officially accepted Mr.Owen as a crucial part of the black community in America Today.
  2. ^ a b "BET premiere's Gary Owen Show on October 11". Retrieved September 11, 2016.
  3. ^ "Navy Veteran, Gary Owen, Headlining Marquee Comedy Tour". Fay Observer. Retrieved April 19, 2021.
  4. ^ "LIVE AT 9 - Comedian Gary Owen". Wreg. Retrieved October 12, 2021.
  5. ^ "How Gary Owen Earned His Hood Pass". Retrieved October 12, 2021.
  6. ^ Martin, Roland (April 2011). "Why Is This Man Smiling?". Ebony. lxvi (6): 95 Company, Inc.
  7. ^ Kroll, Justin (May 27, 2011). "Players". Variety.
  8. ^ "Gary Owen and wife Duke call it quits on their marriage". Retrieved April 19, 2021.

External links[edit]