Keenen Ivory Wayans
Keenen Ivory Wayans
Wayans in 2013
Keenen Ivory Wayans
June 8, 1958
|Occupation||Actor, comedian, filmmaker|
|Years active||1979–2009; 2013–present|
|Family||See Wayans family|
|Awards||1990-Emmy Award Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy Series|
In Living Color (as executive producer)
Keenen Ivory Desuma Wayans Sr. (born June 8, 1958) is an American actor, comedian, filmmaker, and a member of the Wayans family of entertainers. He first came to prominence as the host and the creator of the 1990–1994 Fox sketch comedy series In Living Color. He has produced, directed and/or written several films, starting with Hollywood Shuffle, which he co wrote, in 1987.
A majority of these films have included him and one or more of his brothers and sisters in the cast.
One of these films, Scary Movie (2000), which Wayans directed, was the highest-grossing movie ever directed by an African American until it was surpassed by Tim Story's Fantastic Four in 2005. From 1997 to 1998, he hosted the talk show The Keenen Ivory Wayans Show. Most recently, he was a judge for the eighth season of Last Comic Standing.
Life and career
Wayans was born in Harlem, New York City, son of Howell Stouten Wayans, a supermarket manager, and his wife Elvira Alethia (Green), a homemaker and social worker. His father was a devout Jehovah's Witness. The family later moved to Manhattan's Fulton housing projects, where he primarily grew up. He attended Seward Park High School during his teenage years, and attended Tuskegee University on an engineering scholarship. He entertained his friends at college with made-up stories about life in New York. One semester before graduation, he dropped out of school to focus on comedy.
During his first set performing at The Improv in New York, Wayans met Robert Townsend, who helped him learn about the comedy business. Townsend and Wayans drove cross country to Los Angeles together when Wayans moved to Los Angeles in 1980. They did not speak for a year afterwards. Wayans worked there as an actor. He had a regular role as a soldier on a television series named "For Love and Honor". He also appeared on Hill Street Blues as a famous NFL line backer.
Townsend wrote, directed, and starred in the movie Hollywood Shuffle; Wayans was co star and co writer. The movie's success allowed him to raise the money to make I'm Gonna Git You Sucka. Fox Broadcasting Company approached Wayans to offer him his own show. Wayans wanted to produce a variety show, similar to Saturday Night Live, with a cast of people of color that took chances with its content.
Fox gave Wayans a lot of freedom with the show, although Fox executives were a bit concerned about the show's content prior to its television debut. Wayans created, wrote, and starred in the show, called In Living Color, an American sketch comedy television series that originally ran on the Fox Network from 1990 to 1994.
In Living Color
- Death Row Comic (Prison Cable Access)
- Ice Man (Homeboy Shopping Network)
- Tom Brothers (The Brothers Brothers)
- Wes (Wes & Les)
- Arsenio Hall
- Billy Dee Williams
- Don Cornelius
- Jesse Jackson
- Little Richard
- Mike Tyson
- Marsha Warfield
- Milli (Rob Pilatus) of Milli Vanilli
- Morgan Freeman (such as Hoke Colburn from Driving Miss Daisy, Principal Joe Clark from Lean on Me)
- Rick James
- Steve Harvey
- Carl Weathers (as Apollo Creed)
|1983||For Love and Honor||Duke|
|1987||A Different World||Professor Lawrence|
|1987||Hollywood Shuffle||Donald/Jheri Curl|
|1988||I'm Gonna Git You Sucka||Jack Spade|
|1994||A Low Down Dirty Shame||Shame|
|1996||Don't Be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood||Mailman|
|1996||The Glimmer Man||Det. Jim Campbell|
|1997||Most Wanted||Gunnery Sergeant James Dunn|
|2000||Scary Movie||Slave (Amistad II)|
|2001||My Wife and Kids||Ken|
|2009||Dance Flick||Mr. Stache|
|2014||Last Comic Standing||Judge|
- Hollywood Shuffle (1987) (writer)
- Eddie Murphy Raw (1987) (writer and producer)
- I'm Gonna Git You Sucka (1988) (writer and director)
- In Living Color (1990–1992) (executive producer, director and creator/writer)
- The Five Heartbeats (1991) (writer)
- A Low Down Dirty Shame (1994) (writer and director)
- Don't Be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood (1996) (producer)
- The Keenen Ivory Wayans Show (1997) (executive producer)
- Most Wanted (1997) (executive producer and writer)
- Scary Movie (2000) (actor and director)
- Scary Movie 2 (2001) (director)
- White Chicks (2004) (producer, director)
- Little Man (2006) (producer, writer, director)
- Dance Flick (2009) (producer, writer)
- The Boo Crew (2017) (creator, producer, writer)
- Braxton, Greg (August 3, 1997). "Will 'Hip' Equal 'Hit'?". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved November 6, 2011.
- Stated on Finding Your Roots, January 19, 2016, PBS
- Keenen Ivory Wayans Biography (1958–)
- Stein, Joel (September 11, 2000). "Marlon Wayans". Time.
- The Movie Chicks – Interview – Marlon Wayans
- Laurence, Robert P. (April 13, 1990). "Is prime time ready for rudeness? Fox's new comedy 'In Living Color' will offend some, tickle others". The San Diego Union. p. E1.
- Hughes, Mike (April 13, 1990). "Laughing with 'Living Color'". USA Today.
- McIntyre, Mike (February 16, 1989). "Keenen Wayans gambles and wins on an offbeat 'Sucka'". The San Diego Union. p. E3.
- "New Fox Show Pokes Fun at Black Stereotypes". Associated Press. Greensboro, North Carolina: Greensboro News & Record. April 12, 1990. p. B6.
- "Keenen Ivory Wayans". TV Guide. Archived from the original on September 8, 2015. Retrieved September 7, 2018.
- "Do It for Someone You Love: Keenan Ivory Wayans". Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. Archived from the original on April 27, 2012. Retrieved September 7, 2018.