Rhys Montague Darby
21 March 1974
Rhys Montague Darby (born 21 March 1974) is a New Zealand actor and comedian, known for his energetic physical comedy routines, telling stories accompanied with mime and sound effects of things such as machinery and animals. He was nominated for the Billy T Award in 2001 and 2002. He also won the 2012 Fred (Dagg) award at the New Zealand International Comedy Festival, for best NZ show.
Darby is best known for playing Murray Hewitt, the band manager of Flight of the Conchords in the television series, a role he originally played in the BBC radio series under the name Brian Nesbit, and for playing the boss of Jim Carrey's character in Yes Man, as well as roles in What We Do in the Shadows, The Boat That Rocked, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, A Series of Unfortunate Events, Voltron: Legendary Defender, Psycho Sam in Hunt for the Wilderpeople, Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Crash Bandicoot in Skylanders Academy, and Half-Life: Alyx. He is currently co-starring with Taika Waititi as Stede Bonnet in the HBO Max period romantic comedy series Our Flag Means Death.
Darby was born in Auckland and was brought up in the suburb of Pakuranga. He attended Edgewater College. A former soldier (signaller trained in morse code), he left the New Zealand Army in 1994 and began studies at the University of Canterbury. In 1996 he formed a comedy duo, Rhysently Granted, with Grant Lobban. After winning an open mic contest at Southern Blues Bar in Christchurch, they began performing at local venues.
Rhysently Granted performed at two international comedy festivals which led to Darby moving back to Auckland to seek more solo stand-up experience. After performing his first solo show at the 2002 Edinburgh Festival Fringe, Darby moved to the UK to pursue his career further.
In 2004 he appeared in the Flight of the Conchords BBC radio series as the band's manager Brian Nesbit alongside comedy stars such as Rob Brydon, Andy Parsons and Jimmy Carr. Darby plays Murray, the band's manager, on Flight of the Conchords TV show. He provided vocals for the track "Leggy Blonde" on their self-titled first album and also in the second series of the show on the track "Rejected" during the episode "A Good Opportunity" alongside tenor Andrew Drost.
Darby played the role of Norman, the boss of Jim Carrey's character in Yes Man. In July 2008 he appeared in a Nike advertisement featuring Roger Federer; he played an impostor posing as Federer's coach.
He appeared on a British children's television program The Slammer during its first season. He also appeared in several advertisements for New Zealand mobile phone company 2degrees. He appeared on Soccer AM on 18 October 2008 and on Never Mind The Buzzcocks on 23 October. The DVD of his live performance Imagine That! has gone platinum in New Zealand.
Rhys Darby's hair colour is self-described as Electric Copper in the episode of Flight of the Conchords entitled Murray Takes It to the Next Level. He refers to this in his stand-up show It's Rhys Darby Night which he performed at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe from 6–15 August 2009, The Bloomsbury Theatre in London from 27 July–1 August and toured around New Zealand with in October and November that year.
Darby played the role of Angus in the Richard Curtis film The Boat That Rocked released in the UK on 1 April 2009. This film was released in some countries in November 2009 under the name Pirate Radio.
In 2009 while home in New Zealand he began filming TV ads for NZ's new mobile network 2degrees and appearing in NZ shows Rocked the Nation 2, Jaquie Brown Diaries and Intrepid Journeys. He has also branched out into producing live comedy with his wife and their company Awesomeness International. At the NZ International Comedy Festival they produced shows for local comedians. Darby became a climate ambassador for Greenpeace in its Sign on climate campaign and published a poem on Youtube in support of the campaign.
In 2009 Darby became a part of the New Zealand TV ONE series Intrepid Journeys, Season 5, touring Rwanda. On 10 August 2010, Entertainment Weekly claimed that Darby was in consideration for a role in the television series The Office after Steve Carell left at the end of the 2011 season, however this did not materialise.
In May 2011, he also filmed a pilot for a Channel 4 sitcom in the UK, The Fun Police. The pilot was broadcast on 16 September. In 2011, Darby and family moved to the US for Darby to take a role in the CBS sitcom How to Be a Gentleman. Darby's second DVD "It's Rhys Darby Night!" was released in NZ on 12 December 2011.
He wrote a self-described "autobiographical space novel" entitled This Way to Spaceship, which was released on 12 April 2012. On 20 May 2012, Darby was awarded the Fred Award by the New Zealand International Comedy Festival for his show of the same name as his book.
In 2013, he was responsible for flying 'Cornish rappers' Hedluv + Passman to New Zealand for the New Zealand International Comedy Festival. This was followed by an appearance on Seven Sharp, where he introduced 'his rappers' to the New Zealand public.
Darby climbed to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro in July 2013 as part of a World Vision team of celebrities that included Olympian Mahé Drysdale and musician Boh Runga. On 8 November 2013, Darby made an appearance and performed some standup comedy in his capacity as second guest on the Late Show with David Letterman. He portrayed Anton in the 2014 release comedy horror film What We Do in the Shadows.
In February 2016, he played Guy Mann in the third episode ("Mulder and Scully Meet the Were-Monster") of season 10 of The X-Files. Darby, a long time fan of the show, was thrilled by his experience on set. He saw this as an opportunity that only comes around every so often and said he'd return to the set the first chance he received.
In 2022, he starred in the HBO Max show Our Flag Means Death as pirate Stede Bonnet. Our Flag Means Death received praise for its non-binary and LGBTQ representation, in part due to the romantic relationship between Bonnet and Blackbeard, played by co-star Taika Waititi.
|2008||Yes Man||Norman "Norm" Stokes|
|2009||The Boat That Rocked||Angus Nutsford||Renamed Pirate Radio|
|Peacock Season||Galtrex Guy|
|2011||Coming & Going||Lee Leonetti|
|Arthur Christmas||Lead Elf||Voice|
|2014||What We Do in the Shadows||Anton|
|2016||Hunt for the Wilderpeople||Psycho Sam|
|Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle||Nigel Billingsley|
|Teen Titans Go! vs. Teen Titans||The Master of Games||Voice|
|Jumanji: The Next Level||Nigel Billingsley|
|2020||100% Wolf||Foxwell Cripp||Voice|
|TBA||Next Goal Wins||Post-production|
|2005||Who's Ya Mate?||Multiple||Television film|
|2007–2009||Flight of the Conchords||Murray Hewitt||22 episodes|
|2009||The Jaquie Brown Diaries||Terence Ben'et||1 episode|
|Comedy Showcase: The Amazing Dermot||Dermot Flint|
|2010||Radiradirah||Gavin Hoode, First Officer Rangi||3 episodes|
|2011||How to Be a Gentleman||Mike||9 episodes|
|Comedy Showcase: The Fun Police||Leslie|
|2012||Jake and the Never Land Pirates||Percy|
|The Skinner Boys: Live at Mingara NSW||Professor Tinkerpuff||Television stage show|
|QI||Guest panellist||Episode: Justice|
|2013||How I Met Your Mother||Hamish||1 episode|
|Watsky's Releasing an Album||Flynn||3 episodes|
|The Aquabats! Super Show!||The Shark Fighter|
|Tiny Commando||Tony Turk||2 episodes|
|Jake and the Never Land Pirates||Percy the Penguin|
|Keep Calm and Karey On||Television film|
|Short Poppies||Various characters|
|Modern Family||Fergus Anderson||1 episode|
|Comedy Bang! Bang!||Uncle Deckard|
|Hot in Cleveland||Jack||3 episodes|
|The Millers||Martin||Episode: "CON-Troversy"|
|It's a Date||Craig||1 episode|
|2015–2016||Thunderbirds Are Go||Langstrom Fischler (voice)||3 episodes|
|2015||Life in Pieces||Teddy||2 episodes|
|2016||The X-Files||Guy Mann||Episode: "Mulder and Scully Meet the Were-Monster"|
|Mike Tyson Mysteries||Terry (voice)||Episode: "Yves Klein Blues"|
|Voltron: Legendary Defender||Coran (voice)||27 episodes|
|2017||A Series of Unfortunate Events||Charles||2 episodes|
|Fresh Off the Boat||Tony Wonder||Episode: "Living While Eddie"|
|Dr. Ken||Charles Evans||Episode: "Ken and the CEO"|
|The Lion Guard||Mwenzi (voice)||Episode: "Ono the Tickbird"|
|Bajillion Dollar Propertie$||Stevahn Rabren||Episode: "Dean's Legacy"|
|Milo Murphy's Law||King Pistashion (voice)||Episode: "Missing Milo"|
|We Bare Bears||Kyle (voice)||Episode: "Kyle"|
|The Jim Jefferies Show||Jacko||Episode: "America’s Opioid Epidemic"|
|Welcome to the Wayne||Isthotep (voice)||Episode: "Flutch"|
|2017-2019||Bob's Burgers||Duncan (voice)||2 episodes|
|2018||Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles||Hypno-Potamus / Mezmer-Ron (voice)||Recurring role|
|Skylanders Academy||Crash Bandicoot (voice)|
|The Simpsons||Tag Tuckerbag (voice)||Episode: "Heartbreak Hotel"|
|The Venture Bros||H.E.L.P.eR. Model Two (voice)||Episode: "The Inamorata Consequence"|
|2018–2019||Star vs. the Forces of Evil||Eddie (voice)||5 episodes|
|2019||Mike Tyson Mysteries||Terry (voice)||Episode: "Time to Fly"|
|2019–2020||Infinity Train||Randall (voice)||Episode: "The Beach Car", "The Lucky Cat Car", "Le Chat Chalet Car"|
Short: "The Tech Support Car"
|2019–2020||Carmen Sandiego||Neal the Eel (voice)||Episode: "The Crackle Goes Kiwi Caper" & "The Masks of Venice Caper"|
|2020||Big City Greens||Life Guard (voice)||Episode: "Shark Objects"|
|Moominvalley||Mysterious Fisherman (voice)||3 episodes|
|The Big Fib||C.L.I.V.E.||10 episodes|
|The Boss Baby: Back in Business||Happy Sedengry||3 episodes|
|2021||Wellington Paranormal||Anton-Park Ranger||Episode: "Te Maero"|
|The Great North||Denny the Snowflake||Episode: "Game of Snownes"|
|2022||Our Flag Means Death||Stede Bonnet||Main role, 10 episodes|
|Pacific Rim: The Black||Bunyip Man||Episode: "The Never Never"|
|Home Economics||Monroe Davies||Episode: "Book Deal, Terms Negotiable"|
Television appearances as himself
|2001–2002||Billy T Award|
|2005||Mighty Truck of Stuff|
|2007–2008||Sounds Like a Laugh|
|2008||Yo Gabba Gabba!|
|2008||The Comedy Store Live|
|2009||Rocked the Nation 2: 100 NZ Pop Culture Moments|
|2009||Spicks and Specks|
|2009||Thank God You're Here|
|2010||The Qantas TV and Film Awards|
|2011||A Quiet Word With ...|
|2011||The Rob Brydon Show|
|2012||Mad Mad World|
|2012||The Comedy Marathon Spectacular|
|2013||Late Show with David Letterman|
|2014||No, You Shut Up!|
|2016–17||Whose Line is it Anyway? Australia|
|2021||The Masked Singer NZ|
- Imagine That! (2008)
- It’s Rhys Darby Night! (2011)
- This Way to Spaceship (2012)
- I'm a Fighter Jet (2017)
- Mystic Time Bird (2021)
|2017||Voltron VR Chronicles||Coran|
|2018||Dr. Grordbort's Invaders||Gimble|
|2019||Jumanji: The Video Game||Nigel Billingsley|
|2020||Fortnite||Chapter 2, Season 3 Battle Pass voiceover|
- McDonald, Greer (7 November 2009). "Rhys Darby not planning to slow down". The Dominion Post. Retrieved 14 June 2012.
- Hunkin, Joanna (10 October 2008). "Roll call: Rhys Darby". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 6 July 2012.
- "Rhys Darby's review". Chortle. Retrieved 25 May 2010.
- Keith Huang (13 August 2007). "Inside With: Rhys Darby". The Apiary. Retrieved 25 May 2010.
- Rhys Darby profile Archived 6 August 2009 at the Wayback Machine
- "Rhys Darby wins top NZ award". Television New Zealand. 21 May 2012. Retrieved 21 May 2012.
- "Radio 2 Comedy". BBC. Retrieved 25 May 2010.
- Pulliam-Moore, Charles (15 April 2022). "How Our Flag Means Death's creator made a period romance disguised as a pirate comedy". The Verge. Retrieved 18 April 2022.
- "Global star recalls roots". Howick and Pakuranga Times. 12 May 2012.
- "Performance in University Comedy Show". Retrieved 25 May 2010 – via YouTube.[dead YouTube link]
- ""Mrs Whippy" song by Rhysently Granted". 2 April 2008. Retrieved 25 May 2010 – via YouTube.[dead YouTube link]
- "Rhysently Granted performance in Christchurch bar 1997". 10 April 2008. Retrieved 25 May 2010 – via YouTube.[dead YouTube link]
- "May 2000 Stand-up Performance". 2 September 2008. Retrieved 25 May 2010 – via YouTube.[dead YouTube link]
- "Flight of the Conchords - A Good Opportunity". BBC Four. BBC. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
- "Darby joins Jim Carrey movie". Chortle. 24 September 2007. Retrieved 25 May 2010.
- Brown, Rich (2 July 2008). "Roger Federer's coach 'revealed' in Nike advert". The Telegraph. London, UK. Retrieved 25 May 2010.
- "Video - watch video clips, live streaming, daily". Retrieved 14 February 2016.
- "Rhys Darby: It's Rhys Darby Night". Edinburghfestival.list.co.uk. Retrieved 25 May 2010.
- "Pirate Radio (2009)".
- Rhys Darby at IMDb
- "GREENPEACE New Zealand". Sign On. Retrieved 14 February 2016.
- Brian Gallagher (10 August 2010). "The Office Seeking Danny McBride and Rhys Darby?". MovieWeb.com. Retrieved 16 May 2012.
- "Vic Reeves and Rhys Darby to star in health and safety sitcom pilot". The British Comedy Guide. 18 May 2011. Retrieved 29 May 2011.
- "rhysdarby.com". How to Be a Gentleman.
- "Rhys Darby: Two Cornish rappers and a Casiotone to go". The New Zealand Herald. 15 April 2013.
- "Hedluv + Passman on Seven Sharp NZ". 17 April 2013. Archived from the original on 21 December 2021. Retrieved 14 February 2016 – via YouTube.
- "The Cryptid Factor".
- "What We Do in Shadows stars FOTC's Rhys Darby, Jonathan Brugh, Cori Gonzalez-Macuer, Stu Rutherford, and Jackie Van Beek". Absolute Radio. 7 July 2014. Retrieved 12 July 2014.
- Geoff Lloyd (7 July 2014). "Geoff Lloyd – Rhys Derby". absoluteradio.co.uk/onair/geoff/index.html (Podcast). Absolute Radio. Archived from the original on 14 July 2014. Retrieved 12 July 2014.
- "Rhys Darby on Playing an X-Files Monster and the Future of Flight of the Conchords". Vulture. Retrieved 12 May 2016.
- "Our Flag Means Death Might Just Be the Best Queer Show of the Year". Junkee. 23 March 2022. Retrieved 24 March 2022.
- "Our Flag Means Death: Taika Waititi and Rhys Darby on Their Pirate Love Story's Sincere Finale — Q&A". IndieWire. 24 March 2022. Retrieved 24 March 2022.
- "News - Thunderbirds Are Go".
- "Simpsons showrunner on Homer's 'cheating' on Marge, RuPaul's guest spot, Apu controversy". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
- O'Connor, James. "Half-Life: Alyx Recasts Alyx, Eli, And Others, And Features Rhys Darby". GameSpot. Retrieved 22 November 2019.
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