Ron James (comedian)
Ron James taping his show in 2011.
Glace Bay, Nova Scotia, Canada
James was born in Glace Bay, Nova Scotia; his family later moved to Halifax during his youth. He attended Acadia University, studying history and political science with the intention of becoming a history teacher. During his time there he came under the influence of Evelyn Garbary, who headed the theatre program there, as a result of a course he was taking. After graduating, he moved to Toronto and joined The Second City troupe there, working with them during the 1980s.
He later moved to Los Angeles during the early 1990s for three years and got a spot on a late-night syndicated series produced by Ron Howard’s Imagine TV, where he landed the role of Bucky Fergus, a Canadian transplant who worked for the City of Derby, Wisconsin in the Talk parody sitcom My Talk Show, which ran from 1990 to 1991 (in one episode, he bonded with another Canadian, William Shatner, after he used Canadian phrases and sayings Shatner recognized). After that show was cancelled, he made some guest appearances in TV shows (such as Get A Life and Wings) and an appearance in the movie Ernest Rides Again but mostly experienced rejection during this time while incurring sizable debts. He returned to Canada in 1993 and turned his experience in L.A. into a stage show in 1994 called Up & Down in Shaky Town: One Man's Journey through the California Dream, which was also shown as a special on The Comedy Network. Afterwards, he came across the work of Scottish comedian Billy Connolly, whose style helped shape his own and inspired him to start doing stand-up.
James starred in the television series Blackfly and Made in Canada, and won two Canadian Comedy Awards for Best Stand-up (2000) and Best One Person Show for his stand-up show The Road Between My Ears in 2004. He has also won a Gemini Award as part of the writing team for This Hour Has 22 Minutes and received a Genie Award nomination for best supporting actor in the film Something About Love. He had his own CBC Television series, The Ron James Show, from 2009 to 2014.
- Steven Mazey (2009-01-31). "The funniest man in Canada". Ottawa Citizen. Retrieved 2009-03-21.
- Richard Ouzounian (2009-03-21). "The bitterly funny life of Ron James". Toronto Star. Retrieved 2009-03-21.
- Stephen W. Smith (2004-12-02). "All Over the Place". FFWD. Retrieved 2009-03-21.
- Pat St. Germain (2006-11-29). "Comic Ron James credits Billy Connolly". Jam! Showbiz. Retrieved 2009-03-21.
- Rob Salem (2006-12-30). "Mirth, birth and party hats". Toronto Star. Retrieved 2009-03-21.
- Kathryn Lyzun (2006-03-03). "Get Yourself Gone With Ron". Thunder Bay's Source. Retrieved 2009-03-21.[dead link]
- Chris Traber (2008-03-31). "Nothing's sacred as Ron James performs in Markham this week". yorkregion.com. Retrieved 2009-03-21.