Tim Ferguson

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For the politician, see Timothy R. Ferguson.
Tim Ferguson
Tim Ferguson DAAS.jpg
Tim Ferguson at the DAAS Kapital DVD launch, April 2013
Born Timothy Dorcen Langbene Ferguson[1]
(1963-11-16) 16 November 1963 (age 52)
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Residence Sydney, NSW, Australia
Occupation Television presenter, comedian
Known for Don't Forget Your Toothbrush
Doug Anthony All Stars
Spouse(s) Stephanie Mills (2012–present)
Website www.cheekymonkeycomedy.com

Timothy Dorcen Langbene Ferguson (born 16 November 1963 in Sydney, NSW) is an Australian comedian and television presenter.


Ferguson grew up in the country town of Blayney, New South Wales before moving to Canberra, where he attended the radical free-school School Without Walls and Narrabundah College.[2] He is the son of Tony Ferguson, who was a Vietnam War correspondent, the first reporter to release news of the Tet Offensive to the world media. Tony became executive producer of This Day Tonight and Four Corners at the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, and network liaison for the ABC's managing director, David Hill.[3]

Early career[edit]

Tim Ferguson (left) performing with the Doug Anthony All Stars (DAAS) in 1994.

His first major appearance was as a member of the Doug Anthony All Stars, along with Paul McDermott and Richard Fidler, on the UK Channel 4 television show Friday Night Live and then the ABC television show, The Big Gig, where they quickly gained a following. This was soon followed by their own show, the sci-fi sitcom DAAS Kapital.

In 1995, Ferguson appeared in Funky Squad, again on ABC television, and hosted Don't Forget Your Toothbrush on the Nine Network.

Ferguson's novel, Left, Right and Centre: A Tale of Greed, Sex and Power (ISBN 0-14-026579-1), was published by Penguin in 1997 and became Australia's #1 best-seller for three months.[citation needed] Politician Graham Richardson said of the book, "It scared the hell out of me".[citation needed]

During the 1990s, Ferguson starred in Australian commercials advertising the video game console Nintendo 64.[4]

Ferguson co-wrote and hosted eight series and twelve one-hour specials of his comedy clip show Unreal TV.

He has written various opinion pieces and articles for The Age, The Sydney Morning Herald and The Times. He most notably penned an alternative to the Australian Constitution Preamble.

Recent career[edit]

Tim is co-director (with Marc Gracie) of the feature film 'SPIN OUT'. He wrote the comedy romance with Edwina Exton. SPIN OUT follows a slow-burning attraction between two long-time friends, Billy (Xavier Samuel) and Lucy (Morgan Griffin). The movie is based at a Ute Muster and B&S Ball. Sony Pictures Releasing, who have worldwide rights, plan to release the film in Australian cinemas in 2016.

You can do stand-up comedy or you can do sit-down comedy.

Tim Ferguson, on performing with multiple sclerosis.[5]

Ferguson's autobiography Carry a Big Stick: A Life of Laughter, Friendship and MS was published by Hachette in September 2013. It features the stories of his childhood, life as an international touring comedian, network TV celebrity and comedy screenwriting lecturer. It also presents a new way of overcoming the challenges of multiple sclerosis (MS).[6]

In 2010, Ferguson released The Cheeky Monkey (published by Currency Press), a comedy writing manual for screenwriters and comedians. The book offers "a revolutionary approach to comedy writing" and features what Ferguson calls "primal comedy".[7] His Cheeky Monkey Comedy Writing courses tour worldwide.

In 2001, Ferguson branched out into production when he created, produced and co-wrote the TV1 comedy series Shock Jock which ran for two series. In 2003, he hosted a talk back radio show on 3AK and was the host of Big Brother Australia 2003's Big Brother The Insider. Ferguson also appeared in Fat Pizza as the magician "David Cockerfield."

In 2010, Ferguson was executive producer, writer and host of WTF – With Tim Ferguson on C31 Melbourne.[8] WTF is directed by Marc Gracie (Full Frontal, Unreal TV).

Since then, Ferguson has continued writing TV comedy and other commentary on shows such as including Good News Week, The Glass House, 20 to 1. He was script producer for the AWGIE-nominated web series Forgettherules and host Network Ten's Unreal TV and Foxtel's long-running sci-fi fan-show "Space Cadets". In November 2005, he hosted the Sky Channel National Day of Protest against the Howard Government's industrial relations changes. The Maritime Union of Australia invited Ferguson to host their 10th Anniversary of the Patricks Dispute at the Sydney Convention Centre in 2008, with special guest Julian Burnside. Ferguson describes the event as a personal highlight.

He is one of Australia's top corporate event performers, hosting events and conferences for Australasia's leading corporations. In 2012, Ferguson's production company was developing the feature film Spin Out with Edwina Exton, assisted by Film Victoria. Spin Out is a romantic comedy based at a Bachelor and Spinster Ball. After several years of development, Spin Out began shooting in Shepparton in August 2015, with Ferguson co-directing and co-writing the film.[9]

Ferguson is a sessional lecturer in Screenwriting and Writing TV Comedy at RMIT University.[10][11][12] He won the RMIT Best Sessional Teacher Award in 2010. He has trained thousands of comedians and screenwriters through his Cheeky Monkey Comedy courses.

In 2012 he toured his live standup comedy show "Carry a Big Stick", featuring tales and songs from his life on the 'comedy warpath'. The title alludes to his experiencing multiple sclerosis, and needing to use a walking stick.[12]

Ferguson (left) performing with the reformed Doug Anthony All Stars in 2014.

In early 2014, Ferguson teamed with Maynard to start a podcast named Bunga Bunga.[13]

In 2014, Ferguson joined Paul McDermott and Paul Livingston to reform the Doug Anthony All Stars with Livingston replacing Richard Fidler as the group's guitarist.[14]

Personal life[edit]

Ferguson announced on an episode of Good News Week in 2010 that he has multiple sclerosis (MS), which required him to occasionally use a walking cane.[15] Ferguson has experienced MS symptoms since age 19. His show at the 2012 Melbourne International Comedy Festival was called "Carry a Big Stick", in allusion to his MS.[12] Ferguson's condition has since progressed further and he now uses a wheelchair.

He owns the third largest Star Wars toy collection in the southern hemisphere.[16]

Political candidacy[edit]

In the 1990 Australian federal election, Ferguson stood as an independent candidate for the seat of Kooyong, against the Leader of the Opposition, Andrew Peacock. Following a "Vote For Tim" campaign conducted by the Allstars on The Big Gig, he gained 3.7% of the vote.[17]

On the ABC's Q&A program on 4 May 2013, Ferguson announced his candidacy for the Australian Senate in the 2013 Australian federal election. He said that he would have no policies, and that he wanted someone for whom he could vote.[18] Ferguson nominated for the Senate for New South Wales, as a member of the Senator Online party. He received 2,220 votes (0.06%) and was eliminated in the twelfth count.[19]


  1. ^ Arnold, John (2005). The bibliography of Australian literature, Volume 2. Brisbane: University of Queensland Press. p. 27. ISBN 0-7022-3500-8. 
  2. ^ Cerabona, Ron (6 October 2012). "'It's funny because it's scary'". The Canberra Times. Retrieved 1 March 2013. 
  3. ^ Lewes, Jacqueline Lee: Antenna: "Tony Ferguson ... Father of a Doug Anthony All Star", The Sydney Morning Herald, 6 March 1989.
  4. ^ Plunkett, Luke (5 August 2011). "The Weird & Wonderful World of Australian Video Game Commercials". Kotaku. 
  5. ^ FitzRoy, Louise (2014), Jimmy Barnes rocks the ABC studio, Melbourne: 774 ABC Melbourne, retrieved 22 August 2014 
  6. ^ Pryor, Sally (26 September 2013). "Short end of the stick". The Age. Retrieved 20 August 2015. 
  7. ^ Northover, Kylie (5 April 2010). "A career of monkeying around". The Age. Retrieved 20 August 2015. 
  8. ^ Grace, Robyn (27 September 2010). "From Allstar to Channel 31". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 12 October 2010. 
  9. ^ Karlovsky, Brian (12 August 2015). "Spin Out set for Shepparton shoot". Inside Film. Retrieved 19 August 2015. 
  10. ^ RMIT Staff – Mr Tim Ferguson
  11. ^ Skills and thrills on offer at Expo – Openline (RMIT News), 24 November 2008
  12. ^ a b c Finding humour in living with MS, 7.30, ABC News Online, 28 March 2012, accessed 29 March 2012
  13. ^ "Bunga Bunga podcast". Maynard's Malaise. Retrieved 29 October 2014. 
  14. ^ Westcott, Ben (5 March 2014). "Doug Anthony All Stars reunite to begin Canberra Comedy Festival". The Canberra Times. Retrieved 16 September 2015. 
  15. ^ Allstar To Class Act, The Weekly Review, 10 June 2010
  16. ^ ABC. "Brains Trust". Einstein Factor. ABC. Retrieved 3 November 2012. 
  17. ^ Results for Kooyong
  18. ^ "Q&A: Crime, Climate & Cask Wine". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 4 March 2013. Retrieved 8 September 2013. 
  19. ^ Senate Results 2013: New South Wales, ABC Elections, 2013.

External links[edit]