Willam Belli

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Willam Belli
Willam Belli Shankbone 2010 NYC (1).jpg
Belli at the premiere of Ticked-Off Trannies with Knives
Born (1982-06-30) June 30, 1982 (age 33)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Residence Los Angeles, California, United States
Website www.willambelli.com

Willam Belli (born June 30, 1982) is an American actor, drag queen, model and recording artist, who is known for his recurring role as transgender woman Cherry Peck in Nip/Tuck and for being a contestant on the fourth season of RuPaul's Drag Race, for which he remains the only contestant ever disqualified from the series, as well as being the only contestant to vomit on the main stage. In addition to acting, Belli found viral success with her music video parodies "Chow Down" and "Boy Is a Bottom" with his Los Angeles drag queen pop trio, DWV. However, the group split in June 2014, because of a personal conflict among the groupmates.[1]

Early life[edit]

Willam Belli was born on June 30, 1982, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.[2] He is the younger of two children. He lived in Cocoa Beach, Florida, for middle school and high school.[3] Belli's father worked at the Kennedy Space Center. His aunt is television director Mary Lou Belli.


2000–08: Beginnings[edit]

Belli's first acting credit was as the role of a street hustler named Darren Jacobs on two episodes of The District (2002) and his first TV appearance was on an episode of the game show Street Smarts.[3][4] He later appeared in the TV Series; The District, Boston Public, Cold Case, The Shield, My Name Is Earl and most notably Nip/Tuck as the transsexual Cherry Peck. Throughout the 2000s he would go on to play small roles in many television shows such as American Wedding, but it would not be until his Rupaul debut that he made a splash.

In 2008, Belli was featured on the single artwork for the song "Breakin' Up" by Rilo Kiley.[5] He has also modeled as part of the Tranimal Master Class Workshop at the Machine Project, which was photographed by Austin Young.[6]

2009–10: Drag career[edit]

Belli is a member of the band Tranzkuntinental, which made its debut at The Roxy in 2009. The band was started by Charlie Paulson and Xander Smith and features drag queens Detox, Kelly Mantle, Rhea Litré, and Vicky Vox.[7][8]

In January 2011, he was featured in Rihanna's music video "S&M" along with Detox and Morgan McMichaels as back-up dancers.[9]

Belli with Vicky Vox and Detox Icunt

2011–12: RuPaul's Drag Race and further success[edit]

World of Wonder contacted Willam's manager asking for him to audition for the fourth season of RuPaul's Drag Race.[3] In November 2011, Logo TV announced that Belli was among 13 contestants competing on the fourth season.[10] Fellow castmate Chad Michaels had competed with Belli in the California Entertainer of the Year Pageant in 2010.[11] Belli won the main challenges in the episodes "Float Your Bloat" and "Frenemies," but was disqualified in the latter.[12] In the episode "Reunited," Belli stated that his disqualification was due to conjugal visits made by his husband in his hotel room,[13] though by Belli's own account, the "disqualification" coincided with a previously booked off-Broadway engagement.[14] Belli used the publicity of his disqualification to release his single "Chow Down," which was a parody of Wilson Phillips' "Hold On" that addressed the 2012 Chick-fil-A same-sex marriage controversy. The song featured Detox and Vicky Vox.[15]

On March 12, 2012, he released his first single "Trouble," which was produced by RuPaul's Red Hot collaborator Tom Trujillo. The music video for the song was directed by porn director Chi Chi LaRue and premiered on Logo TV.[3][16] This was not a particularly successful endeavour for him. On March 21, Belli released "The Vagina Song," a parody of "Billionaire" by Travie McCoy featuring Bruno Mars as his third single, which had been previously uploaded to YouTube in 2010. The music video was directed by Michael Serrato,[17] who also directed Belli's music video for "Chow Down."[15]

Belli released "Love You Like a Big Schlong" on April 29, 2012. This was much better received becoming something of a viral hit being watched more than a million times on YouTube alone. Produced by Uncle Slam, the song parodies "Love You Like a Love Song" by Selena Gomez & the Scene. The song was inspired by Belli's loss to 7-year-old Eden Wood in a lip syncing contest during a segment of the 2012 NewNowNext Awards.[18]

In November 2012, Belli was featured with country music artist Drake Jensen on a cover of Tammy Wynette's "Stand by Your Man."[19] That same month, Belli self-released his debut album The Wreckoning via his website.[20]

2013: "Boy Is a Bottom" and DWV success[edit]

In January 2013, Belli would have his biggest viral hit with 18 million hits on YouTube alone, when he released "Boy Is a Bottom," featuring Detox and Vicky Vox, to coincide with the fifth season premiere of RuPaul's Drag Race.[21] Its timing and the use of social media made it a very well received release. The song is a parody of "Girl on Fire" by Alicia Keys and also features an altered version of the "breakdown" from "My Lovin' (You're Never Gonna Get It)" by En Vogue.[22] "Boy Is a Bottom" debuted at number six on Billboard's Comedy Digital Songs, selling 3,000 downloads in its first week.[23]

On August 14, 2013, Belli was featured along with Shangela, Detox, Raven, Morgan McMichaels, Shannel, and Courtney Act, in Lady Gaga's lyric video for her single "Applause".

Belli's trio, including Detox and Vicky Vox, called DWV, officially split in June 2014 due to a personal conflict between the members.[1]

2014–present: American Apparel and Shartistry in Motion[edit]

Belli then became an American Apparel Ad Girl alongside Drag Race alumni Courtney Act and Alaska Thunderfuck 5000 to which they supported this with a single entitled, "American Apparel Ad Girls".[24][25] They also released a second single together, "Dear Santa, Bring Me a Man" for the Christmas season.[26][27]

On January 13, he released a solo version of the DWV hit "Boy Is a Bottom", in Spanish, entitled, "Es Una Pasiva",[28] which went on to top the comedy iTunes chart.[29] Belli self-released his sophomore studio album, Shartistry in Motion, on June 2.[30][31]



Year Title Role Notes
2003 American Wedding Butch Queen
2004 The Last Shot Bus Stop Drag Queen
2006 Unbeatable Harold Anita Boner
2007 Because I Said So Transsexual
2008 Defying Gravity Lola
2008 Dog Tags Alan
2008 Another Gay Sequel: Gays Gone Wild! Transamerican Stewardess Nancy Needatwat
2009 Sex Drugs Guns Candy
2009 Road to the Alter Jamie
2010 Barry Munday Felicia Uncredited
2010 Ticked-Off Trannies with Knives Rachel Slurr
2010 BloodRayne 3: The Third Reich Vasyl Tishenko
2011 Cinema Verite Candy Darling Television film
2011 Blubberella Vadge
2012 The Newest Pledge Sailor
2012 Fun Size Qwerty
2012 Lost Angeles Bob
2013 Girls Will Be Girls Prosecuter post-production
2013 X-Rated Geoffrey Gann/'Karen Dior' pre-production
2013 After Birth Tammy pre-production
2013 Kicking Zombie Ass for Jesus Beth Ann-Fetterman post-production
TBA Hurricane Bianca Bailey pre-production


Year Title Role Notes
2002 The District Hustler Episode: "Oil and Water"
2003 Boston Public Mike Episode: "Chapter Fifty-Eight"
2003 Cold Case Drag Performer Episode: "A Time to Hate"
2004 The Shield Colt Episode: "Posse Up"
2004 Eve Waiter Episode: "Self Helpless"
2004–2006 Nip/Tuck Cherry Peck 5 episodes
2005 My Name Is Earl D.J. Episode: "Pilot"
2005 Related Amy Episode: "Movin' Out, Movin' In, Movin' On"
2006 Saved Tippi Episode: "Living Dead"
2007 CSI: NY Candy Darling Episode: "The Lying Game"
2007 Women's Murder Club Sasha Simone Episode: "To Drag & to Hold"
2009 Southland Sheila Episode: "See the Woman"
2009 Criminal Minds Walter Patterson Episode: "Too Hell and Back"
2011 Hot in Cleveland Bar Queen Episode: "2.16"
2011 Wonder Woman Fake Marilyn Monroe Television pilot
2012 RuPaul's Drag Race Himself 10 episodes
2012 RuPaul's Drag Race: Untucked Himself 10 episodes
2012 RuPaul's Drag U Professor Episode: "Ex-Beauty Queens"
2012 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Dahlia Episode: "Code Blue Plate Special"
2013 The New Normal Nana Drag Queen Episode: "The Goldie Rush"
2013 She's Living for This[32] Himself Season 2, Episode 1
2014 Drag Queens of London Himself Season 1, Episode 2


Year Title Role Notes
2012–13 Transfashionable[33] Himself 4 episodes
"Drag Queen Makeover", "Drag Queen Makeunder", "Death by Drag" and "Miles Jai Post Beatdown Makeover"
2013 Neil's Puppet Dreams[34] Performer Season 1, Episode 5: Dream Bump
Willam's Beatdown Host 19 episodes
30 Days of Willam Host 30 episodes
Snore (Downton Abbey) Maid Funny or Die feature
Rambo, But Gay Deputy Mitch Nerdist feature
2013–present Billium's Wheatdown Himself 35 episodes
2014–present Beatdown[35] Host 20 episodes
Paint Me Bitch 62 episodes
2015 The WeHoans Himself 3 episodes



Title Details Peak

The Wreckoning
Shartistry in Motion
  • Released: June 2, 2015
  • Label: Self-released
  • Format: Digital download
"—" denotes a recording that failed to chart or was not released in that territory.


Title Year Peak chart positions Album

"Trouble" 2012 The Wreckoning
"Chow Down"
(featuring Detox & Vicky Vox)
"The Vagina Song"
"Love You Like a Big Schlong" 25
"She Doesn't Know"
"Let's Have a KaiKai"
(featuring Rhea Litré)
"Stand by Your Man"
(featuring Drake Jensen)
(featuring Sharon Needles)
2013 14
"Potential New Boyfriend"
"Boy Is a Bottom"
(with DWV)
6 Non-album singles
(with DWV)
"Blurred Bynes"
(with DWV)
"That Christmas Song"
(with DWV)
(with DWV)
"Hole Pic"
"Only Anally" Sharistry in Motion
"American Apparel Ad Girls"
(with Courtney and Alaska)
"Dear Santa, Bring Me a Man"
(with Courtney and Alaska)
Non-album single
"Es Una Pasiva" 2015 Shartistry in Motion
"Ride for AIDS"
(featuring Alaska 5000)
"Thick Thighs"
(featuring Latrice Royale)
"I'm Not a Pearl" Non-album single
"—" denotes a recording that failed to chart or was not released in that territory.

Awards and nominations[edit]

NewNowNext Awards[edit]

Belli was nominated for his role on RuPaul's Drag Race at the fifth annual NewNowNext Awards which aired on Logo network on April 9, 2012. He lost to Nadia G. of Bitchin' Kitchen which aires on the Food Network Canada and the Cooking Channel.[38]

Year Recipient/Nominated work Award Result
2012 Willam Belli Most Addictive Reality Star Nominated


  1. ^ a b Johnson, Liam. "US drag supergroup DWV split up". gaystarnews.com. Retrieved 7 October 2014. 
  2. ^ McCutcheon, Lauren (February 6, 2012). "GET REAL WITH Willam Belli". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c d Smith, Brian Bowen (2012). "Willam Belli: How to Break the Rules". Dirty. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  4. ^ "Willam Belli - IMDb". IMDb. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  5. ^ Belli, Willam (December 6, 2012). "Twitter / @willambelli: @KidsGoSplat yes I love Jenny ...". Twitter. Retrieved April 14, 2013. 
  6. ^ "Tranimal Master Class Workshop on Vimeo". Vimeo. February 28, 2012. Retrieved April 14, 2013. 
  7. ^ Lecaro, Lina (May 2, 2011). "L.A.'s A Drag: The Reign of Raja, Tranzkuntinental (and Adam Lambert) On Stage and the Dance Floor". LA Weekly. Retrieved March 22, 2013. 
  8. ^ Horbelt, Stephan (October 13, 2011). "Scream Queens: Meet the Ghouls of Tranzkuntinental". Frontiers. Retrieved March 22, 2013. 
  9. ^ Belli, Willam (January 27, 2012). "Season 2’s Morgan McMichaels and season 4's Willam Belli with Rihanna for the "S&M" music video.". Tumblr. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  10. ^ Jones, Arnold Wayne (November 15, 2011). "Logo announces cast for Season 4 of 'RuPaul's Drag Race'". Dallas Voice. Voice Publishing Company, Inc. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  11. ^ Addams, Calpernia. "California EOY 2010 – The Recap". Calpernia.com. Retrieved March 30, 2013. 
  12. ^ Sava, Oliver (March 6, 2012). "Float Your Boat". The A.V. Club. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  13. ^ Stransky, Tanner (May 1, 2012). "Controversial 'RuPaul's Drag Race' queen Willam explains disqualification: 'My husband was coming to bang me out' -- UPDATED". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  14. ^ Bruno, Paul (May 2012). "Willam Belli: How to Break the Rules". dirty-mag.com. Dirty Magazine. Retrieved 13 December 2014. I was doing a show off-broadway by that point! It was called Jersey Shoresical. In fact, two days after I got kicked off of drag race I was in Jersey Shoresical in New York, pretty convenient, huh? And we won the Fringe Fest Audience Award. It’s almost like it was planned… 
  15. ^ a b Lady Bunny (July 24, 2012). "Willam Belli, RuPaul's Drag Race Star, Chats About Chick-fil-A and More". The Huffington Post. Retrieved March 30, 2013. 
  16. ^ Spargo, Chris (November 25, 2012). "Willam Returns To Logo With 'Trouble'". New Now Next. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  17. ^ Debord, Matt (October 27, 2010). "WATCH: What Willam Belli Would Do If He Was A Lady Down 'There'". Queerty. Retrieved March 30, 2013. 
  18. ^ Spargo, Chris (May 1, 2012). "VIDEO: Willam, 'Love You Like A Big Schlong'". New Now Next. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  19. ^ "Video: Willam Goes Country With Help From Gay Artist Drake Jensen In "Stand By Your Man"". Instinct. November 9, 2012. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  20. ^ Spargo, Chris (November 18, 2012). "Go Buy Willam’s Album, ‘The Wreckoning’". New Now Next. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  21. ^ "This Boy Is A Bottom: Willam, Detox & Vicky Vox Return To Tackle Alicia Keys' 'Girl On Fire'". Instinct. January 28, 2013. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  22. ^ "'Boy Is A Bottom' Music Video Parody From Drag Queens Of 'Chow Down (At Chick-Fil-A)' (VIDEO)". The Huffington Post. January 28, 2013. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  23. ^ Caulfied, Keith (February 8, 2013). "'RuPaul's Drag Race' Divas Debut in Top 10 on Billboard Dance Charts". Billboard. Retrieved February 9, 2013. 
  24. ^ http://www.out.com/fashion/truman-says/2014/09/11/alaska-courtney-act-and-willam-belli-american-apparel
  25. ^ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1mhNedNUAa4
  26. ^ "These Three Queens Have Just One Wish For Santa". Huffington Post. December 9, 2014. 
  27. ^ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zudT4fu5cjc
  28. ^ https://www.facebook.com/willam/photos/a.642759532403209.1073741828.635934403085722/915902075088952/?type=1&theater
  29. ^ https://www.facebook.com/willam/photos/a.642759532403209.1073741828.635934403085722/917341178278375/?type=1&theater
  30. ^ http://www.out.com/theater-dance/2015/4/17/willam-belli-wants-get-thrown-out-her-own-show
  31. ^ https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/shartistry-in-motion/id999417762
  32. ^ "**She's Living For This**". here TV. Retrieved October 20, 2013. 
  33. ^ Anderson-Minshall, Diane (October 14, 2012). "WATCH: RuPaul's Willam Belli on Transfashionable Drag Makeover". The Advocate. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  34. ^ "Joe Manganiello, Willam, Detox & David Burtka Appear In The Latest Webisode Of Neil's Puppet Dreams". Instinct. January 8, 2013. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  35. ^ Beatdown Episode 01 with Willam, YouTube, willam belli (user), retrieved July 29, 2014 
  36. ^ "Billboard Chart Archive" (To access, type "Willam" in the artist bar, then select "Comedy Albums" in the chart name bar). Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved May 17, 2015. 
  37. ^ "Billboard Chart Archive" (To access, type "Willam" in the artist bar, then select "Comedy Digital Tracks" in the chart name bar). Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved May 17, 2015. 
  38. ^ "2012 NewNowNext Awards". Logo TV. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 

External links[edit]