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Lewis Black is known as the comedic king of the rant, skewering anything he sees—usually of the political variety.
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Lewis Black’s career exploded in the late 1990s when he became a guest commentator on the humorous news show The Daily Show. His success on the show led to numerous stand-up specials, including Black on Broadway and Red, White, and Screwed for HBO. During his long career, Black has won many awards, including a Grammy for Best Comedy Album for The Carnegie Hall Performance.
Comedian, actor and playwright Lewis Black was born on August 30, 1948, in Silver Spring, Maryland. Most people know Black as the comedic king of the rant, artfully skewering anything he sees—usually of the political variety. The son of an engineer and a teacher, he became interested in theater while in high school. To pursue this interest, he first attended at University of North Carolina in the late 1960s where he began writing plays. Black later went to the prestigious Yale School of Drama, graduating with a master's degree in 1977.
After Yale, Black became the playwright-in-residence and artistic director of the West Bank Cafe Downstairs Theater Bar. His trademark dark humor and volatile stage stand-up comedy persona was honed by serving as a warm-up act for the theater's productions, some of which he wrote himself. By the mid-1980s, Black was a comedian on the rise. He even tried his hand at a television series with the 1986 pilot The Rock, which was based on his stand-up routine.
While the pilot wasn't picked up, Black began to land some film roles, appearing in Woody Allen's Hannah and Her Sisters (1986) and Jacob's Ladder (1991). He also had a part on the short-lived sitcom The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd in the early 1990s. But Black's career really exploded later in the decade when he became a guest commentator on the humorous pretend news program The Daily Show.
Audiences around the country were introduced his comedic yelling and animated finger-pointing regarding current events, social phenomena, world leaders and almost any other topic that gets under his skin. He has his own featured segment on the program called "Back in Black." His success on the show has led to numerous stand-up specials, including Black on Broadway (2004) and Red, White, and Screwed (2006) for the HBO cable network.
Black continues to tour heavily, playing countless dates each year to the delight of his fans. He found time in his hectic schedule to appear in the comedy Unaccompanied Minors and the political drama Man of the Year with Robin Williams in 2006. Black has also lent his gravelly voice to several animated films, including The Happy Elf (2005) and Farce of the Penguins (2006).
During his long career, Lewis Black has won many awards, including a 1998 Drama Desk Award for Black Humor and a Grammy Award for Best Comedy Album for The Carnegie Hall Performance in 2007.
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