David Walliams is a comedian and dramatic actor best known for his sketch comedy series "Little Britain" and his altruistic personality. Born David Williams, he would later change his name to Walliams after learning that David Williams already existed in the Actors' Equity union. He was raised in the English village of Banstead before joining the National Youth Theatre, where he met his close friend and future business partner, Matt Lucas. After studying drama at the University of Bristol, Walliams and Lucas put together a live comedy act full of bizarre characters and toured extensively, with several performances at the high-profile Edinburgh Festival. But when his live comedy show did not exactly turn a profit, he turned to the world of television drama with a lead role in the BBC series "Attachments". Upon reuniting with Lucas, the comedy duo created several television series including the unsuccessful "Sir Bernard's Stately Homes" and the slightly more rewarding music industry spoof "Rock Profile" before hitting the jackpot with the 2003 mega-hit "Little Britain", which spawned its own American spin-off in 2008. Walliams crossed over into the film industry in the late 2000s, with supporting roles in the rousing fantasy "Stardust" and the buddy comedy "Dinner for Schmucks", starring Paul Rudd and Steve Carell. He is often admired for his dedication to helping others. In 2006, after years of rigorous training, he swam the 22-mile English Channel for the charity Sport Relief.