Lenny Henry

Actor, Comedian, Steelworker
This black British comic quickly rose to fame as a teenaged impressionist. The son of Jamaican immigrants, Lenny Henry started doing impersonations in his early teens, eventually winning the TV talent showcase "New ... Read more »
Born: 08/28/1958 in West Midlands, England, GB

Filmography

Actor (14)

The Pirates! Band of Misfits 2012 (Movie)

Peg-Leg Hastings (Voice)

Gordon Ramsay's F Word 2011 (Tv Show)

Actor

Penelope 2008 (Movie)

Krull (Actor)

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban 2004 (Movie)

Shrunken Head (Actor)

Steve Martin Seriously Funny 2000 - 2001 (TV Show)

Narrator

Clive James 1993 - 1994 (TV Show)

Actor

The Secret Policeman's Biggest Ball 1990 - 1991 (TV Show)

Actor

True Identity 1991 (Movie)

Miles Pope (Actor)

Bernard and the Genie 1990 (Movie)

Josephus--the Genie (Actor)

Lenny Live 1989 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Suicide Club 1988 (Movie)

Cam (Actor)

Work Experience 1988 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Secret Policeman's Third Ball 1987 (Movie)

(Actor)

Alive and Kicking (Movie)

Stevie "Smudger" Smith (Actor)

Biography

This black British comic quickly rose to fame as a teenaged impressionist. The son of Jamaican immigrants, Lenny Henry started doing impersonations in his early teens, eventually winning the TV talent showcase "New Faces" in 1975. With his newfound fame, he went on to make guest appearances on popular comedies (i.e., "The Fosters") and children's shows (e.g., "TISWAS") before teaming with Tracey Ullman and David Copperfield for the variety show "Three of a Kind" (1981). Henry went on to headline a number of other variety series before eventually turning to character comedy. In 1984, he toured with "Stand Up-Get Down", based on his popular recording. Some found his routines abrasive and somewhat racist; wiping sweat from his brow, he would tell the predominantly white audience that it tasted like chocolate. As he matured, Henry moved into more character based comedy, eventually headlining his own sitcom (the self-titled "The Lenny Henry Show" in 1987-88). He found international fame, at least with discerning viewers of public television in the USA, playing the sometimes exasperated titular "Chef!", a sitcom he headlined for three seasons in England from 1993-96.

Relationships

Dawn French

Wife
married on October 20, 1984

Bille Henry

Daughter
adopted with Dawn French in 1992

Milestones

2012

Voiced Peg Leg Hastings in the animated adventure "Pirates! Band of Misfits"

2008

Cast in British family series "Big and Small"

2006

Appeared in the fantasy comedy "Penelope"

2004

Cast in "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban," directed by Alfonso Cuarón

1999

Landed lead on BBC-1's sitcom "Hope & Glory"

1993

Starred for three seasons on the British sitcom "Chef!" (BBC)

1991

Played the Genie in the children's film "Bernard and the Genie" (released on video in the USA)

1991

U.S. film debut, "True Identity"

1989

Wrote and starred in the concert film "Lenny Live/Lenny Henry Live and Unleashed"

1987

Feature film debut, "The Suicide Club"

1987

Once again starred on the comedy series "The Lenny Henry Show" (BBC)

1986

Featured on the BBC series "Lenny Henry Tonite"

1985

Second national tour with "The Totally Fierce Tour"

1984

Hosted his own program "The Lenny Henry Show" (BBC)

1984

Toured England with "Stand Up-Get Down" show

1984

Recorded first comedy album Stand Up-Get Down

1982

Co-starred on series "OTT" (ITV)

1981

Co-starred with Tracey Ullman and David Copperfield in the variety series "Three of a Kind"; also wrote material

1976

Appeared on British TV sitcoms such as "The Fosters" and the children's show "TISWAS"

1975

Started professional career in comedy on British TV by competing in and winning the talent showcase "New Faces"

1973

Entered an impersonation contest at a local club at age 15 (date approximate)

1970

Began doing impersonations at age 13 (date approximate)

Formed Crucial Films

Bonus Trivia

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Henry appeared in several philanthropic events including "Comic Relief," "Lenny Henry and Friends," a benefit for children with Sickle Cell Anemia and Polio, and the film "Chasing the Bandwagon," which warned children about the dangers of drugs.

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He was made Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1998.

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