Chris Rock is an American comedian, actor, writer, director and producer who shot to fame with the hit television show “Saturday Night Live”. He was born on February 7, 1965 to Rosalie Rock, a school teacher and social worker, and Julius Rock, a truck driver and newspaper delivery man. He was born in South Carolina but the family moved to Brooklyn, New York when Chris was an infant. Growing up and going to school in a predominantly white neighborhood, Chris was subjected to racial discrimination from an early age. He was often bullied and even beaten, so his mother had him transferred to James Madison High School. Chris eventually pulled out of high school and received his GED certification.
He initially worked a number of menial jobs such as being a fast food worker. In 1984, he began his career as a stand-up comic at a chain of New York City comedy clubs called “Catch a Rising Star”. His performances were well received and he slowly rose in prominence. He also got some short roles in television and film such as the hit show “Miami Vice” and the film “I’m Gonna Git You Sucka”. During one of his performances, he was noticed by acclaimed comedian Eddie Murphy who gave him a small role in his film “Beverly Hills Cop II”.
In 1990, Chris became a cast member of the popular comedy TV show “Saturday Night Live” (SNL) along with other noted comedians such as Chris Farley, Adam Sandler, Rob Schneider, and David Spade. During this time, he released his first comedy album titled “Born Suspect”. SNL gave Chris national exposure and he soon became very popular. However, he left the show in 1993 and joined the cast of an African-American sketch show called “In Living Color” as a special guest star. The show was shortly cancelled and Chris then decided to focus on his film career. He wrote and starred in the 1993 comedy film CB4 but the film was not a success. Turning to stand-up comedy, Chris starred in his first HBO comedy special “Big Ass Jokes” in 1994 and then “Bring the Pain” in 1996. The show was a huge success,