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We’re no longer living in that era when people of colour were being regarded as less talented or less smart. There are now a number of people of African descent in the United States who have clearly shown that they possess the necessary skill set to make it in the entertainment industry or any other field of endeavor
Anyone who has listened to African American comedy will know that it is relentless and extremely rib cracking, basically they are downright hilarious. Arguably, the greatest African American family in screen comedy is the Wayans family.
Keenen Ivory Wayans Bio, Net Worth, Career
Out of the entire Wayans breed, we will be focusing on one of its boys; The multi talented Keenen Ivory Wayans. Born June 8, 1958, in Harlem, New York City to Howell Stouten Wayans, a devout Jehovah’s Witness and a supermarket manager and his wife, Elvira Alethia who was a homemaker and social worker. He was the second child out of ten children. Yes. Ten gifted children.
Keenen Ivory Wayans grew up in the Manhattan’s Fulton projects, attending High School at Seaward High School, when college rolled around he was off to Tuskegee University on an engineering scholarship. In his early days, he was a victim of racial discrimination as was prevalent in the society back then.
Very early in life, he was clear about his chosen path – to become a comedian. His friends in college already knew him as an entertainer. So it was not a surprise at least probably not too much, when he decided to drop out of college with only one semester to the completion of his majors to pursue his ambition to be a full time stand-up comedian. That proved to be the right decision in the long run.
He met Robert Townsend who was his early mentor as he went to work at the famous comedy club, The Improv in New York City. It didn’t really work out in New York so he decided to move over to Los Angeles in 1980. His first regular role came in a series titled “For Love and Honor” where he played the role of a soldier with a desire to be a professional boxer.
In the mid 80’s, the young Keenen met fellow comedian Eddie Murphy later collaborating with him to write “Eddie Murphy Raw”. “I’m Gonna Git You Sucka” was produced in 1988 and he appeared in the screenplay. In 1990, FOX Network gave him the chance to have his own comedy show “In Living Colour”. It proved to be a massive success and the show helped him launch the careers of his siblings Damon, Shawn, Marlon and Kim.
In 1994, he left the show to concentrate on films. In 2006 he teamed up with his brothers for a remake of “Clifford’ in “Little Man” with the concept of the adult in a child’s body. Now remember when I said leaving college one semester to completion proved to be the right choice for Keenen? He has a net worth that is estimated to be in the region of $65 million.
Keenen Ivory Wayans Siblings
Keenen was the pioneer of the Wayans comedy empire and he helped bring to the limelight the talents of his siblings. Damon Wayans Sr, is most famous for The Last Boy Scout and My Wife and Kids. Elvira Wayans is most famous for her work in My Wife and Kids, she also doubled as a writer for the show, her only screenplay credit.
Kim Wayans is one of the more serious Wayans, she had a role in Pariah. She also joined in with the family for “In Living Colour” , My Wife and Kids and Dance Flick. Shawn Wayans had great works in Scary Movie and White Chicks. Marlon Wayans, the youngest of the first generations of Wayanses tried his hands on some serious stuff in Requiem For A Dream.
Marlon is also known for his roles in White Chicks and Dance Flick. More recently, he has been in “Naked” – a comedy series named after him (Marlon) and the role of Mr Black in parody romance 50 Shades of Black.
Keenen Ivory Wayans Wife, Girlfriend, Children
Keenan got married to Daphne Wayans in 2001, the union was fractured and eventually dissolved when they separated in 2004. The marriage did produce more Wayanses, five of them to be precise, four daughters and a son. Bella, Jolie, Nala, Daphne and Keenen Jr.
Since his separation from his wife, there has been rumors about his personal life and who he may or may not be seeing. He had a girlfriend in Brittany Daniel but that ended as well. So at the moment he seems to be really single; maybe not for long.