Bill Cosby Biography
Bill Cosby is one of the United States' most popular and admired entertainers, known for his wit and warmth both onstage and off. A veteran stand-up performer, he got his start working clubs and making comedy albums, then moved into television with a vanguard role in the 1960s action show I Spy. He later starred in his own series, The Bill Cosby Show, in the late 1960s. He was one of the major characters on the children's television show The Electric Company for its first two seasons, and created the humorous educational cartoon series Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids, about a group of young friends growing up in the city. Cosby also acted in numerous films, although none has received the acclaim of his television work.
During the 1980s, Cosby produced and starred in what is considered one of the decade's defining cultural sitcoms, The Cosby Show, which aired from 1984 to 1992. The sitcom featured an upper-middle class African-American family without resorting to the kinds of stereotypes previously seen among African-Americans in prime-time television. While some argued that The Cosby Show ignored the issues of racial inequity still prevalent in society, many agreed that it showcased positive role models.
The late 1990s brought trouble for Cosby, first in early 1997 with the death of his only son, Ennis, who was shot to death on a Los Angeles freeway in a random act of violence. Also that year, he was dragged into a court case that involved a young woman who was charged with extortion in claiming that he was her biological father—a shocking accusation that Cosby denied. Cosby admitted to having a one-time affair with the woman's mother.
Despite these personal setbacks, Cosby did not slow down at all in the 1990s, starring in Cosby, which first aired in 1996, and hosting Kids Say the Darndest Things, which began in 1998, as well as making more movies. He has also continued appearing on the stand-up circuit, delighting audiences with his gentle, paternal brand of comedy. His material consists mainly of anecdotal tales, often dealing with his upbringing and raising his own family, and he is known for having a clean, kid-friendly routine. His good-natured, fatherly image has made him a popular personality and earned him the nickname of "America's Black Dad," and he has also been a sought-after spokesman for products like Jell-O Pudding, Kodak film, Coca-Cola, and the defunct retail chain Service Merchandise.
Cosby in a Jell-O adAdditional trouble surrounded the comedian's personal life around 2005. In November 2006 Cosby settled a civil lawsuit with a Canadian woman who said the comedian drugged and sexually assaulted her at his home. The terms of the settlement were kept confidential. Cosby's publicist confirmed the settlement, but Cosby denied the charges. The woman who was in her 30's worked at Philadelphia's Temple University and befriended the 69-year-old Cosby, an alumnus and benefactor of the school. She claimed Cosby assaulted her in 2004 after giving her sleeping pills, saying she woke up and found her bra undone and her clothes in disarray, and recalled having her genitals and breasts played with. Cosby's lawyers said the comedian gave her Benadryl after she complained of headaches and denied the charges. She claimed he gave her a number of blue pills. The woman went to Canadian police, but no criminal charges were ever filed because of "insufficient credible and admissible evidence," Montgomery County District Attorney Bruce Castor said in a statement in February 2005. The civil suit was filed in federal court in March 2005. Around the same time there were allegations of additional sexual assaults raised by a dozen women, though none elected to either pursue the charges criminally or sue the comedian civilly.
Posted on Tuesday, October 27, 2009
In: Bill Cosby, Famous Male Comedians, Famous Black Comedians, American Comedians
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Comments about Bill Cosby
Bill Cosby is amazing. But do you have anymore Black Comedians? Not just men either, use womes to.
posted @ Wednesday, April 28, 2010 11:48 AM by Nicole Allen
I grew up enjoying Bill's 'The Cosby Show' and recall the hilarious comedy movie, 'Let's do it again' with him co-starring with Sidney Poitier. Bill Cosby is a legendary, multi-talented comedic genius.
Some years ago, I wrote script for the Cosby show with all the characters but never submitted it for consideration.
I would very much like to post my script on here and perhaps if someone connected to Bill Cosby or himself sees this script, I could get permission to have him read my manuscript for my soon to be released book on Comedy. A commentary from him would add justice to my book. Thanks!
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