Quick Dane Cook Facts:
- Dane Cook has been doing stand-up since 1990
- He released three full-length comedy albums, two comedy specials and a reality show between 2003 and 2009.
- He rose to fame through Internet publicity and MySpace.
- Cook became the first comic in over 20 years to have a comedy album chart in the Billboard Top 10 during the first week of release.
Dane Cook Overview:
Dane Cook is easily one of the most popular and successful comedians currently working. With multiple platinum-selling comedy albums, starring roles in feature films and massively successful arena tours, Cook has become the biggest name in stand-up comedy.
Cook's comedy is rarely topical or political. Instead, he combines an observational comedy style with absurdity and manic physical energy, making his act as much visual as it is verbal.
Becoming Dane Cook:
Born March 18, 1972, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, comedian Dane Jeffrey Cook has been doing stand-up since graduating high school 1990. For most of the 1990s, he toured clubs and colleges performing comedy. In 1997, he made his television debut on The Late Show with David Letterman, followed by a number of appearances on Comedy Central.
Using the internet to build his celebrity, Cook helped break new ground in how comics market themselves. In 2002, he spent his savings to start his own official website. He also launched a MySpace page, where he currently has over 2.3 million friends.
Dane Cook's First Album:
For the better part of the 2000s, Dane Cook has been just about the biggest thing to happen in stand-up comedy. His first comedy album, 2003's Harmful if Swallowed, went platinum and kicked off Cook's enormous popularity. The album featured now-classic Dane Cook routines such as "Tire in the Face" and "The BK Lounge" (Cook's name for Burger King).
His follow-up, the 2005 double-length album Retaliation, was an even bigger success. The album went double platinum and debuted at No. 4 on the Billboard 200 during its first week of release, making it the highest charting comedy album in 27 years. Cook became the first comedian since Andrew "Dice" Clay in the 1980s (and Steve Martin in the '70s) to sell out stadiums and receive the "rock star" treatment.
Dane Cook Moves to HBO:
In 2006, Cook taped his first comedy special for HBO, Vicious Circle. That same year, Cook produced his own six-episode reality series for HBO, called Dane Cook's Tourgasm. It followed the behind-the-scenes exploits of a 30-day, 20-show tour with Cook and fellow comics Robert Kelly, Jay Davis and Gary Gulman.
His third album, Rough Around the Edges: Live at Madison Square Garden was released in 2007. In January of 2009, the special Dane Cook: Rough Around the Edges premiered on Comedy Central.
Dane Cook: Isolated Incident:
In 2009, Cook released his most ambitious album and special to date, ISolated INcident. Taped in an intimate comedy club setting rather than a stadium, the album found Cook covering new kinds of material, from the personal to the political. The special, which debuted commercial-free on Comedy Central in May 2009, was also shot in one single, edit-free take from beginning to end.
In 2010, Cook released the double-length "greatest hits" compilation album I Did My Best: Greatest Hits.
Dane Cook the Actor:
Like many stand-up comics, Cook has also attempted to make the transition to feature films, and has been acting on screen for over 10 years. Until recently, his resume consisted mostly of small parts in unsuccessful movies like Mystery Men (1999), Torque (2004) and Waiting... (2005).
In 2006, Cook had his first leading role opposite pop star Jessica Simpson in Employee of the Month. His second lead performance came in 2007 with Good Luck Chuck, in which he starred with Jessica Alba as a guy cursed to lose any woman he becomes involved with to another man.
Recently, Cook has begun taking roles in a few dramatic films, including Mr. Brooks (2007) with Kevin Costner and William Hurt, and Dan in Real Life (2007) opposite Steve Carell and Juliette Binoche. Critics were kinder to his dramatic performances than his comedic turns.
In 2008, Cook starred with Kate Hudson and Jason Biggs in the romantic comedy My Best Friend's Girl, which he also produced.
Additional Dane Cook Facts
- Cook filmed two sitcom pilots that were not picked up for broadcast: Humor Me in 2004 and Cooked in 2005. Both were packaged together and released on DVD in 2007 under the title Dane Cook - The Lost Pilots.
- He was named "Hot Comic of the Year" by Rolling Stone and "Coolest Comic" by Stuff magazine in 2006.
- Cook has his own production company, called SUperFInger Entertainment.