Charlie Murphy

Last updated
Charlie Murphy
Murphy in December 2009
Birth nameCharles Quinton Murphy
Born(1959-07-12)July 12, 1959
Brooklyn, New York City, New York, U.S. [1]
DiedApril 12, 2017(2017-04-12) (aged 57)
New York City, New York, U.S. [2]
Years active1980–2017
Tisha Taylor Murphy
(m. 1997;died 2009)
Relative(s) Eddie Murphy (brother)
Vernon Lynch Jr. (half-brother)

Charles Quinton Murphy (July 12, 1959 – April 12, 2017) was an American actor, comedian, and writer. Murphy was best known as a writer and cast member of the Comedy Central sketch-comedy series Chappelle's Show , and as the costar of the sitcom Black Jesus . He was the older brother of comedian Eddie Murphy and the older half-brother of Vernon Lynch Jr.

Comedy Central American cable and satellite television channel

Comedy Central is an American pay television channel owned by Viacom Global Entertainment Group, a unit of the Viacom Media Networks division of Viacom, and based in Manhattan. The channel is geared for mature audiences and carries comedy programming in the form of both original, licensed, and syndicated series, stand-up comedy specials, and feature films.

Chappelle's Show is an American sketch comedy television series created by comedians Dave Chappelle and Neal Brennan, with Chappelle hosting the show and starring in the majority of its sketches. Chappelle, Brennan, and Michele Armour were the show's executive producers. The series premiered on January 22, 2003, on the American cable television network Comedy Central. The show ran for two complete seasons and a third, truncated season.

<i>Black Jesus</i> (TV series) American television sitcom

Black Jesus is an American sitcom created by Aaron McGruder and Mike Clattenburg that airs on Adult Swim. The series stars Gerald "Slink" Johnson, Charlie Murphy, Corey Holcomb, Kali Hawk, King Bach, and Andra Fuller. The series premiered on August 7, 2014. On December 10, 2014, the series was renewed for a second season. The second season premiered on September 18, 2015. It has been renewed for a third season.



Early life

Murphy was born on July 12, 1959, in the New York City borough of Brooklyn. [3] His mother, Lillian, was a telephone operator, and his father, Charles Edward Murphy, was a transit police officer and an amateur actor and comedian.

New York City Largest city in the United States

The City of New York, usually called either New York City (NYC) or simply New York (NY), is the most populous city in the United States. With an estimated 2018 population of 8,398,748 distributed over a land area of about 302.6 square miles (784 km2), New York is also the most densely populated major city in the United States. Located at the southern tip of the state of New York, the city is the center of the New York metropolitan area, the largest metropolitan area in the world by urban landmass and one of the world's most populous megacities, with an estimated 19,979,477 people in its 2018 Metropolitan Statistical Area and 22,679,948 residents in its Combined Statistical Area. A global power city, New York City has been described as the cultural, financial, and media capital of the world, and exerts a significant impact upon commerce, entertainment, research, technology, education, politics, tourism, art, fashion, and sports. The city's fast pace has inspired the term New York minute. Home to the headquarters of the United Nations, New York is an important center for international diplomacy.

Brooklyn Borough in New York City and county in New York state, United States

Brooklyn is the most populous borough of New York City, with an estimated 2,648,771 residents in 2017. Named after the Dutch village of Breukelen, it borders the borough of Queens at the western end of Long Island. Brooklyn has several bridge and tunnel connections to the borough of Manhattan across the East River, and the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge connects it with Staten Island. Since 1896, Brooklyn has been coterminous with Kings County, the most populous county in the U.S. state of New York and the second-most densely populated county in the United States, after New York County.

Switchboard operator profession

In the early days of telephony, through roughly the 1960s, companies used manual telephone switchboards, and switchboard operators connected calls by inserting a pair of phone plugs into the appropriate jacks.

As an adolescent, Murphy spent 10 months in jail. [4] In 1978, on the day he was released from jail, [5] he enlisted in the United States Navy and served for six years as a Boiler Technician. [6] In 1983, shortly before being discharged from the Navy, Murphy witnessed a mushroom cloud over Beirut. He later learned that it was the aftermath of the Beirut barracks bombing in which 307 people were killed. [7]

United States Navy Naval warfare branch of the United States Armed Forces

The United States Navy (USN) is the naval warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces and one of the seven uniformed services of the United States. It is the largest and most capable navy in the world and it has been estimated that in terms of tonnage of its active battle fleet alone, it is larger than the next 13 navies combined, which includes 11 U.S. allies or partner nations. With the highest combined battle fleet tonnage and the world's largest aircraft carrier fleet, with eleven in service, and two new carriers under construction. With 319,421 personnel on active duty and 99,616 in the Ready Reserve, the U.S. Navy is the third largest of the U.S. military service branches in terms of personnel. It has 282 deployable combat vessels and more than 3,700 operational aircraft as of March 2018, making it the third-largest air force in the world, after the United States Air Force and the United States Army.

Machinists mate

Machinist's mate is a rating in the United States Navy's engineering community.

Mushroom cloud Pyrocumulus mushroom-shaped cloud of debris/smoke resulting from a large explosion

A mushroom cloud is a distinctive pyrocumulus mushroom-shaped cloud of debris/smoke and usually condensed water vapor resulting from a large explosion. The effect is most commonly associated with a nuclear explosion, but any sufficiently energetic detonation or deflagration will produce the same effect. They can be caused by powerful conventional weapons, like thermobaric weapons, including the ATBIP and GBU-43/B Massive Ordnance Air Blast. Some volcanic eruptions and impact events can produce natural mushroom clouds.


Murphy had minor roles in several films in the late 1980s and early 1990s, and worked behind the scenes with the hip hop group K-9 Posse, a duo composed of his half-brother Vernon Lynch Jr. and Wardell Mahone. On their 1988 self-titled debut, Murphy was credited as the album's executive producer as well as songwriter on the songs "Somebody's Brother" and "Say Who Say What". [8] He also made an appearance in the video for the duo's first single "This Beat Is Military". [9] Murphy's first major role in a motion picture was in the 1993 film CB4 , where he portrayed the antagonist, Gusto.

Executive producer (EP) is one of the top positions in the making of a commercial entertainment product. Depending on the medium, the executive producer may be concerned with management accounting or associated with legal issues. In films, the executive producer generally contributes to the film's budget and their involvement depends on the project with some simply securing funds and others getting involved in the filmmaking process.

<i>CB4</i> 1993 film directed by Tamra Davis

CB4 is a 1993 American comedy film directed by Tamra Davis and starring Chris Rock. The film follows a fictional rap group named "CB4", named after the prison block in which the group was allegedly formed. The movie primarily parodies the rap group N.W.A among other gangsta rap aspects, as well as taking inspiration from This is Spinal Tap. It contains short segments featuring celebrities and musicians such as Halle Berry, Eazy-E, Butthole Surfers, Ice-T, Ice Cube, Flavor Flav, and Shaquille O'Neal.

Murphy achieved fame as a recurring performer on Chappelle's Show , particularly in the Charlie Murphy's True Hollywood Stories sketches. In these, Murphy recounts his misadventures as part of his brother Eddie's entourage, including encounters with various celebrities such as Rick James and Prince. [10] [11] After Chappelle's Show host Dave Chappelle left the show, Murphy and Donnell Rawlings hosted the "lost episodes" compiled from sketches produced before Chappelle's departure.

Sketch comedy comprises a series of short scenes or vignettes, called "sketches", commonly between one and ten minutes long. Such sketches are performed by a group of comic actors or comedians, either on stage or through an audio or visual medium such as radio and television. Often sketches are first improvised by the actors and sketch down based on the outcome of these improv sessions; however, such improvisation is not necessarily involved in sketch comedy.

Celebrity is the fame and public attention accorded by the mass media to individuals or groups or, occasionally, animals, but is usually applied to the persons or groups of people themselves who receive such a status of fame and attention. Celebrity status is often associated with wealth, while fame often provides opportunities to earn revenue.

Rick James American singer, songwriter, dancer, bandleader and record producer

Rick James was an American singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer. Born and raised in Buffalo, New York, James began his musical career in his teen years. He was in a number of various bands and groups before entering the U.S. Navy to avoid being drafted in the early 1960s. In 1965, James deserted to Toronto, Canada, where he formed the rock band the Mynah Birds, who eventually signed a recording deal with Motown Records in 1966. James's career with the group halted after military authorities discovered his whereabouts and eventually convicted James on a one-year prison term related to the draft charges. After being released, James moved to California where he started a variety of rock and funk groups in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

In 2005, he appeared in King's Ransom (alongside Anthony Anderson and Jay Mohr). In the film, Murphy portrayed "Herb", a gay ex-con who is hired by King (Anderson) to kidnap him in a fake kidnapping. [12] Murphy has done voiceovers for Budweiser radio commercials, provided the voice for Iraq War veteran/criminal Ed Wuncler III on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim series The Boondocks , and the voice for a pimp named Jizzy-B in Rockstar Games' Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas video game. Murphy provided the voice for Spock on the G4TV's Star Trek 2.0 shorts, and the dog in his younger brother Eddie's 2007 film, Norbit . [13]

<i>Kings Ransom</i> (film) 2005 film by Jeffrey W. Byrd

King's Ransom is a 2005 comedy film directed by Jeffrey W. Byrd and written by Wayne Conley, who was a writer for Kenan & Kel. The film stars Anthony Anderson, Jay Mohr, Kellita Smith, Regina Hall, Donald Faison, Nicole Ari Parker, Charlie Murphy, Loretta Devine, Brooke D'Orsay, and Leila Arcieri. King's Ransom was released in the United States on April 22, 2005, and, on a production budget of $15 million, brought in $4,143,652 worldwide.

Anthony Anderson American actor

Anthony Anderson is an American actor, comedian, writer, and game show host. He has starred in his own short-lived sitcom, All About the Andersons, as well as the ABC sitcom Black-ish and the Fox sitcom The Bernie Mac Show during its fifth and final season. He is known for his leading roles in drama series K-Ville, The Shield and as NYPD Detective Kevin Bernard on Law & Order. He has had major roles in feature films such as Me, Myself & Irene (2000), Kangaroo Jack (2003), Agent Cody Banks 2: Destination London (2004), The Departed (2006), Transformers (2007), and Scream 4 (2011).

Jay Mohr American actor and comedian

Jon Ferguson Cox "Jay" Mohr is an American actor, comedian and radio host. He is known for his role as Professor Rick Payne in the TV series Ghost Whisperer (2006–2008), the title role in the CBS sitcom Gary Unmarried (2008–2010), as a featured cast member on the sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live (1993–1995) and the back-stabbing sports agent Bob Sugar in Jerry Maguire (1996). Since making his feature film debut with Jerry Maguire, he has appeared in the films Suicide Kings (1997), Picture Perfect (1997), Paulie (1998), Mafia! (1998), Small Soldiers (1998), The Adventures of Pluto Nash (2002), Are We There Yet? (2005), Street Kings (2008), Hereafter (2010) and The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (2013).

On March 20, 2009, his own sketch comedy series Charlie Murphy's Crash Comedy began on Crackle. [14] A stand-up special, Charlie Murphy: I Will Not Apologize premiered on Comedy Central in late February 2010. [15] Murphy also made special appearances in 1000 Ways to Die and the TBS sitcom Are We There Yet? as Frank Kingston. In 2014–15, Murphy played Vic on the Adult Swim live action show Black Jesus . [16]


Murphy died from leukemia on April 12, 2017, at the age of 57. [17] [18]

Personal life

Murphy was a resident of Tewksbury Township, New Jersey. [19] He was married to Tisha Taylor Murphy from 1997 until her death from cervical cancer in December 2009. [1] The couple had two children together, and Murphy had another child from a previous relationship. [1] He was a karate practitioner. [20] [21]



1989 Harlem Nights Jimmy The Muffin Man [22]
1990 Mo' Better Blues Eggy [23]
1991 Jungle Fever Livin' Large [23]
1993 CB4 Gusto [24]
1995 Vampire in Brooklyn Writer [25]
1996 The Pompatus of Love Saxophone Man [23]
1998 The Players Club Brooklyn [23]
1999Unconditional LoveDetective
2002 Paper Soldiers Johnson [23] Also writer
2003 Death of a Dynasty Dick James/Dukey Man/Sock Head [23]
2005 King's Ransom Herb Clarke [23]
2005 Roll Bounce Victor [23]
2006 Night at the Museum Taxi Driver [23] Cameo
2007 Three Days to Vegas Andre [23]
2007 Mattie Fresno and the Holoflux Universe Griss [26]
2007 Norbit Lloyd the Dog [23] [27] Voice cameo / also writer
2007 Unearthed Hank [23]
2007 Twisted Fortune Angel Robbins
2007Universal RemoteVarious
2007 The Perfect Holiday J-Jizzy [23]
2008Bar StarzClay the Doorman/Arnie [23]
2008The HustleJunior Walker
2009 Frankenhood Franklin [23]
2010 Our Family Wedding T.J. [28]
2010 Lottery Ticket Semaj [29]
2012 Moving Day Cedric [30]
2016 Meet the Blacks Key Flo [31] Last role


1990 The Kid Who Loved Christmas TV movie
1995 Martin Big Bro1 episode
1995 Murder was the Case: The Movie JC Direct-to-video
2003–2006 Chappelle's Show Various14 episodes, also writer
2004 One on One Senator Larry Eldrige
2005 Denis Leary's Merry F#%$in' Christmas HimselfTV Special
2005–2010 The Boondocks Ed Wuncler III (voice) [32] 10 episodes
2006 Thugaboo: Sneaker Madness Big Kid (voice)TV movie
2006Thugaboo: A Miracle on D-Roc's StreetBig Kid (voice)TV movie
2006 Wild 'n Out Himself
2007 Beef IV Himself/Narrator (voice)Video documentary
2007 We Got to Do Better HostUnknown episodes
2007 Pauly Shore's Natural Born KomicsHimself Direct-to-video
2009 Nite Tales: The Series Samson
2010 Freaknik: The Musical Al Sharpton, [33] Perminator (voice)TV movie
2010Charlie Murphy: I Will Not ApologizeHimselfVideo documentary
2010 Lopez Tonight Himself
2010–2012 Are We There Yet? Frank Kingston5 episodes
2010 1000 Ways to Die Himself
2011 The Cookout 2 Coach AshmokeemTV film
2012–2014 Black Dynamite A Cat Named Rollo (voice)2 episodes
2013 Hawaii Five-0 Don McKinney
2014–2015 Black Jesus Vic [23] Main cast
21 episodes
2016 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Bellybomb [34] Episode: "Journey to the Center of Mikey's Mind"
2017 Power Marshal Clyde Williams5 episodes
2017 The Comedy Get Down HimselfPosthumous release
5 episodes

Video games

2004 Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas Jizzy B. [32]
2006 Marc Eckō's Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure White Mike [32]

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