Colin Quinn, July 2005 age 46
|Birth name||Colin Edward Quinn|
June 6, 1959 |
Brooklyn, New York, US
|Medium||Stand-up, television, film|
|Genres||Observational comedy, black comedy, sketch comedy, satire, political satire, news satire|
|Subject(s)||American politics, American culture, current events, race relations, world history, drinking culture|
|Influences||Richard Pryor, George Carlin|
|Notable works and roles||Co-host of Remote Control
Weekend Update anchor on Saturday Night Live
Host of Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn
Colin Edward Quinn (born June 6, 1959) is an American stand-up comedian and writer. He is best known for his five-year stint on Saturday Night Live (1995–2000), as the sidekick on the late 80s MTV gameshow Remote Control, and as the host of the Comedy Central series Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn.
Quinn was born and raised in the Park Slope section of Brooklyn. The son of teachers, he attended and graduated from John Dewey High School. He attended Stony Brook University for a year and worked as a bartender. He stopped drinking in the early 1980s after several bad experiences with alcohol, including blackouts and arrests.
He began performing stand-up in 1984, and first achieved fame in 1987 as the sidekick announcer of the MTV game show Remote Control, which lasted five seasons. In 1989, he hosted the A&E stand-up showcase Caroline's Comedy Hour, and wrote and acted in the comedic short/music video Going Back to Brooklyn with Ben Stiller. He wrote for In Living Color, and co-wrote and produced the movie Celtic Pride, which starred Damon Wayans and Dan Aykroyd.
Saturday Night Live
In 1995, Quinn was hired by Saturday Night Live as a writer and featured player. He became a full cast member during the 1997–1998 season. He established himself on the show with characters such as "Lenny the Lion" and "Joe Blow", and did the recurring segment "Colin Quinn Explains the New York Times". He began hosting Weekend Update in January 1998 after Norm Macdonald's firing, and anchored the segment until his departure in 2000. Quinn commented on a number of highly publicized media circuses, including the Clinton-Lewinsky Scandal and the Microsoft Anti-Trust Trial. At the end of each Weekend Update segment, he used the catchphrase, "That's my story and I'm sticking to it." He was not thrilled about his run on the show, declaring on an episode of Tough Crowd, "I don't miss it."
During his SNL tenure, Quinn made his Broadway debut in a one-man show, Colin Quinn: An Irish Wake co-written with Lou DiMaggio, and was offered the role of Scott Evil in Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery by Mike Myers, which he turned down. The role was accepted by Seth Green.
Recurring characters on SNL
- Gene, an ex-convict who performs menial work.
- Joe Blow, a blue-collar worker from Queens who complains about the decline of his neighborhood.
- Lenny the Lion, a lion who is trying to better himself.
- Rolf, a racist who always has second thoughts about his behavior.
- Dale Jarrett
- Elvis Costello
- Leon Panetta
- Robert De Niro in the "Joe Pesci Show" sketch where the real Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci make surprise appearances.
Television and film work and stand-up
Tough Crowd followed The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, and was one of several attempts to create a companion show for Stewart's program. It was renewed through the 2005 season, but was placed on indefinite hiatus in October 2004, with its "final" episode airing on November 4, 2004. The show featured a panel of four comedians, with Quinn as host, discussing the social and political issues of the day. The show ran for two seasons, and consisted of over 200 episodes.
Colin performs regularly at the Comedy Cellar in New York City. In 2004, he was named No. 56 on Comedy Central's list of the 100 greatest stand-ups of all-time. He was also named to the Irish America Magazine list of the "Top 100 Irish Americans of the Year".
He was the "unofficial co-host" on the Nick DiPaolo show on the now-defunct 92.3 Free FM in New York City, airing Monday-Friday from noon to three. Quinn and DiPaolo were originally slated to host the show together on WJFK-FM, but the station decided not to pick up the show. Nick often referred to Quinn as "the joke fairy", due to his propensity for telling a joke and hanging up the phone before getting a response. Quinn is also a regular guest on The Opie & Anthony Show, where he disclosed the thousands of pages of "manifestos" that he's written since the cancellation of Tough Crowd. He has never elaborated on the contents.
In 2010, Quinn premiered his one-man show "Colin Quinn Long Story Short" on Broadway at the Helen Hayes Theatre, directed by Jerry Seinfeld. Comically channeling the demise of various world empires, Quinn takes a satirical look at the history of the world in 75 minutes. Quinn recorded a special performance of the show that aired on HBO on April 9, 2011. He explores the attitudes, appetites and habits that toppled some of the world's most powerful nations.
In summer 2011, Quinn toured "Colin Quinn Long Story Short" to Guild Hall in East Hampton, Philadelphia Theatre Company in Philadelphia, and other cities including Chicago at the Broadway Playhouse at Water Tower Place.
|1987–1990||Remote Control||Sidekick/Announcer||Television series|
|1987||Three Men and a Baby||Gift shop Clerk|
|1988||Cosby Show, TheThe Cosby Show||Davey Herbeck||Television series
|1988||Crocodile Dundee II||Onlooker at mansion|
|1988||Married to the Mob||Homicide detective|
|1988||2 Hip 4 TV||Host||Television series|
|1989||Caroline's Comedy Hour||Host||Television series|
|1990||Manly World||Television series|
|1990||True Blue||Television series
|1992||Ben Stiller Show, TheThe Ben Stiller Show||Guest||Television series
|1993||Who's the Man?||Frankie Flynn|
|1995||Larry Sanders Show, TheThe Larry Sanders Show||Cully||Television series
|1995–2000||Saturday Night Live||Various||Television series
|1996||Christmas Tree, TheThe Christmas Tree||Tom||Television film|
|1997||Pulp Comics: Jim Breuer||Cop||Television film|
|1998||A Night at the Roxbury||Dooey|
|2002–2004||Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn||Host||Television series|
|2003||Crooked Lines||Annoying customer|
|2003||Windy City Heat||Talk show guest||Television film|
|2010||Grown Ups||Dickie Bailey|
|2011||Colin Quinn Long Story Short||Himself||Stand-up performance|
|2012||That's My Boy||Strip Club DJ|
|2013||Grown Ups 2||Dickie Bailey|
- "Colin Quinn". Popentertainment.com. Retrieved June 17, 2010.
- Colin Quinn: Tough Guy
- Broadway World
- Colin Quinn at the Internet Movie Database
- Colin Quinn on National Public Radio in 2003
- Comedy Cellar – a Comedy Club in New York and one at which Colin always "performs".
- SNL Transcripts: Colin Quinn – contains searchable database of almost all of Quinn's SNL works
- ColinQuinn.com – Website for Colin Quinn's Broadway show "Long Story Short" directed by Jerry Seinfeld.
Tina Fey and Jimmy Fallon