Bill Hicks - Rotten Tomatoes

Bill Hicks

Birthday:  
Birthplace:   Valdosta, Georgia, USA
Considered by many to be one of the sharpest social satirists/comedians to have ever graced the standup stage, Bill Hicks offered audiences something more than simple laughs -- he offered a new perspective. Always pushing boundaries in hopes of making his audience question the status quo, Hicks' dangerous brand of standup drew comparisons to such comedy legends as Sam Kinison and Lenny Bruce, despite the fact that many Americans never heard of him during his short lifetime. If comedy were a weapon, Hicks' wit would have been a ten-ton nuclear warhead. A native of Valdosta, GA, Hicks was raised in Houston from the age of seven. His first standup performance was at a church camp talent show, where Hicks' somewhat blue routine would leave audiences simultaneously shocked and doubled over in laughter. His energy only seemed to grow with each passing year, and by the time he had reached Stratford High School, his teacher would allot him a few minutes to entertain the class each day before lessons in hopes that he would get it out of his system. Staying up nights with friend Dwight Slade in order to refine his comedic universe, the lack of comedy clubs in Houston forced Hicks to innovate by sending videos of his routine to agents. The approach soon proved a success, and one such agent eventually booked Hicks on a 2:00 a.m. spot on the upcoming Jerry Lewis Telethon. Though Hicks' act had yet to develop the razor-sharp teeth of his later years, his wit and warmth were obvious to everyone lucky enough to catch his late-night routine, which would grow increasingly scathing and critical of social norms. His parents took him to a psychoanalyst at age 17, but the doctor found nothing wrong with the emerging comedian and even commented that he was probably in better mental health than they were. In 1978 Hicks enrolled in a comedy workshop in Houston, and it was there that he made the acquaintance of comic Kinison and truly began to realize the power of anger in comedy. Hicks' family would relocate to Little Rock, AK, during his senior year of high school, and soon after graduating, Hicks made the move to L.A. to grace the stage with such comic greats as Jerry Seinfeld and Garry Shandling. Following an appearance in a short-lived sitcom entitled Bulba, Hicks hit the comedy circuit, where audiences were sometimes taken off guard by his confrontational style -- sometimes resulting in physical confrontations initiated by offended audience members. Hicks first appeared on David Letterman's late-night talk show in 1984, thanks to an arrangement made by fellow comic Jay Leno, and many more television appearances were soon to follow. Though he would come dangerously close to losing himself to drugs, an invitation by Rodney Dangerfield to appear on Dangerfield's Young Comedian's Special launched Hicks' career and found him packing his bags for New York. It was at this point that Hicks and childhood friend Kevin Booth formed Sacred Cow Productions to bring Hicks' act to film and albums. Though Hicks would eschew drugs after realizing that he was on the brink of a dangerous addiction, his cigarette smoking only increased during this period (one of Hicks' favorite jokes was that he went through two lighters a day). In November of 1990, British audiences were first introduced to Hicks' unique brand of comedy, thanks to a six-week engagement at London's West End entitled Stand Up America, and his dry and insightful wit (not to mention his searing commentary on the state of the U.S.) immediately won him many fans in the U.K. Hicks received the Critics Award at the Edinburgh Festival the following year, and his perception-altering perspective smashed boundaries and increasingly gained exposure due to his tireless touring schedule. It was also around this time that Hicks met and fell in love with his new manager, Colleen McGarr. Though everything seemed to be coming together for Hicks, in June of 1993, he was diagnosed with cancer after being plagued with r

Highest Rated Movies

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT BOX OFFICE YEAR
No Score Yet Comedy Dynamics Presents: Bill Hicks
  • Actor
2015
83% American: The Bill Hicks Story
  • Actor
$90.8k 2011
No Score Yet Bill Hicks: Relentless
  • Actor
  • Screenwriter
2006
No Score Yet Bill Hicks Live: Satirist, Social Critic, Stand Up Comedian
  • Actor
2004
No Score Yet Best Of Midnight Rider, The
  • Actor
2002
No Score Yet Bill Hicks: Revelations
  • Actor
1993
No Score Yet Ninja Bachelor Party
  • Dr. Death/Shotsi
  • Director
1991
No Score Yet Bill Hicks: Sane Man
  • Actor
1989
No Score Yet Comedy's Dirtiest Dozen
  • Actor
1988
No Score Yet Born to Race
  • Sphinx
1988
No Score Yet Rodney Dangerfield: Nothin' Goes Right
  • Actor
1988
No Score Yet Dr. Gore
  • Himself
1973
No Score Yet The Cheyenne Social Club
  • The Bannister Gang
1970

Quotes from Bill Hicks' Characters

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