3 David Spade

David Spade

David Spade

David Spade, 2008
Born David Wayne Spade
July 22, 1964 (1964-07-22) (age 47)
Birmingham, Michigan, U.S.
Occupation Actor
Television personality
Years active 1987–present
Children Harper (born 2008)

David Wayne Spade (born July 22, 1964) is an American actor, comedian and television personality who first became famous in the 1990s as a cast member on Saturday Night Live, and from 1997 until 2003 when he starred as Dennis Finch on Just Shoot Me!. He also starred as C.J. Barnes, along with Katey Sagal, James Garner and Kaley Cuoco on 8 Simple Rules.

He currently stars as Russell Dunbar on the CBS sitcom Rules of Engagement. He is also working with TBS on an animated series based on his film Joe Dirt.[1]


Early life

Spade was born in Birmingham, Michigan, the son of Judith M, a writer and magazine editor, and Sam Spade, a sales representative.[2][3][4] His brothers are Bryan and Andy Spade; Andy Spade is the husband of designer Kate Spade and CEO of Kate Spade New York.

Spade attended Scottsdale Community College and briefly went on to Arizona State University, where he was a member of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity.[5] Spade performed standup at the university's long-running sketch comedy show, Farce Side Comedy Hour, on numerous occasions. In the mid-80s he also did standup in the Monday night comedy show at Greesy Tony's Pizza in Tempe, Arizona. Before finding success as a comedian, Spade made money by working as a busboy, a valet parker, a skee ball championship competitor and a skateboard shop employee.


With the help of friend and fellow comedian Dennis Miller, he joined Saturday Night Live in 1990 as a regular cast member and writer. Here, he made popular his well-known sarcastic, smart aleck characters in a number of sketches, some of which include: a flight attendant who bids a perceived-as-unpleasant "Buh-Bye" to each passenger upon disembarking; a receptionist for Dick Clark who, as a matter of policy, asks people indiscriminately "And you are?"; and the sarcastic "Hollywood Minute" reporter who communicates with celebrities by means of one-liners. Other characters include Christy Henderson from the Gap Girls, and Karl from the Karl's Video sketches. He has also done impressions of famous celebrities, such as Brad Pitt and Michael J. Fox. According to interviews with Spade, most of the material that he wrote early on was given to Dana Carvey to perform on the show. Due to his relatively low work rate, he was in danger of being fired as a performer, until the Hollywood Minute segment secured his position.

Though most of the cast left in 1995, Spade stayed on the following year to help in the transition with the new cast. He then quit in 1996, citing "burnout" as the reason. Said Spade, "When I leave, it will be to ease the pressure, not to be a movie star. You can't stay there forever — it kills you inside. It ages you in dog years. It's a tough place." He returned to host an episode in 1998 and another in 2005. He recently also voiced a chihuahua in an animated short, written by Fred Wolf, in 2010.

Spade's attempt at a film career was met with success. Movies such as Joe Dirt and Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star were, especially the former, not very successful critically, although both made back their budget and more. (They were both written by Spade with Fred Wolf.) He worked with fellow Saturday Night Live cast member Chris Farley in the movies Tommy Boy and Black Sheep, in an attempt to form a modern-day Laurel and Hardy. The two were planning a third movie together when Farley died of a drug overdose at the age of 33.

Although he received several offers to star in his own TV shows, he turned them down and joined the ensemble cast of Steven Levitan's office sitcom Just Shoot Me!, which ran for seven seasons from 1997 to 2003. He played to type as sarcastic receptionist Dennis Finch, which earned him an Emmy nomination and two Golden Globe nominations.

Spade hosted both the Teen Choice Awards and SpikeTV's Video Game Awards in 2003. He voiced characters on several episodes of Beavis and Butt-head, and produced his own TV series Sammy in 2000. From 2002 to 2006, Spade regularly appeared in commercials for Capital One with Nate Torrence, where he plays the employee of a fictional rival company whose policy toward honoring credit card rewards (and just about everything else) is "always no." In 2004 he joined the cast of 8 Simple Rules, following the death of the sitcom's star, John Ritter.

On September 5, 2003, Spade received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. His star is located at 7018 Hollywood Blvd. He was the host of the Comedy Central show, The Showbiz Show with David Spade, which began in September 2005. On the show, Spade made fun of Hollywood and celebrities in a manner similar to his old "Hollywood Minute" segment on SNL. The Showbiz Show with David Spade was canceled in October 2007 after three seasons.[6]

Along with actors Elijah Wood and Gary Oldman, Spade is one of the voice talents for The Legend of Spyro: A New Beginning, the sixth installment of the platform game series Spyro the Dragon. He provides the voice for Spyro's dragonfly companion, Sparx.[7]

Currently, he stars as Russell Dunbar in the CBS comedy, Rules of Engagement.

Personal life

Spade has one daughter with Playboy Playmate Jillian Grace. Spade confirmed his paternity on September 3, 2008.[8]

Spade is very sensitive to light. The combination of bright lights on-set and working under sunlight while filming Black Sheep caused permanent damage to his eyes. On his condition: "I have to wear a hat even indoors and flashes in particular freak me out. I even have to make them turn down the lights in the make-up trailers. I've become such a pain in the butt with this light-sensitive thing, it's a wonder they don't just shoot me!"[9]

His height (5'7") frequently features in his comedy roles.[10]

In December 2008, Spade donated $100,000 to the police department in his former hometown of Phoenix, Arizona, as part of a program designed to provide patrol officers with rifles.[11] Spade's contribution will buy 50 AR-15 semi-automatic rifles for Phoenix police officers.[12]



Year Film Title Role Notes
1987 Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol Kyle
1992 Light Sleeper Theological Cokehead
1993 Coneheads Eli Turnbull
1994 Reality Bites The "Wienerschnitzel" Manager
PCU Rand McPherson
1995 Tommy Boy Richard Hayden MTV Movie Awards (won 1)
1996 Black Sheep Steven "Steve" Dodds
A Very Brady Sequel Sergio
Beavis and Butt-Head Do America Voice
1997 8 Heads in a Duffel Bag Ernest "Ernie" Lipscomb
1998 Senseless Scott Thorpe
The Rugrats Movie Ranger Frank "Franklin" voice only
Jerome Executive Producer
1999 Lost & Found Dylan Ramsey
2000 Loser The Video Store Clerk
The Emperor's New Groove Emperor Kuzco / Llama Kuzco voice only

Kid's Choice Awards (nominated-1)

2001 Joe Dirt Joseph "Joe" Dirt
2003 Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star Dickie Roberts
2005 Racing Stripes Scuzz voice only
Lil' Pimp Principal Nixon
Kronk's New Groove Emperor Kuzco voice only
2006 Grandma's Boy Shilo
The Benchwarmers Richie Goodman Teen Choice Awards (nominated-1)
2010 Grown Ups Marcus Higgins
2011 Jack & Jill Damien Farley
2012 Hotel Transylvania Griffin the Invisible Man Voice Only


Year Show Title Role Other notes
1988 The Facts of Life Scott Season 9, Episode 22: "Big Apple Blues"
1989 Baywatch B.J. Season 1, Episode 3: "Second Wave"
1990 ALF Larry Slotkin Season 4, Episode 14: "Make 'em Laugh"
Monsters Teddy Season 3, Episode 7: "Small Blessings"
Born to Be Mild Stage Assistant uncredited; cameo
Saturday Night Live Various writer and cast member from 1990–1996
Emmy Awards (nominated-3)
Hosted episodes in 1998 and 2005.
1992 The Larry Sanders Show Himself Season 1, Episode 2: "The Promise"
1994 Beavis and Butt-Head Mr. Manners/Mr. Candy/Ticket Attendant (voice) uncredited; cast member from 1994–1997
1997–2003 Just Shoot Me! Dennis Finch American Comedy Awards (nominated-1)
Emmy Awards (nominated-1)
Golden Globe Awards (nominated-2)
TV Land Awards (nominated-1)
1998 David Spade: Take the Hit Himself  
2000 Sammy Sammy Blake/James Blake (voice) canceled after 2 episodes
2002 Greg The Bunny Himself cameo
2004 Father of the Pride Tommy the Coyote (voice)  
8 Simple Rules C.J. Barnes cast member from 2003–2005
2005 The Showbiz Show with David Spade Himself  
2007–present Rules of Engagement Russell Dunbar Teen Choice Awards (nominated-1)


Year Song Title Performer Notes
1993 "Buddy" Adam Sandler

Video games

Year Title Character Notes
2006 The Legend of Spyro: A New Beginning Sparx


External links

Preceded by
First host
Teen Choice Awards host
Succeeded by
Nicole Richie and Paris Hilton

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