Before fame dawned on him, he earned his bread by performing magic and selling Disneyland guidebooks.
From performing in an empty coffee house to hosting the Oscars, he garnered attention by every artistic medium: stand-up comic, starring in and scripting classic films, plays and bestselling novels, and playing banjo.Â
In 2004, Comedy Central ranked him sixth on a list of 100.
Stephen Glenn “Steve” MartinÂ was born on August 14, 1945 in Texas. As a teenager, Martin sold guidebooks and performed magic tricks at Disneyland and at Knotts Berry Farm.
He enrolled in Long Beach State College to study philosophy, but soon transferred to the theater program at the University of California, Los Angeles.Â
In 1967, Martin began performing comedy in nightclubs around California. Dropping out of college at age 21, he got his first TV job as a writer and occasional performer onÂ â€œThe Smothers Brothers Comedy Hourâ€. Â His first stand-up album,Â Let’s Get Small, was a huge success, launching Martin into rock-star status as a comic.
In 1979, he starred in his first full-length feature film,Â â€œThe Jerkâ€. Throughout the 1980s, Martin continued to headline films includingÂ â€œThe Man with Two Brainsâ€,Â â€œThree Amigos!â€Â andÂ â€œPlanes, Trains and Automobilesâ€.
Martin continued to act in the 1990s, branching out into dramas likeÂ â€œGrand Canyonâ€ (1991) andÂ â€œThe Spanish Prisonerâ€Â (1998). He then began starring in “family” comedies like theÂ â€œFather of the Brideâ€Â andÂ â€œCheaper by the dozenÂ seriesâ€, as well as had two screenplays turned into films:Â L.A. StoryÂ (1991) andÂ BowfingerÂ (1999).
A frequent contributor toÂ â€œThe New Yorkerâ€Â magazine, Martin published â€œShopgirlâ€, a novella, to great acclaim in 2001.Â In 2008, Martin publishedÂ â€œBorn Standing Upâ€, a memoir about his days as a hugely successful stand-up comedian.
1989: Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree fromÂ California State University Long Beach
2005:Â Mark Twain Prize for American Humor
2005:Â Disney LegendÂ award
2013:Â Academy Honorary Award