B a c k g r o u n d
Paul Mooney was born in Louisiana, and later grew up in Oakland, California. Mooney became a ringmaster with the Charles Gody Circus. During his stint as ringmaster, he always found himself writing comedy and telling jokes, which would later help Mooney land his first professional work as a writer for Richard Pryor.
C a r e e r
Paul Mooney wrote some of Richard Pryor's routines for his appearance on Saturday Night Live, co-wrote his material for the Live on the Sunset Strip, Bicentennial Nigger, and Is It Something I Said albums, and Pryor's film Jo Jo Dancer, Your Life Is Calling. As the head writer for The Richard Pryor Show, he gave many young stand-up comics, such as Robin Williams, Sandra Bernhard, Marsha Warfield, John Witherspoon, and Tim Reid, their first break into show business. Mooney also wrote for Redd Foxx's Sanford and Son, Good Times, acted in several cult classics including Which Way Is Up?, Bustin' Loose, Hollywood Shuffle, and portrayed singer/songwriter Sam Cooke in The Buddy Holly Story. He was the head writer for the first year of Fox's In Living Color, creating the character Homey D. Clown, played by Damon Wayans. Mooney later went on to play Wayans' father in the Spike Lee film Bamboozled as the comedian Junebug.
C h a p p e l l e ’ s S h o w
Paul Mooney initially appeared in the sketches Ask a Black Dude and Mooney on Movies on Comedy Central's Chappelle's Show, which he later replaced with Negrodamus, the African American version of Nostradamus. As Negrodamus, Mooney ad-libbed the "answers to life's most unsolvable mysteries" such as "Why do white people love Wayne Brady?" (Answer: "Because Wayne Brady makes Bryant Gumbel look like Malcolm X.") Mooney was planning to reprise his role as Negrodamus in the third season of the Chappelle's Show, before its abrupt hiatus.
Paul Mooney's Upcoming Shows