Bernie Mac is an American actor, stand-up comedian and voice artist. He was born as Bernard Jeffrey McCullough on October 5, 1957, in Chicago Illinois in the U.S.A. His mother died when he was only 16 due to cancer. He studied at Chicago Vocational Career Academy. He shifted to Tampa, Florida and worked in several jobs such as an UPS agent and furniture mover during his 20’s. In 1977, he got married to Rhonda McCullough, and they were blessed with one child named Je’Niece McCullough-Childress.
His passion for acting was influenced by
The Three Stooges
and listening to his favorite comedians like Redd Foxx and Richard Pryor. He began his career as a stand-up comedian at the Cotton Club in Chicago. At 32, he won in the comedy search contest called the Miller Lite, and since then, he gained popularity as a comedian. His first breakthrough happened after he performed in the television series, Def Comedy Jam on HBO.
could not calm the aggressive crowd and Bernie went onstage and told the crowd, “I ain’t scared o’ you mothafuckas”. His comedy and boldness when on stage carved his niche in the entertainment world. In 1994, he did a small role as Uncle Vester in the comedy film, House Party 3. Later, he had a talk show entitled Midnight Mac on HBO. His breakthrough came in the year 1995 through the American stoner buddy crime comedy film, Friday, which stars
and DJ Pooh in the lead roles. This was followed by his first starring role in the comedy-drama film, The Players Club, in 1998. He played as Dollar Bill in the film, the owner of The Players Club, who got threatened by St. Louis, a loan shark.
In the year 2001, he played as Frank Catton, a con man who works in a casino, in the comedy heist film, Ocean’s Eleven, alongside
. Bernie did his very own semi-autobiographical sitcom entitled The Bernie Mac Show on Fox channel. He played as the custodian of his sister’s children when she enters the rehabilitation. The show consists of several events that happened in his real life. It was renewed post the 2005-2006 seasons and the finale happened in April 2006. The Bernie Mac Show earned the 2001 Peabody Award, Writing in a Comedy Series, Humanitas Prize and three Outstanding Comedy Series awards at the NAACP Image Awards. He also bagged the Television Critics Association for Individual Achievement in a Comedy and the Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series at the NAACP Image Awards for four consecutive years. He replaced
in playing the role of Bosley in Charlie’s Angels’ sequel entitled Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle in 2003. In the same year, Bernie played as a villain in the black comedy film, Bad Santa and was starred in the sports comedy film, Mr. 3000, as a retired baseball player in 2004. He acted as Percy Jones in the 2005 comedy film, Guess Who. Bernie was seen as car sales person in the sci-fi action film, Transformers in 2007. Besides acting, he also hosted the reality show, Last Comic Standing.
His voice was used by Zuba’s character in the computer-animated comedy film, Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa in 2008. In the same year, he was starred alongside Samuel Jackson in the blockbuster musical comedy film,
. Bernie’s last film role was from the ensemble comedy film, Old Dogs in 2009, together with
. On August 9, 2008, a year before this film was released, Bernie died due to complications of Pneumonia. In his final years, he openly says that he is suffering from Sarcoidosis, which particularly attacked his lungs. 7,000 people attended his public funeral including
, Samuel Jackson,
and a lot more.