8″ x 10″ Signed in 1996 on the set of Jungle 2 Jungle, New York, NY
Martin Short was born March 26th 1950 in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada where he lived and worked until he eventually graduated from McMaster University with a degree in social work. His comedic talents were undeniable, and his prowess for slapstick supreme, it was no surprise when he chose a career in comedy.
He started out small, with tiny roles on American television. He appeared in two series, The Associates and I’m a Big Girl Now. His first big break came in 1982, in the form of a role on SCTV: Network 90, the American version of the hit Canadian comedy series SCTV. After a year he returned to his country of birth to appear in the original SCTV. Short won both an Emmy and a Gemini for his work. The show brought him to the attention of the country and also to fellow Canuck-turned-television producer Lorne Michaels. Short was lured south of the border once more to appear in Michaels’ Saturday Night Live where he stayed for only a year. The year was enough however for Americans to take notice. Martin Short was ready for bigger things, and bigger screens
Short got his big screen debut in Three Amigos, a film which starred fellow SNL alums, Chevy Chase and Steve Martin. Since then Short has been on a steady roll and has continued to appear in comedic films. Martin has not quite managed to carry a film on his own, and usually appears in co-starring and supportive roles. One of his most recent successes has been the character of Franck, in Steve Martin’s Father of the Bride films.
Along with his feature film work, Martin Short has also always had a penchant for the stage. Shortly after his graduation from McMaster he appeared in the stage production of Godspell. Other Canadian stage productions include You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown (he played Snoopy), What’s a Nice Country Like You Doing in a State Like This?, The Apple Tree, Harry’s Back in Town and Second City. Most recently, Short appeared on Broadway in Neil Simon’s musical version of The Goodbye Girl. Short received a Tony Award nomination as well as the Outer Critics Circle and Theater World Awards for it. He has also starred in director Lawrence Kasdan’s production of John Patrick Shanley’s Four Dogs and a Bone at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles.
Between films and stage productions, Martin has been busy working with the television media as well. He has written and produced three comedy specials. Martin Short’s Concert for the North Americas was the first and won a Cable Ace Award. The second was I, Martin Short Goes Hollywood, which also won and Ace, and the third was The Show Formerly Known as the Martin Short Show which won him an Emmy Award. It seems that when it comes to television, almost everything he touches turns to gold, except of course the actual Martin Short Show which crashed and burned quickly (but such is Hollywood!).
Regardless of the size of his roles, Martin Short has still become one of the most recognizable faces in comedy. He perfected the art of body humour long before fellow Canadian Jim Carrey hit the big time. Short’s glory days were in the eighties but he recently popped up in Jungle 2 Jungle, A Simple Wish and Mars Attacks! and there’s no telling what the future will hold for him. A few big hits could return him to popularity, but Jim Carrey casts a big shadow and it will take a lot to break free of it. His fans will just have to settle for small, pleasurable doses of Martin. Short is also be launching his won syndicated talk show, and hopefully he will fair better than some of his predecessors.