Cedric the Entertainer

Cedric Antonio Kyles (born April 24, 1964), better known by his stage name Cedric the Entertainer, is an American actor, stand-up comedian, and game show host. He hosted BET's ComicView during the 1993–1994 season and Def Comedy Jam in 1995. He is best known for co-starring with Steve Harvey on The WB sitcom The Steve Harvey Show, as one of The Original Kings of Comedy, and for starring as Eddie Walker in Barbershop. He hosted the 12th season of the daytime version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire in 2013–14 and starred in the TV Land original series The Soul Man, which aired from 2012 to 2016. He has also done voice work for Ice Age, the Madagascar film series, Charlotte's Web, Planes and Planes: Fire & Rescue. He currently stars on the CBS sitcom The Neighborhood. In 2019, he received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.[2]

Cedric the Entertainer
Cedric in 2013
Birth nameCedric Antonio Kyles
Born (1964-04-24) April 24, 1964 (age 58)
Jefferson City, Missouri, U.S.
MediumStand-up, television, film
Alma materSoutheast Missouri State University[1]
Years active1987–present
GenresObservational comedy, blue comedy, surreal humor, insult comedy
Subject(s)African-American culture, everyday life, human sexuality, pop culture, race relations, racism, self-deprecation
Lorna Wells
(m. 1999)

Early lifeEdit

Cedric was born on April 24, 1964 in Jefferson City, Missouri, the son of Rosetta (née Boyce), a schoolteacher, and Kittrell Kyles, an employee of The Missouri Pacific Railroad.[3][4] He has a younger sister, Sharita Kyles Wilson, a communications professor at Pepperdine University in Malibu, California.[5][6]

Cedric was raised in Caruthersville, Missouri, but after junior high school he moved to Berkeley, Missouri, a northern suburb of St. Louis. He is a graduate of Berkeley High School.[7]

He earned a degree in communications from Southeast Missouri State University.[1]


In 1995, Cedric moved into acting, auditioning for and receiving his first-ever role as The Cowardly Lion in the 1995 Apollo Theater Revival of The Wiz. He expanded his career by playing Steve Harvey's friend Cedric Jackie Robinson on The Steve Harvey Show. He then began appearing in films, including Barbershop, Barbershop 2: Back in Business, Ride, Serving Sara, Johnson Family Vacation, Intolerable Cruelty, Man of the House, Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events, Madagascar, Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa, Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted and Be Cool. He was the subject of controversy when his Barbershop character made unpopular remarks about Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks.[8] These comments were spoken in character, as part of the script; he has never apologized for them. In Madagascar, he voiced Maurice the aye aye. In October 2005, he joined the Champ Car auto racing series as a part owner.[9] He appeared in the movie Charlotte's Web as the voice of Golly the gander.

While his acting career grew, Cedric continued to do stand-up and traveled the country as one of the Kings of Comedy headliners with Steve Harvey, D. L. Hughley and Bernie Mac. The act was later made into a Spike Lee film, The Original Kings of Comedy. Cedric had his own sketch comedy show, Cedric the Entertainer Presents, but after being renewed for a second season, it was canceled by Fox before the season began. He took time to write a book, Grown-A$$ Man.[10] He then appeared in the 2003 video game Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2004. His most recent HBO Comedy Special was Cedric The Entertainer: Taking You Higher. (Two of the background dancers from the special were Kamilah Barrett and Sandra Colton, who were finalists in Fox's So You Think You Can Dance.) He also recorded comedic interludes on two multi-platinum selling albums, Nelly's Country Grammar (2000) and Jay-Z's The Black Album (2003).

Cedric at the premiere of Johnson Family Vacation in March 2004

In the 2007 comedy film Code Name: The Cleaner, Cedric plays Jake, a janitor with amnesia who may be a secret undercover government agent involved in an illegal arms conspiracy. He starred in the 2008 films Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins and Street Kings.

Cedric appeared as the lead comedian at the White House Correspondents Dinner, but jokingly remarked that he was unprepared because he thought that he would follow a humorous speech by President George W. Bush. He instead followed First Lady Laura Bush, who called him "hilarious" and "probably the funniest person" she had ever met.[11]

Cedric has won many awards, beginning with $500 in the Johnny Walker National Comedy Contest in 1990 and coming in first in the Miller Genuine Draft Comedy Contest in 1993.[12] BET named him Richard Pryor Comic of the Year.[13] He has also won four NAACP awards.[14]

He was inducted to the St. Louis Walk of Fame on June 7, 2008. His star is at 6166 Delmar.[15]

He was the special guest host for WWE Raw on September 21, 2009, in Little Rock, Arkansas. During the show, he participated in a wrestling match, defeating Chavo Guerrero Jr. by pinfall. The match also featured Santino Marella as a guest referee. Cedric also got help from an unknown wrestler dubbed The Sledge Hammer (played by Imani Lee) and Hornswoggle.[16][17]

In March 2010, Cedric made his directorial debut with Dance Fu, produced and funded independently by his company Bird and a Bear Entertainment with producer Eric C. Rhone. It starred comedian Kel Mitchell. Cedric made a cameo appearance in the film as a homicide detective. It was released straight to DVD on October 4, 2011.[18]

Cedric appeared in the Broadway revival of David Mamet's play American Buffalo.[19]

In a June 21, 2011, interview, Cedric said his latest reality game show, It's Worth What?, would air on NBC on July 12, 2011,[20] but the start date was delayed by one week to July 19. Starting in 2012, he played the main character in the TV Land original series The Soul Man, featuring Niecy Nash. The series ran for five seasons and ended in 2016.[21]

Cedric was the host of the classic American TV show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire beginning with its 12th season in national syndication, which premiered on September 2, 2013. "With his deep roots as a legendary stand-up comedian and actor, Cedric will bring his fresh approach and unpredictable fun to the show", said Disney-ABC Domestic Television president Janice Marinelli.[22] On April 30, 2014, Cedric announced that he was leaving Who Wants to Be a Millionaire after the 2013–14 season to focus on his busy schedule.[23] Terry Crews took over as host on September 8, 2014.[24]

Personal lifeEdit

Cedric is married to Lorna Wells. They have two children, Croix (born 2000) and Lucky Rose (born 2003). He also has a daughter, Tiara (born 1990), from a previous relationship. He continues his involvement with his high school by awarding a scholarship each year to a graduating senior through the Cedric the Entertainer Charitable Foundation, whose motto is "Reaching Out...Giving Back". Cedric majored in mass communication at Southeast Missouri State University and worked as a State Farm insurance claims adjuster and substitute high school teacher before becoming a full-time comedian. He is a member of Kappa Alpha Psi. In May 2015, he was awarded an honorary doctorate in fine arts and humanities by Lincoln University of Missouri (his parents' alma mater). In 2018, St. Louis honored him by renaming the street in front of the Kappa Alpha Psi Alumni House Cedric The Entertainer Way.[25][26]


Cedric at the June 2008 premiere of Get Smart
List of film performances
Year Title Role Notes
1998 Ride Bo
2000 Big Momma's House The Reverend
2000 The Original Kings of Comedy Himself Also writer
2001 Kingdom Come Reverend Beverly H. Hooker
2002 Serving Sara Ray Harris
2002 Barbershop Eddie Walker
2002 Ice Age Carl Voice only
2003 Intolerable Cruelty Gus Petch
2004 Barbershop 2: Back in Business Eddie Walker
2004 Johnson Family Vacation Nate Johnson Also producer
2004 Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events Constable
2005 Be Cool 'Sin' LaSalle
2005 Madagascar Maurice Voice
2005 Man of the House Percy Stevens
2005 The Honeymooners Ralph Kramden Also executive producer
2006 Charlotte's Web Golly The Gander Voice
2007 Code Name: The Cleaner Jake Rogers Also producer
2007 Talk to Me Bob 'Nighthawk' Terry
2008 Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins Clyde Stubbs
2008 Street Kings Winston 'Scribble'
2008 Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa Maurice Voice
2008 Cadillac Records Willie Dixon
2009 Un-broke: What You Need To Know About Money Himself TV film
2009 Merry Madagascar Maurice Voice
TV film
2011 Dance Fu Detective Also executive producer
2011 Larry Crowne Lamar
2012 Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted Maurice Voice
2013 A Haunted House Father Doug Williams
2013 Madly Madagascar Maurice Voice
2013 Planes Leadbottom Voice
2014 A Haunted House 2 Father Doug Williams
2014 Planes: Fire & Rescue Leadbottom Voice
2014 Top Five Jazzy
2016 Barbershop: The Next Cut Eddie Walker
2016 Why Him? Lou Dunne
2017 First Reformed Pastor Joel Jeffers as Cedric Kyles
2020 Poor Greg Drowning Narrator
2020 Son of the South Reverend Ralph Abernathy
2020 The Opening Act Billy 'Billy G'
List of television performances
Year Title Role Notes
1987 It's Showtime at the Apollo Himself
1993–1994 ComicView Himself Host
1995 Def Comedy Jam Himself 1 episode
1996–2002 The Steve Harvey Show Cedric Jackie Robinson Main role
2001–2005 The Proud Family Bobby Proud (voice) Semi-regular, 14 episodes
2002–2003 Cedric the Entertainer Presents Himself Main role
2006 Wild 'n Out Himself Episode: "Cedric the Entertainer"
2007 The Boondocks Cousin Jericho Freeman (voice) Episode: "Invasion of the Katrinians"
2009 WWE Raw Himself Special guest host, 1 episode
2011 It's Worth What? Himself Host
2011 Take Two with Phineas and Ferb Himself Episode: "Cedric the Entertainer"
2011, 2014 Hot in Cleveland Reverend Boyce Ballentine Episodes: "Bridezelka" and "Stayin' Alive"
2012–2016 The Soul Man Reverend Boyce Ballentine Main role, 54 episodes
2012 2 Broke Girls Darius Episode: "And the Pre-Approved Credit Card"
2013 Real Husbands of Hollywood Himself Episode: "Blackstabbers"
2013–2014 Who Wants to Be a Millionaire Himself Host
2014–2020 Power Croop Recurring
2015, 2020 Whose Line is It Anyway? Himself Season 11 Episode 1, Season 16
2015 Cedric's Barber Battle Himself Host
2016 Another Period Scott Joplin Episode: "Joplin"
2017 Master of None Kenny 'The Magnificent' Episode: "Door #3"
2017 Drop the Mic Himself Episode: "Niecy Nash vs. Cedric the Entertainer / Liam Payne vs. Jason Derulo"
2017 Nightcap Himself Episode: "Spinster Code"
2017 The Comedy Get Down Himself Main role
2017 Superior Donuts Reggie Wicks 2 episodes
2018–2020 The Last O.G. Miniard Mullins Main cast[27]
2018–2021 Summer Camp Island The Moon (voice) 11 episodes[28]
2018–present The Neighborhood Calvin Butler Main role; also executive producer
2018 Black-ish 'Smokey' 2 episodes
2018 Nobodies Himself 2 episodes
2019–2020 Power Croop 3 episodes[29]
2020 The Greatest #StayAtHome Videos Himself Host
2020–present The Greatest #AtHome Videos Himself Host
2020 Woke Trashcan (voice) 3 episodes
2021 73rd Primetime Emmy Awards Himself (host) Television special
2022–present The Proud Family: Louder and Prouder Bobby Proud Voice role[30]


  1. ^ a b King, Lynnea Chapman (October 10, 2014). The Coen Brothers Encyclopedia. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 37. ISBN 978-0-8108-8577-6. The New York Times characterized Cedric's performance [in Intolerable Cruelty (2003)]] as one in which he "delivers the crassest lines with what can only be called hammy understatement; his years of stand-up have taught him that less is all."
  2. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (July 28, 2015). "'The Soul Man' Picked Up For Fifth & Final Season By TV Land". Deadline.com. Retrieved August 20, 2017.
  3. ^ "Cedric The Entertainer Biography (1964?-)". Filmreference.com. Retrieved June 13, 2014.
  4. ^ [1][dead link]
  5. ^ "Cedric 'The Entertainer' Scores in Commercials, TV and Film with Down-Home Comedy", Jet, March 12, 2001. Accessed on December 29, 2009.
  6. ^ "Local News: Cedric "The Entertainer," to be pararde marshal (10/19/07)". seMissourian.com. October 19, 2007. Archived from the original on November 10, 2014. Retrieved June 13, 2014.
  7. ^ "Cedric the Entertainer: Biography". IMDb.com. Retrieved June 14, 2014.[unreliable source?]
  8. ^ Munoz, Lorenza; Braxton, Greg. "Black Leaders Angered by Scene Say 'Barbershop' Needs a Trim". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on January 12, 2016. Retrieved October 15, 2018.
  9. ^ "Champ Car adds some star power". sbsun.com. October 7, 2005. Retrieved July 10, 2021.
  10. ^ Christian, M. A. (2003), "Cedric the Entertainer shares views on his rising stardom, being black in Hollywood, and what he learned from Barbershop", Jet, 103 (18): 58–62
  11. ^ "Cedric the Entertainer at the White House". NPR.org. NPR. May 2, 2005. Retrieved July 10, 2021.
  12. ^ Stanton, L. (2004). "Cedric the Entertainer". Current Biography. 65 (2): 3–6.
  13. ^ Who's Who in America (70th ed.). New Providence, NJ: Marquis Who's Who LLC, 2016. 2016.
  14. ^ "Cedric the Entertainer". Contemporary Black Biography. 60: 35–37. 2007.
  15. ^ St. Louis Walk of Fame. "St. Louis Walk of Fame Inductees". stlouiswalkoffame.org. Archived from the original on October 31, 2012. Retrieved April 25, 2013.
  16. ^ [2] Archived September 25, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  17. ^ "The Masked Man from Cedric's RAW Revealed, WrestleMania in Atlanta?". Wrestlescoop. Retrieved June 13, 2014.
  18. ^ Silvestri, Max (August 23, 2012). "We found it on Netflix Instant: Dance Fu". Grantland.com. Retrieved July 10, 2021.
  19. ^ "Revival of Mamet's American Buffalo Finds a Broadway Home". Playbill.com. August 19, 2008. Archived from the original on May 12, 2009. Retrieved November 1, 2015.
  20. ^ Cedric the Entertainer prepares for Nashville and NBC The Tennessean. Retrieved on July 5, 2011.
  21. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (July 28, 2015). "'The Soul Man' Picked Up For Fifth & Final Season By TV Land". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved February 16, 2019.
  22. ^ "Cedric 'The Entertainer' to host 'Who Wants to be a Millionaire'". WABC TV. Archived from the original on April 11, 2013. Retrieved March 20, 2013.
  23. ^ "Cedric the Entertainer to leave 'Millionaire'". Usatoday.com. April 30, 2014. Retrieved June 13, 2014.
  24. ^ "Terry Crews Named New 'Who Wants to Be a Millionaire' Host". hollywoodreporter.com. May 7, 2014. Retrieved December 19, 2014.
  25. ^ Hoskins, Kelley (December 15, 2018). "Cedric the Entertainer has a street named in his honor in north St. Louis". Fox 2 Now. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
  26. ^ Cedric the Entertainer Street Renaming Ceremony. STL TV. January 17, 2019. Retrieved February 25, 2020 – via Internet Archive.
  27. ^ Pedersen, Erik (May 17, 2017). "Tracy Morgan TBS Series Gets A Title, Adds Cedric The Entertainer & Others". Deadline.com. Retrieved June 8, 2018.
  28. ^ Triplett, Steffan (December 18, 2020). "One Good Thing: A magically soothing cartoon that lets friendship last forever". Vox.com. Retrieved February 10, 2021.
  29. ^ Macrae, Grace (November 22, 2019). "Power season 6: Famous guest stars revealed in run up to huge finale showdown". Express.co.uk. Retrieved January 8, 2020.
  30. ^ Swift, Andy (February 27, 2020). "The Proud Family Revival Ordered at Disney+ With Original Cast — First Look". TVLine.

External linksEdit

Preceded by Host of TV Land Awards
Succeeded by