Joseph Lawrence Mignogna Jr. (born April 20, 1976) is an American actor, musician, singer-songwriter, record producer, podcaster and game show host. He got his start as a child star in the early 1980s and is best known for his role as Joey Russo in Blossom and Joe Longo in Melissa & Joey. Lawrence also starred in Gimme a Break! (1983–1987), and the series Brotherly Love with his real-life brothers Matthew and Andrew, and for his film roles in Summer Rental (1985) and Oliver & Company (1988).

Joey Lawrence
Lawrence in 2012
Joseph Lawrence Mignogna III

(1976-04-20) April 20, 1976 (age 47)
Occupation(s)Actor, musician, singer-songwriter, record producer, game show host
Years active1981–present
Michelle Vella
(m. 2002; div. 2005)
Chandie Yawn-Nelson
(m. 2005; div. 2020)
Samantha Cope-Lawrence
(m. 2022)

Early life Edit

Lawrence was born and raised in Abington, Pennsylvania,[1][2] a suburb of Philadelphia. He is the son of Donna Lynn (née Shaw), a personnel manager and former elementary school teacher,[3] and Joseph Lawrence Mignogna Sr., an insurance broker.[4] He is of Italian, English, and Scottish descent.[5] His family's surname was changed to "Lawrence" during his childhood. He has two younger brothers, actors Matthew and Andrew.[6]

Lawrence graduated from Abington Friends School in Jenkintown, Pennsylvania, in 1994 and later attended the University of Southern California.[7]

Career Edit

Acting Edit

In 1981, when he was five years old, Lawrence landed his first acting role in a Cracker Jack commercial.[8] Three weeks before turning age six, he appeared on the March 31, 1982, episode of The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, where he performed the song "Give My Regards to Broadway" and tap danced.[9][10]

After appearing in guest spots on Diff'rent Strokes and Silver Spoons, Lawrence won the role of Joey Donovan on the hit NBC sitcom Gimme a Break! in 1983. He continued in that role until the series ended in 1987. 1985 marked Lawrence's theatrical debut with the release of Summer Rental. Lawrence provided the voice of Oliver, the protagonist in the 1988 Disney film Oliver & Company at the age of 12. From 1991 to 1995, at the age of 15, Lawrence co-starred in the hit TV series Blossom on NBC, playing Joey Russo.

Lawrence has also starred in the series Brotherly Love (which featured his real-life brothers, Matthew and Andrew Lawrence) and Run of the House and has guest starred on such programs as American Dreams and CSI: NY.[11] One of Lawrence's film credits is Urban Legends: Final Cut (2000).

Lawrence with the cast of Melissa & Joey

In 2006, Lawrence appeared on ABC's Dancing with the Stars. Paired with professional dancer Edyta Śliwińska, he placed third in the competition.

In May 2007, he starred in the Broadway hit Chicago as Billy Flynn.[12] He next hosted a dance competition show on The Learning Channel, Master of Dance, which premiered June 9, 2008.[13]

In 2009, Lawrence starred in the television film My Fake Fiancé with Melissa Joan Hart, which premiered on ABC Family with 3.6  million viewers, becoming the most-watched television film the rating season, sweeping top rank in its time period in key demos. In August 2010, Lawrence returned to television in the ABC Family sitcom Melissa & Joey, again opposite Hart.[14] Hart plays a woman who hires Lawrence as a nanny to help care for her incarcerated sister's kids. Lawrence's character is a former figure in the financial industry whose company came under investigation for wrongdoing and caused his professional life to be put on hold. Lawrence's brothers have guest-starred on the show. Matthew Lawrence played Tony Longo in season 1 episode 25 and Andrew Lawrence appeared in season 1 episode 26 as Ryder Scanlon's teacher, Evan McKay. The series was renewed for its fourth season and ended in 2015.[15]

Lawrence in 2011 at March Of Dimes

In 2012, he was contracted to be a Chippendales dancer for a special engagement in June at the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.[16] On March 19, 2013, Lawrence began appearing in the ABC reality show Splash, co-hosting alongside Charissa Thompson.

In 2022, Lawrence competed in season eight of The Masked Singer as "Walrus". He was eliminated on "90s Night" alongside Le'Veon Bell as "Milkshake".

In 2023, Lawrence resurged his Blossom catchphrase, "Woah!" by starring in the US Debut of VinFast's VF8 ad campaign,[17] writeups of which circulated publications such as Automotive News,[18] Ad Age,[19] MSN[20] and others.

Music career Edit

Lawrence has said that music was always his passion, and at the height of his success began a recording career. Lawrence was 16 when his debut album Joey Lawrence was released in February 1993. Produced by Steve Barri, Tony Peluso, Terry Lupton, and Ian Prince. Lawrence co-wrote some material, including the international hit single "Nothin' My Love Can't Fix" (#6 Billboard Hot 100 Airplay, No. 10 Billboard Top 40 Mainstream, No. 19 Billboard Hot 100, No. 13 United Kingdom, No. 68 Australia).[21] The song was used as the end-title theme from the film Cop and a Half; its music video received heavy airplay on MTV and MuchMusic, and Lawrence was invited to perform live on MTV's Spring Break, The Arsenio Hall Show, and the UK's Top of the Pops in 1993.[citation needed]

In June 2011, he released a single, "Rolled", which was available as a free download for one week on ABC Family's website.[22] In July, Joey released a second single, "Give It To Ya (Acoustic)" via Pledge Music.[23] In 2017 Joey started a band with Matt and Andy called Still 3. They released their debut single "Lose Myself".[24]

Podcasting Edit

In 2023, Joey launched a podcast called "Brotherly Love Podcast" with his brothers Andrew and Matthew.[25] It was launched through PodCo, a podcast studio launched by actress Christy Carlson Romano and focused on rewatches of completed television series by their former actors.

Personal life Edit

Lawrence married Michelle Vella in 2002; the couple divorced in 2005.[26]

He met his second wife, Chandie Yawn-Nelson, earlier while on vacation in Disney World when the two were teenagers; they wed there in July 2005.[27] They have two children.[28][29][30] Reports had surfaced in March 2018 that Lawrence and Yawn-Nelson had filed for bankruptcy in July 2017.[31][32] On April 6, 2018, the Chapter 7 bankruptcy case was reportedly settled.[33][34] Lawrence filed for divorce in July 2020.[26]

In August 2021, Lawrence announced his engagement to actress Samantha Cope whom he met on the set of a Lifetime movie directed by his brother Andrew and co-starring his daughter Charleston.[35] On May 1, 2022, Lawrence and Cope were married in California.[36] On September 9, 2022, they announced that they are expecting their first child together.[37] On January 16, 2023, they welcomed daughter Dylan Rose.[38]

Filmography Edit

Film Edit

Year Title Role Notes
1985 Summer Rental Bobby Chester
1988 Pulse David Rockland
Oliver & Company Oliver Voice role
1991 Chains of Gold Tommy
1994 Radioland Murders Frankie Marshall
1995 A Goofy Movie Chad Voice role
1999 Tequila Body Shots Johnny Orpheus
2000 Urban Legends: Final Cut Graham Manning
Desperate But Not Serious Darby
2001 Do You Wanna Know a Secret? Hank Ford
A Christmas Adventure ...From a Book Called Wisely's Tales Wolfpack Leader Direct-to-video film; voice role
2002 Trois 2: Pandora's Box Det. Anderson
2006 Rest Stop Officer Michael Deacon Direct-to-video film
2008 Killer Pad Joey Lawrence
Together Again for the First Time Carey Krzyznyk Direct-to-video film
2010 Sinatra Club Louie 'Pipes' Pepitone
2011 Hit List Lyle
2016 Saved By Grace Rick
Emma's Chance Kevin Chambers
Arlo: The Burping Pig David
Isle of the Dead Lt. Paul Gibson
2017 Girl Followed Jim
2018 Sk8 Dawg Mr. Hoffman
2020 Money Plane The Concierge
My Brother's Keeper Preach
Pardoned by Grace Scott Highberger
2020 The Office Mix-Up Mikey
2021 Roe v. Wade Robert Byrn
2023 Frankie Meets Jack Jack Shaw Also writer and executive producer
TBA Turning Tables Reid [citation needed]

Television Edit

Year Title Role Notes
1982 Scamps Sparky Television film
Diff'rent Strokes Joey Episode: "Big Brother"
Silver Spoons Joey Thompson Episode: "The Best Christmas Ever"
1983 Little Shots Pete Television film
Wait till Your Mother Gets Home! Chris Peters Television film
1983–1987 Gimme a Break! Joey Donovan Main role
1984 Young People's Specials Billy Episode: "Umbrella Jack"
1985 ABC Afterschool Special Mattie Episode: "Don't Touch"
1989 Adventures in Babysitting Brad Anderson Unsold TV pilot
1990–1995 Blossom Joey Russo Main role
1993 Olsen Twins Mother's Day Special Singer TV special
Almost Home Jeff Thornton Episode: "Girls and Boy"
Empty Nest Wade Episode: "Aunt Verne Knows Best"
1995 The John Larroquette Show Carly's Brother Episode: "Whipping Post"
Something Wilder J.J. Travis Episode: "Bergman of Alcatraz"
Prince for a Day Ralph Bitondo / Ricky Prince Television film
Wheel of Fortune Himself Episode #2398: Celebrity Week
1995–1997 Brotherly Love Joe Roman Main role
1996 Brothers of the Frontier Ethan Frye Television film
1999 Touched by an Angel Jesse Episode: "Fool for Love"
Horse Sense Michael Woods Television film; also co-producer
Recess Franklin Dudikoff Voice role; episode: "The Dude"
2001 Jumping Ship Michael Woods Television film
2002 Romantic Comedy 101 Mark Gibson Television film
The Zeta Project Dex Finley Voice role; episode: "Eye of the Storm"
2002–2003 American Dreams Michael Brooks Recurring role, 11 episodes
2003–2004 Run of the House Kurt Franklin Main role
2004 Love Rules! Michael Warner Television film
2005 Bow Matt Television film
Confessions of a Sociopathic Social Climber Ferguson Television film
2005–2006 Half & Half Brett Mahoney Recurring role, 9 episodes
2006 Android Apocalypse DeeCee Television film
2007 CSI: NY Clay Dobson 3 episodes
2007–2008 The Emperor's New School Dirk Brock Voice role; 2 episodes
2009 My Fake Fiancé Vince Television film
2010–2015 Melissa & Joey Joe Longo Lead role
2011 The Dog Who Saved Halloween Zeus Television film
2012 Hitched for the Holidays Rob Marino Television film
The Dog Who Saved The Holidays Zeus Television film
2013 Splash Himself Co-host
2015 Celebrity Family Feud Himself Episode: "Lawrence vs Lopez"
2016 Cupcake Wars Himself Contestant: runner-up
2017–2019 Hawaii Five-0 Aaron Wright 4 episodes
2018 A Mother's Worst Fear Brent Television film
2019 Celebrity Big Brother Himself Contestant / Houseguest: 9th place[39][40]
Dollface Himself Episode: "Mystery Brunette"
2021 Danger Force Himself Episode: "Vidja Games"
My Husband's Secret Brother Kevin Television film
2022 Call Me Kat Himself [41]
2022 The Masked Singer Walrus Episode: "90s Night"

Dancing with the Stars Edit

Week # Dance / Song Judges' scores Result
Inaba Goodman Tonioli
1 Cha-Cha-Cha / "I Like the Way (You Move)" 7 7 7 Safe
2 Quickstep / "I Got Rhythm" 10 9 10 Safe
3 Jive / "Blue Suede Shoes" 8 6 8 Safe
4 Waltz / "Take It to the Limit" 9 9 9 Safe
5 Samba / "Freedom! '90" 8 8 9 Safe
6 Rumba / "Father Figure" 8 8 8 Bottom two
Group Disco / "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough" No scores given
7 Foxtrot / "Singin' in the Rain" 10 9 10 Safe
Mambo / "Mambo No. 5" 9 9 10
Tango / "The Addams Family Theme" 10 9 9 Safe
Paso Doble / "Sympathy for the Devil" 9 8 9
Quickstep / "42nd Street" 9 10 10 Third place
Rumba / "Eternal Flame" 10 10 10

Commercial Edit

Theater Edit

  • Chicago (2007) as Billy Flynn (replacement)

Discography Edit

Studio albums Edit

Title Album details Peak positions
Joey Lawrence
  • Released: February 2, 1993
  • Label: Impact, MCA
74 25 39
  • Released: September 16, 1997
  • Label: Curb

Extended plays Edit

Title Extended play details
  • Released: August 28, 2017
  • Label: Entertainment A&R Media
  • Released: February 10, 2022
  • Label: The Art of Loud Recordings

Singles Edit

Year Title Peak positions Album
1993 "Nothin' My Love Can't Fix" 19 68 50 22 13 Joey Lawrence
"I Can't Help Myself" 27
"Stay Forever" 52 41
1997 "Ven Ven Conmigo" Soulmates
1998 "Never Gonna Change My Mind" 49
2011 "Rolled" Non-album single
"Give It To Ya" (Acoustic) Guilty
2013 "Our Time" Non-album single
2017 "Girl" Imagine
"Christmas Time" Non-album single
2021 "Turtle"
"Something Special" Guilty
"Give It To Ya"
"Under the Tree" Non-album single
2022 "Guilty" Guilty

References Edit

  1. ^ "Brotherly Love Podcast: Hollywood Director Asked Matthew Lawrence to do WHAT in His Hotel Room?! Ep 10". YouTube. April 28, 2023. Retrieved April 29, 2023.
  2. ^ Weckerly, Dan (March 11, 2023). "Yes, Montco Produced Bradley Cooper and Educated Kobe Bryant, But Other Luminaries Hail from Here, Too". MONTCO Today. Retrieved April 29, 2023.
  3. ^ Gliatto, Tom (March 15, 1993). "A Method to His Doofus". People. Archived from the original on October 20, 2012. Retrieved September 23, 2011.
  4. ^ "Grown Up Joey Lawrence Kept the 'Y' – Here's Why". Retrieved November 25, 2011.
  5. ^ Gostin, Nicki (July 26, 2010). "Grown Up Joey Lawrence Kept the 'Y' — Here's Why". Retrieved September 23, 2011.
  6. ^ Radovsky, Vicki Jo (April 23, 1993). "Stonecoldfox". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on October 22, 2012. Retrieved September 23, 2011.
  7. ^ Lipton, Michael A. (June 27, 1994). "Class of '94". People. 41 (24). ISSN 0093-7673.
  8. ^ "Brotherly Love Podcast: Ep 1: The Lawrence Brothers on Fame and Rumors". YouTube. February 24, 2023. Retrieved April 30, 2023.
  9. ^ "Johnny Carson: Adorable Little Joey Lawrence Wins Over Everyone". YouTube. March 31, 1982. Retrieved April 30, 2023.
  10. ^ "Joey Lawrence". Retrieved June 12, 2010.
  11. ^ Snierson, Dan (October 16, 2002). "' Whoa' Be Gone". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved September 23, 2011.
  12. ^ Gans, Andrew (May 4, 2007). "Joey Lawrence Joins Broadway's Chicago May 4". Archived from the original on October 16, 2012. Retrieved June 12, 2010.
  13. ^ Master of Dance Archived May 30, 2008, at the Wayback Machine,; accessed March 20, 2017.
  14. ^ Bockelman, Andy (April 1, 2010). "Melissa Joan Hart, Nikki Blonsky Among Stars To Appear In New ABC Family Shows". Retrieved June 12, 2010.[permanent dead link]
  15. ^ "Hart & Lawrence Land New Sitcom". February 2010. Retrieved February 2, 2010.
  16. ^ "Joey Lawrence – Whoa, I'm a Stripper!". TMZ. May 16, 2012. Retrieved May 16, 2012.
  17. ^ VinFast - It’s Time To Charge A Different Path, retrieved August 30, 2023
  18. ^ "'Whoa!' EV maker VinFast's U.S. ad debut features Joey Lawrence, and his catchphrase". Automotive News. August 21, 2023. Retrieved August 30, 2023.
  19. ^ "'Whoa!' EV maker VinFast's US ad debut features Joey Lawrence, and his catchphrase". Ad Age. August 21, 2023. Retrieved August 30, 2023.
  20. ^ "MSN". Retrieved August 30, 2023.
  21. ^ "Joey Lawrence: Billboard chart history". Retrieved June 12, 2010.
  22. ^ "ABC Family's Hit Comedy "Melissa & Joey" Returns With All-New Episodes, Premiering Wednesday, June 29 at 8:00 ET/PT". June 24, 2011. Retrieved July 8, 2011.
  23. ^ "Give it to ya". PledgeMusic. Retrieved November 25, 2011.
  24. ^ "Music". Archived from the original on February 5, 2017.
  25. ^ "How The Lawrence Brothers Are Making A Big Comeback In 2023 (Exclusive)". Toofab.
  26. ^ a b Jennifer Drysdale (July 18, 2020). "Joey Lawrence Files for Divorce From Wife Chandie After 15 Years of Marriage". Retrieved July 23, 2020.
  27. ^ Monica Rizzo (November 13, 2006). "Whoa, It's Joey!". People. 66 (20). ISSN 0093-7673. Retrieved September 18, 2021.
  28. ^ Sarah Michaud (November 13, 2009). "Joey Lawrence, Wife Expecting Second Daughter". People. Archived from the original on August 7, 2016. Retrieved June 12, 2010.
  29. ^ Sarah Michaud (March 4, 2010). "Joey Lawrence Welcomes Second Daughter". People. Archived from the original on August 7, 2016. Retrieved June 12, 2010.
  30. ^ Shannon Walsh (January 21, 2019). "Joey Lawrence Kids & Family: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know". Retrieved August 4, 2020.
  31. ^ Dave Quinn (March 9, 2018). "Joey Lawrence files for bankruptcy after accumulating over $355K in liabilities". People. Retrieved March 10, 2018.
  32. ^ Ryan Naumann (March 9, 2018). "Joey Lawrence Filed for Bankruptcy After Things Got So Bad, He Had to Sell His Clothes". Blast. Retrieved March 10, 2018.
  33. ^ Ryan Naumann and Daniel Goldblatt (April 9, 2018). "Joey Lawrence's Bankruptcy Case Comes to a Close, Several Creditors Get the Shaft". Blast. Retrieved July 11, 2018.
  34. ^ Sarah Hearon (April 9, 2018). "Joey Lawrence's Bankruptcy Case Settled, IRS Won't Receive Full Payment". Us Weekly. Retrieved July 11, 2018.
  35. ^ Ally Mauch; Aili Nahas (August 10, 2021). "Joey Lawrence Is Engaged to Girlfriend Samantha Cope: 'We Are Beyond Excited'". Retrieved September 18, 2021.
  36. ^ Nahas, Aili (May 1, 2022). "Joey Lawrence Is Married to Samantha Cope: 'I Am So Thankful!'". Retrieved May 2, 2022.
  37. ^ "Joey Lawrence and Wife Samantha Cope Expecting First Baby Together: 'So Blessed'". September 9, 2022.
  38. ^ "Joey Lawrence and Samantha Cope Welcome Baby Girl: 'Overjoyed with Gratitude'". January 20, 2023.
  39. ^ Porreca, Brian (January 13, 2019). "'Celebrity Big Brother' Cast Includes Anthony Scaramucci, Dina Lohan and Ryan Lochte". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved January 13, 2019.
  40. ^ Ross, Dalton (January 13, 2019). "Anthony Scaramucci among 12 new Celebrity Big Brother houseguests". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved January 13, 2019.
  41. ^ Schwartz, Ryan (November 15, 2021). "Call Me Kat Staging Blossom Reunion in Season 2 — Watch a Very Meta Promo". TVLine.
  42. ^ "Joey Lawrence – Chart History". Billboard. Retrieved May 5, 2022.
  43. ^ "Joey Lawrence: Joey Lawrence". RPM. July 17, 2013.
  44. ^ "joey-lawrence – full Official Chart History – Official Charts Company". Retrieved August 17, 2017.
  45. ^ "Joey Lawrence – Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved May 5, 2022.
  46. ^ "The ARIA Australian Top 100 Singles Chart – Week Ending May 1, 1994". ARIA. Retrieved February 22, 2016.
  47. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 0972". RPM. July 17, 2013. Retrieved May 5, 2022.
  48. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Nothin' My Love Can't Fix". Irish Music Charts. Retrieved May 5, 2022.
  49. ^ "Official Charts > Joey Lawrence". The Official UK Charts Company. Retrieved February 22, 2016.

External links Edit