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Jordan Haworth Peele[1] (born February 21, 1979)[2] is an American actor, comedian, writer, producer, and director. He is best known for starring in the Comedy Central sketch series Key & Peele and for his five seasons as a cast member on MADtv. In 2014, he also had a recurring role in the first season of the FX anthology series Fargo. His directorial debut, the horror film Get Out, was released in 2017 to critical acclaim and box-office success.

Jordan Peele
Jordan Peele Peabody 2014 (cropped).jpg
Peele at the May 2014 Peabody Awards
Born Jordan Haworth Peele
(1979-02-21) February 21, 1979 (age 38)
New York City, U.S.
Alma mater Sarah Lawrence College
Occupation Actor, comedian, writer, producer, director
Years active 2002–present
Spouse(s) Chelsea Peretti (m. 2016)
Children 1


Early life and educationEdit

Peele was born in New York City, New York,[3] and raised by his single mother, Lucinda Williams, on Manhattan's Upper West Side.[1] His mother is white and his father is black.[4] He attended the Calhoun School in Manhattan and went on to Sarah Lawrence College before dropping out after two years to form a comedy duo with his college roommate and future Key & Peele comedy writer Rebecca Drysdale.[1]


Peele performing in 2012

Peele regularly performed at Boom Chicago in Amsterdam and The Second City in Chicago. He and Nicole Parker were well known for their musical duets at Boom Chicago. He portrayed a popular character called "Danish Supermodel Ute" during his time at Boom Chicago and hosted MTV's Comedy Weekend in 2002.

Peele appeared on the Comedy Bang! Bang! podcast as disqualified American Idol singer Jermaine Jones alongside Gillian Jacobs of Community.


In 2003, Peele joined the cast of MADtv for its ninth season. Around the time Keegan-Michael Key joined the cast as a featured performer, it was assumed that Key would be chosen over Peele. The two of them ultimately were cast together after showing great comedic chemistry. Peele performed celebrity impersonations, which included favorites Caroll Spinney (as the voice of Big Bird from Sesame Street), Ja Rule, James Brown, Flavor Flav, Justin Guarini, Montel Williams, Morgan Freeman, and Forest Whitaker.

Peele was absent from the first four episodes of his second season on MADtv. He made a cameo in "Weird Al" Yankovic's video "White & Nerdy" with MADtv co-star Keegan-Michael Key.

Peele was nominated for a 2008 Emmy for his song "Sad Fitty Cent", a music video parody about 50 Cent lamenting over his rivalry with Kanye West. The lyrics were, according to the music video, written by Peele, and he was involved in arranging its music. In 2009 he appeared in Little Fockers.[5]

Peele appeared in a viral video titled "Hillary vs Obama" (which was shown as a MADtv sketch) where he and a Hillary Clinton supporter (played by short-term cast member Lisa Donovan) argue over whether Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama would make a better president, only to get upstaged by a Rudy Giuliani supporter (played by Donovan's brother, Ben). Peele auditioned to be a castmember for Saturday Night Live when SNL producers were looking for someone to play Barack Obama (around the time when SNL and MADtv — and other scripted shows — were put on hiatus due to the 2007–2008 Writers Guild of America strike). Peele remained at MADtv, and the role went to Fred Armisen until September 2012, when Jay Pharoah took over the role.

After five seasons on MADtv, Peele left the cast at the end of the 13th season.

Career after MADtvEdit

In 2010, Peele co-starred in the FOX comedy pilot The Station,[6] and appeared with a recurring role in the Adult Swim series Childrens Hospital. He had a supporting role in the David Wain-directed comedy Wanderlust, which was released in 2012.

Peele and his former MADtv castmate and friend Keegan-Michael Key starred in their own Comedy Central sketch series Key & Peele, from 2012 to 2015. In 2016, the pair starred in and produced their first film Keanu.

Peele and Key have starred in two episodes of Epic Rap Battles of History. The first featured Peele as Martin Luther King Jr and Key as Mahatma Gandhi, while the second featured Peele as Muhammad Ali and Key as Michael Jordan.

Peele also appeared in a parody music video with Jane Lynch for Americans United for Separation of Church and State, playing the role of "state" in the process of breaking up with Lynch's "church".[7] Together with Key, he played an FBI agent in a recurring role in the 2014 FX crime drama Fargo. In an interview with People magazine, Peele stated that he wanted both his and Key's roles to add comic relief to the show.

Key and Peele will be working with Judd Apatow on a feature-length film for Universal Pictures.[8]

In February 2017, Peele's first film as director, Get Out, was released to critical acclaim, and grossed over $250 million on a budget of $4.5 million.[9] Peele will produce the HBO series Lovecraft Country written by Underground co-creator Misha Green, which will be shown through the lens of supernatural horror.[10]


Character Sketch First appearance Catch Phrase Notes
Dontel LaMontrose Inside Looking Out "Mmm, mmm, mmm"
"I love this woman!"
He is married to a white wife who makes racially insensitive remarks.
Funkenstein's Monster Dr. Funkenstein
Killbrain the Fury Astroman & Killbrain "ASStroman!" The arch enemy of Astroman who has to take on demeaning jobs because his elaborate plans fail.
Larvelle Dupree Real Mother****ing Talk He is one of Dollar Bill Montgomery's talk show guests.
Marcus Macleod Scottish Warlord He is a Scottish warlord who was violated by the English troops.
Melvin Dufrane 911 Police Report
Noodles Clownin' and Krumpin "Krumping!!!" He is an abusive krump dancer
Stingray Abercrombie and Fitch Season 10 He is an African American version of the Abercrombie and Fitch models/salesmen.
Ty Gray The Superstitious Knights "Man up!"
Tyrone Conkling Holly Meadow Estates
Leandro Kezeele Fashion Surprise


As a comedian, Peele counts among his influences In Living Color, Richard Pryor and Dave Chappelle.[11] In February 2017, Peele curated the Brooklyn Academy of Music film series "The Art of the Social Thriller", comprised of 12 films that inspired the making of Get Out, including the horror films Rosemary's Baby, Night of the Living Dead, The Shining, Candyman, The People Under the Stairs and Scream, the thrillers The Silence of the Lambs, Funny Games and Misery, and Rear Window, the comedy-thriller The 'Burbs, and the 1967 racial comedy-drama Guess Who's Coming to Dinner.[12]

Personal lifeEdit

Peele began dating Chelsea Peretti in 2013.[13] They became engaged in November 2015,[14] and, in April 2016, Peretti announced that she and Peele had eloped at an unspecified date.[15]

On July 1, 2017, Peretti gave birth to their first child, Beaumont Gino Peele.[16]



Year Title Role Notes
2008 Boner Boyz! D-Rock Peppers Short film
2010 Little Fockers EMT
2010 3B Rob Short film
2012 Wanderlust Rodney
2013 The Sidekick Sidecar Willy Short film
2016 Keanu Rell / Oil Dresden Also writer and producer
2016 Storks Beta Wolf (voice)
2017 Get Out Director, writer, and producer
2017 Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie Melvin Sneedly (voice)
2017 The Breadwinner Executive producer
2018 Abruptio Danny Filming
2018 Black Klansman Producer; filming


Year Title Role Notes
2003–2008 MADtv Various 94 episodes
Also writer
2008 Chocolate News Kelvin Melvin 7 episodes
2009 Reno 911! Three-Card Monte Guy Episode: "Extradition to Thailand"
2009 The Station Joe TV movie
2009–2010 SuperNews! Various voices 15 episodes
2010–2015 Childrens Hospital Dr. Brian 10 episodes
2011 Love Bites Eli Episode: "Too Much Information"
2012–2015 Key & Peele Himself / Various 54 episodes
Also co-creator, writer, executive producer
2013 The Mindy Project Nick Episode: "Mindy's Minute"
2013 Workaholics Mark Episode: "The Worst Generation"
2013 Comedy Bang! Bang! Tan Fu Episode: "Andy Samberg Wears a Plaid Shirt & Glasses"
2013 Axe Cop Super Axe (voice) Episode: "Super Axe"
2013 Modern Family Derrick Episode: "A Fair to Remember"
2013–2014 Kroll Show Ref Rondy / Various Characters 2 episodes
2014 Bob's Burgers Fanny / Sandy / Horace / Don (voice) 5 episodes
2014 Fargo Special Agent Webb Pepper 4 episodes
2014 Drunk History Percy Julian Episode: "Montgomery, AL"
2014 Robot Chicken Various voices 2 episodes
2015–2016 Life in Pieces Chad 3 episodes: "Pilot", "Prison Baby Golf Picking", "Ponzi Sex Paris Bounce
2015 Rick and Morty Second Fourth-Dimensional Being (voice) Episode: "A Rickle in Time"
2015 Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp Alan 3 episodes
2015 TripTank Various voices 2 episodes
2015 SuperMansion Bugula (voice) Episode: "A Shop in the Dark"
2016 The Muppets Himself Episode: "Swine Song"
2016 American Dad! Street Thug (voice) Episode: "Criss-Cross Applesauce: The Ballad of Billy Jesusworth"
2017 The Daily Show Barack Obama Episode: "Keegan-Michael Key"
2017–present Big Mouth The Ghost of Duke Ellington / various voices 10 episodes
2018 The Last O.G. Co-creator and executive producer

Music videosEdit

Year Title Role Artist
2006 "White & Nerdy" Black gangster "Weird Al" Yankovic
2006 "I Write Sins Not Tragedies" Clown Panic! At The Disco[citation needed]

Awards and nominationsEdit


  1. ^ a b c Zadie Smith (February 23, 2015). "Brother from Another Mother". The New Yorker. Retrieved May 9, 2016. 
  2. ^ "February 21, birthdays for Ellen Page, Corbin Bleu, Jordan Peele". Brooklyn Daily Eagle. February 21, 2017. Retrieved July 17, 2017. 
  3. ^ "Jordan Peele Biography". Retrieved July 17, 2017. 
  4. ^ Wolcott, James (October 13, 2014). "How Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele Have Broken the Comedy-Duo Mold". Vanity Fair. Retrieved 4 January 2015. 
  5. ^ "COMEDY CENTRAL® Greenlights Two New Series for the 2012 Season - an Untitled Sketch Comedy From Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele and "The Nick Show Kroll" Starring Nick Kroll" (Press release). New York, New York. PR Newswire. June 29, 2011. 
  6. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (January 14, 2010), "'Station' agents are Peele, Gallo, Zuniga". Hollywood Reporter. 412 (48):5
  7. ^ "Jane Lynch and Jordan Peele's Epic Church-State Breakup!". Americans United. YouTube. May 30, 2013
  8. ^ Mike Fleming Jr. (November 13, 2013). "'Key & Peele' Partners Team With Judd Apatow For Universal Pitch Deal". Deadline. Retrieved November 13, 2013. 
  9. ^ "Get Out". Retrieved March 1, 2017. 
  10. ^ Mike Flemming Jr. "'Get Out's Jordan Peele Teams With WBTV, HBO & Bad Robot For 'Lovecraft Country' Drama Series; Misha Green Writing". Deadline. Retrieved May 16, 2017. 
  11. ^ Bill Keveney (January 31, 2012), "They dare to make Obama angry". USA TODAY. Section: Life:5d
  12. ^ "Jordan Peele: The Art of the Social Thriller". Brooklyn Academy of Music. February 17 – March 1, 2017. Archived from the original on March 10, 2017. Retrieved August 13, 2017. 
  13. ^ "Andy Samberg's Latest Role Is Playing Cupid!". September 2, 2014. Retrieved 2014-11-24. 
  14. ^ Adams, Char (November 29, 2015). "Jordan Peele and Chelsea Peretti Announce Engagement on Twitter". People. 
  15. ^ "Surprise! Chelsea Peretti and Jordan Peele Eloped". People. April 26, 2016. Retrieved April 26, 2016. 
  16. ^ "Jordan Peele and Chelsea Peretti Welcome Their First Child". Retrieved 18 July 2017. 
  17. ^ "Complete List of Nominees for 2008 Emmys". E!. July 17, 2008. Retrieved September 27, 2014. 
  18. ^ Mitchell, Gregg; Strell, Jay (December 6, 2012). "2013 Writers Guild Awards Television, News, Radio, Promotional Writing, and Graphic Animation Nominees Announced" Archived 2016-03-03 at the Wayback Machine.. Writers Guild of America
  19. ^ "The Peabody Awards". Retrieved 9 May 2016. 
  20. ^ Aaron Couch, Arlene Washington (February 22, 2014). "NAACP Image Awards: The Winners". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved February 22, 2014. 
  21. ^ "Amy Poehler, Seth Rogen win American Comedy Awards". Entertainment Weekly. May 9, 2014. Retrieved September 26, 2014. 
  22. ^ "2014 Emmy Nominations: 'Breaking Bad,' 'True Detective' Among the Honored". New York Times. July 10, 2014. Retrieved July 10, 2014. 
  23. ^ Toomey, Alyssa (November 4, 2014). "Jennifer Lawrence, Shailene Woodley and Robert Downey Jr. Among People's Choice Nominees, Plus Find Out Who's Hosting!". E! Online. Retrieved November 8, 2014. 
  24. ^ Jue, Teresa (December 9, 2014). "NAACP Image Awards announce nominations for film and TV". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved December 11, 2014. 
  25. ^ "67th Primetime Emmy Award Nominations" (PDF). Retrieved July 18, 2015. 
  26. ^ "The 22nd Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards". Screen Actors Guild Awards. Retrieved February 8, 2016. 
  27. ^ "'Creed,' 'Empire' Top NAACP Image Award Nominations; Full List". The Hollywood Reporter. 4 February 2016. Retrieved 27 February 2016. 
  28. ^ "68th Primetime Emmy Award Nominations" (PDF). Retrieved September 23, 2016. 
  29. ^ Cox, Gordon (19 October 2017). "'Get Out' Leads 2017 Gotham Awards Nominations". Variety. Retrieved 19 October 2017. 

External linksEdit