Martin Knelman


The Joker Is Wild
Penguin CAN/99

The Life of Jim Carrey

In 1976, at a Toronto comedy club, a nerdy 14-year-old from the outskirts of the city turned up to make his debut on amateur night, encouraged by a doting father, himself a frustrated performer. Doing a bad Jimmy Stewart impression, he drew hoots of derision from the unmerciful crowd. Young Jim Carrey was so devastated that it took several years before he was ready to try again.

This is the astonishing story of how a charming misfit from a troubled family overcame a desperately insecure childhook - and went on to become Hollywood's biggest star of the 1990’s.

Martin Knelman tells how Carrey became a hot young comic in L.A. only to have his life and career reach an apparent dead end at age 25; how the TV series In Living Color gave him a second chance; and how an unlikely movie vehicle about a pet detective became Carrey’s ticket to superstardom.

Carrey has gone from one phenomenal hit to another - The Mask, Dumb and Dumber, Liar Liar, and The Truman show - yet the emotional stability that Carrey so painfully lacked in his childhood may continue to elude him.