Jim Norton (comedian)

Jim Norton (comedian)
Jim Norton

Jim Norton, after a performance at Helium Comedy Club in Portland, Oregon, on Feb. 25, 2011
Birth name James Joseph Norton, Jr.
Born July 19, 1968 (1968-07-19) (age 43)
Bayonne, New Jersey, U.S.
Medium Stand-up, radio, television
Nationality American
Years active 1990–present
Genres Cringe humor, black comedy, satire, observational comedy
Subject(s) Human sexuality, self-deprecation
Influences Richard Pryor, George Carlin, Sam Kinison, Woody Allen, Don Rickles, Samuel Beckett, Edmund Muskie
Notable works and roles Opie and Anthony
Lucky Louie
Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn
Red Eye w/ Greg Gutfeld
The Jay Leno Show
Chelsea Lately

James Joseph "Jim" Norton, Jr. (born July 19, 1968) is an American stand-up comedian, radio personality, author, and actor. He is an on-air personality, often dubbed the 'third mic' on The Opie and Anthony Show, which airs on Sirius XM Radio. Norton has appeared on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno six times and on the Late Show with David Letterman, filmed an HBO stand-up special for the series One Night Stand as well as his special "Monster Rain", co-starred in the short-lived HBO sitcom Lucky Louie and had cameos in the films Spider-Man, Zack and Miri Make a Porno and Courting Condi.

Norton hosted a four episode stand-up showcase for HBO titled Down and Dirty with Jim Norton and appeared on The Comedy Central Roast of Bob Saget and Gabriel Iglesias. He was also in Jerry Seinfeld's 2002 documentary Comedian.[1] Jim is also a regular correspondent on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.


Early life

Norton dropped out of high school in his senior year and never graduated. He entered rehab soon after, at age 17. A couple of years later he attended Middlesex County College, where he earned a B in English, an F in Problems and Statistics, an F in Western Civilization and an F in Biology. A year later he obtained his GED, after being sober for around three years.[2]


At age 12, Norton decided he wanted to be a comedian after seeing Richard Pryor's special Richard Pryor: Live in Concert.[citation needed] Norton became a comedian in the early 1990s, when comic Jim Florentine helped Norton receive his first paying stand-up gig.


Jim, Anthony, and Opie walking to their XM studio from CBS Radio in New York City on July 25, 2006.

Norton became a regular guest on The Opie and Anthony Show on WNEW in late 1999 after several guest appearances by himself and along with Andrew Dice Clay.

In 2002, Norton began appearing on the show three days a week (Tuesdays through Thursdays). Before Norton could become an official member of the radio show, it was canceled by Infinity Broadcasting (now CBS Radio) due to the St. Patrick's Cathedral "Sex for Sam 3" incident on August 15, 2002. Norton has co-hosted The Opie and Anthony Show since it reemerged on XM Radio in October 2004. He is famous for such bits as "Frrrrrrunkis," "Uncle Paul," "Ted Sheckler", "Boardroom Jimmy" (a jargon-spouting stereotypical executive along the lines of Jim Cramer from Mad Money), "Jimcy" (parodying the title character of 70's TV show Quincy, M.E. played by Jack Klugman) "Bill Tetley", "Lyle 'Chip' Chipperson" and calling in and screaming "Ramone," as Steve from Yellowstone, when the show hosts irritating guests.[citation needed].

On December 2, 2009, when the Opie and Anthony Show hosted former Governor of Minnesota Jesse Ventura, an argument between Norton and Ventura erupted while the discussion was on the September 11 attacks (the official account of which Ventura questions) and the "counter-terrorism" measures against illegal immigration. Ventura was arguing against the INS practice of stopping individuals and asking for ID, because this is "in the [U.S.] Constitution". At some point, when Norton disagreed with him on this, Ventura suggested that Norton did not believe in the Constitution, to which Norton strongly objected. Soon after, Ventura walked off the air and the two exchanged explicit comments towards one another.[3]

On May 27, 2010, The Jim Norton Show premiered on Raw Dog Comedy. Norton hosts the program, which features other comedians as well as clips of live stand-up.


For two years, Norton was a regular on Comedy Central's Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn, He was selected to be among the final twenty contestants for the second season of Last Comic Standing, but had to back out due to contractual obligations.

His first half-hour HBO stand-up special aired on October 21, 2005, as part of the HBO Stand-up Series One Night Stand. In the spring of 2007, Norton filmed his second HBO stand-up special which aired live on October 13, 2007.

In 2006, Norton landed the role of Rich on the HBO series Lucky Louie. Rich is a foul-mouthed, perverted, "ill-informed", straight shooting character who lives with his mother and deals pot to high schoolers for a living, departing from the traditionally tamer sitcom model of a supporting character. Lucky Louie ran for one season before HBO opted not to renew the series.

In June 2008, Norton taped several episodes of The Gong Show with Dave Attell as one of the celebrity judges.

Since mid-2007, Norton has been a regular guest on Red Eye w/ Greg Gutfeld on the Fox News Channel. On June 21, 2010, Norton guest-hosted RedEye.

Norton appeared regularly as a correspondent for The Jay Leno Show as Jim Norton: The Uninvited Guest.[4]

In 2010 & 2011, Norton appeared in Louis CK's FX sitcom, Louie.


Norton frequently tours the country, performing at the most well-known comedy clubs. In 2004, Norton was voted best comedian and breakthrough performer of the year on the Cringe Humor website, which is dedicated to some prominent New York comedians. Norton frequently performs at Caroline's and the Comedy Cellar, and sometimes performed at the weekly alternative standup "Eating It" show at the Luna Lounge before it closed in 2005. He is friends with several other comedians, including Rich Vos, Reverend Bob Levy, Jim Florentine, Otto Petersen (of the R-rated ventriloquist act Otto & George), Bill Burr, Kevin Hart, Colin Quinn, Louis C.K., Robert Kelly, Patrice Oneal, Wendel Zimet, Gerald Sherbert, Keith Robinson and Artie Lange. Norton was the Best Man at Rich Vos's 2005 wedding to Bonnie McFarlane. Dom Irrera has described Norton as one of today's best comedians. Norton was the headline comedian for some dates of Traveling Virus comedy tour.[5] He returned to the 2007 tour as well.[6]

Norton performed at Bonnaroo in 2008.[citation needed]


In February 2007, it was learned on The Opie and Anthony Show that Norton was close to finishing a book believed to be an autobiographical collection of stories and anecdotes from his childhood and his comedy career. However, the final title of the book ended up as "Happy Endings: The Tales of a Meaty-Breasted Zilch" due to publishing conflicts. The book was released on July 10, 2007.[7] It reached #4 on the New York Times Bestseller list for hardcover nonfiction.[8] The book entered the Amazon.com Top 10 for books on the day it was released, peaking at #7. Norton has admitted in the book his love of literature, most notably his admiration of the Irish author, poet and playwright Samuel Beckett. Beckett’s minimalist, bleak and existential viewpoint immediately appealed to Norton's wry and often scathing sense of humor. An ex-girlfriend introduced him to Beckett’s work while in his late twenties. In an excerpt from his book Norton writes, “(she) would often quote passages from Molloy and Endgame while squatting over my chest…one night, during the awkwardness caused by the delay of her laxative taking effect, she looked down at me and asked, ‘Are you Waiting for Godot or Krapp's Last Tape you dirty boy!’ We both cracked up like silly geese and I knew I was in love.”

Norton's second book I Hate Your Guts came out on November 4, 2008. It reached #13 on the New York Times Bestseller list for hardcover nonfiction.[9]


Norton had a one line cameo in the film Spider-Man. As a surly truck driver character, Norton replies "He stinks and I don't like him".

Norton had a pivotal role in the film Courting Condi, counseling Devin Ratray on how to win the heart of Condoleezza Rice, and especially advising him "not to get your bag stuck between the gap in her teeth".[10]

Norton also appears in the film Zack and Miri Make a Porno, directed by Kevin Smith.[11]

In 2010, Norton appeared in the films Furry Vengeance and Kevin Smith's Cop Out.

Selected works

Norton's first CD was released in 2003 entitled Yellow Discipline. His second CD, Trinkets I Own Made from Gorilla Hands, was released in April 2005.

In 2007, Norton released his first book, entitled Happy Endings: The Tales of a Meaty-Breasted Zilch.[12]

Jim's latest album "Despicable" was released on March 8, 2011.

Personal life

Legal troubles

In 2000, Norton was arrested with Lewis Black and show producer Rick Delgado in connection with a stunt named "Voyeur Bus" involving a transparent bus full of topless women driving through Manhattan streets.[13] This bus rode around Manhattan while being broadcast on the "Opie and Anthony" radio show. Unfortunately, radio station management did not inform the O&A show that the bus' route was also the route that President Clinton was taking that same day. Twenty-eight hours after the arrest, Black and Norton were released.

On October 9, 2008, it was reported that Norton was being sued by Roy Hollander over his treatment during a phone interview on the Opie & Anthony Show.[14] On August 28, 2009, the New York Post reported that Hollander would drop his suit if Norton would also drop his motion to have Hollander sanctioned for filing a baseless claim, as well as being forced to pay Norton's legal fees.[15]



  • 1997: Brokers ...Homeless Guy
  • 2000: Sidesplitters: The Burt & Dick Story ...Dick
  • 2000: Ed .... (two episodes)
  • 2002: Run Ronnie Run ...Police Officer (uncredited)
  • 2002: American Dummy .... Eddie Barnum
  • 2002: Errors, Freaks & Oddities .... Paul
  • 2002: Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn .... Himself
  • 2002: Spider-Man .... Surly Truck Driver
  • 2006: Crooks....Paul
  • 2002: Rock Bottom .... Diesel
  • 2003: The Gynecologists ...Sheldrake
  • 2006: Lucky Louie (TV) .... Rich
  • 2006: Bully (Video Game) .... Officer Morrison
  • 2008: Zack and Miri Make a Porno ...Man being interviewed for porn movie
  • 2008: Grand Theft Auto IV (Video Game; Radio Personality) .... Chuck on "Just or Unjust" on WKTT Radio
  • 2009: Courting Condi
  • 2010: Cop Out
  • 2010: Furry Vengeance


  • 2005: One Night Stand (TV) (unknown episodes)
  • 2007: Jim Norton: Monster Rain (TV)



  1. ^ http://www.fandango.com/jimnorton/filmography/p484711 Retrieved 2009-04-02
  2. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RihAQS5sRIY#t=01m39s 2006-07-10 Opie and Anthony: 80-Year-Old Woman Gets GED After 20 Years Part 1 of 2
  3. ^ Huff, Richard. "Jesse Ventura walks off 'Opie & Anthony' show after verbal mud fest with Jim Norton". December 3, 2009. NY Daily News. http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/tv/2009/12/03/2009-12-03_jesse_ventura_walks_off.html. Retrieved 16 September 2011. 
  4. ^ http://www.nbc.com/news/2009/08/05/the-jay-leno-show-taps-comedians-to-act-as-correspondents/
  5. ^ Foundrymusic.com Headlines: THE OPIE AND ANTHONY TRAVELING VIRUS – 2006 COMEDY FESTIVAL
  6. ^ Foundrymusic.com Headlines: OPIE AND ANTHONY TRAVELING VIRUS COMEDY TOUR 2008
  7. ^ Norton, Jim (2007). Happy Endings: The Tales of a Meaty-Breasted Zilch. Simon Spotlight Entertainment. ISBN 978-1-4169-5022-6.
  8. ^ "Hardcover Nonfiction". The New York Times. July 29, 2007. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/29/books/bestseller/0729besthardnonfiction.html. Retrieved May 6, 2010. 
  9. ^ "Hardcover Nonfiction – List – NY Times". New York Times. 2008-11-14. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/23/books/bestseller/besthardnonfiction.html?_r=1. Retrieved 2008-12-04. 
  10. ^ http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/a282e475b7/courting-condi-sizzle-trailer-from-courtingcondi
  11. ^ [1]
  12. ^ Simon & Schuster: Jim Norton
  13. ^ "'VoyeurBus' performers to sue NYC over arrest". http://www.freedomforum.org/templates/document.asp?documentID=3136. Retrieved 2007-12-01. 
  14. ^ Daily News: Lawyer sues 'Opie and Anthony's' Jim Norton for x-rated jokes

External links

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