Who Is Neal Brennan? New Details On The Comic From 'Comedians Of The World' On Netflix

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Who Is Neal Brennan? New Details On The Comic From 'Comedians Of The World' On Netflix

Comedians of the World on Netflix has already gotten rave reviews since premiering on January 1st. The series features 47 comedians from 13 regions, including Australia, the Middle East, and France, and airs in 8 different languages. Comics discuss how life is like in their area of the world, with some calling attention to homophobia, racism, religion, sexism, and motherhood.

Despite the many somewhat unknown comedians, there’s one comic you may know: Neal Brennan. But who is Neal Brennan? You probably know him as the writer and creator of multiple shows and movies, including Chappelle’s Show and Half Baked. But he’s much more than that. Here are 8 things to know about the comedian’s personal life and how he got his start in comedy.


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1. He has a huge family.

Brennan comes from a large Irish Catholic family and is the youngest of 10 children. He has five brothers and four sisters, and has said that his father’s side of the family was always funny, as were his five older brothers.

2. He’s always liked comedy.

Brennan himself has said that he began to enjoy comedy around 8 or 9 years old and knew he was funny. He’d frequently perform material for his classmates and looked up to comics like Jerry Seinfeld, David Brenner, and Richard Lewis. He’d also watch comedy shows in high school, and stayed up late to watch Late Night with David Letterman and The Arsenio Hall Show.

3. His brother is also a comedian.

Kevin Brennan is a stand-up comedian and writer who has written for Saturday Night Live and Comedy Central Presents. Neal would attend his brother’s performances and was inspired to seek a career in comedy after realizing how successful he could become.

4. He got his start as a comedy writer.

Though his first stand-up routine bombed, he eventually became a writer for various shows, including Singled Out, Bzzz!, All That, and Kenan & Kel. In 1997, he teamed up with Dave Chappelle to write the screenplay for Half Baked, which didn’t do well commercially but has since become a cult classic. Brennan also wrote material for the White House Correspondents’ Dinner in 2011.


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5. He’s a co-creator of Chappelle’s Show.

Together with Chappelle, the two co-created and co-wrote Chappelle’s Show, which became the most popular show on Comedy Central at the time. He was nominated for three Emmy Awards in 2004 for his work on the show as a writer, producer, and director.

But after Chappelle abruptly left the show, even after signing a $50 million deal for two more seasons, the third season never premiered. Brennan released the unaired sketches as “lost episodes,” and by 2012, he and Chappelle had reconciled.

6. He’s also a director.

He’s directed the movies Totally Awesome and The Goods, commercials for the ESPYs, and was a director for 10 episodes of Inside Amy Schumer.

7. But he’s acted, too!

In addition to writing Half Baked, he also had a small role in the film. He also appeared in sketches on Chappelle’s Show, and was in Get Him to the Greek.

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8. He’s part of a podcast.

Since 2011, he’s hosted a podcast with fellow comedians Moshe Kasher and DJ Douggpound called The Champs.

The podcast, according to Kasher, is “Doug dropping sound effects and beats over me and Neal kind of hosting an hour of ridiculous chat. We have a rotating black guy guest, there’s a different black guest every week.” The show has had Chris Rock, David Alan Grier, Blake Griffin, Wayne Brady, Sasha Grey, and Aziz Ansari as guests.


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Samantha Maffucci is an associate editor for YourTango who focuses on writing trending news and entertainment pieces. In her free time, you can find her obsessing about cats, wine, and all things Vanderpump Rules.