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Christopher Ryan "ChrisHardwick (born November 23, 1971) is an American stand-up comedian, MC (Master of Ceremonies), actor, writer, musician, podcaster, television personality, and voice artist. He is best known for performing with Mike Phirman in Hard 'n Phirm, hosting Singled OutWired ScienceWeb Soup, and The Nerdist Podcast, and as the voice of Otis in Back at the Barnyard. In 2011 he began hosting Ministry of Laughs, a BBC America Britcom block, and Talking Dead, a live hour talk show on AMC.

Early life

Hardwick was born in Louisville, Kentucky, the son of former professional bowler Billy Hardwick and Sharon Hills, a real estate agent in Pasadena, California.[1] He was named after American sportscaster Chris Schenkel.[2] Hardwick was raised Roman Catholic, but claims to no longer be religious.[3] He grew up in Memphis, Tennessee attending St. Benedict at Auburndale K-12 School, then attended Regis Jesuit High School inColorado, and then Loyola High School for his senior year.[4]

Hardwick studied philosophy at UCLA, where he was a member of the Chi Phi Fraternity during his freshman year.[4][5] Hardwick was roommates withWil Wheaton for some time.[6][7] They met at a showing of Arachnophobia in Burbank, California.[6]

Career

Hardwick was a DJ on influential Los Angeles radio station KROQ-FM during the mid-1990s.[4] In the fall of 1998, he starred in the UPN comedy Guys Like Us; the show aired 12 episodes before it was cancelled in January 1999.

He appeared in Rob Zombie's horror films House of 1000 Corpses and Halloween 2.[4] He also made a small appearance in Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines. In 2010 he was featured in the film The Mother of Invention. Hardwick was in episodes of CSI: Crime Scene InvestigationMarried... with Children,[4] Boy Meets World[4] and Zoey 101. He was also a guest commentator on VH1's I Love the 90s series which aired in 2005.[4]

He appeared as a television host on hip hop group Little Brother's 2005 album The Minstrel Show.

Hardwick plays the melodica, notably as part of Hard 'n Phirm.[8]

Currently, Hardwick is a contributing writer for Wired magazine (since 2007), writes for Web Soup and Back at the Barnyard,[4] and makes regular appearances on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson and Chelsea Lately. As part of what Hardwick calls his "nerd media empire", he runs Nerdist Theater, an entertainment space at Meltdown Comics in Los Angeles.[9]

He entered into an equity partnership with GeekChicDaily in June 2011[10] to form Nerdist Industries.[11]

In February 2012, GeekChicDaily fully merged with Nerdist Industries and became Nerdist News with Hardwick operating as Chief Creative Officer.[12]

On July 10, 2012, Nerdist Industries was acquired by Legendary Entertainment. Chris was given the title of co-president of Legendary's digital business.[13]

Voiceover work

Hardwick voiced Alexander Hamilton in The Radio Adventures of Dr. Floyd and Otis in the Barnyard series (the character was originally voiced by actor Kevin James in the movie Barnyard: The Original Party Animals). He also provided the voice for Green Arrow/Oliver Queen on The Batman and was the voice of Glowface in The X's.[citation needed]. Hardwick also did voice work for The Minstrel Show from the rap group Little Brother and narrated the introduction video for the flash game George Plimpton's Video Falconry. His most recent voice is Sokka in The Legend of Korraseries.

Hosting

In 1993, Hardwick hosted the game show Trashed.[14]

Hardwick was first known as the host of MTV's Singled Out. While working on Singled Out, he met Jacinda Barrett, to whom he was engaged but never married. Later, he hosted the syndicated dating show Shipmates. As of October 2007, he has been hosting Wired Science on PBS, writing for Wired, and works as a reviewer on Attack of the Show's "Gadget Pr0n".

On June 7, 2009, he became the host of G4's Web Soup, a spinoff of E!'s The Soup. Hardwick had previously guest hosted The Soup's predecessor, Talk Soup.[15]

Since February 2010, he has been producing the "Nerdist" podcast, which he hosts with Jonah Ray and Matt Mira.[16] The podcast was named one of 2010's best by The A.V. Club[17] and one of the 10 best comedy podcasts by Rolling Stone.[18]

In May 2011, Hardwick signed a deal with BBC America to host a pilot of a panel talk show for the network based on the podcast. The deal also included Hardwick doing intros and outros for BBC America's new Saturday night Ministry of Laughs comedy block of Britcoms.[19]

Hardwick also hosted the 2011 SXSW Interactive Awards show in Austin, Texas.

In 2011, Hardwick began hosting Talking Dead, a live half-hour (later expanded to one hour) talk show companion series to AMC's hit series The Walking Dead. Hardwick interviews celebrity fans of The Walking Dead as well as members of its cast and crew, interacts with the studio audience, re-airs clips of the episode, plays games with and polls the viewers via the Internet, and offers exclusive clips of the next episode. Talking Dead is currently in its second season.

On December 24, 2011, BBC America aired The Nerdist: The Year in Review, a comedy special hosted by Hardwick. Celebrity guests included David Tennant and Simon Pegg with Hardwick in London; and Nathan FillionWil Wheaton, and Weird Al Yankovic in Los Angeles. In August 2012 Hardwick hosted a special episode of The Nerdist on BBC America to "debate" the effects of time and space with other friends and celebrity nerds. The episode was really an effort to promote the network's upcoming September 1 seventh-season premiere of its series Doctor Who.

Stand-up comedy

Hardwick is also a stand-up comedian and performs with Mike Phirman in the music comedy duo Hard 'n Phirm, whose half-hour comedy specialComedy Central Presents: Hard 'n Phirm premiered in January 2008.[20]

In 2004, Comedy Central used some of his material for an animated series called Shorties Watchin' Shorties.[21]

In 2007, both his solo standup and duo act were featured on the comedy compilation CD Comedy Death Ray. Hard 'n Phirm completed several songs for the 2009 Rob Zombie animated movie The Haunted World of El Superbeasto. Hardwick has announced plans to do a live stand-up album from his 2009 tour. He has toured as a featured comedian for Joel McHale.[citation needed]

In 2010, Hardwick appeared as a stand-up comic on John Oliver's New York Stand Up Show twice.[citation needed] In the same year, Hardwick performed on the Comedy Central show The Benson Interruption (starring Doug Benson).

On February 17, 2012, Chris Hardwick filmed Mandroid, his first one hour stand-up special for Comedy Central in New York City. Jonah Ray was his unaired opener.[22] The special aired on Comedy Central on November 10, 2012; extended and uncensored DVD, CD, and digital versions will be available in early 2013.[23] Tentative release date for these is January 22nd, 2013.[24][25]

Filmography

Year Title Role Notes
1998 Courting Courtney Tim
1998 Art House Weston Craig
2002 Jane White Is Sick & Twisted Burger
2003 House of 1000 Corpses Jerry Goldsmith
2003 Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines Engineer
2004 Spectres Sam Phillips
2004 Johnson Family Vacation Arson investigator
2005 The Life Coach Milos
2007 The Batman Green Arrow/Oliver Queen Voice only
2008 Chop Socky Chooks Chuckie Chan Voice only
2009 The Mother of Invention Drake Wooderson
2009 Halloween II David Newman
2010 Lego: The Adventures of Clutch Powers Bones Voice only
2011 Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close Estate sale organizer
2012 The Legend of Korra Sokka (adult) Voice only
2013 Grown Ups 2 Jimmy the Ice Cream Vendor Cameo appearance
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