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See How Far Eddie Murphy Has Come Since His Days as a TV Comedian to a Bonafide Movie Star

Eddie Murphy is without a doubt one of the most celebrated comedians of his time. No wonder, the public was excited to see him come back to his post in the long-running NBC sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live (SNL).

After leaving the late-night variety show in the ‘80s, the now-58-year-old actor makes a historic return to host it himself. To celebrate the occasion, here’s a quick trip down memory lane retracing Murphy’s decades-long career in the entertainment industry.

Starting Young

Murphy played a variety of memorable sketch characters during his time on the show

Born to working-class parents living in the Bushwick neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York, the comedian’s childhood was definitely not an easy one. After the separation of his parents and the death of his father, he and his older brother Charlie reportedly had to spend a year living in foster care.

This experience, Murphy says, became influential in the development of his sense of humor. Another important factor in his interest in comedy is the late Richard Pryor, whose work the actor heard as a teenager.

By age 19, the young comedian has already secured himself a spot in the then-struggling SNL cast. Murphy joined the show in 1980 at a time when its original stars have all left. In the end, he was credited as helping in keeping the show afloat.

His tenure there lasted from that year up until 1984 when he left the program that launched his career. Murphy would only return on its stage during the SNL 40th anniversary special but didn’t perform a sketch.

Scoring Blockbuster Hits

Murphy with co-star Martin Lawrence in the 1999 film ‘Life’

While entertaining television viewers, the talented performer also began his movie career beginning with the 1982 thriller ‘48 Hrs’. Proving to be a good actor, he soon starred in a string of other smash-hit movies like ‘Harlem Nights’, ‘Coming to America’, and ‘Another 48 Hrs’, which is a sequel to his first film.

Going into the ‘90s, his career was given a revival by his starring roles on more family-friendly comedies such as ‘The Nutty Professor’ films, ‘Mulan’, and ‘Dr. Doolittle’.

His success carried on into the new millennium as he lent his voice for the hit animated film series ‘Shrek’. He also took on some more serious roles such as in the comedy-drama ‘Dreamgirls’. Murphy holds the distinction of being among the highest-paid actors in the world with his films grossing almost $6.7 billion worldwide.

What’s Up Next

Murphy recently played real-life filmmaker Rudy Ray Moore in ‘Dolemite Is My Name’

His total box office earnings are only set to grow even more as he gears on to star in the upcoming films ‘Beverly Hills Cop 4’ and ‘Coming 2 America’. The actor has also set his eyes on the online streaming niche as he pens a reported $70 million deal with Netflix.

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