Laugh Out Loud: 35 of the Best Black Comedic Film Actors

This cast of characters have set a new benchmark.

Richard Pryor

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Richard Pryor - One of the most iconic Black comedic actors, Richard Pryor turned heads and made fans and film cirtics pay attention when he starred opposite Diana Ross in Lady Sings the Blues.  The comedian broadened his fan base co-starring with Gene Wilder in the film Silver Streak. He later went on to star in many more major films. Pryor will always remain one of the greatest comedians/actors of all time.  (Photo: Paul Natkin/WireImage)

Eddie Murphy

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Eddie Murphy - Eddie Murphy first flexed his comedic muscles on the sketch-comedy TV series Saturday Night Live. Then he made his film debut with Nick Nolte in 48 Hours. Next Murphy gained worldwide appeal in the Beverly Hills Cop franchise. To date the film remains one of the all-time biggest domestic blockbusters.  Murphy went on to star in films like Doctor Dolittle and the animated film Shrek, which further expanded his reach and solidified his houselhold name.   (Photo: Jason Merritt/Getty Images For BET)

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Chris Rock - We first got a glimpse of Chris Rock's talent in Beverly Hills Cop II with fellow SNL alumnus Eddie Murphy. Next we saw him as Pookie in New Jack City. Then we saw him play a Caucasian man come back to life in Down to Earth. We fell in love with him as Osmosis Jones and couldn't stop laughing at him in the Grown Ups franchise. Now we're just hoping he keeps making films like Top Five, so we can keep cracking up.  (Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images for BET)

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Moms Mabley - Moms Mabley may not have been in very many films, but she sure paved the way for many comedians on this list. As the first woman comedian to perform at the Apollo Theatre, later going on to perform in the African-American vaudeville circuit, she's the mother of Black comedian actors for real! (Photo: Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

Redd Foxx

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Redd Foxx - Performing on the "Chitlin Circuit," Redd Foxx gained notoriety by performing his style of "blue humor" — a dirty version of the comic form that was deemed too raw for mainstream audiences. Later, Foxx received his own show, Sanford and Son, but he was also in films like All the Fine Young Cannibals, Cotton Comes to Harlem and the controversial film Norman...Is That You?. Foxx always pushed the envelope and always made us laugh. (Photo: Bettmann/CORBIS)

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Whoopi Goldberg - Straight out of the gate comedienne Whoopi Goldberg hit the nail on the head as the lead character in the Steven Spielberg-directed film The Color Purple. From then on the box-office hits kept coming with films like: Burglar, Clara's Heart, Ghost, Sarafina, Sister Act, The Lion King, Star Trek: Generations, Bogus, How Stella Got Her Groove Back, Girl Interrupted, Kingdom Come, Madea Goes to Jail and For Colored Girls! (Photo: Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images for The Weinstein Company)

Bernie Mac

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Bernie Mac - A true luminary in the comedy world, Bernie Mac was that rare pairing of raw and relatable. From films like How to Be a Player, Ocean's Twelve, Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle to Mr. 3000, his career had a very broad range.   (Photo: Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

Robert Townsend

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Robert Townsend - Believe it or not, but the actor/producer/comedian received his start in the film Cooley High with the likes of Glynn Turman and Mahogany featuring the lovely Diana Ross. Then he starred alongside Densel Washington in A Soldier's Story. He's produced films like Hoolywood Shuffle, The Meteor Man, Of Boys and Men, In the Hive and Playin' for Love. (Photo: Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images for BFCA)

Martin Lawrence - By far one of the funniest African-American comics in Hollywood, Martin's handling of physical comedy is uncanny. He gained worldwide popularity via his hit TV series Martin, but soon switched over to the big screen in films like Do the Right Thing, the House Party franchise, Nothing to Lose, Blue Streak and the Big Momma's House franchise.  (Photo: Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images)

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Martin Lawrence - By far one of the funniest African-American comics in Hollywood, Martin's handling of physical comedy is uncanny. He gained worldwide popularity via his hit TV series Martin, but soon switched over to the big screen in films like Do the Right Thing, the House Party franchise, Nothing to Lose, Blue Streak and the Big Momma's House franchise.  (Photo: Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images)

Steve Harvey

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Steve Harvey - Steve Harvey has been one of the few Black comedic actors to transcend the form and become a household name. Aside from his various television and film hits, it's worth mentioning that Harvey also has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. (Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images for BET)

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Kym Whitley

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Kym Whitley - Every time she hits the screen we can't help but laugh. She played a funny woman for years in films like Next Friday, Grown Ups, Nutty Professor II: The Klumps, Baby Boy, Deliver Us From Eva, The Hustle and Black Dynamite. (Photo: Moses Robinson/Getty Images for Ford Neighborhood Awards)

Kevin Hart

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Kevin Hart -  You might not remember that he starred in The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Along Came Polly, Scary Movie, Epic Movie, Fool's Gold, Death at a Funeral and 35 and Ticking. Then there's the successful films Think Like a Man, Ride Along and About Last Night. We're way beyond laughing at Kevin Hart's pain, we're definitely laughing with him. (Photo: Dana Edelson/NBC)

Chris Tucker - Chris Tucker went from starring in the hilarious Friday to causing all of our hearts to feel in Dead Presidents. A truly versatile comedian pushing the medium forward in everything that he does.  (Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images for BET)

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Chris Tucker - Chris Tucker went from starring in the hilarious Friday to causing all of our hearts to feel in Dead Presidents. A truly versatile comedian pushing the medium forward in everything that he does. (Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images for BET)

Photo By Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images for BET

Dave Chappelle

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Dave Chappelle - The world got a glimpse of Chappelle in The Nutty Professor as his character tried to out-joke Eddie Murphy. Then he led the ensemble cast in Half Baked and soon the world noticed his many talents. Chappelle then went on to helm his own TV series, which blew the ratings off of Comedy Central. (Photo: Jason Merritt/Getty Images for GQ)

Bill Cosby

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Bill Cosby - Probably one of the most influential comedic actors of our time, Bill Cosby laid the foundation for comedians making both an impact and being able to seamlessly move through TV and film. Collaborating with Sidney Poitier in the film Uptown Saturday Night, this film launched Cosby's already buzzing career. This would lead to A Piece of the Action, major TV deals and more. Cosby is still hailed as one of the few African-American talents to help change how we're viewed in Hollywood. (Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

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Wanda Sykes

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Wanda Sykes - We remember her role as Biggie Shorty in the ultra hilarious film Pootie Tang. The funny kept coming when she hit the big screen again in Nutty Professor 2: The Klumps, Brother Bear 2 and Ice Age. While we love her departure into TV, we desperately want her to come back to film quickly. (Photo: Steve Spatafore/Getty Images)

Mike Epps

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Mike Epps - By far one of the most exciting contemporary comedians, Mike Epps stole the show in Next Friday going on to star in films like Roll Bounce, Resident Evil: Extinction, and Sparkle alongside the late Whitney Houston. (Photo: Rick Diamond/Getty Images for BET)

Nick Cannon

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Nick Cannon - From his days on Nickelodeon Nick Cannon has always gone above and beyond. He made heads turn in the film Drumline where he played the character of Devon Miles. Next we heard Cannon in the film Monster House as the voice of Officer Lister. Cannon, like Cosby, has built an amazing and extensively 'N'Credible empire for which generations can draw inspiration. (Photo: Jason Merritt/Getty Images for Maxim)

Jamie Foxx

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Jamie Foxx - Carving out an amazing career for himself, Jamie Foxx has gracefully moved from the comedy stage to the screen  beginning in films like Booty Call and The Player's Club to his Academy Award win for his leading role as Ray Charles in the film Ray. (Photo: Michael Buckner/Getty Images for Playboy)

Tasha Smith - We're always ready to see what she'll do and hear what she'll say next! Tasha Smith brings life to every character that she plays and we can't help but fall in love.   (Photo: Bennett Raglin/BET/Getty Images for BET)

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Tasha Smith - We're always ready to see what she'll do and hear what she'll say next! Tasha Smith brings life to every character that she plays and we can't help but fall in love. (Photo: Bennett Raglin/BET/Getty Images for BET)

Photo By Photo: Bennett Raglin/BET/Getty Images for BET

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Tisha Campbell-Martin - Tisha Campbell-Martin is the definition of comedic timing. She's got the art of hitting a joke down pat. Starring in the films Little Shop of Horror, School Daze, the House Party franchise, Down to Earth and others.   (Photo: Earl Gibson/BET/Getty Images for BET)

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Tisha Campbell-Martin - Tisha Campbell-Martin is the definition of comedic timing. She's got the art of hitting a joke down pat. Starring in the films Little Shop of Horror, School Daze, the House Party franchise, Down to Earth and others. (Photo: Earl Gibson/BET/Getty Images for BET)

Photo By Photo: Earl Gibson/BET/Getty Images for BET

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Will Smith - Will Smith's talent and influence on Black Hollywood is on a whole other level. From Independence Day to Bad Boys, Smith has a way of lighting up the screen every time he's on it.  (Photo: Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for MTV)

Dick Gregory

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Dick Gregory - Dick Gregory revolutionized African-American film by having the delicate balance between comedy and seriousness. Arguably the "Jackie Robinson of Black comedy" and pentrate the white mainstream culture, Gregory received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame this earlier this month (February 2, 2015 to be exact). (Photo: Roger Walsh/Landov)

Niecy Nash - Niecy Nash never lets the big screen down. In every film she steals the screen with her infectious personality. Most recently she let that personality shine in Ava DuVernay's Selma.   (Photo: Mark Davis/Getty Images)

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Niecy Nash - Niecy Nash never lets the big screen down. In every film she steals the screen with her infectious personality. Most recently she let that personality shine in Ava DuVernay's Selma. (Photo: Mark Davis/Getty Images)

Photo By Photo: Mark Davis/Getty Images

Katt Williams

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Katt Williams - We immediately fell in love with Katt Williams in Friday After Next. Since then he's acted in Norbit, The Perfect Holiday, First Sunday, Lonely Street, The Obama Effect, Scary Movie 5 and School Dance. (Photo: Jason Merritt/Getty Images)

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Bill Bellamy

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Bill Bellamy - He was the player in Love Jones. Bill Bellamy always seems to bring his fun-loving character to every role. He would later star in How to Be a Player, Love Stinks, Any Given Sunday and Lottery Ticket. (Photo: Earl Gibson/BET/Getty Images for BET)

DeRay Davis

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DeRay Davis - We first saw him selling DVDs in the film Barbershop. We then saw the actor/comedian in Jumping the Broom, 21 Jump Street, G.I. Joe: Retaliation and A Very Larry Christmas. (Photo: Paras Griffin/Getty Images for HCE LIve)

Keenan Ivory Wayans

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Keenan Ivory Wayans - A pioneer of Black film and television, Keenan Ivory Wayans received his start under the wing of Robert Townsend in Hollywood Shuffle. Then Keenan wrote I'm Gonna Get You Sucka, Five Heartbeats, A Low Down Dirty Shame, Little Man and most recently Dance Flick. (Photo: Christopher Polk/Getty Images)

Shawn Wayans

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Shawn Wayans - A part of the royal comic family, Shawn Wayans is no stranger to stealing the screen with jokes. There's not much more that needs to be said except that we look forward to him and his family making more movie magic. (Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

Marlon Wayans

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Marlon Wayans - Marlon Wayans was destined to be funny. Coming from a wickedly talented comedic family, we fell in love with Marlon and the rest of his family through films like the Scary Movie franchise and Don't Be a Menace While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood. (Photo: John M. Heller/Getty Images)

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Damon Wayans Jr.  - Few things in the world are sexier than laughter. Wayans keeps us in stitches with comedic roles in New Girl and Let?s Be Cops. He?s a guy that will always keep you on your toes, and who doesn?t love that?  (Photo: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

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Damon Wayans Jr. - He can't help but be a comedic icon in the making; his last name is Wayans. He got his start in the film Blankman and from then on we all knew his name. (Photo: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

John Witherspoon

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John Witherspoon - Getting his TV start on The Richard Pryor Show, it wouldn't be long before the actor made the move to film. From Hollywood Shuffle, I'm Gonna Get You Sucka, The Five Heartbeats and The Meteor Man to the Friday franchise and The Hustle, Witherspoon's career has had the longevity that most Black actors, let alone Black comedic actors, have not had.   (Photo: WENN)

Mo'Nique

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Mo'Nique - All of the comics on this list have undeniable versatility. When we think of one comedian in particular who's got that and more, we think of Mo'Nique. While we definitely remember her for her films like 3 Strikes, Baby Boy and Soul Plane, we'll never forget her Academy Award-winning performance in Precious. (Photo: Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images)

Torry the Host - Joe Torry served as hot for the comedy event.(Photo: Leon Bennett/BET/Getty Images for BET)

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Joe Torry - He wasn't joking opposite Regina King, Tupac and Janet Jackson as the character Chicago in Poetic Justice, but we still remember how he's made us laugh in the past. We watched him party hard in both House Party and House Party 3. Then we witnessed him sort of make fun of love in the cult-classic Sprung. (Photo: Leon Bennett/BET/Getty Images for BET)

Photo By Photo: Leon Bennett/BET/Getty Images for BET

Tracy Morgan - It seems like all of the SNL alums grew to be major stars and Tracy Morgan is no exception. We first saw this funnyman alongside another comic on this list in the film A Thin Line Between Love and Hate and on the TV series Martin. Later he teamed up with Dave Chappelle in Half Baked. Most recently we heard him in Rio 2 and The Boxtrolls.  (Photo: Bennett Raglin/BET/Getty Images)

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Tracy Morgan - It seems like all of the SNL alums grew to be major stars and Tracy Morgan is no exception. We first saw this funnyman alongside another comic on this list in the film A Thin Line Between Love and Hate and on the TV series Martin. Later he teamed up with Dave Chappelle in Half Baked. Most recently we heard him in Rio 2 and The Boxtrolls. (Photo: Bennett Raglin/BET/Getty Images)

Photo By Photo: Bennett Raglin/BET/Getty Images