Martin Lawrence. Date unknown.
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Martin Lawrence
Forecourt Ceremony held on Monday, November 19, 2001
Born: April 16, 1965, Frankfurt, Hesse, Germany
Age at the time of the ceremony: 36
Named after Martin Luther King Jr., Lawrence was born to parents stationed in Germany, the fourth of six children. With his parents divorcing when he was eight, Martin grew up with his mother Chlora, who struggled to make ends meet. The family lived in Queens New York, and Landover Maryland.

After dabbling in boxing while in high school, Lawrence wandered on into New York's The Improv, and began to do stand-up comedy. After appearing on Star Search, aired over CBS in 1987, Lawrence didn't win on the show, but he was offered the role of Maurice in 22 episodes of What's Happening Now, starring Ernest Thomas, aired in syndication. Several bits on television followed.

Director Spike Lee, always looking for new faces, gave Lawrence his breakout role as Cee in Do the Right Thing (released in July 1989). Lawrence then got a big role in the comedy House Party (released in March 1990) with Kid 'n Play. He got a supporting role in an unsold television pilot called Hammer, Slammer & Slade, starring Isaac Hayes, aired in syndication in December 1990.

Lawrence headlined for the first time in Talkin' Dirty After Dark (released in August 1991) with John Witherspoon, then he returned to do a bit in House Party 2 (released in October 1991) with Kid 'n' Play. He has a decidedly supporting role in Boomerang (released in July 1992) with Eddie Murphy. Also in July 1992, Lawrence became the host for 20 episodes of Def Comedy Jam on HBO.

Lawrence finally got his own television show, the highly successful Martin, aired initially over HBO in August 1992, for three seasons, then over the Fox Network, ending in May 1997, for a total of 132 episodes. Lawrence's very blue monologue as host of Saturday Night Live (aired over NBC on February 19, 1994) was cut out and the show banned Lawrence for life.

For those who were not able to catch Martin Lawrence in the clubs, he has left a number of concert films, the first of which was Martin Lawrence: You So Crazy (released in April 1994). The improv skills of Lawrence were encouraged by Michael Bay, director of Bad Boys (released in April 1995) with Will Smith. The picture was a roaring success. With all of this going on, Lawrence then directed, co-wrote and starred in the rom-com A Thin Line Between Love and Hate (released in April 1996) with Lynn Whitfield.

Now came movie stardom. Lawrence starred in a stand-up double Nothing to Loose (released in July 1997) with Tim Robbins, co-starred in Life (released in April 1999) with Eddie Murphy, and headlined the hit Blue Streak (released in September 1999) with Luke Wilson. He enjoyed a home-run hit with Big Momma's House (released in June 2000) with Nia Long.

Then came some duds: What's the Worst That Could Happen? (released in June 2001) with Danny DeVito, and Black Knight (released in November 2001) with Marsha Thomason. His second concert film Martin Lawrence Live: Runteldat (released in August 2002) was a hit, while National Security (released in January 2003) with Steve Zahn tanked.

Lawrence bounded back with Bad Boys II (which played the Chinese in July 2003) again with Will Smith, which remains his biggest hit film. Lawrence played a basketball coach in Rebound (released in July 2005) with Megan Mullaly, which flopped, while reprising his role as an FBI agent in Big Momma's House 2 (which played the Chinese in January 2006), faired much better. Lawrence did the voice for Boog in the animated hit Open Season (released in September 2005), and enjoyed another hit with Wild Hogs (released in March 2007) with Tim Allen.

Welcome Home, Roscoe Jenkins (which played the Chinese in February 2008) with Louis C.K., squeaked by, while College Road Trip (released in March 2008) with Raven Symoné, did OK business. Lawrence got second billing (under Peter Dinklage) in the American remake of Death at a Funeral (released in April 2010), and returned to the pay window for Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son (released in February 2011) with Brandon T. Jackson.

More recently, Lawrence has done ten esisodes of Partmers, with Kelsey Grammer, aired over FX in 2014. His third stand-up concert film, Martin Lawrence: Doin' Time aired over Showtime in September 2016). He has a role in the comedy The Beach Bum (released in March 2019) where Matthew McConaughey struggles with being a pitchman for Lincoln . . . Lawrence has signed up for two more Bad Boys films, the first being Bad Boys for Life (which had its premiere and played the Chinese in January 2020) with Will Smith once again. Same goes for Bad Boys: Ride or Die (which played the Chinese in June 2024).
Grauman's Chinese Theatre, Hollywood, California. Martin Lawrence Forecourt block. Executed by unknown, Monday, November 19, 2001. 48 x 36 inches.
Grauman's Chinese Theatre, Hollywood, California. Martin Lawrence Forecourt ceremony, Tuesday, November 19, 2001. Martin Lawrence smiles for the cameras after placing his hands in the cement. Photo by Vince Bucci.
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