Comedians are a mixed bag and it’s often a case of “hiding behind the tears of a clown” when it comes to their personalities off stage. From bold and animated to laidback and sarcastic, the personalities that make us laugh cover the whole spectrum of characterization.
Movie stars, athletes and the wealthy usually go for the luxurious and fast, so what do these often odd, quirky, outrageous and witty minds choose when walking into a car showroom?
Considered one of the most successful comedians of all time thanks to his stand up shows and his giant series The Office, Ricky Gervais’ career continues to snowball as he writes and appears in Hollywood productions. Off stage, his personality is that of an exited child, whilst on stage his personality is that of an excited child with an inflated head.
Larger than life with a personality the size of his bank account, Gervais goes for something rather sensible considering. German, reliable yet stylish, a black Mercedes C-class is a car you can’t dislike nor get excited about either.
Hugh Laurie, one of the UK’s comedy darlings, an actor who has managed to take the days of his university skits to being one of the US’s top paid actors. From the BBC’s A Bit Of Fry & Laurie and Blackadder, to Jeeves and Wooster and releasing blues and jazz albums, this multi-talented actor/comedian has been performing for over two decades. For the US and the UK’s younger generation, Laurie is best known as Dr Gregory House from the highly successful House series.
Discovering what car Laurie drove was a pleasant surprise. When cruising around Hollywood, Hugh really looks the part in his red 1966 Ford Galaxie – perhaps his love for Blues and Jazz influenced his choice?
This longhaired stand up comedian graces the stage with both Dickensian demeanour and vocabulary. He is extremely verbose and often uses the phrases, “The Swines!” and “T’is rhubarb!” His colourful presence in the press varies from drug abuse, sex addiction and his marriage/divorce to pop star Katy Perry. Aside from the gossip, Brand has appeared in many Hollywood movies and has also released a successful book entitled, My Booky Wook: A Memoir of Sex, Drugs, and Stand-Up.
So, does his colourful character translate to owning a colourful car?
Brand does own the ubiquitous Range Rover, but apart from a few cool rentals like a Lamborghini Aventador (which his friend dinged on a truck), he’s been spotted driving to yoga classes in an uber cool classic Ford Mustang.
This man is best known for his lead role in the BBC’s Blackadder series and as the bumbling but lovable Mr Bean. When the rubber-faced comedian isn’t causing chaos in his old yellow Mini as Mr Bean, Atkinson takes an entirely different breed of car (quite literally) for a spin.
Once worth £3M, Atkinson unfortunately had to claim has £910,000 to fix his McLaren F1 after crashing it near Peterborough. Whilst he escaped with just a broken shoulder, the 240-mph supercar took on a lot more damage – nearly all of the rear was destroyed whilst the 6.1-L lump sat 20 yards away. Experts estimated it would set back Atkinson £60,000 a year in insurance.
It’s no secret this comedian, actor, writer and producer loves cars. Famed for playing himself in the semi-fictional comedy series Seinfeld, a sitcom he co-wrote with Larry David, Jerry has done everything from stand-up to political contributions.
Owning a prestigious collection of cars leaves me at a bit of a loose end when picking one for this article; however, his simply and aptly titled series, Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee generously displays his fleet whilst he picks up comedians and interviews them in the chosen car.
Yes, his surname is Carr, and yes, if I were a cheap tabloid reporter I would be all over it, but I’m not, thankfully. Jimmy Carr is an original and very witty act, known for his dark humour, deadpan delivery and edgy one-liners. With his child-like looks, schoolboy hair and smart attire, he looks privately educated, which he was. Cambridge, to be exact, and it shows in his comedy act.
When it comes to cars, Jimmy can drive; he proved it on the BBC’s Top Gear by setting the fastest lap around their test track in ‘The Reasonably Priced Car’. When he’s off screen, Carr likes the comfort and power combination of the Bentley Continental.
The highly gifted and articulate Stephen Fry is another British comedy darling, a national treasure known for his ridiculously broad and rich vocabulary. From making up the second half of A Bit Of Fry & Laurie, starring in Blackadder and Jeeves & Wooster with Hugh after his University days, Fry has gone on to write novels, essays, articles, plays… pretty much everything.
Fry only likes one car, and that’s his own personal London taxi. Like Jerry Seinfeld, Fry recorded a multi-part documentary in which he uses his car, a road series called Fry in America. Sucking in, absorbing and expressing his views on various American cultures, Fry takes the viewer on an educated ride across the States in his hackney cab.
For the younger audience – anyone born after 1990 – Eddie Murphy started out as a stand-up comedian and found great success in doing so. This led to Hollywood and the roles we all know: Axel Foley in Beverly Hills Cop and Reggie Hammond in 48 HRS. Still very much a part of Hollywood today, Murphy now plays roles in blockbuster rom-coms and children’s movies.
Over the past three decades in the business, Murphy has owned many great cars, from his Cadillac Escalade to his Rolls Royce Phantom, his Aston Martin Rapide to his Mercedes SLR, his choice is either big or fast or both. Pictured above, the comedy actor is pictured with his stunning black Mercedes SLS AMG. With a red interior and red callipers, this is one hot German.
Michael McIntyre is an English comedian, who in 2012 was reported to be the highest-grossing comedian on the planet. His DVDs, Live and Laughing, Hello Wembley and Showtime, have sold a combined total of over three million copies in the UK alone.
Despite once being on the verge of bankruptcy, his observational style humour packed into his DVDs sales and the £8M earned just from his live shows has seen this comedian’s life go from rags to riches in a relatively short period of time.
What better way for a Brit to splash his cash than on an £80,000 Jaguar? McIntyre was snapped admiring his Jag XK not far from his north London home. The big cat has a V8 5.0-L heart that sees it pounce from 0-60-mph in 4.6 seconds.
Steve Coogan started his career as a stand up, where his multi character act ended up on TV. From then on, Coogan wrote the classic British comedy, I’m Alan Partridge.
When it comes to cars, Coogan is best known driving a Rover and a Lexus as the Norfolk DJ Alan Partridge. Not as well known, Coogan spent some time in a far cooler 1973 Ford Mustang Mach 1 in his series Saxondale.
So what does this multi-personality actually drive of screen?
When he’s not being caught for speeding in his Range Rover, Coogan drives a Porsche 911 Carrera 4 – this was after his brother totalled his £100,000 Ferrari. Coogan has an enviable collection and once told The Guardian, “I won’t let anyone eat in my Porsche 911 unless it’s dried food and they’re very, very careful. I’m more concerned about passengers eating in my 1995 Mercedes e280, because it has fabric seats, woven with tweed-type material. I just won’t allow it, ever.”
So despite the eclectic mix of personalities and characters that all make us laugh, all appear to have style and flair when choosing their cars.