Robert Townsend

Robert Townsend Trailers

Playin' for Love TrailerWhy We Laugh: Black Comedians on Black Comedy TrailerOf Boys and Men Trailer

Robert Townsend was born on February 6, 1957 in Chicago, Illinois. He is an actor, comedian, film director, and writer. In 1974, Townsend auditioned for parts at Chicago's Experimental Black Actors' Guild and performed in local plays studying at the famed Second City comedy workshop for improvisation. He enrolled at Illinois State University and a year and later moved to New York to study at the Negro Ensemble Company. Townsend had a brief un-credited role in the movie Cooley High (1975). His career hit mainstream in the early 1980s. This included stand-up comedy routines which appeared on cable television. He also appeared in small parts like the his role in A Soldier's Story (1984) opposite Denzel Washington. Townsend auditioned to be part of Saturday Night Live's 1980-1981 cast, but was rejected when Eddie Murphy was chosen instead. During the 1980s and early 1990s Townsend gained national exposure through his many appearances on The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson. Townsend established himself when he wrote, directed, produced, and starred in the comedy Hollywood Shuffle, his 1987 film about struggling black actors in Hollywood. The success of this project helped him establish credit in the film industry and he gained notoriety, which helped him continue to succeed in other films like The Mighty Quinn (1989) with Denzel Washington, The Five Heartbeats (1991) and The Meteor Man (1993). He created and produced two television variety shows; the CableACE Award–Winning Robert Townsend and His Partners in Crime for HBO, and the Fox Television Variety Show Townsend Television (1993). He also created and starred in the WB Network's sitcom The Parent 'Hood (1995). On the big screen, he has directed Eddie Murphy in Eddie Murphy: Raw (1987); Halle Berry and Martin Landau in B*A*P*S (1997); James Earl Jones and Bill Cosby in The Meteor Man (1993), which Townsend also starred. Other credits include; Love Songs (1999), a TV movie starring Louis Gossett, Jr., and Andre Braugher; the Disney family film Up, Up, and Away (2000); and the Showtime movie, Holiday Heart, starring Ving Rhames. In 2009 he directed Phantom Punch, the film biopic of Sonny Liston, with Ving Rhames in the lead role. During his career, Townsend has made history through being nominated for more than 30 NAACP Image Awards for film and television.

Most Popular Robert Townsend Trailers

Total trailers found: 31

B.A.P.S. Trailer (1997)

28 March 1997

Can two clueless Georgia homegirls with big hearts -- and even bigger hair -- find happiness, fame and thrills in the swank hills of Beverly? Anything is possible when you are B.

Eddie Murphy Raw Trailer (1987)

25 November 1987

Eddie Murphy delights, shocks and entertains with dead-on celebrity impersonations, observations on '80s love, sex and marriage, a remembrance of Mom's hamburgers and much more.

Why We Laugh: Black Comedians on Black Comedy Trailer (2009)

01 January 2009

Directors Robert Townsend and Quincy Newell offer this comprehensive and hilarious examination of the history, evolution and cultural significance of African American comedy in America, from the earliest minstrel shows to the latest HBO special.

Carmen: A Hip Hopera Trailer (2001)

08 May 2001

Based on Verdi's (Bizet's not Verdi's) classic opera and its all African American musical counterpart Carmen Jones, Carmen a Hiphopera is a modern retelling of the story of the tragic gypsy Carmen.

The Mighty Quinn Trailer (1989)

17 February 1989

Police chief Xavier Quinn investigates the gruesome murder of Donald Pater, one of the wealthiest residents on a Caribbean island.

Richard Pryor: I Ain't Dead Yet, #*%$#@!! Trailer (2003)

01 January 2003

This documentary praises comedian Richard Pryor by showing fragments of various shows Pryor made and having famous comedians talk about the importance and greatness of Pryor.

The Meteor Man Trailer (1993)

06 August 1993

One night Jefferson Reed gets hit in the chest by a souped-up chunk of meteor. So he can fly, but he's scared of heights.

Up, Up, and Away Trailer (2000)

01 January 2000

A boy is the only family member without superpowers in this Disney Film. The world depends on him saving his family from computerized brainwashers.

Phantom Punch Trailer (2009)

01 January 2009

From his discovery by a priest while serving time at the Missouri State Penitentiary to the infamous 'Phantom Punch' by Cassius Clay which effectively ended his career, the movie spans the years from 1950 to Liston's mysterious and untimely death in 1971.

A Soldier's Story Trailer (1984)

14 September 1984

In the towm of Tynen, Louisiana, a black Master Sergeant is found shot to death just outside the local Army Base.

Hollywood Shuffle Trailer (1987)

20 March 1987

Aspiring actor and hot-dog stand employee Bobby Taylor catches the ire of his grandmother for auditioning for a role in the regrettably titled exploitation film "Jivetime Jimmy's Revenge.

The Five Heartbeats Trailer (1991)

29 March 1991

In the early 1960's, a quintet of hopeful young African American men form an amateur vocal group called The Five Heartbeats.

In the Hive Trailer (2012)

14 December 2012

Sixteen-year-old Xtra Keys hopes to raise his son better than his boozy, razor-edged mother raised him, and he just might get his wish when he's thrust into an unorthodox alternative school full of underprivileged boys.

Taxman Trailer (1999)

16 September 1999

After a homocide that the police believe is over gasoline theft, a tax investigator discovers the Russian mafia is involved and that they are stealing millions in gasoline tax money.

Odd Jobs Trailer (1986)

01 March 1986

Four students who work on different jobs during their vacations in summer are tired of doing the same thing every year.

That's Adequate Trailer (1989)

01 January 1989

This mockumentary about fictional movie studio Adequate Pictures boasts an interesting cast. Tony Randall hosts, and James CoCo (practically on his deathbed) stars as head of the studio.

Cooley High Trailer (1975)

25 June 1975

In the mid-1960s, a group of high school friends who live on the Near North Side of Chicago enjoy life to the fullest.

Bill Cosby: Far From Finished Trailer (2013)

23 November 2013

Bill Cosby shares his hilarious new observations on life and family in this comedy special, his first televised concert in 30 years.

Playin' for Love Trailer (2015)

16 January 2015

Coach Banks (Robert Townsend) is used to calling all the shots for his championship high school basketball team and in his own love life.

Bill Cosby: 77 Trailer (2014)

28 November 2014

Standup special recorded on his 77th birthday.

Of Boys and Men Trailer (2008)

01 January 2008

Robert Townsend stars as the patriarch of a family devastated when his wife is killed in a senseless auto accident.

Rodney Dangerfield: It's Not Easy Bein' Me Trailer (1986)

01 January 1986

Rodney Dangerfield hosted this HBO special which includes fantastic performances by some of the best new talent of 1986.

Tao of The Golden Mask Trailer (2007)

23 June 2007

In the 70's, Langston Faizon Santisima, barely 18, left his native Cuba on an impossible quest- to direct a film starring Bruce Lee.

Edge of Outside Trailer (2006)

05 July 2006

A documentary celebrating maverick filmmakers from DW Griffith to Quentin Tarantino.

Mercenary II: Thick & Thin Trailer (1999)

20 July 1999

Mercenary Captain "Hawk" is in Acion again to save a hostage. But he and his team are betrayed. Nothing is as it seems.

Jackie's Back! Trailer (1999)

14 June 1999

A mockumentary of Jackie Washington, a fictonal star of music, stage and screen played by Jenifer Lewis.

Little Richard Trailer (2000)

20 February 2000

Biopic of the rock icon. Made for television

I Was a Teenage Faust Trailer (2002)

01 June 2002

15 year old Brendan Willy hates himself for being un-cool when he falls in love with the girl of his dreams.

Black Listed Trailer (2003)

21 January 2003

Alan Chambers (Townsend) is a lawyer and sick of his job. He corrals his friends into forming a vigilante group.

Livin' for Love: The Natalie Cole Story Trailer (2000)

10 December 2000

The true life story of famed singer Natalie Cole, daughter of Nat 'King' Cole. Gripping drama of her struggle with addiction and living in her father's shadow while still maintaining her own celebrity status.

Ratboy Trailer (1986)

17 October 1986

A failed window dresser exploits a being with rat-like features in an effort to make money.