“Despite being almost limp from laughter, his audience gave comedian Jeff Dunham a standing ovation after his opening set last night…. His show combined prepared material with off-the-cuff witticism that show him to be one of the funniest comics working." — The Denver Post
Breathing life into an elderly curmudgeon or a purple human-like creature, a self-effacing, talking jalapeno-on-a-stick or even a bumbling, skeletal dead terrorist, Jeff Dunham is straight man to some of the funniest partners in show business. And also a genuine cultural phenomenon who amassed legions of loyal fans throughout North America and abroad with his thousands of sold-out arena, theater and comedy club performances, countless television guest spots and three top-rated specials on Comedy Central. He has sold more than 2.7 million DVDs and rapidly heads towards three million with his latest and chalked up more than 300 million worldwide online views of his clips on You Tube and other websites. He continues to win stellar accolades and phenomenal success for one simple reason: He and his buddies are funny as hell. Oh, and by the way… Jeff Dunham is a ventriloquist.
Dunham's comedic skill, impeccable technique and sleight of hand make him a master of his craft. In fact, audiences often forget there is a person behind the characters. “What makes this performer the best at what he does is the believability factor,” one reviewer wrote. “Dunham's characters have more personality than a lot of people I know.”
Hailed as “easily one of the funniest stand-up comics alive” by his hometown Dallas Morning News, Dunham has captured the public imagination and keyed into the current zeitgeist to become a best-selling comedy icon with the help of his hilarious and convincingly real sidekicks like Peanut, Achmed the Dead Terrorist, Jose Jalapeno and crowd favorite Walter the grumpy retiree. Hailed by “Tonight Show” host and fellow comic Jay Leno as a talent who “really is the best there is,” he has rocketed into the pantheon of top comedians thanks to a dynamic combination of humane warmth, a keen sense of the humor to be found in everyday life, and a sharp wit and cutting-edge sensibility that punctures the strictures of political correctness to leave audiences “rolling in the aisles” with “nonstop fits of laughter,” as the St. Louis Post-Dispatch notes in reviews of two separate Dunham shows.
The last year has seen Dunham amass a series of triumphs to add to the many stellar achievements already in his career. His current tour is expected to gross $25 million as his appearances consistently sell-out and second shows are frequently added as soon as the first is announced due to fervent ticket demand. He hit the two million sales mark with his DVDs “Spark of Insanity” and “Arguing With Myself” — as compared with average stand-up comedy DVD sales of 35,000 — and his new DVD “A Very Special Christmas Special” racked up quadruple platinum sales of more than 400,000 in its very first two weeks and is sure to add at least another million to Dunham’s sales tally. The premiere of his holiday special on Comedy Central drew 6.6 million viewers to become the cable channel’s most-watched show ever. He sold out the Caesar’s Palace Colosseum during the star-studded Comedy Festival in Las Vegas and Toronto’s Massey Hall as part of Canada’s prestigious Just For Laughs festival. And he recently released his first-ever CD, Don’t Come Home For Christmas, which jumped into the Top 10 of the Billboard Independent Album chart as well as the Top 100 on its release and also hit 1 on iTunes comedy CD sales chart along with Achmed’s Christmas song “Jingle Bombs” topping the iTunes comedy singles chart.
Jeff Dunham has enjoyed rapidly increasing popularity ever since Johnny Carson invited the ventriloquist to the couch on his very first "Tonight Show" appearance, an honor he shares with only four other comedians during Carson's 30-year tenure. He has been voted “Funniest Male Stand-Up Comic” at the American Comedy Awards alongside the likes of Jerry Seinfeld, Jeff Foxworthy and Robin Williams, and is the only person ever to win the prestigious “Ventriloquist of the Year” award twice. The proverbial crown of ventriloquism was passed to him when Dunham was recently interviewed for “60 Minutes II” by Candice Bergen — daughter of legendary ventriloquist Edgar Bergen — who proclaimed him “flat out funny!” He is a regular and popular guest on both “The Tonight Show” and “Late Night with David Letterman,” and Dunham and his suitcase posse of comedic characters also delight viewers on sports, comedy and country music TV shows, appearing on “The Best Damn Sports Show Ever,” “Blue Collar TV” and CMT’s “Fast Living” as well as “Hollywood Squares,” “Entertainment Tonight” and “Good Morning America,” among many others.
His popularity and sales power has also been spreading internationally. The DVD of “A Very Special Christmas Special” hit 1 on the Danish Entertainment Chart and is enjoying strong sales in the U.K., continental Europe and South Africa. “Spark of Insanity” reached 2 on both the Dutch and Swedish overall DVD charts on 3 in DVD sales at South Africa’s leading retail chain — all up against hit movie DVD releases — and it was the best-rated show ever on Comedy Central Holland. And the only two releases by an American on the U.K. comedy DVD chart are both Jeff Dunham titles.