Martin Fitzgerald Lawrence (born April 16, 1965) is an American comedian, actor, filmmaker, and musician. He came to fame during the 1990s, establishing a Hollywood career as a leading actor, most notably in the films House Party, Boomerang, Bad Boys, Nothing to Lose, Blue Streak, Life, Big Momma’s House, and A Thin Line Between Love & Hate.
Lawrence ended up moving to New York City and found his way to the legendary The Improv. Shortly after appearing at The Improv, Lawrence won a performance spot on Star Search. He did well on the show and made it to the final round, but didn’t win. However, executives at Columbia Pictures Television saw Martin’s performance and offered him the role of “Maurice” on the television sitcom What’s Happening Now!!; this was his first acting job. Upon cancellation of that show, Lawrence found bit parts in various films and television series. His breakthrough role was as Cee in the Spike Lee film Do the Right Thing.