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9 Curious Facts About Jim Carrey, Who’s Now Ready to Retire

When thinking of the word “comedy,” Jim Carrey might be someone that pops up in our heads. With a career spanning over 4 decades, The Mask actor is a man of many talents. Not only can he act, but he can produce, dance, sing, and write, and he loves to throw paint onto a canvas. Not many people know the real reason why Carrey chose to start comedy — as it turns out, it all began with his mother.

Let’s take a moment to get to know the man behind the longest-spanning character he’s ever played, known as Jim Carrey.

Jim Carrey had a rough childhood and often recalls trying to lift the mood in the household.


Jim Carrey, a Canadian actor, is the youngest of 4 siblings. His dad, Percy, was a saxophone player but gave up on his musical career to become an accountant and support his family. His mother, Kathleen, was a stay-at-home mom, and Carrey recalls her not feeling well most of the time as well as suffering from hypochondria, which was observed at every family dinner.

The actor shared, “I was 7 years old and my mom would say things like ’My brain is deteriorating at an incredible rate!’ or ’My angina’s acting up; I could go at any time!’ Things like that would just shake me to the core. It’s terrifying, but that was her way of getting attention and love.” That’s when he started to do comedy around the house in order to make his mother feel better and happier.

The actor has always struggled with ADHD and depression.

The Ace Ventura actor has had a tough time dealing with depression throughout his life; in school, he was the restless kid that would often interrupt the class. He was diagnosed with ADHD and was getting treatment for it. As an adult, he used some of his ADHD symptoms to his advantage — his high-energy comedic and creative self truly showcases the gift of this condition.

In school, Carrey would finish his work as fast as possible to finally get to do what he loved.

In seventh grade, one of Carrey’s teachers offered him 15 minutes in front of the class at the day’s end, given that he’d leave his classmates to work in peace. The actor gladly took the offer and used this quarter of an hour to entertain and practice his stand-up comedy chops.

He dropped out of school at 16 to help his parents pay the bills.

Courtesy Everett Collection/Everett Collection/East News

When Carrey’s father lost his stable job, everything fell apart, and the family of 6 was homeless and had to live in a Volkswagen van before ending up sleeping in tents at various campsites. As a result, Carrey dropped out of school and got a job as a janitor for 2 years to try to improve his parents’ financial situation.

He made his debut as a comedian in a Toronto club.

At age 15, Carrey was writing his own material and making audiences laugh in small local pubs around Canada. By age 17, in 1979, the actor was able to make a living as a comedian. Known for his effervescent energy and impersonations, capable of acting out more than 100 characterizations, Carrey moved to Hollywood a couple of years later.

He wrote himself a check for $10 million before making it big.

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Jim Carrey visualized his rise to stardom for years before becoming the world-renowned actor we know today. Big on manifestation, Carrey wrote himself a check for $10 million in 1990 for “acting services rendered” and promised to make it a reality within 3 years. He dated it Thanksgiving 1995 and kept it in his wallet for years. Just before Thanksgiving ’95, the actor found out he was going to make $10 million on Dumb and Dumber.

He is a dad and a grandfather.

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Above is Jim Carrey and his daughter, Jane.

6 months into Carrey’s marriage to ex-wife Melissa Womer back in 1987, they became parents. While he was married twice and had multiple girlfriends over the years, and he is the father to an only child, Jane. The comedian’s daughter turned Carrey into a grandfather in 2010, an experience that, according to the actor, “It’s the greatest feeling in the world and as you get older...your connection to these things gets so just go, ’Without this, I can’t go on.’”

Above is Jim Carrey with wife Melissa Womer and daughter Jane.

One of his movies helped the actor set a world record.


For the dark comedy, The Cable Guy, in 1996, Carrey received the highest salary a male actor ever received for a film at the time, which stood at $20 million, an event that changed Hollywood forever.

“I have enough. I’ve done enough. I am enough.”

Invision/Invision/East News

50 movies and 20 TV shows later, adding up to a 40-year-long career, Carrey is ready to retire. “It depends — if the angels bring some sort of script that’s written in gold ink, that says to me that it’s going to be really important for people to see, I might. I might continue down the road, but I’m taking a break.”

“I really like my quiet life,” the comedian shared. “And I really love putting paint on canvas, and I really love my spiritual life, and I feel like — and this is something you might never hear another celebrity say as long as time exists — I have enough. I’ve done enough. I am enough.

What’s your favorite Jim Carrey movie? Why do you think the funniest comedians are often depressed? Let us know in the comments.

Preview photo credit Courtesy Everett Collection/Everett Collection/East News, Invision/Invision/East News
Bright Side/People/9 Curious Facts About Jim Carrey, Who’s Now Ready to Retire
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