Anthony Anderson

Anthony Anderson Headshot

Actor • Comedian • Game Show Host

Birth Name: Anthony Alexandre Anderson

Birth Date: August 15, 1970

Age: 53 years old

Birth Place: Los Angeles, California

Parents: Doris Hancox Bowman

As a dynamic performer with incredible screen presence, actor Anthony Anderson started out providing comic relief in a number of films early in his career, including "Life" (1999) and "Big Momma's House" (2000), Anderson quickly made his presence known as a powerful dramatic force with guest starring roles on gritty cop dramas like "NYPD Blue" (ABC, 1993-2005). After earning laughs as a bungling burglar in "Barbershop" (2002) and in his own short-lived sitcom, "All About the Andersons" (The WB, 2003-04), he had a career-defining role as the powerful and much-feared drug kingpin, Antwon Mitchell, on "The Shield" (FX, 2002-08). Giving perhaps his best performance to date, Anderson flung open the doors to a wider variety of roles that helped redirect a career that seemed destined for him to play second banana in cheap comedies. By the time he joined the cast as a homicide detective on "Law & Order" (NBC, 1990-2010), Anderson had more than proved himself as a capable dramatic performer. But his starring role as Los Angeles advertising executive Andre Johnson in the hit sitcom "Black-ish" (ABC 2014- ) reaffirmed his status as a sharp comic actor. While starring on "Black-ish," Anderson also hosted a prime-time reboot of the venerable TV game show "To Tell the Truth" (ABC 2016- ) and created a sideline career as host and producer of travel-themed series for Food Network.

Born on Aug. 15, 1970 in Los Angeles, CA, Anderson was raised by his mother, Dora, a telephone operator and sometime actress, and his stepfather, Sterling Bowman, owner of a clothing chain store. At five years old, he landed his first professional job by appearing in a television commercial. Following his attendance at the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts, Anderson won a talent scholarship to attend Howard University, where he earned his Bachelor's degree in theater. Returning to his native Los Angeles, he landed guest spots on the sitcom, "In the House" (NBC, 1995-98), starring LL Cool J. Following a cameo in "Alien Avengers" (1996) and a segment of the Showtime series "Roger Corman Presents," Anderson had a regular role as a hefty, but capable basketball player during the third season of the teen sitcom, "Hang Time" (1995-2001). Anderson took his first steps into more dramatic roles with a 1998 guest spot on "NYPD Blue" (ABC, 1993-2005), which he followed up with his feature film debut in "Life" (1999), a 1930s prison comedy starring Eddie Murphy and Martin Lawrence. Having been adept at both comedy and dramatic fare, Anderson proved a versatile player and followed up his role in "Life" with a part in Barry Levinson's 1950s Baltimore-set drama, "Liberty Heights" (1999), a coming-of-age drama set during desegregation. After a guest turn on "Ally McBeal" (Fox, 1997-2002), the actor spent the next few years building his feature film resume with supporting roles in "Big Momma's House" (2000), "Romeo Must Die" (2000) and "Me, Myself and Irene" (2000); the latter of which he hilariously played Jamaal, the most vocal of Jim Carrey's overgrown triplet sons. He next played David Arquette's postal colleague and confidant in "See Spot Run" (2001), which threatened to confine him in rather inane comedies for his career duration. But that year saw Anderson in two breakout roles; first being the action thriller "Exit Wounds" (2001), followed by the funeral-set dramedy "Kingdom Come" (2001). Reuniting with "Romeo Must Die" director Andrzej Bartkowiak and co-star DMX in the former, Anderson brought much-needed comic relief to the casualty-heavy Steven Seagal police drama by working with Tom Arnold to make a genuinely and unexpectedly funny comedy pair. In "Kingdom Come," Anderson won raves as the worthless womanizing husband of a demanding woman (Jada Pinkett Smith), though the film itself left something to be desired.

With his feature career on the rise, Anderson spewed advice to his romantically-challenged buddy (Morris Chestnut) in "Two Can Play That Game" (2001) before joining an all-star cast for the ensemble hit "Barbershop" (2002), in which he played a bumbling thief trying to crack open an ATM across the street from a family-owned barbershop in Chicago. Next, he starred alongside Jerry O'Connell as a New Yorker on the lam in the Australian Outback comedy "Kangaroo Jack" (2002), then reunited with "Exit Wounds" co-star DMX for the action feature "Cradle 2 the Grave" (2003). Returning to comedy, he had supporting turns in Jamie Kennedy's "Malibu's Most Wanted" (2003) and the horror-spoof sequel "Scary Movie 3" (2003) before returning to the small screen when he co-created and starred in the short-lived sitcom, "All About the Andersons" (The WB, 2003-04). Inspired by his own experiences as an actor living in a multigenerational household, Anderson played a struggling actor who moves in with his parents to provide a stable environment for his young son.

At this time, Anderson was slapped with some surprising bad press when he and Warner Bros. were named in a lawsuit filed by a woman claiming sexual assault on the set of "All About the Andersons." The charges came just months after he was publicly accused of raping an extra on the set of "Hustle & Flow" (2005), though in October 2004 a judge dismissed the case on the grounds that the accuser's claims were "suspicious." Meanwhile, as his sitcom came and went, Anderson continued his feature career by appearing alongside Eddie Griffin and Michael Imperioli in the underwhelming relationship comedy, "My Baby's Daddy" (2004). Following a co-starring role in the family-friendly sequel "Agent Cody Banks 2: Destination London" (2004), Anderson redefined his career when he joined the 2005 season of the gritty crime drama "The Shield" (FX, 2002-08), playing the powerful and menacing former drug lord-turned-ex-con Antwon Mitchell. Delivering his most compelling and complex performance to date, Anderson's Mitchell butted heads with corrupt cop Vic Mackey (Michael Chiklis) while he forges a working relationship with Mackey's wayward underling, Shane Vendrell (Walton Goggins), which leads to inevitable disaster. Though he wound up in prison at the end of the season, Mitchell made occasional appearances for the remainder of the series.

Back in features, Anderson appeared in "King's Ransom" (2005) as a millionaire businessman who devises a plot to kidnap himself in order to avoid a messy and expensive divorce from his wife (Kellita Smith). The plan goes awry, however, when he discovers that he's not the only one who wants to kidnap him. Far better was his measured turn in the acclaimed indie drama "Hustle & Flow" (2005) as Key, the aspiring but frustrated rap producer who hopes a surprisingly talented pimp (Terrence Howard) will at last provide his ticket to success. After appearing on a couple of episodes of the cable comedy "Campus Ladies" (Oxygen Media, 2005-07), Anderson showed up as a gay cowboy in a parody of Ang Lee's "Brokeback Mountain" (2005); one of many Hollywood movies that received the David Zucker treatment in "Scary Movie 4" (2006). Also that year, he voiced Koolomassai in the underwhelming animated adventure, "Arthur and the Invisibles" (2006).

Elevating himself with quality material once again, Anderson joined an all-star cast that included Matt Damon, Leonardo DiCaprio, Mark Wahlberg and Jack Nicholson in "The Departed" (2006), Martin Scorsese's slick crime thriller that was loosely based on the excellent Hong Kong action thriller, "Infernal Affairs" (2002). "The Departed" centered on a South Boston cop (DiCaprio) deep undercover inside a crime syndicate ran by Franck Costello (Nicholson), a ruthless, but charismatic mob boss who has one of his own gangsters (Matt Damon) inside the police department. As the police struggle to bring down Costello's operations, the mob boss manages to stay one step ahead while trying to flush out the mole that he learns has infiltrated his crew. Anderson played one of several detectives in the Massachusetts State Police trying to take down Costello. Meanwhile, he returned to television with a starring role in "K-Ville" (Fox, 2007), a short-lived cop drama set in post-Katrina New Orleans that was left off the networks schedule after the onslaught that followed the Writer's Guild of America strike in 2007-08. While he continued to appear in feature films, including the blockbuster hit "Transformers" (2007), Anderson seemed content to stick with television. In 2008, he joined the cast of "Law & Order" (NBC, 1990-2010), on which he played Detective Kevin Bernard, who transferred to homicide following an unwanted two-year stint in internal affairs. Following the end of that iconic series' two-decade run in 2010, Anderson co-starred in "Guys With Kids" (NBC 2012-13), a sitcom about three young fathers, co-created and executive produced by Jimmy Fallon, which ran for a single season. Far more critically and commercially successful was "Black-ish" (ABC 2014- ), a sitcom created by writer Kenya Barris about an upper-middle-class African-American family in Los Angeles whose patriarch, advertising executive Andre Johnson (Anderson), worries that his children are losing touch with their black identities. While starring in the critically-acclaimed and occasionally controversial sitcom, Anderson also executive produced and hosted a series of travel shows focusing on his culinary interests, including "Eating America with Anthony Anderson" (Food Network 2014) and "Carnival Cravings with Anthony Anderson" (Food Network 2016). As part of a wide-ranging reboot of classic TV game shows, Anderson also hosted a new prime-time version of "To Tell the Truth" (ABC 2016- ), which also featured his real-life mother, Doris Day Bowman, as an on-the-set Greek chorus commenting on both the contestants and judges. The following year, Anderson co-starred in the indie crime thriller "Small Town Crime" (2017).

Credits

The Real Full Monty

Executive Producer
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2024

The Real Full Monty

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2024

National Memorial Day Parade

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The 75th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards

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75th Primetime Emmy Awards

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Emmy Awards 2023

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We Are FamilyStream

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Kings of BBQStream

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Kings of BBQStream

Self
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Trippin' with Anthony Anderson and Mama DorisStream

Executive Producer
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Trippin' with Anthony Anderson and Mama DorisStream

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Hot Wheels: Ultimate ChallengeStream

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National Memorial Day Parade

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You PeopleStream

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Barber #1
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Dear Culture With Panama Jackson

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Norman Lear: 100 Years of Music and Laughter

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Access Daily With Mario & Kit

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Running Wild With Bear Grylls: The ChallengeStream

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A Dream Delivered: The Lost Letters of Hawkins Wilson

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American Veterans Center's National Memorial Day Parade

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Lionel Richie: The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song

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black-ish: A Celebration -- An ABC News Special

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53rd Annual NAACP Image Awards

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Phat TuesdaysStream

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That's My JamStream

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2021

House Haunters

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The Most Magical Story on Earth: 50 Years of Walt Disney WorldStream

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Nick Cannon

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Stand Up to Cancer

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Stand Up to Cancer

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The 2021 Inaugural Gospel Celebration

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Celebrity Wheel of FortuneStream

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The Cabin With Bert Kreischer

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Mo Willems and The Storytime All-Stars Present: Don't Let the Pigeon Do Storytime!

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The Drew Barrymore ShowStream

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The Greatest @ATHOME Videos

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John Legend and Family: A Bigger Love Father's Day

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After the Dance With Stephen A. Smith

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Saving Our Selves: A BET COVID-19 Relief Effort

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Celebrity IOUStream

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Who Wants to Be a Millionaire

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Live in Front of a Studio Audience: All in the Family and Good Times

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mixed-ishStream

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mixed-ishStream

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Shark Trip: Eat Prey Chum

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Live in Front of a Studio Audience: Norman Lear's All in the Family and The Jeffersons

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All About All in the Family and The Jeffersons

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Dear Mama: A Love Letter to Mom

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National Cherry Blossom Festival

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Today With Hoda & Jenna

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50th NAACP Image Awards

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Desus & Mero

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The Masked SingerStream

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Beats

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Beats

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Today 3rd Hour

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2018 NBA Awards

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PeopleTV Specials

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49th NAACP Image Awards

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Grown-ishStream

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Grown-ishStream

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The 40th Annual Kennedy Center Honors

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Drop the MicStream

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STEVE on Watch

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Funny You Should Ask

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Carpool Karaoke: The SeriesStream

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The Gong Show

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Dear Mama: An Event to Honor Moms

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Live with Kelly and Ryan

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The Best Place to Be

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Live From Hollywood: The After Party With Anthony Anderson

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48th NAACP Image Awards

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Caraoke Showdown

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MasterChef Celebrity Showdown

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FerdinandStream

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Small Town CrimeStream

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Desus & MeroStream

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Harry

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Anthony Anderson: Lost at Comic-Con

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The $100,000 PyramidStream

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2016

Match GameStream

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2016 BET Awards

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2016 BET Awards

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Any Given Wednesday With Bill Simmons

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To Tell the TruthStream

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The Peabody Awards

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ChelseaStream

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Dear Mama

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Behind The...

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Animal Nation With Anthony Anderson

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Hot Bot

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Almost Sunrise

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Carnival Cravings With Anthony Anderson

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Close Up With The Hollywood Reporter

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UNCF: An Evening of Stars

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The Nightly Show With Larry WilmoreStream

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Variety Studio: Actors on Actors

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PRISM Awards 2014

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blackish: Extras

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The Meredith Vieira Show

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Eating America With Anthony Anderson

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Running Wild With Bear GryllsStream

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UNCF: An Evening of Stars

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Popular Science

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The 45th NAACP Image Awards

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Rake

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NBC's New Year's Eve With Carson Daly

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2013 Soul Train Awards

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Take Part Live

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Kris

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The Real

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The Little Penguin: Pororo's Racing Adventure

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Gotham Comedy Live

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You Laugh But It's True

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ConanStream

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Raising HopeStream

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TremeStream

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Watch What Happens Live With Andy CohenStream

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Anthony Anderson
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All About the Andersons

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Kingdom ComeStream

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News aboutAnthony Anderson

Taye Diggs, Anthony Anderson, and James Van Der Beek for 'The Real Full Monty'

‘The Real Full Monty’: Anthony Anderson, Taye Diggs, James Van Der Beek & More to Strip for Charity

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Anthony Anderson and Travis Barker perform onstage during the 75th Primetime Emmy Awards
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Emmys Host Anthony Anderson Opens Night With Classic TV Themes, Travis Barker & His Mom

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Anthony Anderson Talks ‘Trippin’ With Mama Doris, ‘Kings of BBQ’, and Building Businesses With Friends & Family (VIDEO)

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Anthony Anderson Opens Up About Scene-Stealer Mom Doris After Their 6-Week Roadtrip

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