Dane Cook is one of the most financially successful comics of all time -- he's also one of the most controversial.
Cook exploded onto the national scene with two certified platinum comedy albums and historic sold-out shows, though many people questioned the origin of several of his jokes. But whether you believe he's "stolen" material from other comics (like Louis C.K.) or not, there's little denying his talent and presence as a performer. With starring roles in "Good Luck Chuck"(2007) and "Dan In Real Life" (2007), Cook is no stranger to the silver screen. This summer, the comic/actor returns as the voice of Dusty Crophopper in "Planes: Fire & Rescue."
From his superhero audition to his embezzling brother, here are 21 things you probably don't know about Dane Cook.
1. Dane Cook was born March 18, 1972 in Cambridge, Massachusetts to Donna Jean Ford and George F. Cook.
2. Cook's family was Roman Catholic.
3. He has five sisters and an older half-brother, Darryl.
4. Darryl was Cook's business manager, but it was discovered in 2008 that Darryl and his wife had been stealing millions of dollars from the comedian. Both Darryl and his wife have been sentenced to prison.
5. Admittedly a shy and introverted child, Cook broke out of his shell and began acting and doing stand-up during his junior year of high school.
6. In college, Cook studied graphic design as a back-up plan just in case his comedy dreams didn't work out.
7. Although he did become a successful actor and comedian, graphic design is still part of his life. Today, he designs all of his merchandise and also made the cover for his comedy album "Harmful If Swallowed" (2003).
8. "Harmful If Swallowed" was Cook's first comedy album and went on to become certified platinum.
9. His first break came when he appeared on Comedy Central's "Premium Blend," a stand-up comedy series, in 1998.
10. Cook's follow-up to "Harmful If Swallowed" was 2005's "Retaliation." The comedy album went double platinum.
11. Crazier yet, it was the first time in 29 years a comic had an album at No. 4 on the Billboard charts.
12. As a result, Cook performed at the 2005 MTV Video Music Awards, where he also presented Best New Artist with Snoop Dogg.
13. On December 3rd of that year, Cook also hosted "Saturday Night Live". A year later, the comedian found himself hosting the show again for its Season 32 premiere.
14. On November 12, 2007, Cook became only the second comic to sell out Madison Square Garden. And he even did two sell out shows in one night...
15. The comic has described his onstage persona as a mix of the personalities of his mother and father.
16. In 2007, Cook broke The Laugh Factory's endurance record that was previously held by Richard Pryor, setting the mark at 3 hours 50 minutes. Yet, just five days later, Dave Chappelle broke Cook's record. Was there some unwritten rule about not going after Pryor's record? Regardless, only months later, Cook broke the record yet again by performing on stage for a shocking 7 hours.
17. Throughout all his success, Cook has been disliked by several fellow comics, who felt Cook was unfunny and has an inflated ego. Worse yet, many people have accused Cook of stealing several comedians' jokes, such as stand-up routines from Louis C.K's 2003 album "Live in Houston."
18. This ultimately led to a hilarious and heartfelt appearance by Cook on Louis C.K.'s acclaimed show "Louie" to acknowledge the accusations.
19. Cook started his film career with a small role in "Mystery Men" (1999) and a starring role opposite Dennis Rodman in "Simon Sez" (1999).
20. The comic even auditioned for the role of Captain America for "Captain America: The First Avenger" (2011), though he was apparently not on the short list for the part.
Bonus Fact: Cook has said he does not do drugs or drink.
Photo courtesy of Getty