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James Belushi

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James Adam "Jim" Belushi (born June 15, 1954) is an Albanian-American actor, voice actor, comedian, singer and musician. He is the younger brother of late comic actor John Belushi and father of actor Robert Belushi, best known for playing the role of James "Jim" Orenthal on the long-running sitcom According to Jim (2001–2009).

Belushi has also been a prominent figure in cinema, performing in films such as Thief (1981), Little Shop of Horrors (1986),Trading Places (1983), Salvador (1986), Red Heat (1988), Who's Harry Crumb? (1989), K-9 (1989), Mr. Destiny (1990), Last Action Hero (1993), Jingle All the Way (1996), Wag the Dog (1997), Curly Sue (1991), Return to Me (2000), The Wild (2006), Underdog (2007), The Ghost Writer (2010), Home Sweet Hell (2015), and The Whole Truth (2016).

Early life

Belushi was born in Chicago to Adam Anastos Belushi and Agnes Demetri Samaras Belushi, both ethnic Albanians from the city of Korçë in Northern Epirus that today is part of Albania. He was raised in Wheaton, a Chicago suburb, along with his three siblings: older brother John, his older sister, Marian, and a younger brother, Billy. After graduating from Wheaton Central High School, Jim Belushi attended the College of DuPage and graduated from Southern Illinois University Carbondale with a degree in Speech and Theater Arts.

Career

From 1977 to 1980, Belushi, like his older brother John Belushi, worked with the Chicago theater group The Second City. During this period, Belushi made his television debut in 1978's Who's Watching the Kids and also had a small part in Brian De Palma's The Fury. His first significant role was in Michael Mann's Thief (1981). After his elder brother John's death, from 1983 to 1985 he appeared on Saturday Night Live; he portrayed characters such as Hank Rippy from "Hello, Trudy!" and "That White Guy". Belushi also appeared in the film Trading Places as a drunk man in a gorilla suit during a New Year's Eve party. He made a guest appearance in Faerie Tale Theatre's third-season episode Pinocchio, starring Paul Reubens as the titular puppet.

Belushi rose to greater prominence with his supporting roles in The Man with One Red Shoe (1985), About Last Night..., Salvador and Little Shop of Horrors (as Patrick Martin) (all 1986), which opened up opportunities for lead roles. He has starred in films including Real Men, The Principal, Red Heat, Homer and Eddie, K-9, Dimenticare Palermo, Taking Care of Business, Mr. Destiny, Only the Lonely, Curly Sue, Once Upon A Crime, Wild Palms, Royce, Race the Sun, Jingle All The Way, Separate Lives, Retroactive, Gang Related, Angel's Dance and Joe Somebody (2001).

His voice work includes The Mighty Ducks, The Pebble and the Penguin, Babes in Toy land, Gargoyles and Hey Arnold!, and the more recent Hoodwinked, Scooby-Doo! and the Goblin King and The Wild. He also lent his vocal talents for 9: The Last Resort (a PC game released in 1995), in which he portrayed "Salty", a coarse yet helpful character. In 1997, he portrayed the "Masked Mutant" in the Goosebumps PC video game, alongside Adam West as "The Galloping Gazelle". On January 4, 2001, Belushi appeared on the ER episode "Piece of Mind". The episode focused on both Dr. Mark Greene's life-or-death brain surgery in New York and Belushi's character, who had been in a car accident with his son in Chicago. Belushi's performance contributed to his re-emergence in the public eye, and the following year he was cast as the title role in ABC's According to Jim. His first animation voice-over was as a pimple on Krum's head in Aaahh!!! Real Monsters on Nickelodeon. That performance led him to be cast in the continuing role as Simon the Monster Hunter in that series, where he ad-libbed much of his own dialogue.

Personal life

Belushi has been married three times and has three children. He married Sandra Davenport on May 17, 1980, and the couple had a son, Robert James (also an actor, born October 23, 1980). Belushi was married to actress Marjorie Bransfield from 1990 to 1992. He has been married to Jennifer Sloan since May 2, 1998. The couple has a daughter, Jamison Bess (born July 28, 1999), and a son, Jared James (born February 8, 2002). Belushi is closely linked to his Albanian heritage and received honorary Albanian citizenship from the President of Albania, Bamir Topi. Belushi is an avid fan of the Chicago Blackhawks, Chicago Bears, Chicago Cubs, Chicago Bulls and the Chicago Fire Soccer Club.

In 2011, Belushi announced that he suffered from gout, and became a spokesman for Savient Pharmaceuticals' educational campaign "Check Out Your Gout".He has also appeared on the cover of and been interviewed by Cigar Aficionado magazine.

Belushi endorsed the re-election campaign of Democratic President Barack Obama in 2012. On a Fox News interview, he explained, "When you talk to the President in private, he's a cool guy, that knows what he's doing. Besides, I'm from Chicago too."


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