Pete Davidson

The third-youngest cast member in the history of "Saturday Night Live" (NBC 1975- ) as well as the first born in the 1990s, Pete Davidson recovered from an early-life tragedy-the death of his firefighter father on 9/11-and hit the comedy circuit at the ripe young age of 16. Catching the eye of actor and comedian Nick Cannon, Davidson's career was launched into orbit, booking tours, radio shows, a momentous late-night talk show appearance and finally a spot on Lorne Michaels' illustrious sketch comedy. Davidson, born on November 16, 1993 to parents Amy and Scott Davidson, was raised in Great Kills, Staten Island, NY. His father, described as having a "brutally honest" sense of humor by his coworkers, was a firefighter for Brooklyn Heights' Ladder Co. 118. On September 11, 2001, Scott tragically lost his life when he and five of his firehouse peers entered the Marriott World Trade Center Hotel just before the Twin Towers collapsed. Pete was only seven years old. While continuing his studies, first at St. Joseph by-the-Sea High School on Staten Island before transferring to Brooklyn's Xaverian High School, Davidson turned to standup comedy as a therapy of sorts. At age 17, "America's Got Talent" (NBC 2006- ) host Nick Cannon saw promise in the 6'3" teenager, booking him for the eponymous Cannon's Fresh Faces of Comedy Showcase at Gotham Comedy Club and inviting him to co-host the 92.3 NOW morning radio show "Rollin with Nick Cannon." Davidson built up his credits on MTV2, appearing both on the Cannon-produced improv show "Wild 'N Out" (MTV2 2005-07) and reality comedy show "Guy Code" (MTV2 2011- ), the most watched original series in the cable channel's history. After appearing in a small role on cop workplace comedy "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" (Fox 2013- ) and being named by Variety as one of the Top 10 Comics to Watch in 2014, Davidson reached national attention when he appeared on the April 1, 2014 episode of "Jimmy Kimmel Live" (ABC 2003- ) delivering the talk show's first standup set in nearly a year. Around the same time, Davidson booked a small role in the Judd Apatow film "Trainwreck," where he met SNL alum and Emmy nominee Bill Hader. Hader, impressed with Davidson's gusto, energy and thick skin, recommended him to SNL creator and executive producer Lorne Michaels. Within a matter of months, Davidson was cast as a featured player for the long-running NBC show's 40th season, stealing the Chris Pratt-hosted episode with an uproarious monologue during "Weekend Update." His bit gained him an immediate following, his youthful candor lighting a fire underneath the television program. Aside from one recurring character, a clueless teen named Chad whom older women and men find themselves falling hopelessly in love with, and memorable one-offs in sketches like a John Mulaney-penned sketch in a Greek diner that evolves into a parody of the Broadway hit "Les Miserables," Davidson remained best known for his "Weekend Update" monologues, which grew considerably more personal, dealing with his troubled childhood, mental illness and substance abuse issues. Those addictions caused Davidson to miss a large chunk of the show's 2016-17 season, during which he underwent rehab. Davison also addressed these elements in his first hour-long comedy special, "Pete Davidson: SMD" (Comedy Central 2016), which he puckishly named in honor of his late father's initials, knowing full well that "SMD" was also a vulgar abbreviation in text-speak. In June 2018, Davidson unexpectedly landed in the gossip columns when it was revealed that he was newly engaged to pop star Ariana Grande. The couple split up in October of that year, but that was not the end of Davidson's tabloid fame: he garnered new headlines in December of that year when an Instagram post was widely interpreted as a suicide threat; following a public apology, Davidson left social media. In early 2019, Davidson began dating actress Kate Beckinsale, starting a new round of pararazzi snaps. In the meantime, he went on an extended standup comedy tour with longtime friend John Mulaney and garnered solid reviews for his starring role in indie comedy-drama "Big Time Adolescence" (2019). Davidson also co-starred in romantic comedy "What Men Want" (2019) and appeared as an A&R executive in the Motley Crue biopic "The Dirt" (2019). Davidson was absent for the first two episodes of SNL's 2019-20 season because he was in Atlanta filming a role in the sequel to "Suicide Squad" (2016), due in 2021.