Tim Allen
Allen in 2012
Born
Timothy Alan Dick

(1953-06-13) June 13, 1953 (age 70)
Occupations
  • Actor
  • comedian
Years active1975–present
Spouses
  • Laura Deibel
    (m. 1984; div. 2003)
  • Jane Hajduk
    (m. 2006)
Children2
Comedy career
MediumStand-up, film, television
Alma materWestern Michigan University (BS)
GenresObservational comedy, physical comedy, surreal humour
Subject(s)Marriage, gender differences, family, everyday life, social awkwardness, politics
Websitetimallen.com

Timothy Alan Dick (born June 13, 1953), known professionally as Tim Allen, is an American actor and comedian. He is known for playing Tim "The Toolman" Taylor on the ABC sitcom Home Improvement (1991–1999) for which he won a Golden Globe Award and Mike Baxter on the ABC/Fox sitcom Last Man Standing (2011–2021). He voices Buzz Lightyear for the Toy Story franchise for which he won an Annie Award and played Scott Calvin and Santa Claus in The Santa Clause franchise (1994–present).

Allen's other films include Jungle 2 Jungle (1997), Galaxy Quest (1999), Joe Somebody (2001), Big Trouble (2002), Christmas with the Kranks (2004), The Shaggy Dog (2006), Wild Hogs (2007), The Six Wives of Henry Lefay (2009) and Crazy on the Outside (2010).

Early life and education

Allen was born in Denver, Colorado, on June 13, 1953. He is the third oldest of six children of Martha Katherine (née Fox), a community-service worker, and Gerald M. Dick, a real estate agent.[1][2] Allen has two older brothers, two younger brothers, and a younger sister. His father died in a car accident in November 1964, colliding with a drunk driver when Allen was 11.[1][3] Two years later, his mother married her high school sweetheart, a business executive,[2] and moved with her six children to Birmingham, Michigan, to be with her new husband and his three children.[4] Allen has said the move meant going from "being in a cool group at one school to being at the bottom [of the social hierarchy at another]."[5]

Allen attended Seaholm High School in Birmingham, where he was in theater and music classes (resulting in his love of classical piano). He then attended Central Michigan University before transferring to Western Michigan University in 1974.[6] At Western Michigan, Allen worked at the student radio station WIDR. In 1976 he received a Bachelor of Science degree in communications, specializing in radio and television production, with a split minor in philosophy and design.[4]

Career

1975–1990: Standup comedy and film debut

Allen in 1993

Allen started his career as a comedian in 1975.[1] On a dare from one of his friends, he participated in a comedy night at Mark Ridley's Comedy Castle in Royal Oak, a suburb of Detroit.[7] While in Detroit he began to get recognition appearing in local television commercials and appearing on cable comedy shows such as Gary Thison's Some Semblance of Sanity. Following his release from prison in 1981, he returned to comedy. He moved to Los Angeles and became a regular performer at The Comedy Store. He began performing stand-up appearances on late-night talk shows and specials on record and film.[1] In 1998, Western Michigan awarded Allen an honorary fine arts degree and the Distinguished Alumni Award.[6] In a magazine interview, Allen once said, "I can only play a part if I can draw on personal experience, and that well can go dry pretty quickly".[8] His initial film debut was as a baggage handler in Tropical Snow (1988).

1991–2010: Home Improvement and franchise roles

Allen rose to fame in acting with the sitcom Home Improvement (1991–1999) produced for ABC by Wind Dancer Productions. Allen played the main character Tim "The Tool-Man" Taylor, the father of three boys. [1] Much of the show was based on his stand-up comedy act. In November 1994, Allen simultaneously starred in the highest-grossing film (Walt Disney Pictures's The Santa Clause), topped The New York Times bestseller list with his book Don't Stand Too Close to a Naked Man, and appeared in the top-rated television series (Home Improvement) within one week.[1] Home Improvement ran until 1999, for which he was paid US$1.25 million per episode during the eighth and final season.[9]

Allen at the 45th Emmy Awards, 1994

In 1995, Allen provided the voice of Buzz Lightyear in the Disney/Pixar blockbuster Toy Story.[10] In 1997, he starred in the family comedy Jungle 2 Jungle from Disney. The next year he returned to voice Buzz Lightyear in Toy Story 2, which was a financial and critical hit.[11] In 1999, he starred in the sci-fi parody Galaxy Quest alongside Sigourney Weaver, Alan Rickman, and Sam Rockwell.[12] In 2002, he reprised his role as Scott Calvin in The Santa Clause 2. Two years later, he starred as Luther Krank in Christmas with the Kranks. In 2006, Zoom was released, starring Allen as Jack Shepard. The same year, he also starred in The Shaggy Dog and The Santa Clause 3. The year 2008 marked his first dramatic turn with a supporting role as an aging action film star in David Mamet's Redbelt.[13]

Allen began narrating the "Pure Michigan" television and radio commercials for the "Travel Michigan" agency. These commercials can be seen and heard throughout the Midwest and began airing nationally in 2009.[14] In December 2009, he started a preview tour of Crazy on the Outside, a film that debuted in January 2010. Allen accompanied the film, helping promote it with a series of stand-up acts beforehand. During the performances, he told audiences he planned a 2010 comedy tour. Allen also directed the film, marking his film directorial debut.[15]

Allen hosted the 8th Annual TV Land Awards on April 25, 2010.[16] That same year, he returned the role of Buzz Lightyear in Toy Story 3 and also became the official voice of the Chevrolet Cruze, narrating commercials for the vehicle, and he became the voice of Campbell Soup Company's "It's Amazing What Soup Can Do" campaign.[17][18]

2011–present: Last Man Standing and other roles

Allen returned to ABC with the sitcom Last Man Standing (2011–2021). He played the role of Mike Baxter, a conservative father fighting for his manhood in a house filled with women.[19] The character is loosely based on his own life, as a Republican father of three girls.[20] After six seasons, the show was canceled in May 2017. ABC Entertainment Chief Channing Dungey denied claims of political bias against Allen, explaining that the network could not accommodate the program on their schedule.[21] On May 11, 2018, Fox TV's CEOs and chairmen announced that Fox had officially picked up Last Man Standing for a seventh season.[22][23][24][25] The show ended in May 2021 after nine seasons.[26]

Shortly before the 2017 cancellation of Last Man Standing, Allen had been announced as part of the cast of the Netflix original comedy film El Camino Christmas (2017).[27] In 2018, he had a cameo voice role as Buzz Lightyear in Ralph Breaks the Internet. In 2019, he voiced the character in Toy Story 4 and appeared as himself in No Safe Spaces, a documentary film.[28] In 2022, it was announced that Allen would reprise the role of Scott Calvin in a Disney+ mini-series, The Santa Clauses, based on The Santa Clause franchise.[29]

On June 30, 2022, the History Channel series More Power premiered, with co-host Allen reunited with Richard Karn. The show covered the history of tools and included field reports of people who use powerful tools.[30] In February 2023, Allen announced that he would return as the voice of Buzz Lightyear for a fifth installment of the Toy Story franchise.[31]

Personal life

Marriages and family

Allen (left) with members of the United States Navy, 2010

Allen was raised as an Episcopalian.[2] He married Laura Deibel on April 7, 1984. Their daughter, Katherine, was born in December 1989. He and Deibel legally separated in 1999 and finalized their divorce in 2003.[32] Allen married actress Jane Hajduk on October 7, 2006, in a small private ceremony in Grand Lake, Colorado.[33][34] They had been dating for five years.[33] Their daughter, Elizabeth, was born in March 2009.[35]

Tim Allen's mug shot after his arrest on October 2, 1978.

Legal issues

On October 2, 1978, Allen was arrested at the Kalamazoo/Battle Creek International Airport for possession of over 650 grams (1.43 lb) of cocaine.[36][37][38][39] He subsequently pleaded guilty to felony drug trafficking charges and provided the names of other dealers in exchange for a sentence of three to seven years rather than a possible life imprisonment.[36] He was paroled on June 12, 1981, after serving two years and four months in Federal Correctional Institution, Sandstone, in Sandstone, Minnesota.[40][41][42]

In 1998, Allen was arrested for driving under the influence in Birmingham, Michigan. At the time, his blood alcohol content was 0.15, nearly double the legal limit in Michigan.[43] He was sentenced to one-year probation and entered a rehabilitation clinic for alcohol abuse as part of his court obligation.[44]

Political views

Allen is a supporter of the Republican Party, describing himself as "fiscally conservative and emotionally liberal".[45] In 2021, he condemned then-president Donald Trump and those taking part in the 2021 United States Capitol attack, calling the incident "horrible, embarrassing, and shameful" and opining that the rioters must have had inside help. He also said the riot had caused people to be embarrassed to be known as conservative.[5]

Allen is also involved in philanthropic efforts to help reduce homelessness.[46]

Car interests

Allen is a car enthusiast and competed in endurance racing for Saleen in a co-owned car in the 1990s, including the 24 Hours of Daytona.[47][48] He also owns a car collection, which he houses in a former paint shop in Southern California. As of 2022, the collection includes a 1956 Ford F-100 custom made by McLaren, a 1965 Shelby Cobra, and a 1966 Ferrari 330 GTC.[49] While some sources claim the latter's standalone value to exceed $3,000,000,[50] there is no proof of this, and typical sales of the same model are worth far less.[51]

Filmography

Film

Year Title Role Notes Ref(s)
1988 Tropical Snow Baggage Handler
1988 Comedy's Dirtiest Dozen Himself
1994 The Santa Clause Scott Calvin / Santa Claus
1995 Toy Story Buzz Lightyear Voice role
1997 Meet Wally Sparks Himself Cameo
1997 Jungle 2 Jungle Michael Cromwell
1997 For Richer or Poorer Brad Sexton
1999 Toy Story 2 Buzz Lightyear Voice role
1999 Galaxy Quest Jason Nesmith
2000 Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins Buzz Lightyear Voice role; direct-to-video
2001 Who Is Cletis Tout? Critical Jim
2001 Joe Somebody Joe Scheffer
2002 Big Trouble Eliot Arnold
2002 The Santa Clause 2 Santa Claus / Scott Calvin / Toy Santa
2004 Christmas with the Kranks Luther Krank
2006 The Shaggy Dog Dave Douglas Producer
2006 Cars Buzz Lightyear Car Voice cameo
2006 Zoom Jack Shepard / Capt. Zoom
2006 The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause Santa Claus / Scott Calvin
2007 Wild Hogs Doug Madsen
2008 Redbelt Chet Frank
2009 The Six Wives of Henry Lefay Henry Lefay Also executive producer
2010 Crazy on the Outside Tommy Zelda Also director
2010 Toy Story 3 Buzz Lightyear Voice role
2011 Toy Story Toons: Hawaiian Vacation Buzz Lightyear Voice role; short film
2011 Toy Story Toons: Small Fry Buzz Lightyear Voice role; short film
2012 Toy Story Toons: Partysaurus Rex Buzz Lightyear Voice role; short film
2012 Chimpanzee Narrator Documentary
2012 The Penguin King Narrator U.S. version
2013 3 Geezers! Tim
2013 Adventures of the Penguin King Narrator
2017 El Camino Christmas Larry Michael Roth
2018 Ralph Breaks the Internet Buzz Lightyear Voice cameo
2019 Toy Story 4 Buzz Lightyear Voice role
2019 No Safe Spaces Himself Documentary [52][53]

Television

Year Title Role Notes Ref(s)
1990 Tim Allen: Men Are Pigs Himself Stand-up special
1991 Tim Allen Rewires America Himself Stand-up special
1991–1999 Home Improvement Tim Taylor Lead role; also executive producer (seasons 6–8)
1996 68th Academy Awards Buzz Lightyear Voice role
1996 The Drew Carey Show Himself Episode: "The Front"; uncredited
1997 Soul Man Tim Taylor Episode: "Communion Wine and Convicts"
1998 The Larry Sanders Show Himself Episode: "Flip"
1998 Spin City Rags Voice role; episode: "The Kidney's All Right"
2000 72nd Academy Awards Buzz Lightyear Voice role
2004 The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius Meldar Prime Voice role; episode: "Win, Lose and Kaboom"
2011–2021 Last Man Standing Mike Baxter / Tim Taylor Main role; also executive producer [54][55]
2013 Toy Story of Terror! Buzz Lightyear Voice role; television special
2014 Toy Story That Time Forgot Buzz Lightyear Voice role; television special
2015 Cristela Mike Baxter Episode: "Last Goose Standing"
2016 88th Academy Awards Buzz Lightyear Voice role; television special
2020 Reno 911! Space Force Commander Episode: "Space Force"
2021 Assembly Required Himself / Host Main role; also creator and executive producer [56]
2022 More Power Himself / Host Main role; also creator and executive producer [57]
2022–present The Santa Clauses Scott Calvin / Santa Claus Main role; also executive producer

Video games

Year Title Voice role Ref(s)
1994 Home Improvement: Power Tool Pursuit Tim Taylor
1999 Toy Story 2: Buzz Lightyear to the Rescue Buzz Lightyear
2001 Toy Story Racer Buzz Lightyear
2009 Toy Story Mania! Buzz Lightyear
2010 Scene It? Disney Magical Moments Buzz Lightyear
2010 Toy Story 3 Buzz Lightyear
2016 Disney Magic Kingdoms Buzz Lightyear
2022 Disney Dreamlight Valley Buzz Lightyear
2023 Disney Speedstorm Buzz Lightyear

Awards and honors

Awards and nominations

Year Association Category Work Result Ref(s)
1992 People's Choice Awards Favorite Male Performer in a New TV Series Home Improvement Won [58]
1993 Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series Nominated [59]
1993/94
1996/97
Golden Globe Awards Best Actor – Television Series Musical or Comedy Nominated [60]
1995 Won [60]
1993–99 People's Choice Awards Favorite Male TV Performer Won
1994–97 Kids' Choice Awards Favorite Male TV Actor Won
1998/99 Nominated
1995 People's Choice Awards Favorite Comedy Motion Picture Actor The Santa Clause Won [58]
MTV Movie Awards Best Breakthrough Performance Nominated
Best Comedic Performance Nominated
1996 Kids' Choice Awards Hall of Fame induction Honored [61]
1997 Golden Satellite Awards Best Actor in a Television Series – Comedy or Musical Home Improvement Nominated
1999 TV Guide Awards Favorite Actor in a Comedy Won [62]
2000 Annie Awards Outstanding Voice Acting in a Feature Production Toy Story 2 Won
2009 TV Land Awards Fan Favorite (given to the cast) Home Improvement Won
2011 Kids' Choice Awards Favorite Voice from an Animated Movie Toy Story 3 Nominated
2012 TV Guide Awards Favorite Comeback Last Man Standing Won
2017 People's Choice Awards Favorite Comedic TV Actor Nominated [63]
2023 Children's and Family Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Performance The Santa Clauses Nominated [64]

Other honors

Honorary scholastic degrees

Year Degree School Location Notes Ref(s)
1998 Doctor of Fine Arts (DFA) Western Michigan University  Michigan Gave commencement address [68]
2021 Doctor of Fine Arts (DFA) Hillsdale College  Michigan Gave commencement address [69]
This list is incomplete; you can help by adding missing items. (June 2021)

Bibliography

See also

References

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  50. ^ Dyer, Nathan (June 29, 2022). "Tim Allen's Updated 2023 Car Collection". CarHP. Retrieved November 21, 2022.
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