November 10, 1968
Passaic, New Jersey, United States
If one is to follow a certain career path, Jerry Seinfeld's is a good way to go. Tom Papa did just that, going from the stand-up comic stage to television and movies and radio. Papa, who was born in 1968 in Passaic, New Jersey and graduated from Rider University in 1990, started being a stand-up comedian in 1993, around the time that "Seinfeld" (NBC 1989-1998) was going from a cult favorite to an across the board TV hit. Jerry Seinfeld then gave Papa his first big chance, taking him on as opening act on his stand-up tours. Papa then appeared on shows like "The Colin Quinn Show" (NBC 2002) and films including the Robert De Niro/Billy Crystal vehicle "Analyze That" (2002). Papa then co-wrote the screenplay for the animated hit "Bee Movie" (2007), where he also did voiceover work with Seinfeld. He also hosted "The Marriage Ref" (NBC 2010-11), a Seinfeld-produced reality series where a panel of celebrities got to render their verdicts on marital problems. Not just content to be a stand-up comedian, Papa acted in a wide range of genres, including appearances in the comedy-drama "The Informant" (2009) and the campy biopic "Behind The Candelabra" (HBO 2013) with Michael Douglas and Matt Damon. Papa also hosted a comedy talk show on Sirius XM Radio called "Come to Papa" and continued his career as a stand-up comic.