Keegan-Michael Key: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Keegan-Michael Key speaks onstage during the CNN Heroes Gala 2016. (Getty)

Keegan-Michael Key speaks onstage during the CNN Heroes Gala 2016.(Getty)

Comedian Keegan-Michael Key is the host of the 6th Annual NFL Honors ceremony February 4 in Houston, Texas.

The event starts at 8 p.m. Eastern and will crown the winner of several awards for the 2016-2017 NFL regular season, including the NFL MVP, the NFL Coach of the Year and the Offensive and Defensive Players of the Year.

The 45-year old Key will deliver yet another hosting performance following a surge in his popularity because of multiple roles on comedic TV shows.

Here’s what you need to know about Key:

1. Key Starred on Comedy Central’s ‘Key & Peele’


Key & Peele – Obama and Luther's Farewell Address – UncensoredJordan Peele and Keegan-Michael Key suit up as President Obama and Luther, his faithful anger translator, to get real about Donald Trump's election. Watch more Key & Peele: cc.com/shows/key-and-peele2017-01-07T04:30:01.000Z

Alongside Jordan Peele, Key was a star in the hit show “Key & Peele” on Comedy Central. The show started in 2012 and had five seasons until it ended in 2015.

It was a sketch comedy show and often took up many social and racial issues in comedy skits.


Key & Peele on tackling race through humor"Key & Peele," a Peabody Award-winning sketch series on Comedy Central, is known for tackling racial issues. Stars Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele discuss impersonating President Obama and writing a film with Judd Apatow.2014-05-19T20:13:31.000Z

There were many notable character’s during the show’s run, including Key being President Barack Obama’s “Anger Translator.”


2. Key & Peele Got Their Start on FOX’s ‘MAD TV’


Coach Hines Oliver Rant – MadTV OFFICIAL VIDEO!!!!!Coach Hines Oliver Rant!!!2009-01-09T02:42:47.000Z

Before “Key & Peele,” the duo were cast members on MADtv.

Key and Peele both joined the show during its ninth season, with Key playing many notable characters on the show, including “Coach Hines,” who was a high school sports coach that constantly interrupted and got into confrontations with co-workers and students. The two were known for their humorous chemistry on the TV screen and it eventually led to them getting a show on Comedy Central together.


3. He Filed For Divorce In 2016 From Cynthia Blaise

On January 7, 2016, it was reported by TMZ that Key and his wife of 17 years, Cynthia Blaise, were getting a divorce.

Key made the filing on December 31, 2015. TMZ said the couples’ court documents say the couple separated in November 2015 when they started to drift further apart. The couple didn’t have any kids together.

Blaise worked behind the scenes on famous Hollywood movies such as “Bad Teacher” and “Miami Vice.”

Since the divorce, Key has been dating Elisa Pugliese, a producer and actress in a handful of movies.


4. He Was Adopted By Social Workers

Keegan-Michael Key (Getty)

Keegan-Michael Key (Getty)

NPR reported that Key was adopted by a white mother and an African-American father. The couple grew up in Salt Lake City and were both social workers.

Key said during the interview that he knows his biological mother “quite well,” and the two have a “wonderful relationship.”He met her in 1996 and told Chicago Now that finding her was “something that had always been on (his) mind.”

He said about his relationship with his biological mother to NPR:

It’s been, like, 16 years of some kind of constant healing, is how I feel about it. Because I – you – like every human, you – you know, Jordan said earlier, we have to categorize ourselves, so you kind of start to build a mythos ‘cause I had no information about her. So you have to build a mythos around yourself. And so my mythos included me not being wanted or me being a wretched person, which is just great fertilizer for comedy.

Key also noted that his biological father died.

Once he met his mother, he found out that he had two half-brothers, both who died. One of them was comic book writer Dwayne McDuffie.


5. ‘Key & Peele’ Won Emmy Awards

Actor/writers Keegan-Michael Key, left, and Jordan Peele accept an award at the 68th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards. (Getty)

Actor/writers Keegan-Michael Key, left, and Jordan Peele accept an award at the 68th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards. (Getty)

“Key & Peele” received all sorts of praise for their hit comedy show. The two won a Primetime Emmy in 2016 for Outstanding Variety Sketch Series.


Emmy winners Keegan-Michael Key & Jordan Peele ("Key & Peele") – 2016 Primetime EmmysMore about the 68th Primetime Emmys at emmytvlegends.org/interviews/shows/emmy-awards-the-68th-primetime-20162016-09-20T23:28:46.000Z

The show also won an Emmy for Outstanding Make-up for a Multi-Camera Series or Special and was also a nominee for Outstanding Writing For A Variety Series. The show received praise from other critics throughout its 53 episodes.

It won a Peadbody Award in 2014 and was also nominated for other awards like the Writers Guild Award, the NAACP Image Award and also 16 other nominations for the Primetime Emmy Awards.


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