WTF Happened to this Celebrity is written (with Brad Hamerly), narrated and produced by Taylor James Johnson, and edited by Kier Gomes. Check out the video above and read the script below!
So what can be said about Andy Dick that the paparazzi and nearly every Judge from West Virginia to Los Angeles hasn’t already said? He was once a rising star in the comedy world with lovably nerdy characters on hit TV series before his demons grabbed a hold of him and took him down an over 25 year path of endless headlines with his name often times preceding the word “arrested.” In those years, he has compiled more Mug Shots than Head Shots and went from Star on the Rise to Registered Sex Offender. Yeah, I don’t know how else to say this other than: WTF Happened to Andy Dick?!
But as always we must begin at the beginning and the beginning began on his birthday, December 21, 1965 in Charleston, South Carolina. After graduating high school in the suburbs of Illinois, Andy would study at the famed Second City and Improv Olympic studios in Chicago while also attending both Wesleyan University and Columbia College Chicago.
Andy would land a few bit parts on short lived sitcoms such as the Jamie Lee Curtis/ Richard Lewis starring Anything But Love and the pre-Friends Matthew Perry starring Sydney before landing his big break as a sketch player on the Emmy winning The Ben Stiller Show. Despite that show being cancelled far too soon, it was a true launching pad for all of its talent. Especially the shows namesake, Ben Stiller, who enjoyed working with Andy so much that he gave him a role in his directorial debut Reality Bites (1994). After having memorable guest spots on The Late Show with David Letterman and The Nanny, Andy would land a co-lead role opposite the in demand at the time Pauly Shore for In The Army Now (1994) followed by a small part in the Video Game adaptation Double Dragon (1994).
But it would be 1995 when Andy Dick’s career really took off, after appearing in the rebooted Get Smart series, Andy would land a starring role on a new NBC series called NewsRadio opposite comedy legends Dave Foley, Stephen Root and Phil Hartman. The series would run for 5 seasons, yet never was a ratings juggernaut. But it was consistent, and garnered solid reviews which kept it on the air. During this time Andy would have brief appearances in several projects including the Ben Stiller directed The Cable Guy (1996), the Sarah Silverman mockumentary Who’s The Caboose? (1997), Best Men (1997) and would even appear in a Sheryl Crow music video (Andy comes in at the 37 second mark) while also getting his start in the world of voice acting with spots on Johnny Bravo and Jumanji.
It was during this time that Andy’s demons began taking a hold on him. He would attend AA meetings with his good friend Chris Farley who was actually his sponsor at the time, but when Farley passed away from an overdose in December 1997, Andy began to slide even further into his addictions. It was around this time that it is alleged that Andy went to a Christmas party at Phil Hartman’s house where he and Hartman’s wife Brynn, who had been sober for ten years at the time, allegedly did cocaine together. That event is believed to have led Brynn Hartman to relapse, which would result in her murdering husband Phil Hartman on May 28, 1998 while high on cocaine before turning the gun on herself. While many don’t out right blame Andy Dick for this tragic event, one person has long held the belief that if Andy Dick hadn’t gone to that Christmas party, Phil Hartman would still be alive: Jon Lovitz, who took over for Phil Hartman after his death on NewsRadio. The animosity between the two was so bad that one day on set Andy told Lovitz that he shouldn’t be there to which Lovitz replied “Well, I wouldn’t be here if you hadn’t given Brynn coke in the first place.” The show was cancelled shortly after and the feud has continued ever since with Andy one time approaching Lovitz in a restaurant and saying to him “I put the Phil Hartman hex on you- you’re the next to die.” Later that year, Lovitz reportedly shoved Andy’s head against a bar at the famed Laugh factory several times until a security guard separated them.
Sadly, this wouldn’t be the only death of a NewsRadio cast member that Andy would be associated with. In March 1999, Andy and actor David Strickland flew to Las Vegas and spent three straight days partying it up in the city that never sleeps. After that three day bender, Strickland, while intoxicated, hung himself in his motel room while Andy would later be questioned about the events surrounding Strickland’s death. These tragic events in his life would lead Andy Dick down a spiral that began with his first run in with the law on May 15, 1999 when he crashed his car into utility pole and was arrested for felony cocaine possession with the charges being dismissed after he completed an 18 month drug diversion program.
This would be the beginning of Andy Dick becoming far more infamous for his off screen shenanigans than his on screen ones. He was never the lead star, but you could always count on him to show up in a small role and knock it out of the park whether it was in direct to video roles like Bongwater (1998), Advice From a Caterpillar (1999) or in voice over gigs like The Lion King II: Samba’s Pride (he played Nuka) and Castle in the Sky (he voiced Henri in the English language dub) to showing up in some pretty solid cameo spots in movies such as Permanent Midnight (1998), Inspector Gadget (1999), Loser (2000), Road Trip (2000) for which he would be nominated for a Teen Choice Award for “Choice Sleazebag” as well as an MTV Movie Award Nomination for Best Cameo, Dude, Where’s My car? (2000) and the Ben Stiller directed Zoolander (2001). He would remain out of trouble long enough to launch his own MTV show The Andy Dick Show in 2001 which would garner him his second Teen Choice Award Nomination for “Choice TV Personality” followed by appearing in several other projects such as Family Guy, Clone High the successful ABC sitcom Less Than Perfect as well as back on the big screen in small roles such as voicing Lennie the Weasel in Dr. Dolittle 2 and an uncredited cameo in Old School as a man who teaches a certain skill set.
But in 2004, Andy was back in the headlines, not for his role voicing Maurice in the hit video game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, but for his less than savory behavior. First he was arrested in 2004 for mooning people at a McDonald’s, which admittedly sounds hilarious, but it was the beginning of a slippery slope for him. Andy would be invited to take part in the Comedy Central Roast of Pamela Anderson (2005) where he would proceed to grope the honoree several times and there are several photos of him around the web of him just licking people’s faces, for no reason other than he thinks it is funny, including doing it several times at the Comedy Central Roast of William Shatner (2006) while in 2007 Andy was a guest on Jimmy Kimmel Live where he had to be forcibly removed from the show by the host after touching fellow guest Ivanka Trump several times.
But it wasn’t just on TV that Andy was being a professional nuisance, in 2005, Andy would perform stand up in Alberta, Canada where he would drop his pants to the unsuspecting audience and be ushered off the stage with the remaining shows cancelled. The following year, Andy would call the audience at his stand up show the N word and would be forced to issue an apology but not long after he would go on a radio show and call Howard Stern some extremely anti-semetic things
Sure Andy was continuing to pop up on our screens in things like Arrested Development, ER, CSI, Community, Legit, 2 Broke Girls, The Simpsons and in films such as Danny Roane: First Time Director which was also his first time directing a film, Blonde Ambition (2007), The Comebacks (2007) to even appearing on the big screen in films such as Funny People (2009) and Zoolander 2 (2016), but his personal life had now fully overshadowed his professional one. In 2008 he was arrested again for drug possession and sexual battery after pulling down the top of a 17 year old girl outside a Buffalo Wild Wings. He pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor battery and marijuana charge and was given three years of probation and ordered to wear an alcohol monitoring bracelet for a year. Sadly it would be just two years later when Andy would be arrested again in West Virginia on charges of sexual abuse after he reportedly groped a bartender and patron. He would be formally indicted on the charges a year later. After a 6 month delay, the judge showed him some mercy and said that if he could stay out of trouble for six months, the charges would be dropped, which he did, however the two victims would later file civil suits against the actor.
In 2009, Andy would appear on the VH1 reality series Sober House where it seemed he genuinely had a desire to get clean, but not long after he would be back to his old ways, drunkenly showcasing his body to people that did not want it showcased to them such as the time in 2010 when he exposed himself outside Cafe Audrey in Hollywood, or at the 2011 Newport Beach Film Festival where he exposed himself before urinating on a backdrop. Later that year he would be sued by an audience member at one of his comedy shows after Andy rubbed his genitals on the mans face. But more than just exposing himself, he also feels he has the right to inappropriately touch whomever he wants whenever he wants including instances at the 2011 AVN awards where he repeatedly groped and stalked adult film actresses.
In 2016 we would get a brief glimpse into the real Andy Dick when he posted a 20 minute video from the bedside of his dying brother. The video was a heartbreaking glimpse into the life him and his brother, both adopted, had endured and how his early life has taken its toll on him as an adult. The video doesn’t offer an excuse for his behavior, but gives you a bit of an insight into why Andy Dick has had trouble staying sober all these years. But sadly by 2017, he was back to his old ways. He would be fired from a role in the independent film Raising Buchanan after allegations of groping people’s genitals and unwanted kissing and licking of several crew members. That same month he would be fired from a role in the film Vampire Dad for many of the same complaints.
It would seem in 2019, Andy had met his match when he allegedly tried groping a man who then punched Andy in the head so hard he had to go to the hospital and be monitored for a brain bleed. Later that year, after the Me Too movement came into full effect, a paparazzi video came out that found Andy outside a restaurant, drunk, asking him about the scandals of Harvey Weinstein and Kevin Spacey, Dick made light of the situation, but then things got a bit serious, when Andy gets candid with the camerawoman after threatening to grope her, tearfully admitting that he contemplates committing suicide every day. This was another rare glimpse into a man that on the outside seems to be just purely out of control, while on the inside he is fighting very real unseen demons.
But the thing about Andy Dick is… the people that have worked with him, for the most part, seem to like him. His friends in the industry, from Ben Stiller to Judd Apatow keep pulling for their friend with Apatow even casting him in his TV series Love to play a fictionalized version of
himself who desperately yearns to be clean and sober. There was even a documentary made about him titled Everybody Has an Andy Dick Story that was due to premiere at the Chicago Comedy Film Festival in 2022, but was pulled from release when Andy Dick was yet again arrested, this time with a full live stream of the arrest, while living in an RV park for felony sexual battery.
Andy Dick was never a performer who was at the top of the call sheet, but he was someone who you could generally count on for a decent walk on laugh. His most successful characters played on his nerdy persona that was the butt of the joke most of the time, but behind the scenes he was a person who has had to fight his demons combined with headline making heartbreak that only made his demons get worse. He is a person who thinks he is being funny when the rest of the world has stopped laughing. It is telling that even in this episode, the bulk of it is spent on his misdeeds and not his work. We didn’t even mention his roles in Sharknado 2, Employee of the Month or his hilarious guest spot on Workaholics or his work on the hit Netflix series Sense8 or a number of his direct to video films, for which there are plenty! Nor did we have time to mention all of his legal troubles from stealing power tools to even more sexual assaults with the most recent of which happened in January of 2023 when he was arrested for public intoxication and failure to register as a sex offender, something that he became after being found guilty of groping an Uber driver in 2022 and even the time he almost died from snorting Fentanyl which he thought was cocaine.
There is just so much to report on him that only a feature length video could begin to scratch the surface, but the over arching story of Andy Dick is that of a man who seems to have lost touch with reality a long time ago. Is it possible for him to one day get this all figured out and get his life on track? Anything is possible, and we genuinely hope he does because when Andy Dick puts in the work, he has proven he can be an entertaining person. We generally like to end these with the phrase “Don’t worry about WTF Happened to so and so because so and so is doing just fine.” But for Andy Dick, we’re not sure he is, but we are hopeful that this story will one day have a happy ending, and if you follow him on Instagram, it does look like for the time being, he is doing better than the headlines would have us believe, and that is something to be happy about, hopefully after 25 years, this is the long stretch that gets him back in the public’s good graces. And that is WTF Happened to Andy Dick.
Originally published at https://www.joblo.com/wtf-happened-to-andy-dick/