List of Famous Clowns People

List of Famous Clowns

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This list of famous clowns includes photos, bios, and other information, when available. Who are the top clowns in the world? This includes the most prominent clowns, living and dead, both from America and abroad. This list of notable clowns and clown names is ordered by their level of prominence, and can be sorted for various bits of information, such as where these popular clowns were born and what their nationality is. The people on this list are from different countries, but they're all regarded as famous clowns in history and today.

No clown names list would be complete without the likes of Willard Scott, Red Skelton, and more. Did you know serial killer John Wayne Gacy had a career as a clown as well? Famous circus clowns, famous TV clowns, and others are full of surprises.

From reputable, prominent, and well known clowns to funny clown names you might not have heard of, these are some of the funniest famous clown names int the business. You'll even find a few female clown names on this list! So, who are the most famous clowns ever? What are the names of famous clowns? This list has them all, with French, Italian, and other world famous clowns for your amusement.

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  1. 1

    William Mills "Bill" Irwin is an American actor, clown, and comedian. He is best known for his vaudeville-style stage performances and has been noted for his contribution to the renaissance of American circus during the 1970s. He has also made a number of appearances on film and television, and he won a ...more

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    • Age: age 65
    • Birthplace: Santa Monica, California, USA
    • Profession: Theatre Director, Screenwriter, Choreographer, Actor, Clown, + more
    • Credits: Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Interstellar, Across the Universe, Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Eight Men Out, + more
  2. 2
    John Wayne Gacy
    Photo: Freebase/Fair use

    John Wayne Gacy, Jr., also known as the Killer Clown, was an American serial killer and rapist who was convicted of the sexual assault and murder of a minimum of 33 teenage boys and young men in a series of killings committed between 1972 and 1978 in Chicago, Illinois. All of Gacy's known murders were ...more

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    • Age: Died at 52 (1942-1994)
    • Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States of America
    • Profession: Clown
  3. 3
    Emmett Kelly
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Emmett Leo Kelly was an American circus performer, who created the memorable clown figure "Weary Willie", based on the hobos of the Depression era.more

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    • Age: Died at 81 (1898-1979)
    • Birthplace: USA, Sedan, Kansas
    • Profession: Actor, Clown
    • Credits: The Greatest Show on Earth, Wind Across the Everglades
  4. 4
    Red Skelton
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Richard Bernard "Red" Skelton was an American entertainer best known for his national radio and television acts between 1937 and 1971 and as host of the television program The Red Skelton Show. Skelton, who has stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his work in radio and television, also appeared in ...more

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    • Age: Died at 84 (1913-1997)
    • Birthplace: Vincennes, Indiana, United States of America
    • Profession: Comedian, Television producer, Screenwriter, Radio personality, Actor, + more
    • Credits: Rudolph's Shiny New Year, Around the World in 80 Days, The Red Skelton Show, Ocean's 11, Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines, + more
  5. 5

    Soupy Sales was an American comedian, actor, radio-TV personality and host, and jazz aficionado. He was best known for his local and network children's television show, Lunch with Soupy Sales; a series of comedy sketches frequently ending with Sales receiving a pie in the face, which became his ...more

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    • Age: Died at 83 (1926-2009)
    • Birthplace: Franklinton, North Carolina, United States of America
    • Profession: Comedian, Actor, Presenter
    • Credits: Holy Man, The Making of '...And God Spoke', Angels with Angles, Black Scorpion Returns, Birds Do It, + more
  6. 6


    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Grock, born Charles Adrien Wettach, was a Swiss clown, composer and musician. Called "the king of clowns" and "the greatest of Europe's clowns", Grock was once the most highly paid entertainer in the world.more

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    • Age: Died at 79 (1880-1959)
    • Birthplace: Loveresse, Switzerland
    • Profession: Clown
    • Credits: Goodbye Mr. Grock
  7. 7

    Robert James "Bob" Keeshan was an American television producer and actor. He is most notable as the title character of the children's television program Captain Kangaroo, which became an icon for millions of people during its 30-year run from 1955 to 1984. Keeshan also played the original "Clarabell the ...more

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    • Age: Died at 77 (1927-2004)
    • Birthplace: Lynbrook, New York, United States of America
    • Profession: Television producer, Actor
    • Credits: Captain Kangaroo, The Stupids, Howdy Doody, CBS Storybreak
  8. 8

    Joseph Grimaldi

    Joseph Grimaldi
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Joseph Grimaldi was an English actor, comedian and dancer, who became the most popular English entertainer of the Regency era. In the early 1800s, he expanded the role of Clown in the harlequinade that formed part of British pantomimes, notably at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane and the Sadler's Wells and ...more

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    • Age: Died at 59 (1778-1837)
    • Birthplace: London, United Kingdom
    • Profession: Clown
  9. 9

    Gordon James Ramsay, Jr, OBE is a Scottish born British chef and restaurateur.His restaurants have been awarded 15 Michelin stars in total and currently hold 14. His signature restaurant, Restaurant Gordon Ramsay in Chelsea, London, has held 3 Michelin stars since 2001. Ramsay is known for presenting TV ...more

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    • Age: age 49
    • Birthplace: Johnstone, United Kingdom
    • Profession: Cook, Television director, Television producer, Restaurateur, Actor, + more
    • Credits: Hell's Kitchen, Hell's Kitchen, Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares, Kitchen Nightmares, MasterChef, + more
  10. 10
    W. C. Fields
    Photo: Freebase

    William Claude Dukenfield, better known as W. C. Fields, was an American comedian, actor, juggler and writer. Fields's comic persona was a misanthropic and hard-drinking egotist, who remained a sympathetic character despite his snarling contempt for dogs and children. His career in show business began ...more

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    • Age: Died at 66 (1880-1946)
    • Birthplace: Darby, Pennsylvania, United States of America
    • Profession: Juggler, Comedian, Screenwriter, Actor, Writer
    • Credits: The Bank Dick, David Copperfield, You Can't Cheat an Honest Man, It's a Gift, Alice in Wonderland, + more
  11. 11


    Dimitri. After changing his name, his official name is Jakob Dimitri. He is a well-known Swiss clown and mime.more

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    • Age: age 80
    • Birthplace: Ascona, Switzerland
    • Profession: Clown
  12. 12

    Otto Griebling

    Otto Griebling was a German-born circus clown who performed for many years with the Cole Brothers and Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circuses. He was one of four clowns given the title Master Clown by Irvin Feld.more

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    • Age: Died at 76 (1896-1972)
    • Birthplace: Koblenz, Germany
    • Profession: Clown
  13. 13
    Michael Goudeau
    Photo: Freebase/Fair use

    Michael Carey Goudeau is a juggler and an ex-circus clown who graduated from the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Clown College. He was an Emmy-nominated writer and executive producer for the Showtime series Bullshit!. Goudeau juggled for the Lance Burton Show at the Monte Carlo Resort and Casino in ...more

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    • Age: age 56
    • Birthplace: Louisiana, United States of America
    • Profession: Juggler, Businessperson, Television producer, Screenwriter, Clown
    • Credits: Penn & Teller: Bullshit!
  14. 14
    Chester Conklin
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Chester Cooper Conklin was an American comedic actor who appeared in over 280 films, about half of them in the silent film era.more

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    • Age: Died at 85 (1886-1971)
    • Birthplace: Oskaloosa, USA, Iowa
    • Profession: Comedian, Actor, Vaudeville Performer, Clown
    • Credits: Modern Times, The Great Dictator, Sullivan's Travels, Greed, A Big Hand for the Little Lady, + more
  15. 15
    Wavy Gravy
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Wavy Gravy is an American entertainer and activist for peace, best known for his hippie appearance, personality and countercultural beliefs. His moniker was given to him by B.B. King at the Texas International Pop Festival in 1969. "It's worked pretty well through my life," he says, "except with ...more

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    • Age: age 79
    • Birthplace: East Greenbush, New York, United States of America
    • Profession: Activist, Comedian, Actor, Clown, Entertainer, + more
    • Credits: The Holy Modal Rounders: Bound to Lose
  16. 16

    William Alexander "Bud" Abbott was an American actor, producer and comedian. He is best remembered as the straight man of the comedy team of Abbott and Costello, with Lou Costello.more

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    • Age: Died at 79 (1895-1974)
    • Birthplace: Asbury Park, New Jersey, United States of America
    • Profession: Comedian, Film Producer, Actor, Vaudeville Performer
    • Credits: Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein, Buck Privates, Abbott and Costello Meet the Invisible Man, Jack and the Beanstalk, The Naughty Nineties, + more
  17. 17

    Lorne Michaels, CM is a Canadian-American television producer, writer, comedian, and actor, best known for creating and producing Saturday Night Live, the Late Night series, and The Tonight Show.more

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    • Age: age 71
    • Birthplace: Toronto, Canada
    • Profession: Television producer, Film Producer, Screenwriter, Actor
    • Credits: Mean Girls, 30 Rock, Saturday Night Live, Wayne's World, Tommy Boy, + more
  18. 18

    Avner Eisenberg "Avner the Eccentric" is an American vaudeville performer, clown, mime, juggler, and sleight of hand magician. He played the title role in the 1985 film The Jewel of the Nile. John Simon described him in 1984 as "A clown for the thinking man and the most exacting child." Born in Atlanta, ...more

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    • Age: age 67
    • Birthplace: Georgia, USA, Atlanta
    • Profession: Clown
    • Credits: The Jewel of the Nile
  19. 19

    Oleg Popov

    Oleg Konstantinovich Popov is a famous Soviet and Russian clown and circus artist. Popov is also called the "Sunshine clown". He was born on 31 July 1930 in Moscow, the son of a clock-maker. He studied elements of acrobatics, juggling, and other circus skills in his youth. In 1949, he graduated from the ...more

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    • Age: age 85
    • Birthplace: Moscow, Eurasia, Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic, Russia, Soviet Union
    • Profession: Actor, Clown
    • Credits: Ma-ma
  20. 20

    David William Frederick Lodge was a British character actor.more

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    • Age: Died at 82 (1921-2003)
    • Birthplace: England, Rochester
    • Profession: Ringmaster, Actor, Clown
    • Credits: The Return of the Pink Panther, Two-Way Stretch, Ice Cold in Alex, Scream and Scream Again, The Long Ships, + more
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