Gary Coleman

Gary Coleman


8/2/1968, Zion, Illinois



Birth Name

Gary Wayne Coleman


  • Gary Coleman attends the Tribeca Film Fe...
  • Todd Bridges (L) and Gary Coleman flank ...
out of 10
User Rating
48 votes


Gary Coleman got his big break when he starred in the 80s hit series Diff'rent Strokes. Gary knew at a young age that he would never be tall. By the time he was just five years old, he had undergone three different operations for a congenital kidney defect…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • Like his Diffrent Strokes character, Arnold, Gary coleman owned toy train sets himself in real life.

    • In 2007, Gary Coleman tried to auction off his 2007 Saturn Sky Convertible with a starting asking price of $25,000. No one placed a single bid the whole time it was up for auction.

    • In January of 2008, Gary Coleman put an autographed pair of Old Navy sweatpants up for auction on Ebay. The pants sold for more than $400,000.

    • Gary Coleman lost his virginity when he was 40 years old.

    • In 2005, Gary worked as a commentator for All Comedy Radio, covering the Michael Jackson trial.

    • In 2000, Gary publicly ran for U.S. Senator of California.

    • In Fisherman's Village which is near Santa Monica, California, Gary once owned his own video game arcade.

    • In 1980, 1981, 1982 and 1983, Gary won People's Choice Awards for "Favorite Young TV Performer."

    • It was revealed in Febuary of 2008, that Gary Coleman married Shannon Price, on a mountain top in Las Vegas on her 22nd birthday on August 28, 2007.

    • Gary has made cameo appearances in: S.F.W in 1994, Dirty Work in 1998, and Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star in 2003.

    • Gary filed for chapter 7 bankruptcy in 1999.

    • Gary sued his parents and his business manager in 1992 for misappropriation of his 8.3 million dollar trust fund. He was awarded $1,280,000.00 in a ruling on February 23, 1993.

    • Gary appeared in a cash advance payday loan service in 2006, called 'Cash Call'. At the end of the commercial, he says the tagline 'Pay your bills on time, and everyone will love you'.

    • Gary appears in a music video for WWE Superstar John Cena's song 'Bad Bad Man', and in Kid Rock's 'Cowboy' video, where he fights fellow bandmate JoeC.

    • Gary was employed as a shopping mall security guard in Los Angeles. He was videotaped trying to stop a vehicle from entering the mall lot, and the tape was comedian fodder for months.

    • Gary plays a supporting role in the controversial video computer game 'Postal 2'.

    • Gary was invited to appear on an episode of the VH1 reality series The Surreal life, as a restaurant manager to the housemates. He became so frustrated and enraged at ex-rapper 'Vanilla Ice' and his attempts to have him say the catchphrase 'Whatchu talkin' 'bout, Willis?' that he walked off the set.

    • Gary was discovered by a talent scout that was working for power producer Norman Lear. He was chosen to play a role in the television revival of The Little Rascals, that was never produced.

    • Was ranked #10 in E's cutest child stars all grown up.

    • Gary has been parodied by comedian Dave Chapelle.

    • Gary's nickname is Arnold.

    • In the Broadway musical, Avenue Q, "Gary Coleman" is displayed as the superintendent of the town.

    • T-shirts were made in 2005 that had Gary's head with the words "Bling, bling" under it.

    • Gary Coleman is a model railroader.

    • He made his appearance on TV court in front of Mills Lane, Gary was ordered to pay bus driver Tracy Fields $1665 for hospital bills resulting from a fight stemming from an attempt to get an autograph in a Hawthorne, California mall. Gary said he felt threatened by her insistence and punched her in the head. (November 2, 2000)

    • Gary earned $70,000 per episode on Diff'rent Strokes.

    • Gary requires constant dialysis to keep his kidneys in order.

    • Gary was born with a congenital kidney disease causing nephritis which stunted his growth.

    • Gary has lived in Utah since 2005.

    • Gary had his first kidney transplant in 1973 and his second in 1984.

    • Gary was ranked #1 in VH1's list of the '100 Greatest Kid Stars'.

    • Gary appears in a Jack-In-The-Box commercial. (2006)

    • He made his appearance in Moby's "We Are All Made Of Stars" music video.

    • Gary has twice attempted suicide with sleeping pills, a fact he revealed on Geraldo in 1993.

    • Gary finished 8th out of 135 official candidates in the 2003 California Gubernational Election. Gary received 14,242 votes. Gary stated he would vote for Arnold Schwarzenegger, who received the most votes and was elected Governor.

    • Gary Coleman is now bald.

    • Gary Coleman is a dwarf. He is 4'8" tall.

  • Quotes

    • Gary Coleman: (On the death of Diff'rent Strokes co-star, Dana Plato) It's very unfortunate that Dana is no longer with us - she was a wonderful woman, but her death was a welcome, though sad piece of closure to Diff'rent Strokes. The possibility of a reunion no longer exists now, and thank God.

    • Gary Coleman: (talking about his wife Shannon Price) I never got the opportunity to be romantic or feel romantic with anyone. I wasn't saving myself, she just happened to be the one.

    • Gary: The one thing that I always hear, is that I am a has-been, but if you think about it, aren't we all? No one's life is exactly how they had pictured it, and neither is mine. That doesn't equal being washed up in my book.

    • Gary: People need to realize that I am a grown man, not the little boy that you can just pick up, and pinch my cheeks. Seriously, boundaries really do apply to short people.

    • Gary: So, I get a little heated at times, so what? If there was a camera up in your face at every turn, waiting for you to trip, fall, or slap someone silly...that's eventually exactly what they will find.

    • Gary Coleman: You can involve yourself in electronics, computers, puzzles... there's a lot of creativity and brain working. There's a lot to model trains that people don't realize.

    • Gary Coleman: I've done over 150 different things since Different Strokes, but that role will always be prevalent in people's minds because I haven't done anything to overshadow it yet.

    • Gary Coleman: I still have the desire to do the job of acting. It's just a matter of whether I'll be allowed to do the job of acting that remains to be seen. There are only so many brick walls that I'm willing to beat my head on.

    • Gary Coleman: I read Popular Mechanics, Popular Science, Reader's Digest... I read some responsible journalism, and from that, I form my own opinions. I also happen to be intelligent, and I question everything.

    • Gary Coleman: I parody myself every chance I get. I try to make fun of myself and let people know that I'm a human being, and these things that have happened to me are real. I'm not just some cartoon who exists and suddenly doesn't exist.

    • Gary Coleman: I have more than four people on this planet in my life who see me for myself and forget that I've worked on network television. They forget I've worked in movies, and that I'm an actor. As long as I have four people who can do that, then there are others who are capable of doing that.

    • Gary Coleman: I don't hurt or want for visibility, but people seem to forget pretty easily.

    • Gary Coleman: I can't sit back and swallow stuff. I live in a time and place, and in a country on earth where you're not supposed to swallow it. People just gave up.

    • Gary Coleman: George W. Bush bought the election - period. End of story. There is no argument. You can try to come up with any argument you can, but there is none.

    • Gary Coleman: I can see through almost any scam, especially one perpetrated by the federal government. I can see through it... they can't pull the wool over my eyes, it's absolutely freakin' impossible to pull the wool over my eyes about the government.

    • Gary Coleman: You know, somehow, some way, we need to get this state back in shape. Back in order. And someone like me, someone who's new and not a politico, [is] going to shake the trees and poke the bushes, and needs to be in there

  • Perfect

    This is in a way, a tribute to him, who passed away Friday May 28, 2010. He was a great, funny actor, best known for Diff'rent Strokes. I know him from that, from an episode of the simpsons, and an episode of married with children, and i must say, he was really talented. I don't see how anyone can deny he is a great, funny actor. He will surely be missed. I give thee a 10, a perfect score, and may you rest in piece, Gary Coleman. You will be dearly missed by all of your fans. RIP GARY COLEMAN!moreless
  • Gary is a Real Human Being Entirely Misunderstood!

    To Gary:

    I saw your story on Divorce Court...and your comments ripped me apart (not the divorce part but the part where you feel so betrayed and down on yourself). I wanted to tell you something. The world is not entirely made up of people who want to use you...I used to think so too, and I'm not even close famous (and don't care to be...I live a quiet life with a few GOOD friends and family)! I understand you don't want "those types of friends" ... not the type you used to have. Any time you want a friend to listen to you and talk to, you're free to email me at wombytony "at" I don't want anything from you..I merely want you to know there are good, honest people out there who care about others. I DO understand self-esteem issues and that feeling of inadequacy and helplessness. It's all good...we are never given more than we can handle, but you can't go through the rest of your PRECIOUS life feeling so betrayed and upset! Take care, friend. Know you're loved even if you feel you just can't get past it. Know someone "out there" knows, understands...and does care. Bless you.moreless