- Richest Celebrities
- Net Worth:
- $200 Million
- Date of Birth:
- Mar 5, 1955 (68 years old)
- Place of Birth:
- 6 ft 5 in (1.98 m)
- Actor, Television producer, Magician, Illusionist, Writer, Inventor, Musician, Comedian, Screenwriter, Voice Actor
- United States of America
What is Penn Jillette's Net Worth?
Penn Jillette is an American illusionist, comedian, musician, actor, and best-selling author who has a net worth of $200 million dollars. A graduate of the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Clown College, Jillette is one half of the successful comedy-magic duo Penn & Teller, who have starred in several television projects, including "Penn & Teller's Sin City Spectacular" (1998–1999) and "Penn & Teller: Bullshit!" (2003–2010). Penn & Teller have been performing at the Rio All Suite Hotel and Casino since 2001, making them the longest-running act to headline at the same Las Vegas hotel. An outspoken atheist and libertarian, Penn has written 8 books, and 2011's "God, No!: Signs You May Already Be an Atheist and Other Magical Tales" spent six weeks on the "New York Times" Hardcover Nonfiction list.
Penn Jillette was born Penn Fraser Jillette on March 5, 1955, in Greenfield, Massachusetts. His mother, Valda, worked as a secretary, and his father, Samuel was an employee of Franklin County Jail. Penn also has an older sister, Valda, who was 23 years old when he was born. After reading the Bible as a teenager, he became an atheist. Jillette began juggling at the age of 12 and started learning magic in the late 1960s; he was inspired by illusionist James Randi's approach of acknowledging that magic was the result of deception rather than psychic or supernatural powers.
Penn graduated from high school in 1973 and formed a juggling act with classmate Michael Moschen. In 1974, he graduated from Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Clown College and met Raymond Teller, and the two formed The Asparagus Valley Cultural Society with mutual friend Weir Chrisemer. In 1981, Penn & Teller was born, and talkative Penn and silent Teller starred in a 1985 off-Broadway show (which earned them an Obie Award) and the 1987 Broadway show "Penn & Teller," which ran for 122 performances at the Ritz Theatre before touring nationally.
While starring in Penn & Teller's off-Broadway show, Jillette also played bass in the band Bongos, Bass and Bob, releasing the album "Never Mind the Sex Pistols, Here's Bongos Bass and Bob! (What on Earth Were They Thinking?)" in 1988. He was also in a band called Captain Howdy, which released 2 albums: "Tattoo of Blood" (1994) and "Money Feeds My Music Machine" (1997). Penn wrote a column for "PC/Computing" magazine from 1990 to 1994 and the Excite.com search engine in 1997. In the 1990s, he was the main announcer for Comedy Central promos and appeared in several film and television projects, including "Hackers" (1995), "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" (1998), "Friends" (1997), "Sabrina the Teenage Witch" (1996–1997), and "Babylon 5" (1998). In 2003, Penn & Teller began producing their own series, "Penn & Teller: Bullshit!," on Showtime, and two years later, Jillette co-directed and co-produced "The Aristocrats," which was named Best Documentary at the 2005 U.S. Comedy Arts Festival Awards. From 2006 to 2007, Penn co-hosted "Penn Radio" on Free FM and hosted the NBC game show "Identity."
In 2008, Jillette competed on ABC's "Dancing with the Stars" and was eliminated during the first results show. He also competed on "The Celebrity Apprentice" (2012) and was fired during Week 11; the following year, he appeared on the "All-Star" season of the show and was the runner-up, raising $663,655 for the charity Opportunity Village. In 2011, the Discovery Channel series "Penn & Teller Tell a Lie" premiered, and the duo began hosting "Penn & Teller: Fool Us" on ITV (the show moved to The CW four years later). In 2012, Penn started a podcast, "Penn's Sunday School," which is still running as of July 2020. Jillette has appeared on dozens of TV shows in the 2000s, including "Just Shoot Me" (2001), "The West Wing" (2004), "Modern Family" (2015), and "Scorpion" (2016), as well as reality TV series and competitions, such as "Hollywood Squares" (1999–2004), "Wizard Wars" (2014), "Celebrity Wife Swap (2014), and "Celebrity Jeopardy" (2015).
Besides writing for Penn & Teller's television projects, Jillette also wrote the 1990 TV movie "Don't Try This at Home!," the 1993 TV series "Monstervision," and the 2013 documentary "Tim's Vermeer." He published his first book, "Cruel Tricks for Dear Friends," in 1989 and followed it with "Penn and Teller's How to Play with Your Food" (1992), "Penn and Teller's How to Play in Traffic" (1997), "Sock" (2004), "How to Cheat Your Friends at Poker: The Wisdom of Dickie Richard" (2005), "God, No!: Signs You May Already Be an Atheist and Other Magical Tales" (2011), "Every Day is an Atheist Holiday!: More Magical Tales from the Author of God, No!" (2012), and "Presto!: How I Made Over 100 Pounds Disappear and Other Magical Tales" (2016).
Penn married television producer Emily Zolten on November 23, 2014, at the Viva Las Vegas Wedding Chapel, and they welcomed daughter Moxie CrimeFighter on June 3, 2005, and son Zolten on May 22, 2006. Jillette has said that he supports the legalization of all drugs, but he has never tried drugs or alcohol himself because he has an addictive personality. In December 2014, Penn was admitted to the hospital due to high blood pressure, so he made some lifestyle changes and lost 105 pounds by March of the following year. Jillette always keeps one fingernail on his left hand painted red and has stated that he wears Essie's Jelly Apple Red nail polish in remembrance of his mother, who passed away in 2000.
Awards and Honors
In 2004, Jillette won a WGA Award for Comedy/Variety (Including Talk) – Series for "Penn & Teller: Bullshit!," which earned him 9 Emmy nominations as well. He was also nominated for an Emmy for "Sin City Spectacular" in 1999, a BAFTA Film Award for "Tim's Vermeer" in 2014, and a CableACE Award for "Monstervision" in 1994. Penn and Teller received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in April 2013, and the next day, the Magic Castle named them "Magicians of the Year."
In 2015, Penn and Emily paid $3.8 million for a 7,808 square foot home in Las Vegas; the mansion includes 5 bedrooms, 7 bathrooms, a Jacuzzi tub, a balcony, and a swimming pool. In 1994, Jillette bought a 7-bedroom Las Vegas house he dubbed "The Slammer," and he sold it for $1.88 million in 2016.