John Barry Humphries was born on 17 February 1934, in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, of part-English descent. Barry is an actor, artist, author, and comedian, best known for his playing his alter egos Dame Edna Everage and Sir Les Patterson. He also produces films and is an award winning writer. All of his efforts have helped put his net worth to where it is today.
How rich is Barry Humphries? As of mid-2017, sources estimate a net worth that is at $12 million, earned through success in his numerous endeavors. His characters have bought him international renown and all of his achievements ensured the position of his wealth.
Barry Humphries Net Worth $12 million
At a young age, Barry enjoyed dressing up as different characters, and pursued the arts though his parents weren’t very supportive. Despite that he started to collect rare books, paint, and watch theatre productions. He attended Melbourne Grammar School, and after matriculating, went to the University of Melbourne (Queen’s College) which he studied Law, Fine Arts, and Philosophy. He became a leading person in the Dada movement which used pranks and satire.
While doing so, he performed, sketches, some of which he wrote at the university. He eventually left to join the Melbourne Theatre Company (MTC), newly formed, where he created his first and best-known character, Edna Everage, while touring with MTC. In 1957 he moved to Sydney joining the Philip Street Revue Theatre, where Edna would find huge popularity, and soon he would also create the character Sandy Stone. He also appeared in a production of “Waiting for Godot”, playing Estragon. His net worth was starting to build.
In 1959, Barry moved to London, and would work there throughout the 1960s. He appeared in a variety of West End stage productions, such as “Maggie May” and then “Oliver!” , his major break in Britain when he was cast as the undertaker, Mr. Sowerberry in the original production. He also appeared in projects such as “Treasure Island” and “The Bed-Sitting Room”. In 1967, he had a cameo role in the film “Bedazzled” which is his first film role, which led to him appearing in “The Bliss of Mrs. Blossom”. He returned to Australia in the 1970s to make his/her Edna Everage movie debut in “The Naked Bunyip”, and continued to work on various films, including “Side by Side”, “The Getting of Wisdom”, and “Shock Treatment”. His net worth rose steadily thanks to opportunities such as “Dr. Fischer of Geneva”, “Pterodactyl Woman from Beverly Hills”, and “The Leading Man”.
In 2003, he ventured into voice work, as the shark Bruce in “Finding Nemo”. A few of his latest projects include performing as the Goblin King in the film adaptation of “The Hobbit”. He also voiced Wombo the Wombat in “Blinky Bill the Movie”, and had a dual role in “Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie”. He announced his retirement from live entertainment in 2012, but somehow still manages to appear and entertain at various unscripted moments.
For his personal life, it is known that Humphries married four times, firstly at 21 to Brenda Wright, but it only lasted for two years. His next marriages was to Rosalind Tong and Diane Millstead, two children being the results of each one. In 1990, he married Lizzie Spender and they reside in West Hampstead, London. His first two marriages failed due to problems with alcoholism, but since the early ‘70s he has been teetotal. He is an art collector, and an accomplished painter himself, and a self-proclaimed “bibliomaniac”, supposedly having around 25,000 books in his collection. He also enjoys avant-garde music.
He was awarded the Australian Centenary Medal in the 2001 Queen's New Years Honours List for his services to Australian society through acting and writing.
He was awarded the Australian National Medal in December 1979.
Created the role of Mr. Sowerberry in the original West End production of Lionel Bart's musical "Oliver!".
He was awarded the C.B.E. (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) in the 2007 Queen Elizabeth's Birthday Honors List for his services to entertainment.
24 October 2006 Australia Post together with The Perth Mint issued a 50 cent legal tender coin with full-colour portrait of Dame Edna. Coin is mounted in special envelope with 2 postage stamps (featuring Barry Humphries as both Dame Edna and himself) cancelled at Moonee Ponds (suburb where Edna tells she comes from). Also Australian $1 silver one ounce coin portraying Dame Edna was issued to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Barry Humphries as Dame Edna.
Pictured on a set of five 50¢ Australian postage stamps in the Australian Legends series, issued 20 January 2006. One stamp has a photograph of Humphries without makeup. The other stamps have a photo of his alter ego "Edna Everage", showing how the character has changed through the years.
Honorary Doctorate of Griffith University (Australia) in 1994
He was awarded the A.O. (the Officer of the Order of Australia) in the 1982 Queen's Birthday Honours List for his services to Theatre.
Barry Humphries was one of the hosts at "The Royal Pop Concert" in Buckingham Palace, London on June, 4th, 2002. He appeared as Dame Edna Everage and Sir Les Patterson and had the great honor to announce Queen Elizabeth II.
In 2000, received a Special Tony Award for a Live Theatrical Presentation, for his one-person show titled "Dame Edna: The Royal Tour."
As Dame Edna, he greets his audience, "Hello Possums"!
To live in Australia permanently is rather like going to a party and dancing all night with one's mother.
New Zealand is a country of thirty thousand million sheep, three million of whom think they are human.
My parents were very pleased that I was in the army. The fact that I hated it somehow pleased them even more.
Most of my contemporaries at school entered the World of Business, the logical destiny of bores.
Sex is the most beautiful thing that can take place between a happily married man and his secretary.
It's very important to be interesting yourself. Most guests, let's face it, however famous they are, are boring, with no intellectual resources and very little sense of humor, particularly if they are comedians. People only watch my shows for me, and those shows have remained evergreen long after the guests are forgotten. Always wear beautiful clothes, preferably a different frock for every show, and don't overdo the hospitality beforehand. An intoxicated guest is a loose canon and I'm not referring to my famous interview with Jack Palance that didn't go to air!