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30 Years Of The Jim Carrey Comedy, Ace Ventura: Pet Detective

Ace Ventura: Pet Detective opened on February 4, 1994. It was a big financial success and turned its star, Jim Carrey, into a household name. In honor of the classic comedy turning 30 this year, learn more about the film below.

Canadian Comedian

Carrey was born on January 17, 1962. He is from Canada. Very early in his life he discovered his talent for doing impressions. He practiced his impressions in the mirror, and he surprised himself how accurate they were. Carrey’s family struggled with money for his entire childhood. As a teenager, Carrey would leave school to help support his family. He would work low paying jobs, while also working as a standup comedian. As time went on, comedy began paying good money. Carrey had a high level of energy on the stage. His physical movements and broad comedy made him perfect for a live audience.

jim carrey

Hollywood Bound

He found so much success doing comedy in Canada, that as a teenager, he decided to try his luck at the entertainment center of the world, Hollywood. Carrey would find early success appearing in films and TV shows in supporting roles. Standup was also working well for him in the states.

In Living Color

In Living Color would debut in 1990. It was a massive hit right from the start. Carrey was one of the breakout stars. His impersonations, character work and energy were all displayed on the sketch comedy show. When the show ended in 1994, Carrey would start working on films.

jim carrey In Living Color

Ace Ventura

His first major project as a leading man, Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994), was a box office smash. It shocked Hollywood by becoming a surprising blockbuster and helped put Carrey on the map as a leading man. The role of Ace Ventura, which included over the top slapstick humor, which was often juvenile, and crude, would help to establish Carrey’s onscreen persona. The film focused on an odd detective that specializes in crimes dealing with pets. The film also starred Courteney Cox, right before her breakout success on Friends.


Ace Ventura: Pet Detective would inspire two sequels – one of which starred Carrey. Nobody prior to the film’s release anticipated the film becoming so iconic. Critics were not fond of the Jim Carrey vehicle. They found it childish, which for fans, was a big part of the film’s appeal. The comedy grossed over 100 million dollars worldwide. The film’s life was far greater than its theatrical run. It would become a favorite on Cable TV and VHS. The film had a large following of kids, so large that a short lived animated series based on Ace Ventura was created.

jim carrey Ace Ventura

30 Years

Ace Ventura: Pet Detective is one of the biggest comedies of the past 30 years. It is remembered today as the film that gave Jim Carrey his big break.


- Adam C. Better