Richard Karn Wilson is best known as one of America’s most famous TV game show host, actor, and author. He has recorded success in many areas of his life even though his early beginnings in the industry was not as smooth as many celebrities have it now. He put in hard work from the word go but none of it was in vain. The actor is also a point of example to many in the entertainment industry for the success of his marriage to his wife of many decades. Read on for more details about Karn’s struggles in the early days of his career and how his success story kicked off.
Age, Early Life, and Rise to Fame
Born Richard Karn Wilson on the 17th day of February 1956 in Seattle, Washington, United States, the actor’s father, Gene Wilson was a Seabee who survived World War II and a building contractor, while his mother Louise Wilson was more of a painter but died in 1983 of bone cancer. His parents also had a daughter, his sister whose name is Sue Wilson.
Growing up, Richard attended a couple of high schools first of which was Nathan Eckstein Junior High School alongside fellow actor Casey Sander who was a year ahead of him. Next, he moved on to Portage Northern High School and later he attended Theodore Roosevelt High School in Seattle, Washington, United States. While attending all of these schools, one thing was a sure bet for a young and eager to learn Richard, he was often a big part of the many school drama shows at the time, honing his skill better with each play.
After high school, a fast developing Richard Karn moved on to the University of Washington where his experience and theatrical work took another huge turn. He also garnered a wealth of experience working with the Edinburgh Festival in Scotland where his search for bigger experiences took him. At the end of his university studies in 1979, he took the long leap and move to New York where his career began in earnest with an appearance in a beer commercial during Super Bowl XIV. For any upcoming artist, a super bowl exposure is one sure way to get the attention of the right audience. He joined the Screen Actors Guild right after but had to drop his last name Wilson, hence he came to be known simply as Richard Karn.
Almost a decade after he kicked off his acting career proper, things began to slow down for the actor and his career went on a hiatus. This continued until at the advice of his wife, he made a move to Los Angeles where he took up catering events and managing homes to make ends meet. In an effort to diversify his sources of income, Richard Karn took up attending Traffic school where he made a friend who told him of the casting for a new television show, Home Improvement, which would be a good fit for him considering his wealth of experience in managing apartments. Eventually, he was cast as Al Borland after the directors’ first choice for the character did not show up.
His role in Home Improvement began as a guest appearance for the pilot season but was made permanent when the main cast Stephen Tobolowsky still could not make it to set. Like his father, he had a part-time job as a building manager but quit when he realized that Home Improvement will be very successful. He stayed on the show for 8 years (1991-1999).
During the shooting of Home Improvement, Richard did some guest star appearances in a few tv series like Boy Meets World (1995) as Victor in This Little Piggy episode, Recess (2000) as Edmund P. Edmonton, and That 70’s Show (2001) as Theo. In 1996, he became the host for the shows WOW! The Most Amazing Acts on Earth, and Chariots of the Gods? The Mysteries Continue. He also doubled as host and narrator for the 1998 show, Foot Soldier.
The actor added some credits to his film career debuting with Picture Perfect and making further appearances in other successful works like Bram Stoker’s Legend of the Mummy, The Pooch and the Pauper, MVP: Most Vertical Primate, Sex, and the Teenage Mind, Reality School, and Air Bud: Seventh Inning Fetch. Richard was called to replace Louie Anderson as the fourth host on the game show Family Feud from 2002 to 2006 but was eventually replaced by John O’Hurley.
Richard Karn went back to film in 2006 and made a few appearances but soon went back to his hosting duties as the co-host for the Bingo America game show on October 6, 2008, replacing Patrick Duffy until his contract with the game show network ended in 2009. After this, he went back to the movies again.
What Is His Net Worth?
A good bulk of Richard Karn’s wealth was made from the many shows he has hosted and the many successful movies he has been a part of. In addition to the two above, he became an author when he published his books House Broken: How I Remodeled My Home for Just Under Three Times the Original Bid (1999) and Handy at Home: Tips on Improving Your Home from America’s Favorite Handyman (2002).
In view of the above sources, there have been discrepancies amongst many sources as to what the exact amount is for Richard Karn’s net worth. Some sources have placed it at $8 million while others went as high as $30 million. Whatever be the case, the show host is living a lavish lifestyle.
His Wife and Siblings
The love story of Richard Karn and his wife of many years Tudi Roche is one that many young couples in the entertainment industry want to emulate. The two met back in the early 80s, started dating almost immediately and eventually made it to the altar in 1985. Tudi is an American singer and actress who has made some appearances in Home Improvement alongside her husband.
Their union is blessed with a son Cooper Andrew Wilson better known as Cooper Karn Wilson; he was born in 1992. Cooper attended Campbell Hall same as other celebrity kids like Olivia Washington, Mary-Kate Olsen, Ashley Olsen, and Andrew Lawrence. Following his parent’s footsteps, Cooper Karn is an actor
Karn has only one sibling from his parents and that is his sister Sue Wilson.
Is Richard Karn Dead?
In December 2018, a rumor spread on the internet that the veteran actor and game show host was dead. This prompted massive condolence messages coming up on social media from his teeming fans. Thankfully, it was revealed that it was all a hoax and that Richard who was 62 years old at that time is alive and in good shape, which is still the case at the moment.
Richard Karn is hunky in so many ways. He may no longer be young but he was the dream of many women in his hay days. The actor stands at an average 5 feet 10 inches (1.78m) whereas his weight is 90 kg. There is no doubt that he is in perfect shape for his advanced age.