business hadn't panned out I would probably be working today in Hamilton,Ontario at the Dofasco steel mill." When looking across the Burlington Bay toward
Hamilton, he could see the mills and thought, "Those were where the great jobs were."
While struggling to obtain work and making a name for himself, Carrey's father decided to help the young comedian put together a stage act, driving him to
to debut at
Unfortunately, Carrey's impersonations bombed and this gave him doubts about his capability as a professional entertainer. His family, at the time, were struggling financially meaning it was difficult for them to support Carrey's ambitions. Eventually, the family's financial problems were dealt with and they moved into a new home .
With a now more domestic stability, Carrey worked up the nerve to return to the stage with a more polished act. In a short period of time, Carrey went from open mic nights to regular paid shows; a growing reputation building in the process. One reviewer in the
raved that Carrey was "a genuine star coming to life" .
Carrey was soon noticed by comedian
,who signed the young comedian to open Dangerfield's tour performances .
He eventually brought Carrey to
,after which he decided to move to
.Carrey began performing at
and in 1982, appeared on the televised stand-up show
The following year, he debuted his act on
Despite his increasing popularity as a stand-up comedian, Carrey turned his attention to the film and television industries, auditioning to be a cast member for the
Carrey was not selected for the position (although he did host the show in
). He was, after a period of time, cast in several low-budget films:
(1981) playing a struggling young comic, and
(1983) playing a sex-starved teen, the latter including his impersonation of
Since the film had a less than one hour runtime consisting largely of musical performances by
,it was not considered a full-length feature film.In 1984, Carrey was soon cast, surprisingly, as the lead in the NBC sitcom
,in which he played a quirky young artist alongside
. However, the show was unceremoniously cancelled during its first season. Despite the sudden cancellation, Carrey landed supporting roles in several low-budget films:
(1988).When Carrey returned to stand-up, he retired his old act vowing that he didn't want to be famous for
other people; "Some nights it was a melee, literally,where I'd be standing trying to defend myself for what I was doing. People would