Joseph Lawrence

Joseph Lawrence

Apr. 20th, 1976
Born in
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
5' 8

Joseph Lawrence's Main TV Roles

Show Character(s)
Melissa & Joey TV Show
Melissa & Joey
Blossom TV Show
Half & Half TV Show
Half & Half
Gimme a Break! TV Show
Gimme a Break!
Brotherly Love TV Show
Brotherly Love
Run of the House TV Show
Run of the House
Something Wilder TV Show
Something Wilder
Fox After Breakfast TV Show
Fox After Breakfast

Main Movie Roles

Guest TV Roles

[none found]


Joseph "Joey" Lawrence (born April 20, 1976) is an American actor, singer, and TV host. He is known for his roles in the TV series Gimme a Break!, Blossom, Brotherly Love, and Melissa & Joey.

Lawrence was born Joseph Lawrence Mignogna, Jr. in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the son of Donna Mignogna, a personnel manager and former elementary school teacher, and Joseph Lawrence Mignogna, Sr., an insurance broker. He is of Italian descent. His family's surname was changed to "Lawrence" during his childhood. He has two younger brothers, Matthew and Andrew, who are also actors.

He graduated from Abington Friends School in Jenkintown, Pennsylvania, in 1994, and later attended the University of Southern California.

Lawrence's first acting role was in a Cracker Jack commercial. At the age of five, he appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, where he performed the song "Give My Regards to Broadway". After appearing in guest spots on Diff'rent Strokes and Silver Spoons, Lawrence won the role of Joey Donovan on the hit NBC sitcom Gimme a Break! in 1983. He continued in that role until the series ended in 1987. Lawrence provided the voice of Oliver, the protagonist in the 1988 Disney film Oliver & Company.

From 1991 to 1995, Lawrence co-starred in the hit TV series Blossom, in which he played Joey Russo.

Lawrence has also starred in the series Brotherly Love (which featured his real life brothers Matthew and Andrew Lawrence) and Run of the House, and has guest starred on such programs as American Dreams and CSI: NY. One of Lawrence's film credits is Urban Legends: Final Cut (2000) in which he costarred with Jennifer Morrison', 'Matthew Davis', and 'Hart Bochner'.

In 2006, Lawrence appeared on ABC's Dancing with the Stars. Paired with professional dancer 'Edyta Śliwińska', he placed third in the competition. In May 2007, he starred in the Broadway hit Chicago as Billy Flynn. He next hosted a dance competition show on The Learning Channel, Master of Dance, which premiered June 9, 2008.

In 2009, Lawrence starred in the television movie My Fake Fiancé with 'Melissa Joan Hart', which premiered on ABC Family to 3.6 million viewers, becoming the most-watched television movie of the ratings season, sweeping top rank in its time-period in key demos. In August 2010, Lawrence returned to television in the ABC Family sitcom Melissa & Joey, opposite 'Melissa Joan Hart'. Hart plays a woman who hires Lawrence as a nanny to help care for her incarcerated sister's kids. Lawrence's character is a former figure in the financial industry whose company came under investigation for wrongdoing and caused his professional life to be put on hold.

Lawrence hits the big screen with two feature films, Hit List and Sinatra Club, with 'Jason Gedrick'. Lawrence has also just sold a script to Disney with the producers of The Wedding Crashers entitled Mr. Everything, which he will co-produce and star in and which is set to shoot in early 2011. When he is not in front of the camera, he is in the studio working on his latest up-tempo pop album, which is set to drop in 2011 as well.

In 2012, he was contracted to be a Chippendales dancer for a special engagement in June at the Rio All Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.

On March 19, 2013, Lawrence began appearing in the ABC reality show Splash. He is co-host alongside 'Charissa Thompson'.

Lawrence married Michelle Vella in 2002; the couple divorced in 2005. He met his second wife, Chandie Yawn-Nelson, while on vacation in Disney World when the two were teenagers; they married there 13 years later, in July 2005. The couple has two daughters, born 2006 and 2010.

  • Ranked #25 in TV Guide's list of "TV's 25 Greatest Teen Idols" (23 January 2005 issue).
  • (May 1994) Named one of "People" magazines 50 Most Beautiful People in the World.
  • Daughter Charli born May 10, 2006, weighing 7 pounds, 7 ounces
  • Shares a birthday with his _"Gimme a Break!" (1981)_ (qv) co-star 'Lara Jill Miller' (qv).
  • (2000) Dated 'Katherine Heigl' (qv).
  • (November 2004) Filed for divorce from his wife, Michelle Vella, of two years. The divorce should be final by the end of 2005.
  • Attended the University of Southern California.
  • Shortly before he began working on _"Gimme a Break!" (1981)_ (qv), 'Bob Denver' (qv) (_"Gilligan's Island" (1964)_ (qv)) and 'Joseph Lawrence (II)' (qv) shot a pilot for an unsold television show called "Scamps." Lawrence played the ring-leader of a group of pesky children.

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