Patton Oswalt (born January 27, 1969) is an American stand-up comedian, writer, actor and voice actor known for roles such as Spencer Olchin in the sitcom The King of Queens and for voicing Remy in the film Ratatouille.
Oswalt was born January 27, 1969, in Portsmouth, Virginia, to Carla and Larry J. Oswalt, a career United States Marine Corps officer. He was named after General George S. Patton. While a military brat, he later lived in Ohio and Tustin, California, before settling in Sterling, Virginia. He is a 1987 graduate of Broad Run High School in Ashburn, Virginia and subsequently graduated from the College of William and Mary, where he majored in English and was initiated into the Alpha Theta Chapter of the Phi Kappa Tau Fraternity.
Oswalt first began performing stand up comedy in the late 1980s or early 1990s, by his own reckoning. After writing for MADtv and starring in his own 1996 comedy special for HBO, he went on to garner notable roles in films and television shows. His most prominent and long-running role was as Spence Olchin on The King of Queens. His first starring film role was as the voice of Remy, the lead character in the 2007 Pixar film Ratatouille. He has also appeared in smaller roles in such films as Magnolia and 22 Jump Street.
Oswalt wrote the comic book story "JLA: Welcome to the Working Week", a backup story in Batman #600; a story for Dwight T. Albatross's The Goon Noir #01 and a story for Masks: Too Hot for TV. Expanding his voice artist repertoire, he began voicing the villainous character "Tobey" on PBS Kids GO! series WordGirl in 2007. He also appeared on the Comedy Central Roast of William Shatner. In August 2007, he appeared on the Comedy Central Roast of Flavor Flav. In 2007, he appeared on an episode of SpongeBob SquarePants, "The Original Fry Cook", as Jim. In 2008 Oswalt moderated a reunion panel of the Mystery Science Theater 3000 cast at the San Diego Comic-Con International.
In 2009, Oswalt played Paul Aufiero, the leading role in Robert D. Siegel's 2009 directorial debut, Big Fan. He was to star in a 2010 Broadway revival of Lips Together, Teeth Apart. However, the show was postponed then eventually canceled due to Megan Mullally's departure from the production when the director denied her request to replace Oswalt due to his lack of stage experience.
He starred in the Showtime drama The United States of Tara as Neil, an employee of Four Winds Landscaping. He also provided the voice of Thrasher, a robot protagonist from the Cartoon Network show, Robotomy.
In January 2011, Oswalt released his first book, Zombie Spaceship Wasteland.
In November 2011, Oswalt played the role of Hurlan Heartshe in the surrealist comedy miniseries The Heart, She Holler on Cartoon Network's late-night programming block, Adult Swim. Also in November 2011, Oswalt was depicted blowing the second-ever puff of 3D pot smoke in A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas. In December 2011, Oswalt played Matt Freehauf in Jason Reitman's black comedy Young Adult. In 2012, he originated the role of Billy Stanhope on Two and a Half Men.
As of September 2013, Oswalt narrates the TV series, The Goldbergs. He also had a recurring role as Constable Bob Sweeney in the fourth season of the FX series Justified.
As of March 20, 2014, it was announced that Patton would be cast in the role of Agent Koenig on the TV series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. He later appeared in separate episodes as brothers Eric and Billy Koenig. He will continue to appear in the second season as Billy and a third brother Sam (as the original brother Eric is now deceased).
In January 2015 Oswalt's memoir Silver Screen Fiend: Learning About Life from an Addiction to Film was published by Simon & Shuster.
Oswalt's stand up comedy covers topics ranging from pop culture frivolity such as comic book supervillains and 1980s glam metal to deeper social issues like American excess, materialism, foreign policy and religion. He also discusses his atheism in his stand-up. On February 28, 2009, Oswalt recorded his third comedy album at the Lisner Auditorium at George Washington University in Washington D.C. It premiered on Comedy Central as Patton Oswalt: My Weakness is Strong on August 23, 2009, and was released on DVD August 25, 2009.
Oswalt's album, Patton Oswalt: Finest Hour, was released on September 19, 2011. The extended and uncensored DVD of this special was released in April 2012, a few days after its television premiere on Comedy Central.
Patton's newest comedy special Tragedy Plus Comedy Equals Time was to be released on January 16, 2014 via online movie streaming website Epix but was pushed back by the company for unknown reasons. However, it did premiere on Comedy Central on April 6 and became available for purchase on April 8 in both DVD and CD format.
Oswalt married writer Michelle Eileen McNamara on September 24, 2005. They have one daughter: Alice Rigney (born May 15, 2009).
Oswalt is an atheist, and has referenced his atheism in his comedy specials, No Reason to Complain, Feelin' Kind of Patton, My Weakness is Strong, and Finest Hour. It was also referenced by Katt Williams in the opening act of The Comedy Central Roast of Flavor Flav.
In 2013, he teamed up with PETA and spoke out against chaining pet dogs, and sent a letter to the mayor and members of the city council of Newport News, Virginia, urging them to ban the practice.
- Patton vs. Alcohol vs. Zach vs. Patton (2005) with Zach Galifianakis
- Melvins/Patton Oswalt split 7 (2006) with The Melvins
- Comedians of Comedy Tour 3"CD (2006)
- The Pennsylvania Macaroni Company (2006) with Brian Posehn, Maria Bamford, and Eugene Mirman
- Frankensteins and Gumdrops (2008) Available during the WFMU pledge drive
Compilation album appearances
- Beth Lapides' Un-Cabaret â" The Un & Only (2002)
- Beth Lapides' Un-Cabaret â" The Good, The Bad, and the Drugly (2006)
- Comedy Death-Ray (2007)
- JLA: Welcome to the Working Week (DC Comics, 2003)
- The Overrated Book (co-author with Henry H. Owings, Last Gasp, San Francisco, 2006)
- The Goon: Noir (co-author with Thomas Lennon, Steve Niles and Eric Powell, Dark Horse Comics, 2007)
- The Rock Bible: Unholy Scripture for Fans & Bands (co-author with Henry H. Owings, Quirk Books, Philadelphia, 2008)
- Serenity: Float Out (Dark Horse Comics, 2010)
- Zombie Spaceship Wasteland (Scribner, 2011)
- Silver Screen Fiend (Simon & Schuster, 2015)
- Official website
- Patton Oswalt at the Internet Movie Database
- Patton Oswalt at Comedy Central
- Brand new audio interview on The Sound of Young America from PRI.
- Interview with Oswalt from August 2006 on public radio program The Sound of Young America
- Random Rules: Patton Oswalt a feature from The A.V. Club
- Hustler Interview: Patton Oswalt
- IMPOSE interview
- Note Books essay on Largehearted Boy
- Reading John Collier's "The Chaser" at Daytrotter
- Interview by "Rotten.com"
- 'Getting Late' interview by Pete Dominick on Sirius Radio
- "Finest Hour" review