Nicholas Roger "Nick" Swardson is an American actor, stand-up comedian, screenwriter, and producer best known for his role as Terry Bernadino in the comedy series Reno 911!

He voices Sensei Brantley in Star vs. the Forces of Evil.

Early life

A native of the Minneapolis–Saint Paul area, Swardson was born to Pamela and Roger Eric Swardson, and is the youngest of three siblings — he has a sister, Rachel, and a brother, John. Swardson attended St. Paul Central High School and started acting and performing improv comedy at the age of 16. He was expelled from school on four occasions for pulling fire alarms in order to go outside and smoke cigarettes, fighting, posting a lewd sign in class, and for smoking marijuana; he was enrolled in a rehab program while still in school.

After graduating in 1996, Swardson decided to pursue stand-up comedy rather than attend college. Although Swardson was a fan of sketch comedy, he saw stand-up comedy as a stepping-stone to a career in film, more so than he would working within a comedy troupe.


Swardson started performing stand-up at the age of 18, attending open mic nights at the Minneapolis comedy club Acme Comedy Co. He stated in a 2007 interview with The Portland Mercury that he did his first open mic "as a goof" but was encouraged by the club owner to perform again, and he went on to win the comedy club's award for the "Funniest Person in the Twin Cities". He also went on to perform regularly at Knuckleheads, a defunct comedy club located in the Mall of America.

After garnering some attention within comedy circles, Swardson was selected to perform stand-up at the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival at age 20. After Swardson's first performance at the festival, he was officially recognized by comedian and Master of Ceremonies Tony Camin. Swardson eventually left the Minneapolis–Saint Paul area for New York City where he would appear in such venues as the Luna Lounge, then on to Los Angeles where he headlined at many nightclubs.

In addition to his stand-up, Swardson began to get work in commercials and in small roles in both television and film, such an appearance in an episode of the Al Franken sitcom LateLine in 1999 and playing the role of a crazed David Bowie fan in the 2000 film Almost Famous.

In 2003, Swardson co-wrote the screenplay for Malibu's Most Wanted along with the film's star Jamie Kennedy and Adam Small. That same year, he took on the role of a flamboyant roller skates-wearing gigolo named Terry Bernadino on the Comedy Central series Reno 911! 2003 also marked the beginning of Swardson's longtime working relationship and friendship with Adam Sandler. Swardson's first project with Sandler was co-writing the screenplay for Grandma's Boy

Swardson's sketch comedy show Nick Swardson's Pretend Time premiered on Comedy Central on October 12, 2010 and ran for two seasons. The show was produced in conjunction with Adam Sandler's Happy Madison Productions. In 2011, Swardson starred in, co-wrote, and co-produced Bucky Larson: Born to Be a Star. That same year, he starred alongside Jesse Eisenberg, Danny McBride, and Aziz Ansari in 30 Minutes or Less. In 2014, Swardson performed the voice of Troy on the FX animated series Chozen.

External links

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