Arsenio Hall is an American actor, comedian, producer, and writer. He hosted “The Arsenio Hall Show” for which he is best known. Hall was also a regular guest at Jay Leno’s show and Lopez Tonight.

Actor Arsenio Hall
Actor Arsenio Hall

As of 2020, Arsenio Hall’s net worth is estimated around $16 million. He was paid almost a $1 million for his role in Coming to America at the beginning of his career in 1988. Since his fame was rising then as a host of a popular show host, his income were high as well. We unveil here some fascinating facts about Hall and his careers.

Early Life And Education

Arsenio Hall was born on 12 February 1956 in Cleveland, Ohio US. He finished Warrensville Heights High School and continued his education at Kent State University. In 1973, he received a Bachelor’s degree in Speech, then an honorary degree from Central State University in 1992


Talk Show (1989-1994)

Hall moved to Chicago first and then to Los Angeles to pursue a career in entertainment. He appeared in Soul Train, an American TV music-dance program at the time.

In 1984, Hall was the announcer in the “Thicke of the Night”, a live show hosted by Alan Thicke. Hall was a guest host of the “Late Show” in 1987 for 13 weeks and gained unexpected popularity which helped him to start his own career in talk shows.

He premiered his talk show, “The Arsenio Hall Show” in 1989. It lasted for five years before it was canceled. Many celebrities were interviewed in the show and this made it very popular among younger population of all races.

Many of Hall’s friends appeared in the show, some very often like Eddie Murphy, M. C. Hammer, George Lopez, Paula Abdul and Andrew Clay. He also interviewed many wrestlers among them, Hulk Hogan. The band in the show was named “Posse” and was led by Michael Wolff, the American jazz pianist. The audience in the studio always shouted “Wuff! Wuff! Wuff!”. It was a cheering sound used for the “Cleveland Brown”, professional American football team, which is from Hall’s hometown. So, it was very easily linked to the show.

Before the elections in 1992, Bill Clinton appeared in the show, playing the “Heartbreak Hotel” on the saxophone, a song by Elvis Prestley. It is considered that the move helped him to gain popularity among young voters thus, he won the presidential election.

When David Letterman started to host the “Late Show”, few CBS stations dropped Hall’s show. He competed with Jay Leno’s rating, but after some time he started to lose audience, which in the fifth season resulted in a 24% drop. The show was canceled in 1994 because Hall announced that he would not continue hosting it.

Arsenio Hall at one of his shows
Arsenio Hall at one of his shows

The show won two Emmy Awards in 1990 for Outstanding Sound Mixing for a variety/music series/a special and in 1993 for Outstanding Technical Direction/Camera/Video for a series. Also the show won NAACR Image Awards for Outstanding Variety Show in 1993 and 1995. Hall received a star in Hollywood’s walk of fame in 1990.

The Show had one more rivival in 2013, but it lasted only one season. The first series were taped at Paramount studios in Los Angeles and were produced by Paramount Domestic Television. The second ones were taped in Sunset Bronson Studios and were produced by Octagon Entertainment, Tribune Broadcasting, and Eye Productions.

Aside his own show, Hall also hosted the MTV Video Music Awards from 1988-1991. He made regular appearances on Lopez tonight show and Jay Leno’s show as they were his friends. Lopez even credited Hall for having his own late night show, especially because he was the first Mexican-American who hosted such a show in English network language. Lopez was Hall’s guest in his show many times, more than any other comedian.

Return of Arsenio Hall show (2013-2014)

Hall returned on the screen in 2013 with his show. The band was “Posse 2.0.”, led by the musician and drummer Robert DiMaggio. The show’s first episode was a success, but in latter days, the ratings started to drop, and this led the company to cancel the it’s second season. However the show was nominated at NAACP Image Awards.

Executive Producer

In 1990, Hall tried as an executive producer of The Party machine, a music variety show. The show lasted for 30 minutes as late night show hosted by Nia Peeples, a singer and actress. It had good ratings at the beginning, but it was cancelled after the first season.


In addition to hosting shows, Hall has a movie career also. Although he is well remembered for playing in the Coming to America with Eddie Murphy, his movie career began with his voice over of the fictional character of Winston Zeddemore in the first two seasons of the series The Real Ghostbusters.

Coming to America was his next film project after the Ghostbusters. The romantic comedy was a Box office success and received positive reviews. It was nominated in two Oscars categories.

The next year he had a role in another of Eddie Murphy’s movie, Harlem Nights, which also received an Oscar nomination and was a success at the Box office. His last released movie was Black Dynamite in 2009 with good critics’ reviews.


After 11 years of break from movie roles, Hall will appear in the comedy, Coming 2 America, directed by Craig Brewer which is scheduled to premiere at the end of the year.

During his break from the big screen, Hall took some roles in TV series, like Lopez in 2016, The Mayor in 2017, and All about the Washingtons in 2018. Last year, he performed his first comedy standup special “Arsenio Hall: Smart and Classy”, which was filmed live in San Jose, California and released later.

Coming 2 America

This is a second installment of the “Coming to America” franchise. As in the main movie released in 1988, Hall here reprises his role as Semmi in the movie. Semmi is a trusted aide and best friend to Prince Akeem. And when the prince returns to America in search of his son to prepare him for kingship, his best buddy, Semmi, is right beside him all through.

Hall (as Semmi) with Murphy (as Prince Akeem) in coming to America
Hall (as Semmi) with Murphy (as Prince Akeem) in coming to America

This installment is coming 32 years after the release of the main movie, and would be distributed by paramount pictures.. It is hoped that it would be as hugely successful as its predecessor.

Charity Work

When Magic Johnson revealed he had HIV/AIDS, Hall used his fame at the time to raise awareness about the disease. In 2012, he was part of the fifth edition of The Celebrities Apprentice, as a representative of Magic Johnson Foundation. Hall won the show and received $250.000 for his charity.

Personal Life

Hall has never married. He said in an interview that marriage was never for him. However, he has a child, a son born in 1998 with his then partner, Cheryl Bonacci, with whom he was in a relationship for 15 years. She was his personal manager. They separated in 2002, but not in good terms as they had a child support and custody battle. The parents shared custody at the end and reached an agreement for the sake of the child. Hall dedicated to raise him and this took a toll on his career. Their son, Cheron is now a student at the Kelley School of business at Indiana University.

Hall with his only child, Cheron
Hall with his only child, Cheron

Hall is not a person that shares his private life in public. Still, there are information that he dated in the past the actresses Emma Samms, Mary Frann, Pamela Anderson, as well as the singer Paula Abdul. At the moment it is believed that he is single.

Arsenio Hall Appearance

He is 5 feet 11 inches tall and weighs 75 kg. He has black hair and brown eyes. Hall loves and has been playing basketball since his younger years and that is how he maintains his physique.

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