Shawn Harrison | Biography

Quick Wiki

  • Full Name Shawn Harrison
  • Occupation Actor, Producer
  • Nationality American
  • Birthplace Compton, Los Angeles, California
  • Birth Date Dec 28, 1972
  • Age 51 Years, 5 Months
Waldo Geraldo Faldo in the ABC sitcom 'Family Matters'

Shawn Harrison | Biography

Owner of Wassup Shawn Store

Shawn Harrison rose to fame after starring in the ABC sitcom Family Matters in 1990. He portrayed the character of Waldo Geraldo Faldo, a dim-witted yet lovable irritant to the trouble-maker Steve Urkle from 1990 to 1996.

Shawn Harrison is an American actor widely popular as Waldo Faldo in the ABC sitcom Family Matters.

Who is Shawn Harrison?

Shawn Harrison became a public figure right after joining ABC's Family Matters in 1990. Harrison played the character of a dim-witted but lovable chef-in-training, Waldo Geraldo Faldo. 

Despite starting as the negative character in season 2, Shawn's character ark quickly transformed into a lovable and positive persona. In real life, too, Harrison has maintained a similar reputation.


Born on 28 December 1973, Shawn Harrison was born in Compton, Los Angeles, California. He lived with his mother, who was a computer engineer. After the success of Family Matters and his acting career, his mother left her job and began managing her son's and other aspiring actors' careers.

Harrison, however, lost his mother when he was 18, right after his rise to fame as Waldo. "We were both so happy about my getting the part. ... Her heart just stopped," shared Harrison in an interview about his mother's death. 

Even after finding success as an actor, Harrison still lived in his Compton home that he previously shared with his mother. He mostly lived alone for years; however, he was always accompanied by his aunts and cousins. 

Since Harrison lost his mother while still playing Waldo on Family Matters, he says he didn't have enough time to mourn her death. Hence, his on-screen family came to his rescue and provided him enough support to go through such a tragic and tough time at such a young age.

Early Life and Education

Shawn Harrison is an actor and a producer. He started his acting career quite early as a child actor.

Despite being known as a dim-witted character on TV, Harrison is quite the opposite in real life. He finished two years of college at Los Angeles Harbor and Cerritos colleges and attended UCLA, where he took math classes as well.  

In an interview in 1995, Harrison also expressed that he would study to become a family counselor. "An educated, intelligent actor is going to be more successful than one without schooling," he shared.

Shawn always knew he wanted to be an actor. He even told his mother so when he was just 4-years-old, even before attending elementary school. Eventually, his mother enrolled Harrison in a children's workshop. After that, he got an opportunity to star in the 1979 movie, The Jerk as Steve Martin's youngest sibling. 

Despite being known as a famous actor, Shawn Harrison considers dancing as his first "artistic expression." Even though he started acting at a tender age, he made his first step into the show business was through tap dancing classes. He started taking tap dancing lessons since he was 4-years-old.

Waldo Geraldo Faldo

Shawn Harrison rose to fame after starring in the ABC sitcom Family Matters in 1990. He portrayed the character of Waldo Geraldo Faldo, a dim-witted yet lovable irritant to the trouble-maker Steve Urkle from 1990 to 1996.

Initially, Waldo, portrayed by Harrison, was slated as a one-time-only character. He was just a sidekick to Eddie Winslow (portrayed by singer/actor Darius McCrary). However, Shawan instantly became everybody's favorite in no time. Thus, the producers turned Waldo into a regular character. The character evolved from a bully's best friend into a more lovable and positive persona. 

Movies and TV Series Appearances

Before gaining recognition as Waldo Faldo, Shawn Harrison had a good few years of acting experience up his sleeves. At just six, Harrison had the opportunity to star in the movie The Jerk, playing the role of Steve Martin's youngest sibling. And before bagging his most prominent role, he appeared in another sitcom, Day By Day, at the age of 15. He has also appeared in several TV commercials, including the Fruity Pebbles and the Burger King commercials and one with footballer Drew Brees.

In addition, he's also starred in a number of films and TV series such as the animated series Legion of Super-Heroes (2006), the movie Silent But Deadly (2011), and the series A Sitcom for Gio (2020).

Shawn Harrison is also a producer. He says he always dreamt of producing something to encourage and uplift the lives of African-Americans. In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Harrison shared, "I want to produce a show about blacks where we show that the diversity, the black experience, is very universal, kind of like what they do on 'Family Matters.' It's about characters and family, not color."

Other Projects

While Shawn Harrison is already a famed actor, he has used his fame as Waldo Faldo smartly. Waldo was best known in Family Matters for his snarky commentary and witty punchlines. And he is also someone who loves wearing fun, pop-culture mashup t-shirts from different TV shows and movies. Thus, his love for a good witty t-shirt gave rise to the "Wassup Shawn" store.

Wassup Shawn is an online store run by Shawn Harrison through which he sells graphic t-shirts, including the ones with Waldo's famous punchline, "Sup." In addition, the site is also a portal for Shawn's clips of work and a storefront. 

Shawn Harrison also has a profile in the Cameo app in which he gives out personalized shoutouts to his fans and their loved ones. Cameo is a video-sharing app where people can request their favorite celebrities, actors, musicians, and other personas for personalized video messages and shoutouts.


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