Comedian George Lopez was born on April 23, 1961. A native of Los Angeles, he grew up in the San Fernando Valley's Mission Hills, experiencing an economically poor upbringing. The majority of his standup comedy is based specifically on his childhood and unique characterization of his Hispanic relatives, particularly the grandmother who raised him. His depictions struck a universal chord with his audience not unlike that of his hero Richard Pryor's Mudbone character. After years of struggling as a standup comic, Lopez finally released his first album, Alien Nation, in 1996 and with it his rise to superstardom began. Within five years he had landed his own weekly ABC-TV series, The George Lopez Show, where he was co-creator (with actress Sandra Bullock), writer, producer, and star.