Ghetto Klown

Ghetto Klown

  • ISBN: 9781419715198
  • Publication Date: October 8, 2024


Price: $18.99

The graphic novel adaptation of John Leguizamo’s award-winning Broadway play—revised and expanded in paperback, with an all-new introduction by Lin-Manuel Miranda

In Ghetto Klown, nominated for a 2016 Eisner Award for Best Adaptation, John Leguizamo lays bare his early years, discovering acting, and his career trajectory. He shares his childhood memories and the challenges of balancing life with old friends from his lower-income neighborhood in Queens while trying to maintain a professional persona. He brings us onto the sets of TV series and major motion pictures opposite some of Hollywood’s biggest stars, such as Al Pacino, Patrick Swayze, and Steven Seagal, and with directors like Baz Lurhrman and Brian DePalma. And Leguizamo opens up about his loves and marriages, while addressing his recurring feelings of self-doubt and melancholy in a way that enlightens and still entertains.

Originally staged on Broadway in 2011, Ghetto Klown won Leguizamo the Drama Desk Award and Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Outstanding Solo Performance. The show was later adapted into a highly rated HBO special in March 2014. Teaming up with Brooklyn-based artists and illustrators Christa Cassano and Shamus Beyale, Leguizamo shares his life story as a vibrant, funny graphic novel memoir that is sure to reach a whole new audience in paperback. This revised and expanded edition includes an all-new introduction by Lin-Manuel Miranda and cover art by Drew Friedman.


Ghetto Klown is autobiographical dynamite—this is Leguizamo at his scathing, honest, moving, comedic best. Among the finest portraits of an artist as a young wounded talented man as I’ve read.”
Junot Díaz

“My main Johnny Legs has done it again. Ghetto Klown as a graphic novel? DOPENESS.”
Spike Lee

“John’s writing is a cross between hip-hop and Eugene O’Neill. His scathing and unforgiving look at his own life takes no prisoners and, best of all, sets himself—and us—free.”
Baz Luhrmann

“John’s writing has always been cutting-edge. His relationships with women, father and son stories, autobiography . . . He is a pioneer in theater and comedy, not just for Latin people, but as much as any comic or playwright I’ve ever seen or read. No one makes me laugh louder than this man. We are better because of him.”
Sophia Vergara

“The graphic novel of Ghetto Klown captures the infectious spirit of John Leguizamo’s live performances with the same surprising humor and cultural insight. These pages make John seem like the coolest super hero in New York.”
Jesse Eisenberg

“A touching and sometimes hilarious graphic novel.”
Parade online

“Though Leguizamo has matured, this insightful and engaging memoir still offers plenty of youthful edginess.”

Show More