Amy Schumer's unique road to becoming an A-list comedy star

Amy SchumerBrendon Thorne/Getty ImagesBefore ‘Trainwreck’ and an Emmy nod, Amy Schumer grew up bankrupt in NYC.

Amy Schumer is officially a bonafide Hollywood star.

The 34-year-old comedienne’s debut film “Trainwreck” opened to impressive box office numbers this weekend, and she recently earned her first Emmy nomination as an actress for her hit Comedy Central show “Inside Amy Schumer.”

But Schumer’s rise to fame wasn’t easy. Here’s how the stand up comic from New York became a Hollywood star.

Amy Schumer was born in the Upper East Side of Manhattan in 1981. Her father was the owner of a successful baby furniture company, and the family was 'really wealthy' in her early years.

(Instagram) #tbt Dad and me

A photo posted by @amyschumer on Oct 9, 2014 at 10:42pm PDT

Source: (Instagram) NPR

When she was 9, her family went bankrupt and her father was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. Her father's permanent hospitalisation would become a main inspiration for her movie 'Trainwreck.'

(Instagram) Hey!

A photo posted by @amyschumer on Jun 8, 2014 at 3:10pm PDT

Source: (Instagram) The New York Times

Three years later, her parents divorced and she moved to Long Island with her mother, whose 'lack of boundaries' helped inform her provocative sense of humour.

(Instagram) I wasn't buying it #tbt #tanmom

A photo posted by @amyschumer on Feb 12, 2015 at 5:15am PST

'I have a joke where I say, 'Oh, I'm going to bring (my mum) to a soccer game because I want to show her what boundaries look like,'' Schumer said in an interview with (Instagram) NPR.

During her 'tough childhood' in Long Island, she formed a close friendship with her younger sister, Kim, who would later become her road manager and an associate producer on 'Trainwreck.'

Schumer attended South Side High School in Rockville Centre, NY, where she was voted 'Class Clown' and 'Teacher's Worst Nightmare' upon graduating in 1999.

After graduating from Towson University with a degree in theatre in 2003, she moved back to New York and began a career in stand-up comedy. Her first television appearance came on an episode of Comedy Central's 'Live At Gotham.'

Source: OC Weekly

Schumer's first breakthrough performance came on the fifth season of 'Last Comic Standing' in 2007, where she placed fourth.

In 2008, she finished second on the reality show parody 'Reality Bites Back,' hosted by comedian Michael Ian Black.

Over the next few years, Schumer took to the comedy club circuit, opening for headline acts like Dave Attell and Jim Norton and headlining a few of her own shows.

(Instagram) Hi, we're your real parents

A photo posted by @amyschumer on Apr 28, 2014 at 9:18am PDT

Source: (Instagram) WTF Pod

In 2010, Schumer's career took a big leap when she starred in her own half-hour 'Comedy Central Presents' special.

In the same year, she served as a co-host with Blink 182's Mark Hoppus on the Fuse show 'A Different Spin with Mark Hoppus.'

Schumer's years of road material culminated in her 2011 debut album, 'Cutting,' an edgy LP that featured such jokes as 'I finally slept with my high school crush. Now he expects me to go to his graduation.'

The biggest break of her career came during a string of Comedy Central Roasts. In 2011, she killed on the 'Comedy Central Roast of Charlie Sheen'...

... and in 2012, she returned as one of the more prominent roasters on the 'Comedy Central Roast of Rosanne Barr.'

Schumer dated Anthony Jeselnik, a fellow Comedy Central roaster and comedian, on-and-off until 2013. 'There is no anger,' Schumer told Comsopolitan about her ex. 'We didn't have a bad break-up.'

Source: Cosmopolitan

She also had a brief relationship with WWE star Dolph Ziggler before breaking things off in 2012 over text. 'The sex was too athletic,' Schumer told HuffPost. 'He was spinning me like a Globetrotter.'

Source: HuffPost

In 2012, on the strength of her roast appearances, Comedy Central gave Schumer an hour-long special, aptly titled 'Mostly Sex Stuff' for its raunchy (and innovative) material.

In 2013, Comedy Central premiered Schumer's sketch comedy show 'Inside Amy Schumer.'

Schumer and her sister, Kim Caramele, at the 2013 premiere of 'Inside Amy Schumer.'

'Inside Amy Schumer' steadily gained a large following through its first and second seasons, catching media attention as 'the most feminist show on television.'

Source: Slate

Schumer's show grabbed headlines with a second-season sketch featuring Amy making a bargain with 'God' (Paul Giamatti) to get rid of her herpes...

... and she continued to make waves in the third season, when Tina Fey, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, and Particia Arquette guest-starred in a skit ('Last F--kable Day') that parodied the media's expectations of ageing actresses.

Last week, Schumer was nominated for a best actress in a comedy Emmy and 'Inside Amy Schumer' was nominated for outstanding variety sketch series.

In 2013, Judd Apatow agreed to direct Schumer's original script for 'Trainwreck,' and the crew began principle filming in May 2014.

Source: SSN Insider

The 'Trainwreck' cast would go on to include Bill Hader ('Saturday Night Live') and NBA all-star LeBron James...

(Instagram) Just a ride #trainwreck

A photo posted by @amyschumer on Jul 10, 2015 at 6:32pm PDT

... as well as comedian and former 'SNL' Weekend Update host Colin Quinn, starring as a fictional version of Schumer's MS-stricken father.

(Instagram) Happy birthday to my Trainwreck dad @colinquinn. 85 never looked so good

A photo posted by @amyschumer on Jun 6, 2015 at 12:47pm PDT

This weekend, 'Trainwreck' premiered second at the box office, racking up $30.2 million in sales -- a total that certainly pushes Amy Schumer into the exclusive tier of A-list movie stars.

Source: Variety

Today, she has 1.43 million Twitter followers and over 816,000 Instagram followers.

Schumer recently revealed that Comedy Central offered her the 'Daily Show' hosting job to replace Jon Stewart, but she declined, explaining, 'I've never done anything safe or to make money for that reason. So, I said, 'I can't start now.''

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.