25 Controversial Richard Pryor Quotes To Make You Think

Daring, genius, downright hilarious: these are only a few of the many words that can describe legendary comedian Richard Pryor.

Today, we have compiled some of the most memorable Richard Pryor quotes from the award-winning comedian below. 

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Richard Pryor began his comedic career as a staple in the New York City comedy club scene in the early 1960s.

He began to reach national acclaim by appearing on a string of television shows including The Tonight Show With Johnny Carson, The Merv Griffin Show, and The Ed Sullivan Show.

Pryor’s over 40-year long career includes over 20 comedy albums and appearances in dozens of movies.

He is regarded by many as one of the best stand-up comedians of all time, including Comedy Central, which voted him number 1. 

Check out these Richard Pryor quotes highlighting some of his funniest, most relatable, and most controversial moments, below!

We also have a collection of Rodney Dangerfield quotes and famous one-liners.

Don’t forget to also read that.

Check out our most popular quote article, a list of short inspirational quotes for daily inspiration. 

Our inspirational quotes category page has all of our motivational quotes for all the different areas of life

Funny Richard Pryor quotes

1. “All humor is rooted in pain.” ― Richard Pryor

2. “Everyone carries around his own monsters.” ― Richard Pryor

3. “Who you gonna believe, me or your lying eyes?” ― Richard Pryor

4. “I’m not addicted to cocaine. I just like the way it smells.” ― Richard Pryor

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5. “When you ain’t got no money, you gotta get an attitude.” ― Richard Pryor

6. “There’s a thin line between to laugh with and to laugh at.” ― Richard Pryor

7. “There’s nothing worse than being an aging young person.” ― Richard Pryor

8. “I don’t want to go through life as a Wonder Wheel murderer!” ― Richard Pryor

9. “I had to stop drinking, ‘cause I got tired of waking up in my car driving ninety.” ― Richard Pryor

10. “I went through every phone book in Africa, and I didn’t find one god damned Pryor!” ― Richard Pryor

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Richard Pryor quotes about relationships

11. “I don’t see myself getting married again, but if I do, it will be forever.” ― Richard Pryor

12. “Marriage is really tough because you have to deal with feelings… and lawyers.” ― Richard Pryor

13. “If you want a friend, you don’t buy a friend. You earn a friend through love and trust and respect.” — Richard Pryor

14. “I think about being married again, having a home and a wife. No one can ever be married too many times, and maybe if I keep trying I’ll get it right one day.” ― Richard Pryor

15. “I just don’t want to die alone, that’s all. That’s not too much to ask for, is it? It would be nice to have someone care about me, for who I am, not about my wallet.” ― Richard Pryor

16. “Sure, I have friends, plenty of friends, and they all come around wanting to borrow money. I’ve always been generous with my friends and family, with money, but selfish with the important stuff like love.” ― Richard Pryor

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Richard Pryor quotes about life

17. “I’d like to make you laugh for about ten minutes though I’m gonna be on for an hour.” ― Richard Pryor

18. “I know that if I wasn’t scared, something’s wrong, because the thrill is what’s scary.” ― Richard Pryor

19. “The reason people use a crucifix against vampires is because vampires are allergic to bullshit.” — Richard Pryor

20. “Have you ever noticed how quiet you get when you go in the woods? It’s almost like you know that God’s there.” ― Richard Pryor

21. “I won’t talk about what it was like in prison, except to say I’m glad I’m out and that I plan never to go back and to pay my taxes every day.” ― Richard Pryor

22. “If I thought about it, I could be bitter, but I don’t feel like being bitter. Being bitter makes you immobile, and there’s too much that I still want to do.” ― Richard Pryor

23. “Hawaii is the best form of comfort for me. When I die, I want to be cremated, and I want half my ashes spread in the Pacific around the island, the rest on the property.” Richard Pryor

24. “Imagine people calling you to find out if you’re dead. I’ve led a real crazy life at times, and I’ve had many strange things happen to me, but that was one of the strangest.” ― Richard Pryor

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25. “There was a time in my life when I thought I had everything – millions of dollars, mansions, cars, nice clothes, beautiful women, and every other materialistic thing you can imagine. Now I struggle for peace.” ― Richard Pryor

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What do you like about Richard Pryor’s unique brand of comedy?

Modern comedians, regardless of race, religion, or gender, find inspiration in the career of Richard Pryor.

Pryor’s comedy remains relevant today because he isn’t afraid to be controversial.

Within controversy is the truth, and Richard Pryor wasn’t afraid to tell it like it is.

Comedian Damon Wayans once called Pryor a trailblazer, stating, “As a young black man he was saying what he felt, and was shocking.” 

Pryor related deeply to many communities that felt like they were being silenced.

His strong voice helped others navigate their own lives, while finding humor at the end of it all. 

What’s your favorite Richard Pryor quote from above?

Do you have any other quotes to add to the list?

Drop us a comment!

Nia Simone McLeod is a writer, content creator, and video editor from Richmond, Virginia. After receiving a Bachelor’s degree in journalism from Virginia Commonwealth University, she began producing professionally edited, eye-catching written and visual content for clients on a variety of different topics such as pop culture, music, technology, business, and mental health. From songs that top the Billboard charts to binge-worthy TV shows on Netflix, she not only understands what’s “hot” in pop culture but how it connects us as a community.As communities, we bond over discussing, critiquing, and expressing our love for pop culture. Developing great digital content is equal parts research and creative ideas. As a content writer, she has helped brands and entrepreneurs create digital content that authentically expresses their brand while staying in touch with current events. Her article topics also include travel, technology, business, and health. When she is not tapping away at her laptop, she is curating her next great Spotify playlist or stuffing her face at the local pho shop.
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