John Stamos spent his teen years flipping burgers for the Orange County-based Duke's and Yellow Basket restaurants, as well as playing drums in John F. Kennedy High School's marching band. At 15 he began to pursue acting and music in earnest. His parents supported his artistic aspirations, and although he intended to enroll at Cypress College in 1981, he skipped his first semester to take a legitimate shot at a professional acting career. Three weeks later, John was cast as Blackie Parrish on ABC's soap opera, General Hospital. While the character was originally scheduled for a five-episode arc, Johns popularity and audience appeal transformed Blackie into the show's new mainstay. As the sexy, savvy Blackie, John Stamos soon found that he had become a Hollywood heartthrob. During his two-year stint on the show, he earned several awards.
In 1984, John Stamos moved to prime time with CBS's Dreams, a sitcom that featured him as the frontman of a working-class Philadelphia band. The series lasted for 12 episodes. Still bolstered by his burgeoning fame, John befriended his idols, The Beach Boys, and was invited to drum with them at their Fourth of July set in 1985. The Washington, D.C., performance drew 1.5 million people and the band, pleased with Johns' penchant for percussion, used him frequently as a touring and session drummer.
The following year, John made the transition from television to film, starring in the film Never Too Young To Die. On the heels of his little-seen film performance, he was cast opposite Jack Klugman in the sitcom, You Again? The series endured a single season. Around that time, ABC began casting a new family-friendly show, Full House.
The latter role proved to be an ideal vehicle for John Stamos. As the motorcycle-riding, Elvis-worshiping Uncle Jesse, he became a huge success. By the time the series reached its second season, it had become a Top 20 hit, and he was a household name.
In the late 80s and early 90s, John began touring and recording with The Beach Boys. After he appeared in the video for the 1988 hit "Kokomo", their joint efforts produced the single "Forever" (1992), which featured John on vocals. The song later appeared in the Full House series to commemorate Jesse's wedding to love interest Rebecca, played by Lori Loughlin.
Branded as "Uncle Jesse," John Stamos struggled to separate himself from his most popular character. He embraced theater and, that same year, landed the lead role in the Broadway production of How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, replacing Matthew Broderick as the star. He also appeared in several made-for-TV movies: CBS's A Match Made in Heaven (1997) and The Marriage Fool (1998).
In September 1998, John wed supermodel Rebecca Romijn, and soon after, founded St. Amos Productions. Intended as a venture to keep him working in between acting roles, the company largely focused on small-screen productions. Its most notable effort, the ABC miniseries Beach Boys: An American Family (2000), garnered an Emmy nod.
Returning to television, Stamos was offered a leading role in ABC's Theives, but the series was quickly canceled. He returned his focus to St. Amos, and produced MTVs The Virgin Chronicles (2002) and CBS's Martin and Lewis (2002). In between his behind-the-camera projects, John also revisited the stage, starring as the Emcee in the Broadway production of Cabaret. Two years later, he and his wife filed for divorce.
The ABC romantic-comedy, Jake in Progress, which debuted in 2005, offered John another shot at prime time. That same year, he made a guest appearance on ER, NBC's enduring hospital drama. The response to his cameo was enormous, and injected life (and ratings) into the series. When executives canceled Jake in Progress in 2006, Stamos was able to join ER's 13th season as a principal character: military veteran Dr. Tony Gates. Right around this time, he was also offered a role in A&E's Wedding Wars.
While continuing in his role on ER, John Stamos appeared opposite Sean Diddy Combs and Phylicia Rashad in ABC's adaptation of A Raisin in the Sun (2008). The production was honored with nominations at the Golden Globes and the Emmys. Since ER's cancellation in 2009, John agreed to return to Broadway, this time performing opposite Gina Gershon in the revival of Bye Bye Birdie.
In August 2014, reports circulated that Warner Bros. Television was considering a series reboot of Full House. John Stamos, who has an ownership stake in the show, headed up the attempt to get the series back into production. On April 20, John Stamos appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live, confirming the spin-off series called Fuller House had been green-lighted.