He was born in Milan in 1955. His mother, Rosa, was from Como (a city in Northern Italy), and his father, Matteo, was from Puglia (the "heel" of the Italian peninsula). He grew up in a suburbia quarter of Milan. His mother worked as a wardrobe maid at the "Derby", a well-known theater where lots of the most popular Italian comedians performed. Diego's uncle owned the place, which Diego visited since when he was a child. He was first employed as a light technician, then he began to perform as the "terruncello", the guy who lives in the North of Italy but still retains his Southerner accent.