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Carl Reiner

IMDb

Date of Birth:
20 March 1922The Bronx, New York City, New York, USA

Height:
6' 1" (1.85 m)

Short Biography:
Carl Reiner is a legend of American comedy, having achieved great success as a comic actor, a director, producer and recording artist. He has won nine Emmy Awards, three as an actor, three as a writer and two as a producer. He also won a Grammy Award for his "2,000 Year Old Man" album, based on his comedy routine with Mel Brooks.

Reiner was born in The Bronx, to Bessie (Mathias) and Irving Reiner, a watchmaker. His father was an Austrian Jewish immigrant and his mother was a Romanian Jewish immigrant. At the age of sixteen, while working as a sewing machine repairman, he attended a dramatic workshop sponsored by the Works Progress Administration. The direction of his life was set.

In the 1970s, some sources claimed that Reiner made his movie debut in New Faces of 1937 (1937), but that is unlikely as he would have only been 15-years-old at the time. (Interesting, that movie shares the same plot as his erstwhile partner Mel Brooks' 1968 classic, The Producers (1967), with a crooked producer planning to fleece his "angels" by producing a flop and absconding with the money). He didn't appear on screen, silver or small, until he made his TV debut in 1948 in the short-lived TV series, The Fashion Story (1948), then became a regular, the following year, on _"The Fifty-Fourth Street Revue" (1949), another TV series with a brief life.

Reiner made his Broadway debut in 1949 in the musical "Inside U.S.A.", a hit that ran for 399 performances. His next Broadway show, the 1950 musical revue, "Alive and Kicking", was a flop, lasting just 43 performances. Max Liebman, the producer/director/writer/composer, had been called in to provide additional material after the show's troubled six week out-of-town preview in Boston. It didn't help -- the show closed after six weeks on Broadway -- but an important contact had been made.

Leibman was a producer-director on Your Show of Shows (1950), one of the great TV series, and he hired Reiner to appear on the show in the middle of its first season. Reiner's first gig on the revue-like show was interviewing "The Professor", a character played by Sid Caesar. He became central to the comedy portions of the show and, in 1953, he racked up the first of six Emmy nominations for acting. (In all, he was nominated for an Emmy Award a total of 13 times). When, in 1954, "Your Show of Shows" was split up by the network into its constituent parts, Reiner continued on with Sid in Caesar's Hour (1954). (Imogene Coca was given her own show, which lasted one season, and Leibman was allowed to produced specials).

"Your Show or Shows" had been a Broadway-style revue, featuring skits such as dancing (including a young Bob Fosse) whereas "Caesar's Hour" was pure comedy. "Your Show of Shows" had had a great cast, another other than Coca, most of the cast, including Reiner, Howard Morris, and Nanette Fabray (who went on to win an Emmy) moved over to "Caesar's Hour". In his three seasons on the show, he was nominated three more times for a Best Supporting Actor Emmy, winning twice in 1957 and 1958. But it was its stable of comedy writers that was essential to the great success of both "Your Show of Shows" and "Caesar's Hour". In addition to Mel Brooks, the writing staff included Neil Simon, his brother Danny Simon, Larry Gelbart and Mel Tolkin. (There are rumors that the young Woody Allen served as the writing staff's typist).

Reiner had sat in informally with the writers during "Your Show of Shows", but he began writing formally for "Caesar's Hour", having learned his craft from all of the other writers. As a self-described uncredited "writer without portfolio", he was able to leave writers' meetings at 6 PM, if he wanted to. This gave him the time to work on a semi-autobiographical novel. Published in 1958, Enter Laughing (1967) is about a young man in 1930s New York trying to make it in show business. It was transformed into a play and, eventually, adapted into a movie in 1967, and a musical, many years later.

In 1959, he created the pilot for a TV series, "Man of the House", in which he would play a writer, "Rob Petrie", who balanced his family life with the demands of working as a writer for a comedy show headlined by an egotistical comedic genius modeled after Sid Caesar (a "benign despot" who lacked social skills, according to Reiner). The series was rooted in his experience on "Your Show of Shows" and "Caesar's Hour". The network didn't pick up the pilot at first, as CBS executives claimed the main character, which was clearly autobiographical on Reiner's part, was too New York, too Jewish and too intellectual. In 1960, Reiner teamed up with Mel Brooks on The Steve Allen Plymouth Show (1956), and their routine "The 2000 Year Old Man" was a huge success. Reiner played the straight man to Brooks in the routine, which was spun-off into five comedy albums, bringing them a Grammy Award. They also made an animated TV special based on their shtick in 1975.

Though CBS turned down "Man of the House", with the two-time Emmy-winning comedian Reiner as the lead, it was still interested in the series. However, they wanted a WASP in the role of "Rob Petrie" to ensure the broad appeal of the show, and the casting of the protagonist came down to Johnny Carson and Dick Van Dyke. Carson was a game show host of no great note at the time, but Van Dyke was in the smash Broadway musical, Bye Bye Birdie (1963), for which he won a Tony Award. He got the part and another chapter of TV history was made, when Mary Tyler Moore, Rose Marie and Morey Amsterdam all were cast in leading roles. Reiner, himself, would eventually play the role of "Alan Brady", the abrasive Sid Caesar-like comic convinced of his own genius, in the last few seasons of the series' five-year run.

Another milestone in TV comedy, The Dick Van Dyke Show (1961), brought Reiner five more Emmies, three for writing and two as the producer of the series. In 1966, Reiner and the other principals, including executive producer Sheldon Leonard and Dick Van Dyke, decided to end the series at the height of its popularity and critical acclaim. (The show won Emmies as best show and best comedy in 1965 and 1966, respectively). Twenty-nine years after the show was ended, Reiner reprised the role of "Alan Brady" on Mad About You (1992), winning his eighth (and so far, last) Emmy Award, this time as Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series.

It was on "The Dick Van Dyke Show" that Reiner first became a director. His feature film debut, as a director, was with the film adaptation of the play Joseph Stein had adapted from his 1958 novel, Enter Laughing (1967). His work as a writer-director, with Dick Van Dyke, in creating a Stan Laurel-type character in The Comic (1969) was not a success, but Where's Poppa? (1970) became a cult classic and Oh, God! (1977), with George Burns, and The Jerk (1979), with Steve Martin, were smash hits. The last movie he directed was the 1997 comedy, That Old Feeling (1997).

Reiner's career has continued on into the 21st Century, when most of his contemporaries had retired. He was awarded the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor in 2000 and, starting in 2001, he acted in the remake of Ocean's Eleven (2001) and its two sequels. Most recently, he has appeared as a voice artist in the animated series, The Cleveland Show (2009) (he even wrote an episode for the series rooted in his "Your Show of Shows" experience) and has appeared as a regular on the TV series, Hot in Cleveland (2010) (with fellow nonagenarian Betty White), as well as appeared on an episode of Parks and Recreation (2009) in 2012.

Merry Madagascar (2009)

# 06390 IMDb

Merry Madagascar (2009)

By David Soren

Animation (30min)

USA USA

Rated 6.8 after 4,193 votes on 11-Feb-18.

1 win & 5 nominations

The brand new holiday adventure stars everyone's favorite Central Park "zoosters" from Madagascar and Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa. Merry Madagascar begins when Santa and his sleigh unexpectedly crash-land on the island, giving the jolly gentleman a case of amnesia. So it falls to Alex, Marty, Melman and Gloria -- along with the ever-inventive Penguins -- to deliver the presents and save (...)

Ocean's Thirteen (2007)

# 03303 IMDb

Ocean's Thirteen (2007)

TaglineWhat are the odds of getting even? 13 to one.

By Steven Soderbergh

Comedy, Crime, Thriller (2h 02min)

USA USA

Rated 6.9 after 288,403 votes on 21-Sep-18.

1 win & 4 nominations

The last time we saw Danny Ocean's crew, they were paying back ruthless casino mogul Terry Benedict after stealing millions from him. However, it's been a while since they've come back together, which is all about to change. When one of their own, Reuben Tishkoff builds a hotel with known casino owner Willy Banks, the last thing he ever wanted was to get cut out of the deal personally by the (...)

Ocean's Twelve (2004)

# 01671 IMDb

Ocean's Twelve (2004)

TaglineTwelve is the new eleven

By Steven Soderbergh

Comedy, Crime, Thriller (2h 05min)

USA USA, Australia Australia

Rated 6.5 after 304,434 votes on 30-Aug-17.

1 win & 7 nominations

Set three years after "Ocean's 11," this sequel shows us Danny Ocean gathering up his complete gang of con artists and thieves from the first film in New York City before they all jet off to Amsterdam, Rome, and Paris to pull off three seperate heists. All the while, the boys must deal with increasing pressure from a very mad Terry Benedict, a dedicated Europol agent with a link to Rusty's past, (...)

The Majestic (2001)

# 03275 IMDb

The Majestic (2001)

TaglineSometimes your life comes into focus one frame at a time.

By Frank Darabont

Drama, Romance (2h 32min)

USA USA, Australia Australia

Rated 6.9 after 48,584 votes on 23-Aug-18.

2 wins & 1 nomination

Peter Appleton is an ambitious young screenwriter working for HHS Studios during Hollywood's Golden Age, 1951 in particular. "Ashes to Ashes" is about to be released, and he's dating the attractive movie star, Sandra Sinclair. Just when everything seems to be going his way, it is discovered he (unwittingly) attended a Communist meeting during college when pulled there by his girlfriend at the (...)

Ocean's Eleven (2001)

# 00664 IMDb

Ocean's Eleven (2001)

TaglineAre You In Or Out?

By Steven Soderbergh

Action, Comedy, Crime, Thriller (1h 56min)

USA USA, Australia Australia

Fine! Rated 7.8 after 432,337 votes on 30-Aug-17.

3 wins & 17 nominations

When Daniel Ocean is released from prison in New Jersey, his next heist is already planned. Danny's target are three Las Vegas casinos: The Bellagio, the Mirage and the MGM Grand. They all belong to ruthless entrepreneur Terry Benedict, who, by the way, also shows a certain interest in Danny's beautiful ex-wife Tess. During a much-anticipated boxing event (Lennox Lewis vs. Wladimir Klitschko), (...)

Slums of Beverly Hills (1998)

# 11215 IMDb

Slums of Beverly Hills (1998)

TaglineNever judge a girl by her address.

By Tamara Jenkins

Comedy, Drama (1h 31min)

USA USA

Rated 6.6 after 10,612 votes on 21-Aug-18.

8 nominations

This semiautobiographical story follows a lower-middle-class teenager (Lyonne) and her neurotic family in 1976 Tinseltown.

Frasier (1993)

# 03402 IMDb TV-PG 

TV Series: Seasons I, II 

“Frasier” (1993)

By David Lee (41 episodes, 1993-2004), Kelsey Grammer (36 episodes, 1996-2004), Pamela Fryman (34 episodes, 1997-2001), James Burrows (32 episodes, 1993-1997), Sheldon Epps (23 episodes, 1998-2004)

Comedy (22min)

USA USA

Fine! Rated 8.0 after 60,105 votes on 26-Oct-17.

130 wins & 272 nominations

Dr. Frasier Crane moves back to his hometown of Seattle where he lives with his father and works as a radio psychiatrist.

Summer School (1987)

# 09695 IMDb

Summer School (1987)

TaglineAt Ocean Front High, what do they call a guy who cuts classes, hates homework, and lives for summer vacations? Teacher.

By Carl Reiner

Comedy, Romance (1h 37min)

USA USA

Rated 6.5 after 14,248 votes on 13-Jan-18.

A high-school gym teacher has big plans for the summer, but is forced to cancel them to teach a "bonehead" English class for misfit goof-off students. Fortunately, his unconventional brand of teaching fun field trips begins to connect with them, and even inspires ardor in some.

Summer Rental (1985)

# 14866 IMDb PG | PG-13 

Summer Rental (1985)

TaglineJohn Candy is about to face the most devastating experience known to man... the family vacation.

By Carl Reiner

Comedy (1h 27min)

USA USA

Rated 6.2 after 11,814 votes on 15-Sep-18.

3 nominations

Jack Chester, an overworked air traffic controller, takes his family on vacation to the beach. Things immediately start to go wrong for the Chesters, and steadily get worse. Jack ends up in a feud with a local yachtsman, and has to race him to regain his pride and family's respect.

All of Me (1984)

# 05103 IMDb

All of Me (1984)

TaglineThe funniest movie since TOOTSIE

By Carl Reiner

Comedy, Fantasy, Romance (1h 33min)

USA USA

Rated 6.7 after 12,954 votes on 20-May-16.

2 wins & 2 nominations

Roger Cobb is a lawyer by day and a jazz musician at night. His boss refuses to let him to anything substantial unless he decides on what he is. When Roger says he is, his boss puts him in charge of handling the estate of Edwina Cutwater, a spoiled wealthy heiress, who tells Roger that she is dying but she has contingency plan which she wants Roger to handle. And that being she is going to leave (...)

The Man with Two Brains (1983)

# 09583 IMDb

The Man with Two Brains (1983)

TaglineSteve Martin Is A World Famous Surgeon. He Invented Screw Top, Zip Lock Brain Surgery. Trust Him.

By Carl Reiner

Comedy, Romance, Sci-Fi (1h 33min)

USA USA

Rated 6.3 after 19,435 votes on 31-Jul-16.

Recently widowed Doctor Michael Hfuhruhurr, the world's greatest neurosurgeon, injures Dolores Benedict in a car accident. He operates on her and saves her life using a technique of his own invention: cranial screw-top brain entry. As Benedict recovers, Hfuhruhurr falls in love with her and they are soon married. However, Benedict is only interested in Hfuhruhurr's money and Hfuhruhurr still (...)

Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid (1982)

# 05100 IMDb

Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid (1982)

TaglineLaugh... or I'll blow your lips off!

By Carl Reiner

Comedy, Crime, Thriller (1h 28min)

USA USA

Rated 6.8 after 18,309 votes on 07-Sep-18.

Juliet Forrest is convinced that the reported death of her father in a mountain car crash was no accident. Her father was a prominent cheese scientist working on a secret recipe. To prove it was murder, she enlists the services of private eye Rigby Reardon. He finds a slip of paper containing a list of people who are "The Friends and Enemies of Carlotta." Searching for answers, Rigby encounters (...)

Skokie (1981)

# 09518 IMDb

Skokie (1981)

By Herbert Wise

Drama (2h 05min)

USA USA

Rated 7.3 after 258 votes on 14-Jun-16.

2 wins & 4 nominations

This is the story of some Modern day Nazi activists who plan to march through the predominantly Jewish community of Skokie. The town officials tell the citizens to ignore them cause there's nothing that they can do. But one citizen (Kaye) who's a death camp survivor says that he was told this nearly forty years ago in Germany and before he knew it he was in a concentration camp. He says this time (...)

The Jerk (1979)

# 03291 IMDb

The Jerk (1979)

TaglineFrom rags to riches... to rags.

By Carl Reiner

Comedy (1h 34min)

USA USA

Fine! Rated 7.2 after 47,570 votes on 22-Sep-18.

Navin is an idiot. Hew grew up in Mississippi as adopted son of a black family. But at his 18th birthday he feels he wants to discover the rest of the world and sets out to St. Louis... Everyone exploits his naivety, but then a simple invention brings him a fortune.

The End (1978)

# 12793 IMDb

The End (1978)

TaglineAre there laughs before death?

By Burt Reynolds

Comedy, Drama (1h 40min)

USA USA

Rated 6.2 after 2,862 votes on 21-May-17.

Wendell Lawson has only 6 months to live. Not wanting to live his last few months of life waiting for the end, he decides to take his own life. He enlists the help of a humorously delusional mental patient, and the movie chronicles his many unsuccessful attempts to kill himself. Will he ever succeed...?

Oh, God! (1977)

# 05736 IMDb

Oh, God! (1977)

Tagline"It's true. People have trouble remembering My Words. Moses had such a bad memory I had to give him tablets."

By Carl Reiner

Comedy, Fantasy (1h 38min)

USA USA

Rated 6.6 after 7,707 votes on 25-Sep-18.

Nominated for Oscar. Another 3 wins & 2 nominations

Jerry Landers, (John Denver) a supermarket assistant manager and a good yet non-religious person, suddenly finds a note in the mail one day that grants him an "interveiw" with God. Thinking it to be a hoax he tosses it away, but when it keeps reappearing he finally gives in. Skeptical at first, he ends up carrying His personal message - that the world can work with what God's given us.

Where's Poppa? (1970)

# 13005 IMDb

Where's Poppa? (1970)

TaglineI wish momma would stop saying that! Yeah.

By Carl Reiner

Comedy (1h 22min)

USA USA

Rated 6.7 after 1,361 votes on 11-Dec-16.

3 nominations

When New York attorney Gordon Hocheiser meets Louise Callan, the girl of his dreams, he schemes to eliminate his aging, senile mother, even though he promised his late father that he'd always take care of her. He fears that his batty mom's eccentricities will shortly lead to Louise's departure.

A Guide for the Married Man (1967)

# 08451 IMDb

A Guide for the Married Man (1967)

By Gene Kelly

Comedy, Romance (1h 29min)

USA USA

Rated 6.8 after 2,030 votes on 06-Mar-17.

2 nominations

Ed convinces his best friend Paul that he should fool around with other women in order to preserve his happy marriage. Ed illustrates his point with a series of vignettes acted out by a lot of famous celebrities. The joke of it all is that Paul is married to lovely Ruth!

The Russians Are Coming the Russians Are Coming (1966)

# 02702 IMDb

The Russians Are Coming the Russians Are Coming (1966)

TaglineIt's A Plot!... to make the world die laughing!!

By Norman Jewison

Comedy, War (2h 06min)

USA USA

Fine! Rated 7.1 after 6,723 votes on 04-Feb-18.

Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 4 wins & 8 nominations

When a Soviet submarine captain comes up for a look at America (off the coast of a small island in Massachusetts) he runs aground. He sends his two English speaking crewmen to procure a boat with enough power to pull them off. The 2 English speakers, along with 7 other Russian sailors, don't exactly blend in and the town is convinced that they are being invaded.

The Thrill of It All (1963)

# 08078 IMDb Approved 

The Thrill of It All (1963)

TaglineShe's hoping he's ready. He's wishing she's willing.

By Norman Jewison

Comedy, Romance (1h 48min)

USA USA

Fine! Rated 7.0 after 3,711 votes on 17-Feb-18.

2 nominations

The Happy Soap Company is owned and managed by the Fraleigh family. Although he is more of a company figurehead than an active participant in the company's day-to-day business, anything that family patriarch Tom Fraleigh wants for the company he usually gets. What he wants is Beverly Boyer - the wife of his daughter-in-law's obstetrician, Dr. Gerald Boyer - to appear as the company (...)

It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World (1963)

# 05800 IMDb

It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World (1963)

TaglineIf ever this mad, mad, mad, mad world needed "It's a mad, mad, mad, mad world" it's now! (1970 re-release)

By Stanley Kramer

Adventure, Comedy, Crime (2h 34min)

USA USA

Fine! Rated 7.6 after 29,716 votes on 24-Oct-16.

Won Oscar. Another 2 wins & 9 nominations

Somewhere in the desert. A car speeds like crazy along the roads. Suddenly, the driver loses control and sails off a cliff. Four other vehicles are near, they stop to help. The dying man narrates the drivers of a fortune in cash, $350,000, which he has hidden below a giant "W" in Santa Rosita, some 200 miles away. The four drivers and their respective passengers can't decide on how to share the (...)

The Gazebo (1959)

# 13174 IMDb

The Gazebo (1959)

TaglineMURDER CAN BE FUN!

By George Marshall

Comedy, Crime, Thriller (1h 40min)

USA USA

Rated 6.9 after 1,283 votes on 06-Oct-17.

Nominated for Oscar

Television writer and director Elliott Nash and his wife Nell have a happy marriage. One day a blackmailer informs Elliott that he has nude photos of his wife Nell, taken when she was only 18 years old. The blackmailer, a certain Dan Shelby, threatens to ruin Nell's reputation and her Broadway stage career if Elliott refuses to pay a ransom. Elliott agrees to pay the blackmailer but the demands (...)

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