Jerry Stiller

Jerry Stiller (Courtesy Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

Jerry Stiller (born Gerald Stiller on June 8, 1927) is an American comedian and actor.

Born in New York City, he is one of four children born to William Stiller, the New York born son of Austrian-Jewish immigrants, and Bella Citrin, a Russian-Jewish immigrant. A drama major at Syracuse University, he gained a Bachelor of Science in Speech and Drama before making his 1951 professional stage debut in "The Silver Whistle", a play that starred Burgess Meredith.

After some time spent as a stock actor, Stiller first became nationally known as half of the comedy duo Stiller and Meara, with his wife Anne Meara. They have been married since 1954. They met while both were struggling actors in New York City. Later, they were part of the improvisational team "The Compass Players" (which would become "The Second City"). The pair brought many of their real-life relationship foibles to bear on their often-improvised comedy routines. After some years honing the act, Stiller and Meara became regulars on The Ed Sullivan Show and other TV programs.

Stiller continued to perform and write through the decades, often in television guest roles as well as occasional dramatic appearances on television and stage. Beginning in the 1990s his career experienced a resurgence with a recurring role as George Costanza's father Frank in the situation comedy Seinfeld from 1993 to 1998 and as the very similar character of Arthur Spooner in the situation comedy The King of Queens from 1998 to the present.

Stiller and Meara are the parents of actor Ben Stiller (with whom he co-starred in the movie Zoolander, Heavyweights, and Hot Pursuit) and actress Amy Stiller.

Stiller wrote the foreword to the book Festivus: The Holiday for the Rest of Us (ISBN 0-446-69674-9) by Allen Salkin, released on October 26, 2005, and appears in the intro and outro of the Rush 30th Anniversary Tour and on the band's DVD R30 Live In Frankfurt.

Along with his wife, Stiller has spoken publicly about undergoing therapy to treat clinical depression.

His memoir "Married to Laughter: A Love Story Featuring Anne Meara" was published in 2000.

Select filmography

Year Film Role Notes
2001 Zoolander Maury Ballstein
2000 The Independent Morty Fineman
1997 Subway Stories: Tales from the Underground Old Man "The 5:24"
1992 Highway to Hell The Desk Cop
1988 Hairspray Wilbur Turnblad
1974 Airport 1975 Sam
1974 The Taking of Pelham One Two Three Lt. Rico Patrone
1974 The Surboubon

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