Jerry Stiller & Anne Mears Signed Contract 1968 Very Young Pre Seinfeld
A MULTI PAGE CONTRACT WITH WILLIAM MORRIS AGENCY INFORMATION AS WELL AS A VINTAGE 8X10 IONCH PHOTO OF COMEDY TEAM LEGENDS JERRY STILLER AND ANNE MEARA FROM 1968. Gerald Isaac Stiller was an American actor, comedian and author. He spent many years as part of the comedy duo Stiller and Meara with his wife, Anne Meara, to whom he was married for over 60 years until her death in 2015. Anne Meara Stiller was an American actress and comedian. Along with her husband Jerry Stiller, she was one-half of a prominent 1960s comedy team, Stiller and Meara. Their son is actor Ben Stiller. She was also featured on stage, in television, and in numerous films, and later she became a playwright. Anne Meara Stiller (September 20, 1929 – May 23, 2015) was an American actress and comedian. During her career, Meara was nominated for four Emmy Awards and a Tony Award, and she won a Writers Guild Award as a co-writer for the TV movie The Other Woman. Television, stage, film, video. Meara was born in Brooklyn, New York,  the daughter of parents of Irish descent,  Mary (née Dempsey) and Edward Joseph Meara, a corporate lawyer for American Standard.  An only child, she was raised in Rockville Centre, New York, on Long Island. When Anne was 11 years old, her mother died by suicide. When she was 18, Meara spent a year studying acting at the Dramatic Workshop at The New School and at HB Studio under Uta Hagen in Manhattan. The following year, 1948, she began her career as an actress in summer stock. Publicity photo of Meara and Jerry Stiller, 1965. Meara met actor-comedian Jerry Stiller in 1953, and they married in 1954. Until he suggested it, she had never thought of doing comedy. “Jerry started us being a comedy team, ” she said. He always thought I would be a great comedy partner.  They joined the Chicago improvisational company The Compass Players (which later became The Second City), and after leaving, formed the comedy team of Stiller and Meara. In 1961, they were performing in nightclubs in New York, and by the following year were considered a “national phenomenon”, said the New York Times. Their often improvised comedy routines brought many of their relationship foibles to live audiences. Their skits focused on domestic themes, as did Nichols and May, another comedy team during that period from the Chicago Compass Players project. “They were Nichols and May without the acid and with warmth, ” notes author Lawrence Epstein.  They also added a new twist to their comedy act, he adds, by sometimes playing up the fact that Stiller was Jewish and Meara was Catholic.  After Nichols and May broke up as a team in 1961, Stiller and Meara were the number-one couple comedy team by the late 1960s. And as Mike Nichols and Elaine May were not married, Stiller and Meara became the most famous married couple comedy team since Burns and Allen. After some years honing the act, Stiller and Meara became regulars on The Ed Sullivan Show, with 36 appearances,  and other TV programs, including The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson. They released their first LP in 1963, Presenting America’s New Comedy Sensation: Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara Live at The Hungry I, which became a hit. By 1970, however, they broke up their act because it was affecting their marriage: “I didn’t know where the act ended and our marriage began, ” complained Meara in 1977.  Stiller agreed, fearing, I would have lost her as a wife. During the 1970s, Meara and Stiller wrote and performed many radio commercials together for Blue Nun Wine. She had a recurring role on the sitcom Rhoda as airline stewardess Sally Gallagher, one of the title character’s best friends. She also had a small role as Mrs. Curry opposite Laurence Olivier in The Boys from Brazil (1978). In 1975, she starred in her own series, Kate McShane, on CBS. She was nominated for an Emmy Award as Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series in 1976, however, the show was cancelled after 10 episodes. Also in the 1970s, Meara provided narration for segments of the educational television series Sesame Street, consisting of scenes from silent films. Meara in an episode of The Corner Bar, 1973. Meara costarred with Carroll O’Connor and Martin Balsam in the early 1980s hit sitcom Archie Bunker’s Place, which was a continuation of the influential 1970s sitcom All in the Family. During that time, she acted in the movie Fame (1980), in which she played English teacher Elizabeth Sherwood.  She also appeared as the grandmother in the TV series ALF in the late 1980s. The Stiller and Meara Show, her own 1986 TV sitcom, in which Stiller played the deputy mayor of New York City and Meara portrayed his wife, a television commercial actress, was unsuccessful. From 1999 to 2007, Meara guest starred on The King of Queens (where her husband played Arthur Spooner), first as Mary Finnegan, then as Veronica Olchin (mother of Spence, who was played by Patton Oswalt). Veronica and Arthur were married in the series finale. Starting in October 2010, Meara and Jerry Stiller began starring in a Yahoo! Web series called Stiller & Meara produced by Red Hour Digital, a production company owned by their son Ben Stiller. She accepted a role in the off-Broadway play Love, Loss, and What I Wore with Conchata Ferrell, AnnaLynne McCord, Minka Kelly, and B.  She taught a technique and scene study class at HB Studio until her death. In 1995, Meara wrote the comedy After-Play, which became an off-Broadway production.  In her later years, she portrayed recurring roles on the television shows Sex and the City (as Mary Brady) and The King of Queens (as Veronica Olchin). During the 2004-05 season, she appeared in an episode of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. She was the consulting director of J. The Jewish American Princesses of Comedy, a 2007 off-Broadway production that featured live stand-up routines by four female Jewish comics juxtaposed with the stories of legendary performers from the 1950s and 1960s: Totie Fields, Jean Carroll, Pearl Williams, Betty Walker, and Belle Barth. In 2009, Meara wrote her personal life reflections in a New York-focused online blog, titled Mr. Beller’s Neighborhood — New York City Stories. In it, Meara recalled her mother’s death and her childhood experiences at Catholic boarding school. Meara was born, baptised and raised a Roman Catholic. She converted to Judaism six years after marrying Stiller.  She insisted that she did not convert at Stiller’s request, explaining, “Catholicism was dead to me”. She took her conversion seriously and studied the Jewish faith in such depth that her Jewish-born husband quipped, “Being married to Anne has made me more Jewish”.  They discussed how they met and their early career during a guest appearance on the TV game show What’s My Line? Together, Meara and her husband had two children, Amy (born 1961) and Ben (born 1965). Meara died on May 23, 2015, at her home in Manhattan at the age of 85, having suffered multiple strokes. Sources: TCM; AllMovie; Film Reference. Woman in Police Station. Lovers and Other Strangers. The Boys from Brazil. The Perils of P. Through an Open Window. So You Want to Be an Actor. The Search for One-Eye Jimmy. The Thin Pink Line. The Diary of the Hurdy-Gurdy Man. A Fish in the Bathtub. Amy Stiller’s Breast. Keeping It Real: The Adventures of Greg Walloch. Night at the Museum. The Shallow End of the Ocean. When the Evening Comes. The Queen of Greenwich Village. 33-minute short with Jerry Stiller. Planes: Fire & Rescue. This section needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (May 2015) (Learn how and when to remove this template message). Sources: Film Reference; TV. Com. The Philco Television Playhouse. Episode: “Man on the Mountaintop”. The DuPont Show of the Month. Animated TV series, 3 episodes. The Courtship of Eddie’s Father. The Paul Lynde Show. Cast member, 7 episodes. Cancelled after 10 episodes. Take Five with Stiller & Meara. Archie Bunker’s Place. Costarred with Jerry Stiller. Meara co-wrote the teleplay with Lila Garrett. The Stiller and Meara Show. Co-writer; Canceled after a few weeks. Episode: “Charlton Heston/Wynton Marsalis”. Episode: “The Day They Came to Arrest the Book”. Episode: “One Wolf’s Family”. The General Motors Playwrights Theater. Episode: “Avenue Z Afternoon”. “The Sunset Gang”:segment: “The Detective”. Episode: “Love off Limits”. In the Heat of the Night. Great Performances: The Mother. PBS TV movie, Oct. Homicide: Life on the Street. Writer and cast member. Aunt Brenda O’Reily. The King of Queens. What Makes a Family. Sex and the City. Episode: “The Slow and the Furious”. Episode: “If It’s Not One Thing It’s Your Mother”. Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. Episode: “The Last Thing I Said Was”. Episode: “Old People Creep Me Out”. TVLand sitcom pilot that did not sell. A Month in the Country. The Good Woman of Setzuan. Music Box Theatre, Broadway. As You Like It. Joseph Papp Public Theater, Off-Broadway. The House of Blue Leaves. Truck and Warehouse Theatre, Off-Broadway. My Name Is Alice. Top of the Gate, Off-Broadway. John Golden Theatre, Broadway. Center Stage Right, Broadway. Down the Garden Paths. Minetta Lane Theatre, Off-Broadway. Love, Loss and What I Wore. I’d Rather Eat Pants, National Public Radio, 2002. Best Supporting Actress – Television. Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series. Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series. Guest Actress in a Drama Series. Writers Guild of America Awards. Best Featured Actress in a Play. Outer Critics Circle Award. On February 9, 2007 Meara and Jerry Stiller received stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 7018 Hollywood Blvd. Anne Meara, who was half of one of the most successful male-female comedy teams of all time and who went on to enjoy a long and diverse career as an actress and, late in life, a playwright, died on Saturday in Manhattan. Her death was confirmed by her husband and longtime comedy partner, Jerry Stiller, and her son, the actor and director Ben Stiller. They did not provide the cause. Meara was an experienced but relatively unknown stage actress when she joined forces with Jerry Stiller as members of the Compass Players, an improvisational theater troupe that evolved into Second City, and later on their own as Stiller and Meara. Another male-female team, Mike Nichols and Elaine May, also got their start with the Compass Players. Stiller and Meara began performing in New York nightclubs in 1961 and within a year had become a national phenomenon. But even during the act’s heyday, Ms. Meara also pursued a separate career as an actress. She had already amassed an impressive list of stage credits before beginning her comedy career, including an Obie Award-winning performance in “Mädchen in Uniform” in 1955 and roles in several Shakespeare in the Park productions. She was a witch in “Macbeth” in 1957. She later appeared both on and off Broadway, in films, and especially on television, where she was seen on a wide range of series, from “Rhoda” and “Archie Bunker’s Place” on CBS to “Sex and the City” and “Oz” on HBO. Dig deeper into the moment. A tall redhead with a brassy voice and a self-confident demeanor, Ms. Meara was a natural for comedy but frequently played dramatic parts as well. “Comedy, drama, it’s the same deal, ” she said in an interview for the Archive of American Television in 2008. You don’t really act differently; you just make adjustments. ImageAnne Meara in her West Side apartment in 1995. Anne Meara in her West Side apartment in 1995. Conrad/The New York Times. Anne Meara was born in Brooklyn on Sept. 20, 1929, and raised in Rockville Centre on Long Island. An only child, she was the daughter of Edward Meara, a lawyer, and the former Mary Dempsey, who committed suicide when her daughter was 11. After studying for a year at the Dramatic Workshop at the New School in Manhattan, Anne began her career in summer stock in 1948. Stiller in 1953 and married him soon after, but it would be some time before they began working as a team. The idea, they both agreed, was his; she did not think of herself as a comedian, but because work was scarce she reluctantly agreed. “Jerry started us being a comedy team, ” she said in 2008. At that time in my life, I disdained comedians. In the 1960s Stiller and Meara were regular guests on the variety and talk shows of Ed Sullivan and many others, and performed in nightclubs all over the country. In the 1970s their voices were heard on radio commercials for Blue Nun wine and other products. Stiller’s relationship was the basis for their best-known comedy routines, which told the continuing story of Hershey Horowitz and Mary Elizabeth Doyle, a short Jewish man and a tall Catholic woman who had virtually nothing in common except their love for each other. On their first date, arranged by a computer, Hershey and Mary Elizabeth were surprised to learn that they lived on the same block but knew none of the same people. There was one significant difference between the real-life couple and the comedy version: Ms. Meara, though born and raised Roman Catholic, converted to Judaism in 1961. By the end of the decade, Mr. Meara were both concentrating on their individual careers, but they continued to perform together from time to time. She made several guest appearances on the sitcom “The King of Queens, ” on which Mr. Stiller (who had also memorably played Frank Costanza on “Seinfeld”) was a regular; her character married his in the series finale in 2007. After Covid Upended a Dying Woman’s Rome Dream, Her Twin Stepped In. Which Option Would You Choose? While I Was Away, My Boss Had Flowers Delivered to My Apartment. Continue reading the main story. Jerry Stiller and Ms. Meara on the set of “The King of Queens” in 2003. In 2010 they began appearing in a series of web videos produced by their son in which they sat on a couch and talked, to the camera and occasionally to each other, about a variety of topics. Meara starred in “Kate McShane, ” an hourlong drama about a lawyer that, despite generally good reviews, was canceled after two months. “They never really made her a full-blooded woman, ” she said of her character in 2008. She had no love life; she was really a nun. That was her only starring role on television, but she kept busy in a range of supporting roles on the small screen well into the 21st century. In addition to her prodigious prime-time work, she appeared occasionally on the soap opera “All My Children” in the 1990s. During her career, she was nominated for four Emmy Awards and won a Writers Guild Award as a co-writer of “The Other Woman, ” a 1983 TV movie. She had memorable character parts in movies as well, including a teacher in “Fame” (1980) and a personnel manager in “Reality Bites” (1994), Ben Stiller’s feature-film directorial debut. Onstage, she was in the original Off Broadway production of John Guare’s dark comedy “The House of Blue Leaves” in 1971 – her son had a small role in the 1986 Broadway revival and the lead role in a second revival, in 2011 – and she was nominated for a Tony for “Anna Christie” in 1993. In addition to her husband and her son, Ms. Meara is survived by a daughter, the actress and comedian Amy Stiller, and two grandchildren. Meara branched out into writing in 1995, when her comedy “After-Play” was presented Off Broadway. Her “Down the Garden Paths” had a brief Off Broadway run in 2000, with a cast headed by Eli Wallach and Anne Jackson. “After-Play” has been produced by a number of regional theaters, sometimes with both Ms. Stiller in the cast. But neither of them was in the original cast, and she did not conceive it as a Stiller and Meara vehicle. “I wanted to do something on my own, ” she told The New York Times in 1995. It’s the same way he feels good about doing’Seinfeld. The irony is, I feel we’re closer personally than when we were out going to nightclubs. Anne Meara Biography (1929-). Born September 20, 1929, in New York, NY; daughter of Edward Joseph and Mary(maiden name, Dempsey) Meara; married Jerry Stiller (an actor and comic), September 14, 1954; children: Amy (an actress), Benjamin (an actor and director). Addresses: Agent: Innovative Artists, 1505 10th St. Santa Monica, CA 90401. New York, New York, United States. Harriet, The Greatest Gift, NBC, 1954. You’re Putting Me On (game show), 1969. Mae, The Corner Bar, ABC, 1973. Take Five with Stiller and Meara, syndicated, 1977. Anne Bender, The Stiller and Meara Show, NBC, 1986. Voice, Good and Evil, ABC, 1991. Title role, Kate McShane, CBS, 1975. Annie Bell, This Better Be It, CBS, 1976. Veronica Rooney, Gloria Comes Home, CBS, 1982. Anne Bender, The Stiller and Meara Show, CBS, 1986. Betty, Two Families, CBS, 2002. “Oliver Twist, ” The DuPont Show of the Month, 1959. Anna, Ninotchka, ABC, 1960. The Jonathan Winters Show, NBC, 1965. The Perry Como Christmas Show, NBC, 1966. Dames at Sea, NBC, 1971. Don Rickles–Alive and Kicking, CBS, 1972. Alan King Looks Back in Anger–A Review of 1972, ABC, 1973. Celebration: The American Spirit, ABC, 1976. The Mad Mad Mad Mad World of the Super Bowl, NBC, 1977. Voice of Nellie Cosgrove,’Twas the Night before Christmas, ABC, 1977. Salters, “The Day They Came to Arrest the Book, ” CBS SchoolbreakSpecials, CBS, 1987. Colin’s mother, Colin Quinn Back in Brooklyn (also known as Colin Back to Brooklyn), MTV, 1989. Rose Finkler, “Avenue Z Afternoon, ” General Motors Playwrights Theatre, Arts and Entertainment, 1992. Patricia Lennon, “Love Off Limits” (also known as “Off Limits”), CBS Schoolbreak Specials, CBS, 1993. Through an Open Window, syndicated, 1994. Voice, Going, Going, Almost Gone! Animals in Danger, HBO, 1994. Geegan, “The Mother” (also known as “Paddy Chayefsky’s The Mother”), Great Performances, PBS, 1994. The Comedy Central Presents the New York Friars Club Roast of Jerry Stiller, Comedy Central, 1999. The Comedy Central Presents the New York Friars Club Roast of Rob Reiner, Comedy Central, 2000. Voice, They Came for Good: A History of the Jews in the United States, PBS, 2001. There’s Something about Ben Stiller, Arts and Entertainment, 2001. Peg Gilford, The Other Woman, CBS, 1983. Louise Domino, Jitters, Lifetime, 1997. A tekeroelantos naploja (also known as The Diary of the Hurdy-Gurdy Man), 1999. Evelyn Cataldi, What Makes a Family, Lifetime, 2001. “Man on the Mountaintop, ” Philco Television Playhouse, NBC, 1954. The Ed Sullivan Show (also known as Toast of the Town), CBS, multiple appearances, between 1963 and 1971. “The Comedy Survival Kit, ” Kraft Music Hall, 1968. The Summer Smothers Brothers Show, 1968. That’s Life, ABC, 1969. “Love and Marriage: Parts 1 & 2″ and other episodes, Kraft Music Hall, 1970. The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, multiple episodes, between 1970 and 1975. “Love and the Conjugal Visit, ” Love, American Style, ABC, 1971. The Carol Burnett Show, 1972. Annie, “We Love Annie, ” The Courtship of Eddie’s Father, ABC, 1972. Bunny, “Thy Neighbor Loves Thee, ” The Courtship of Eddie’s Father, ABC, 1972. Grace Dickerson, “The Landlord, ” The Paul Lynde Show, ABC, 1972. Grace Dickerson, “To Wed or Not to Wed, ” The Paul Lynde Show, ABC, 1972. Grace Dickerson, “Howie’s Inheritance, ” The Paul Lynde Show, ABC, 1973. Grace Dickerson, “Barbara Goes Home to Mother, ” The Paul Lynde Show, ABC, 1973. “Love and the Clinical Problem, ” Love, American Style, ABC, 1973. “The Enemies, ” Medical Center, CBS, 1974. Panelist, Match Game 73, 1974. Tony Orlando and Dawn, 1975. Margaret Hanrahan, “Super Mom/I’ll See You Again/April’s Return, ” TheLove Boat, ABC, 1979. Rose Vitelli, “Love, Honor, and Obey, ” The Love Boat, ABC, 1981. “We, the Jury, ” The Love Boat, ABC, 1983. Saturday Night Live, NBC, 1987. Winnie Tupper Banner, Who Threw the Barbitols in Mrs. Murder, She Wrote, CBS, 1988. “One Wolf’s Family, ” Monsters, 1990. Bernice Shapiro, “Yiddish, ” The Sunset Gang, PBS, 1991. Bernice Shapiro, “The Detective, ” The Sunset Gang, PBS, 1991. Women Aloud (also known as Funny Ladies), syndicated, 1992. Mae Shaughnessy, “Murder in White, ” Murder, She Wrote, CBS, 1993. Roda, “Poor Relations, ” In the Heat of the Night, 1994. Reena Bernecky, “Bye Bye Bernecky, ” Murphy Brown, CBS, 1994. Reena Bernecky, “Brown in Toyland, ” Murphy Brown, CBS, 1994. Dooley Harold, “Roll Out the Barrel, ” Good Advice, 1994. Donna DiGrazi, “Hostage: Part 2, ” Homicide: Life on the Street, NBC, 1996. Mary Finnegan, “S’aint Valentines, ” The King of Queens, CBS, 1999. Aunt Brenda O’Reily, “Legs, ” Oz, HBO, 1999. Barbara Gennacarro, “The Test, ” Ed, NBC, 2001. “Ben Stiller, ” Biography, Arts and Entertainment, 2001. Friedman, “Star-Spangled Banter, ” Will & Grace, NBC, 2001. Aunt Brenda O’Reily, “Wheel of Fortune, ” Oz, HBO, 2002. Mary Brady, “Unoriginal Sin, ” Sex and the City, HBO, 2002. Veronica, “S’poor House, ” The King of Queens, CBS, 2003. Also appeared as Charlie’s mother, “If It’s Not One Thing, It’s Your Mother, ” Charlie Lawrence; as guest panelist on To Tell the Truth;and on The Merv Griffin Show and The Sonny & Cher Show. Appeared in The Male Menopause. Wilma, Lovers and Other Strangers, Cinerama, 1970. Irate woman in police station, The Out-of-Towners, Paramount, 1970. Irish Whiskey Rebellion, GSF/Cinerama, 1973. Sister Hildegarde (some sources cite Geraldine), Nasty Habits (also known as The Abbess), Brut, 1976. Curry, The Boys from Brazil, Twentieth Century-Fox, 1978. Sherwood, Fame, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 1980. Herself, In Our Hands, 1984. Shopper, My Little Girl, 1986. Madge, The Longshot, Orion, 1986. Charlene Lane, That’s Adequate, 1989. Miriam, Awakenings, Columbia, 1990. Medea, Highway to Hell, Hemdale Releasing, 1992. Herself, So You Want to Be an Actor? Louise, Reality Bites, Universal, 1994. Alice Bushkin, Heavyweights, Buena Vista, 1995. Bev’s mother, Kiss of Death, 1995. Rita Malone, The Daytrippers (also known as En route vers Manhattan), Columbia/TriStar, 1996. Holly Hoyt, The Search for One-Eyed Jimmy, Cabin Fever Entertainment, 1996. Quinn, Southie, Lions Gates Films, 1998. Molly, A Fish in the Bathtub, Curb Entertainment, 1998. Langstrom, The Thin Pink Line, PARCO/Tokyo Theatres Co. Perrett, Brooklyn Thrill Killers, 1999. Bea, Judy Berlin, Shooting Gallery, 2000. Rita, The Independent, New City Releasing, 2000. Chump Change, Miramax, 2000. Herself, Amy Stiller’s Breast, 2000. Protestor, Zoolander, Paramount, 2001. First restaurant patron, Keeping It Real: The Adventures of Greg Walloch (also known as Fk the Disabled: The Surprising Adventures of GregWalloch), Avatar Films, 2001. Get Well Soon, Lions Gate Films, 2001. Hard-boiled woman, Crooked Lines, Crooked Lines Productions, 2001. Sister Theresa, Like Mike, Twentieth Century-Fox, 2002. Hank, The Yard Sale, American Film Institute/Yard Sale Productions, 2002. A Month in the Country, off-Broadway, 1954. Maedchen in Uniform, off-Broadway, 1955. Two Gentlemen of Verona, New York Shakespeare Festival, New York City, 1957. Nurse, Romeo and Juliet, New York Shakespeare Festival, 1957. Ulysses in Nightgown, New York City, 1958. Marion, Cock-a-Doodle Dandy, Carnegie Hall Playhouse, New York City, 1958. Bunny Flingus, The House of Blue Leaves, Truck and Warehouse Theatre, New York City, 1970. Spookhouse, Playhouse 91, New York City, 1984. Bosoms and Neglect, 1986. Nurse, Romeo and Juliet, New York Shakespeare Festival, AnspacherTheatre, Public Theatre, New York City, 1988. May Logan, Eastern Standard, Manhattan Theatre Club, New York City, 1988, then John Golden Theatre, New York City, 1989. Marthy Owen, Anna Christie, Roundabout Theatre Company, CriterionCenter Stage Right Theatre, New York City, 1993. Terry Guteman, After-Play, Theatre Four, New York City, 1995. Also appeared off-Broadway in Dandy Dick and The Silver Tassie. Director, Matinee, Mazur Theatre, New York City, 1990. (With Jerry Stiller) Laugh When You Like, Atlantic, 1972. The End of the Pier, 1992. “Break Up to Make Up, ” ALF, NBC, 1989. (With Lila Garrett) The Other Woman (movie), CBS, 1983. The Stiller and Meara Show (series), NBC, 1986. After-Play, Manhattan Theatre Club Stage I, New York City, 1994, then Theatre Four, New York City, 1995. Stiller, Jerry, Married to Laughter: A Love Story Featuring Anne Meara, Simon & Schuster, 2000. Gerald Isaac Stiller (June 8, 1927 – May 11, 2020) was an American actor, comedian and author. Stiller saw a late-career resurgence starting in 1993, playing George Costanza’s father Frank on the sitcom Seinfeld, a part which earned him an Emmy nomination. The year Seinfeld went off the air, Stiller began his role as the eccentric Arthur Spooner on the CBS comedy series The King of Queens, another role which garnered him widespread acclaim. Stiller is the father of actor Ben Stiller, and the father and son appeared together in films such as Zoolander, Heavyweights, Hot Pursuit, The Heartbreak Kid, and Zoolander 2. He also performed voice-over work for television and films including The Lion King 1½ and Planes: Fire and Rescue. In his later career, Stiller became known for playing grumpy and eccentric characters who were nevertheless beloved.  His family was Jewish. His paternal grandparents immigrated from Galicia (southeast Poland and western Ukraine), and his mother was born in Frampol, Poland.  He lived in the Williamsburg and East New York neighborhoods before his family moved to the Lower East Side,  where he attended Seward Park High School,  where he played Adolf Hitler in a school production. Upon his return from service in the U. Army during World War II,  Stiller attended Syracuse University, earning a bachelor’s degree in Speech and Drama in 1950.  He also studied drama at HB Studio in Greenwich Village.  In the 1953 Phoenix Theater production of Coriolanus (produced by John Houseman), Stiller, along with Gene Saks and Jack Klugman, formed (as told by Houseman in the 1980 memoir Front and Center) “the best trio of Shakespearian clowns that I have ever seen on any stage”. Also in 1953, Stiller met actress-comedian Anne Meara, and they married in 1954. Until Stiller suggested it, Meara had never thought of doing comedy.  They joined the Chicago improvisational company The Compass Players (which later became The Second City) and, after leaving, began performing together. In 1961 they were performing in nightclubs in New York City and by the following year were considered a “national phenomenon”, said the New York Times. The comedy team Stiller and Meara, composed of Stiller and his wife, Anne Meara, was successful throughout the 1960s, with numerous appearances on television variety programs, primarily on The Ed Sullivan Show.  In 1970, they broke up the live act before it broke up their marriage. They subsequently forged a career in radio commercials, notably the campaign for Blue Nun wine. They also starred in their own syndicated five-minute sketch comedy show on radio, Take Five with Stiller and Meara, from 1977 to 1978. From 1979 to 1982, Stiller and Meara hosted HBO Sneak Previews, a half-hour show produced monthly on which they described the movies and programs to be featured in the coming month.  They also did some comedy sketches between show discussions. The duo had their own 1986 TV sitcom, The Stiller and Meara Show, in which Stiller played the deputy mayor of New York City and Meara portrayed his wife, a TV commercial actress. Late in his career, Stiller earned the part of the short-tempered Frank Costanza, father of George Costanza, on the sitcom Seinfeld, a role which Stiller played from 1993 until 1998.  Stiller’s character as initially envisioned was a “meek” and “Thurberesque” character that required him to wear a bald cap. After a couple of days of rehearsal Stiller realized the character wasn’t working and asked Seinfeld co-creator Larry David if he could perform the character in a different way, which was more in line with his final characterization on the show.  For his portrayal of Frank, Stiller gained widespread critical and popular acclaim, including being nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series in 1997 and winning an American Comedy Award for Funniest Male Guest Appearance in a TV Series in 1998. After Seinfeld ended, Stiller had planned on retiring. However, Kevin James asked him to join the cast of The King of Queens. James, who played the leading role of Doug Heffernan, had told Stiller that he needed him to have a successful show. Stiller agreed and played the role of Arthur Spooner, the father of Carrie Heffernan, from 1998 until 2007. Stiller said that this role tested his acting ability more than any other had, and that, before being a part of The King of Queens, he only saw himself as a decent actor. Stiller played himself in filmed skits opening and closing Canadian rock band Rush’s 30th Anniversary Tour concerts in 2004. These appearances are seen on the band’s DVD R30: 30th Anniversary World Tour, released in 2005. Stiller later appeared in cameos for in-concert films for the band’s 2007-08 Snakes & Arrows Tour.  He also made several appearances on the game show, Tattletales, with his wife, Anne Meara. In the late 1990s, Stiller appeared in a series of Nike television commercials as the ghost of deceased Green Bay Packers head coach Vince Lombardi. He also appeared in various motion pictures, most notably Zoolander (2001) and Secret of the Andes (1999). On February 9, 2007, Stiller and Meara were honored with a joint star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. On October 28, 2010, the couple appeared on an episode of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. Stiller voiced the announcer on the children’s educational show Crashbox. Starting in October 2010, Stiller and Meara began starring in Stiller & Meara, a Yahoo web series from Red Hour Digital in which they discussed current topics. Each episode was about two minutes long.  Stiller also worked as a spokesman for Xfinity. The book discussed Festivus, the fictional holiday promulgated by Stiller’s Seinfeld character Frank Costanza. Stiller’s son, Ben. Stiller was married to Anne Meara for over 60 years, from 1954 until her death on May 23, 2015.  The two met in an agent’s office. Meara was upset about an interaction with the casting agent, so Stiller took her out for coffee-all he could afford-and they remained together ever since. Meara was Irish Catholic and converted to Judaism before the couple’s two children were born.  Their son is actor-comedian Ben Stiller (born 1965) and their daughter is actress Amy Stiller (born 1961).  He has two grandchildren through Ben. Stiller died from natural causes at his home on the Upper West Side of Manhattan on May 11, 2020, at the age of 92, less than a month before his 93rd birthday. His death was announced by his son, Ben Stiller.  Many actors Stiller worked with, including Seinfeld castmates Jerry Seinfeld, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Jason Alexander, Michael Richards and King of Queens castmates Kevin James and Leah Remini, paid tributes to him on social media. The Taking of Pelham One Two Three. Those Lips, Those Eyes. Die Story von Monty Spinnerratz. Secret of the Andes. The Lion King 1½. Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy. R30: 30th Anniversary World Tour. Snakes & Arrows Live. Swinging with the Finkels. Excuse Me for Living. Studio One in Hollywood. Sergeant Joe Capriotti / Hugh. Episode: “Thunder Over Berlin”. Episode: “The Empty Chute”. Episode: “Acres and Pains”. Episode: “The Plain Truth”. Episode: “Our First Fight”. Landon / Paul Sterling. Leonard Ferguson / Harry. The Carol Burnett Show. Episode: “Phyllis and the Jumper”. Episode: “A Touch of Classy”. Episode: “Garbage Man/Doctor’s Wife”. Episode: “Murder Takes a Bow”. Episode: “So Long, Sergeant Ross”. Episode: “The Uncivil Servant”. Episode: “Do You Take This Waitress”. Episode: “Digging Up Dinosaurs”. Episode: “You Were Meant for Me”. Episode: “Where There’s a Will”. Tales from the Darkside. Episode: “The Devil’s Advocate”. Episode: “When The Fat Lady Sings”. Sam / Seymour Shapir. Women & Men 2. Michael Tobis / Sam Pokras. Episode: “Rhyme and Punishment”. Episode: “In Search of Crimes Past”. Touched by an Angel. Episode: “Cry and You Cry Alone”. The Larry Sanders Show. Episode: “I Buried Sid”. Voice; Episode: “Hercules and the Promethus Affair”. Episode: “A Candidacy of Dunces”. How Murray Saved Christmas. Voice; Television film (final film role). Timon and Pumbaa at the Movies. Diary of a Scoundrel. The Taming of the Shrew. The Power and the Glory. Ethel Barrymore Theatre, Broadway. Three Men on a Horse. What’s Wrong with This Picture? Brooks Atkinson Theatre, Broadway. Criterion Center Stage Right, Broadway. Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series. Best Spoken Word Album. Married to Laughter: A Love Story. Screen Actors Guild Awards. Outstanding Cast in a Motion Picture. In 2007 Stiller and his wife Anne Meara received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. When Jerry Stiller told his father he wanted to become an actor, his father offered an alternate plan. He said, “Why don’t you be a stagehand – that’s like being on the stage – at least you’ll be working every night, ” Stiller told Fresh Air in 1993. Stiller did not heed his father’s advice and went on to have a long career in show business. He performed comedy on stage and screen, and, in later years, made a name for himself playing George Costanza’s hotheaded father on Seinfeld. Stiller died of natural causes, his son Ben Stiller tweeted Monday. Stiller was born in Brooklyn in 1927. After serving in World War II, he teamed up with his wife, Anne Meara, to form the Stiller and Meara comedy duo – a practical move motivated by love. “We wanted to keep the marriage together, ” he joked – she was tall and Catholic, he was short and Jewish – and until they partnered up, “we never got jobs together, ” Stiller told the Archive of American Television. Stiller and Meara enjoyed success as a duo for many years but eventually decided to pursue careers on their own. Looking back in 1993, Stiller told Fresh Air he and Meara were young parents juggling a show business schedule – and trying to figure out a way to do everything. “Here were a husband and wife working together and suddenly you’re being asked to play Las Vegas, ” he recalled. Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara pose on the set of The King of Queens in November 2003. After stints on Broadway and on several TV shows in the 1970s, Stiller’s most notable role came in the early’90s, when he joined the cast of Seinfeld. Stiller said producer Larry David was looking for an actor who would “play it down” – and he did at first – but felt the approach wasn’t working. So, in a final dress rehearsal in front of a live audience, Stiller played Costanza’s temperament up – way up. In a now-famous episode, the frequently furious Costanza is encouraged to recite the mantra “serenity now” every time he gets riled up. Stiller went on to earn an Emmy nomination for his work on Seinfeld. Years later, he played another angry dad on the show King of Queens. Stiller was also a father in real life, but not one fueled by anger. His son, actor Ben Stiller, told NPR that his dad was always supportive – and hilarious. “He just can’t help but be funny because he’s so committed to being who he is, ” Stiller said. Long-Time Actress And Comedian Anne Meara Dies. The father and son appeared together in Ben’s Zoolander movies. When Meara died in 2015, she and Stiller had been married for more than 60 years. Ben Stiller said his mother’s humor tended to be dark, but his father’s was always intended to bring joy, and perhaps a bit of “serenity now, ” to others. This item is in the category “Collectibles\Autographs\Celebrities”. The seller is “memorabilia111″ and is located in this country: US. 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