Jon Lovitz

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Jon Lovitz
JonLovitz08.jpg
Lovitz in 2008
Born Jonathan M. Lovitz
(1957-07-21) July 21, 1957 (age 56)
Los Angeles, California, United States
Occupation Stand-up comedian, Actor, Singer
Years active 1984–present

Jonathan M. "Jon" Lovitz (born July 21, 1957) is an American comedian, actor and singer. He is best known as a cast member of the NBC sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live from 1985 to 1990.

Early life[edit]

Lovitz was born in Los Angeles, California. His father was a doctor.[1] His family is Jewish (they immigrated from Romania, Hungary, and Russia).[2][3] Lovitz graduated with a theater degree in 1979 from the University of California at Irvine and then studied acting with Tony Barr at the Film Actors Workshop. He became a member of The Groundlings comedy troupe, where he befriended his future SNL fellow Phil Hartman.

Career[edit]

Saturday Night Live[edit]

Lovitz was a cast member of Saturday Night Live from 1985 to 1990. He later said in an interview for the book Live From New York: An Uncensored History of Saturday Night Live that his time on SNL was the most memorable in his career. He went from having no money to being offered a $500,000 movie contract. He was nominated for an Emmy Award his first two years on Saturday Night Live. One of his most notable SNL characters was "Tommy Flanagan, The Pathological Liar" who used the old catchphrase, "Yeah! That's the ticket!" as he, after visible effort, finally finished constructing his latest lie. The line was previously said by Humphrey Bogart. Some of his other recurring characters included Annoying Man, Master Thespian, Tonto, Mephistopheles, Harvey Fierstein and Michael Dukakis. In a 1986 episode of Saturday Night Live he played a virgin Trekkie, who was scripted to hang his head when asked by William Shatner if he had ever kissed a girl.

Hanukkah Harry, one of his most memorable roles, cast him in 1989 as a Jewish contemporary of Santa Claus who lives on Mount Sinai and travels the globe with a cart flown by three donkeys to give bland gifts to Jewish boys and girls. Harry is asked to fill in when Santa falls ill on Christmas Eve.

Television series[edit]

Lovitz's first stint as a regular in a situation comedy was as Mole, an investigator for a New York City District Attorney's office, in the short-lived 1985-1986 series Foley Square, starring Margaret Colin.

Voiceover work[edit]

Lovitz has lent his voice to several cartoons and films. In the series The Critic, he played the title character of Jay Sherman (using his regular speaking voice). He has made several appearances on The Simpsons, including as Marge's prom date Artie Ziff in "The Way We Was", the art teacher in "Brush with Greatness", theater director Llewellyn Sinclair and his sister who owned a daycare center in "A Streetcar Named Marge", Andre in "Homer's Triple Bypass", and numerous other appearances (including the character of Jay Sherman in the episode A Star Is Burns, which was a crossover with The Critic). He was also the voice of Radio in the Hyperion-produced, Disney-distributed animated movie, The Brave Little Toaster and he lent his voice for a promo video for the video game Banjo-Kazooie.

Music[edit]

Jon Lovitz performed a duet with Robbie Williams on Williams' 2001 album Swing When You're Winning, in the song "Well, Did You Evah".

Film roles, cameos and television guest appearances[edit]

In the late 1990s, Lovitz was "the man who wrote the Yellow Pages", in a series of commercials and print ads for the American Yellow Pages industry. He also appeared in ads for Subway.

He had a cameo in the movie Matilda, as Million Dollar Sticky Man.

His first starring role was in Mom and Dad Save the World as the film's antagonist Emperor Tod Spengo. He later starred in the film High School High, this time as the protagonist.

He also had an uncredited cameo as a rival crooner to Adam Sandler in the movie The Wedding Singer, and had a small role in another of Sandler's movies, Little Nicky.

He was a supporting character in "Mr. Destiny" with James Belushi.

Lovitz also appeared on Friends twice. He first appeared in the Season 1 episode "The One with the Stoned Guy" as a restaurateur who gets stoned on marijuana just prior to interviewing Monica Geller for a job. He reappeared years later in the Season 9 episode "The One with the Blind Dates", where it is revealed that he lost his restaurant due to a drug problem.

Lovitz guest-starred as himself in The Larry Sanders Show episode "Larry Loses a Friend."

He appeared on Seinfeld as Gary Fogel, a man who lies about having cancer ("The Scofflaw") and later dies in a car accident.

In 1991, Lovitz appeared in the season six episode of Married... with Children entitled "Kelly Does Hollywood part 2" as sleazy Hollywood producer Mr. Littlehead.

In 1992, Lovitz portrayed crusty baseball scout Ernie Capadino in "A League Of Their Own".

In 1994, Lovitz appeared in "City Slickers II: The Legend of Curly's Gold" as the strange brother of Billy Crystal.

In 1998, Lovitz made a dramatic turn when he appeared in a small but pivotal role in Todd Solondz's film Happiness as a depressed, socially inept man who publicly berates his date for thinking of him as nothing. His insults set the tone for her character throughout the film.

Lovitz guest-starred twice on NewsRadio as two separate characters before becoming a cast member in the show's final season. In the final season, he played Max Louis, the news radio announcer who replaced Phil Hartman's Bill McNeal.

Lovitz played Randy in Rat Race. In 2003, he appeared in an episode of Just Shoot Me! as a man married to Nina. He appeared on Two and a Half Men in 2006 as a jingle writer named Archie. He had multiple guest appearances on Las Vegas as Fred Puterbaugh, up to the end of the second series. Lovitz also appeared in The Producers as Mr. Marks.

Lovitz during a TV interview in 2007

In 2010, he appeared as the Raw Guest Host on the May 24 episode of WWE Raw.

Broadway theatre[edit]

He has appeared on Broadway at the Music Box Theatre in Neil Simon's play The Dinner Party, taking over the lead role from Henry Winkler. He sang at Carnegie Hall three times (including Great Performances' Ira Gershwin at 100: A Celebration at Carnegie Hall) and sang the national anthem at Dodger Stadium and the U.S. Open.

On October 10, 2001, Lovitz sang a duet (with Robbie Williams) of the song "Well, Did You Evah!" at the Royal Albert Hall. The recording can be found on the Swing When You're Winning album.

Commercial work[edit]

In 2006, he became the spokesperson in an advertising campaign for the Subway restaurant chain.[4]

Stand-up comedy[edit]

In 1984, Lovitz entered stand-up comedy for the first time in his career.

The Jon Lovitz Comedy Club[edit]

On November 8, 2007, Lovitz had the grand opening for his new comedy club "The Jon Lovitz Comedy Club at Aubergine" in the Gaslamp District in San Diego, California, sponsored by RR-Ex. The club has played host to David Spade, Ralphie May, Carlos Mencia, Dana Carvey, Jo Koy, Eric Schwartz, Norm Macdonald, Joe Rogan, Russell Peters, Kevin Nealon, Jon Stewart, and Ryan Robinson.

There is also a second Jon Lovitz Comedy Club location on Universal CityWalk in Universal Studios Hollywood. A comic short film starring Ken Davitian ('Borat') and featuring Lovitz was filmed there, directed by Emmy nominee Brent Roske and written by Aaron Davitian. Weekly episodes of The Adam Carolla Show, a podcast hosted by comedian Adam Carolla, have been recorded at the City Walk location since early 2011.[5]

The Jon Lovitz Comedy Club in Universal Studios Hollywood is home to the first ever MMA Roast / MMA Roasted stand up comedy show in 2009. Admirable Mixed Martial Arts Fighters including UFC Legend Kimo Leopoldo were recognized with good-humor for their outstanding accomplishments while being ridiculed in a heartwarming fashion.

The Jon Lovitz Comedy Club & Podcast Theatre[edit]

On May 29, 2011, the name was changed from The Jon Lovitz Comedy Club to The Jon Lovitz Comedy Club & Podcast Theatre. A premiere event called, Podammit was held, in which Kevin Smith hosted a variety of six podcasts, including Plus One 3D with his wife, Jennifer Schwalbach, Hollywood Babble-On with Ralph Garman and Jay and Silent Bob Get Old with Jason Mewes, as well as The ABCs of SNL with Jon Lovitz himself, a 6-episode 'This Is Your Life' style biographical interview about Lovitz's life and career.[6] On April 22, 2013, Smith announced through Twitter that the podcasts would no longer be recorded at the Club after a falling out with Lovitz. The Club still periodically hosts other podcasts such as Rob Paulsen's Talkin' Toons (which subsequently left in October of 2013). On June 15, 2013, Smith detailed the falling out in a podcast.[7]

Filmography[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1986 Hamburger... The Motion Picture Security guard
1986 Last Resort Bartender
1986 Jumpin' Jack Flash Doug
1986 Ratboy Party guest
1986 Three Amigos Morty
1987 Brave Little Toaster, TheThe Brave Little Toaster Radio Voice role
1988 Big Scotty Brennen
1988 My Stepmother Is an Alien Ron Mills
1990 Mr. Destiny Clip Metzler
1991 American Tail: Fievel Goes West, AnAn American Tail: Fievel Goes West Chula Voice role
1992 Buzz, TheThe Buzz Unknown
1992 League of Their Own, AA League of Their Own Ernie Capadino
1992 Mom and Dad Save the World Emperor Tod Spengo
1993 Loaded Weapon 1 Becker
1993 Coneheads Dr. Rudolph
1994 City Slickers II: The Legend of Curly's Gold Glen Robbins
1994 North Arthur Belt
1994 Trapped in Paradise Dave Firpo
1996 For Goodness Sake II Unknown
1996 Great White Hype, TheThe Great White Hype Sol
1996 Matilda Million $ Sticky Host Uncredited
1996 High School High Richard Clark Lead Role
1998 Wedding Singer, TheThe Wedding Singer Jimmie Moore Uncredited
1998 Happiness Andy Kornbluth
1999 Lost & Found Uncle Harry
2000 Small Time Crooks Benny
2000 Little Nicky Peeper
2000 Sand Kirby
2001 3000 Miles to Graceland Jay Peterson
2001 Cats & Dogs Calico Voice role
2001 Rat Race Randall 'Randy' Pear
2001 Good Advice Barry Sherman
2002 Eight Crazy Nights Tom Baltezor Voice role
2003 Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star Sidney Wernick
2004 Stepford Wives, TheThe Stepford Wives Dave Markowitz
2005 Bailey's Billion$ Bailey
2005 Pancho's Pizza Unknown Short film
2005 Producers, TheThe Producers Mr. Marks
2006 Farce of the Penguins "My eyes are up here" Penguin Voice role
Direct-to-DVD release
2006 Benchwarmers, TheThe Benchwarmers Mel
2006 Southland Tales Bart Bookman
2007 I Could Never Be Your Woman Rob Direct-to-DVD release
2010 Casino Jack Adam Kidan
2012 Hotel Transylvania Quasimodo Voice role
2013 Bula Quo! Wilson
2013 Grown Ups 2 Squats Fitness Janitor
2013 Jay & Silent Bob's Super Groovy Cartoon Movie The Mad Scientist

Television[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1984 Paper Chase, TheThe Paper Chase Levitz Episode 2.18: "Billy Pierce"
1985-1986 Foley Square Mole Regular cast member
1985–92 Saturday Night Live Various characters Main cast member; appeared in 92 episodes
1991 Tales from the Crypt Barry Blye Episode 3.5: "Top Billing"
1991 Married... with Children Jeff Littlehead Episode 6.10: "Kelly Does Hollywood: Part 2"
1991–present Simpsons, TheThe Simpsons Various characters (including Jay Sherman and Artie Ziff) Appeared in eleven episodes
1993 League of Their Own, AA League of Their Own Ernie Capadino Episode 1.1: "Dottie's Back"
1994–95 Critic, TheThe Critic Jay Sherman Appeared in all 23 episodes
1995 Seinfeld Gary Fogel Episode 6.13: "The Scofflaw"
1995, 2003 Friends Steve Episodes 1.15: "The One with the Stoned Guy" and 9.14: "The One with the Blind Dates"
1997 Naked Truth, TheThe Naked Truth Acer Predburn Episode 2.8: "The Scoop"
1997–99 NewsRadio Fred
Mike Johnson
Max Lewis
Episode 3.20: "Our Fiftieth Episode"
Episode 4.1: "Jumper"
Main cast member in fifth season
1997–2003 Just Shoot Me! Roland Devereaux Episode 7.15: "A Simple Kiss of Fate"
2000 Bette Himself Episode 1.15: "Polterguest"
2002 Son of the Beach Father of B.J.'s Baby Episode 3.14: "Bad News, Mr. Johnson"
2004–05 Las Vegas Fred Puterbaugh Appeared in three episodes
2006 Two and a Half Men Archie Baldwin Episode 3.17:"The Unfortunate Little Schnauzer"
2010 WWE Raw Himself Guest Host[8]
2011 Saturday Night Live Himself (Cameo) Episode 36.14: Host: Dana Carvey
2011-12 Hot in Cleveland Homeless man/Artie Recurring role
2012- Mr. Box Office Bobby Gold Main cast member

Other work[edit]

Awards[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.filmreference.com/film/59/Jon-Lovitz.html
  2. ^ Jewishbiography.com > Jewish Biography --> Biographies --> List of Jewish Actors and Actresses > Jon Lovitz. Retrieved on 2012-02-03.
  3. ^ Jon Lovitz - Ethnicelebs.com. Retrieved 2012.
  4. ^ Gianatasio, David (March 31, 2006). "Lovitz Makes His Subway Debut in MMB Effort". Adweek. ISSN 0199-2864. Retrieved 2011-02-12. 
  5. ^ AdamCarolla.com (2011). Universal Live Show. Retrieved April 15, 2011.
  6. ^ http://silentbobspeaks.com/?p=415
  7. ^ Hollywood Babble-on - The Lovitz Situation on YouTube
  8. ^ "World Wrestling Entertainment". Retrieved 5 December 2010. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Will Smith
MTV Movie Awards host
1995 (with Courteney Cox)
Succeeded by
Janeane Garofalo and Ben Stiller