Kevin Pollak

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Kevin Pollak
KevinPollakMar08.jpg
Pollak in March 2008
Birth name Kevin Elliot Pollak
Born (1957-10-30) October 30, 1957 (age 56)
San Francisco, California, U.S.
Influences Ross Martin,[1] Bill Murray[2]
Spouse Lucy Webb (m. 1995–2008) (divorced)

Kevin Elliot Pollak (born October 30, 1957) is an American actor, impressionist, game show host, and comedian. He started performing stand-up comedy at the age of 10 and touring professionally at the age of 20. In 1988, Pollak landed a role in George Lucas’s Willow, directed by Ron Howard, and began his acting career. Pollak is an avid poker player, hosting weekly home games with some of Hollywood's A-list celebrities. He finished 134th out of 6,598 entrants in the 2012 WSOP, earning himself $52,718.

Early life[edit]

Pollak was born in San Francisco, the youngest son of Elaine Harlow and Robert "Bobby" Pollak. He has one older brother. He has since moved to and currently resides in San Francisco. His brother resides with his family in Boston.[3] He attended high school at Pioneer High School in San Jose.

Career[edit]

Acting[edit]

As an actor, Pollak's most notable roles are usually playing the best friend or confidant characters to the leading men, as he did in Ricochet (1991), A Few Good Men (1992), End of Days (1999) and The Wedding Planner (2001). However, Pollak has also played a wide variety of parts; he played a criminal in The Usual Suspects (1995) and a gangster in The Whole Nine Yards (2000). He also briefly hosted Celebrity Poker Showdown in its first season. His most substantial role to date was in Deterrence (1999), in which he played the main character, a Vice President who must take over for a deceased President and deal with a nuclear crisis.

In December 2006, he played Karl Kreutzfeld in the Sci Fi Channel miniseries The Lost Room. Through 2008, he had a recurring role as a District Attorney on the television series Shark. In March 2008, Pollak played himself in the web series The Writers Room on Crackle.[4] In 2010, he portrayed Sheriff Tom Wagner in Choose.[5]

Pollak in April 2011

In January 2010, Pollak was scheduled to host Our Little Genius on FOX, but the series was pulled before it could air on television. Pollak was last seen hosting Million Dollar Money Drop, again on the FOX network at the end of 2010.

Directing[edit]

Pollak's directorial debut was on the horror web series Vamped Out, featured on the internet television platform Babelgum.[6] Jason Antoon, Seana Kofoed, Samm Levine and Pollak all acted in the ensemble cast. The screenbook was based on a simple joke that Antoon and Pollak had between them.[7]

Stand-up[edit]

As a comedian, Pollak's most famous work was his 1992 HBO special Stop With the Kicking, directed by fellow comedian David Steinberg and produced by Boston comedy writer Martin Olson. In July 2009, The Littlest Suspect, his most recent comedy special, was aired on Showtime.

Celebrity impressions[edit]

Kevin Pollak's Chat Show[edit]

In April 2009, Pollak partnered with Jason Calacanis on a weekly Internet talk show, Kevin Pollak's Chat Show. Guests for the show include film directors Kevin Smith and Mike Binder, comedian Jimmy Pardo, and actors Nia Vardalos, Illeana Douglas, Bryan Cranston, Dana Carvey, Matthew Perry, Jon Hamm, Paul Rudd, and Jason Lee. A full list of guests can be found in the main article.

The guest interviews are very in-depth and typically longer than an hour in duration, often exceeding two hours. Common topics include the guests' childhoods, how they got into the business they are in (typically show business), how they got inspired to start certain creative endeavors, and unique experiences they have had while working. Viewers can interact via chat room during the show, and sometimes questions for the guest posed in the chat room are answered live.

The show's self-described "Paul Shaffer" is actor Samm Levine.

Recurring segments on the show include:

  • "The Larry King Game", which requires the guest to do a bad Larry King impression, reveal something about oneself (in the persona of Larry King) and then go to the phones and say a funny-sounding city
  • "Tweet Five," where Pollak reads the guest five questions from a Twitter user, usually in a this-or-that style
  • "Who Tweeted", in which a host (typically Samm Levine) reads tweets from the Twitter accounts of three female celebrities (the list of actresses varies, but typically includes Demi Moore (or, more recently, Justin Bieber), Tyra Banks, and Paris Hilton) and Pollak and his guest compete against each other game-show-style to guess who authored each tweet.

In 2012, Pollak began a new podcast called "Talkin Walkin" in which he spends an hour or more with a new guest each show where Pollak spends the entire conversation as Christopher Walken. After three episodes, the show was rated in the top 5 of all comedy podcasts by iTunes.[citation needed]

Filmography[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1983 The Right Stuff Dwight D. Eisenhower (voice) uncredited[8]
1987 Million Dollar Mystery Officer Quinn first credited role in a motion picture
1988 Willow Rool
1990 Coming of Age Brian Brinker television series
1990 Avalon Izzy Kirk
1991 L.A. Story Frank Swan
1991 Another You Phil
1991 Morton & Hayes Chick Morton television series
1991 Ricochet Larry Doyle
1992 The Opposite Sex and How to Live with Them Eli
1992 A Few Good Men Lt. Sam Weinberg
1993 Indian Summer Brad Berman
1993 Wayne's World 2 Jerry Segel
1993 Grumpy Old Men Jacob Goldman
1994 ExtraTERRORestrial Alien Encounter Spinlok Disney World Ride (has since been replaced with Stitch's Great Escape!)
1994 Clean Slate Rosenheim
1995 Usual Suspects, TheThe Usual Suspects Todd Hockney National Board of Review Award for Best Cast
1995 Miami Rhapsody Jordan Marcus
1995 Canadian Bacon Stu Smiley
1995 Casino Phillip Green
1995 Grumpier Old Men Jacob Goldman
1995 Chameleon Matt Gianni
1995 The Drew Carey Show Mr. Bell television series, 1st season only
1996 House Arrest Ned Beindorf
1996 That Thing You Do! Victor 'Boss Vic Koss' Kosslovich
1997 Truth or Consequences, N.M. Gordon Jacobson
1998 Buffalo '66 TV Sportscaster
1998 Ruby Bridges Dr. Robert Coles
1998 From the Earth to the Moon Joe Shea Nominated - Satellite Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film
1998 Hoods Rudy
1999 Outside Ozona Wit Roy
1999 Deal of a Lifetime Jerry
1999 She's All That Wayne Boggs
1999 The Sex Monster Dr. Jerry Berman
1999 Deterrence President Walter Emerson
1999 End of Days Bobby Chicago Nominated — Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Favorite Supporting Actor (Action/Science-Fiction)
1999 Work with Me Jordan Better television series
2000 The Whole Nine Yards Janni Pytor Gogolak
2000 Steal This Movie! Gerry Lefcourt
2001 The Wedding Planner Dr. John Dojny
2001 3000 Miles to Graceland Damitry
2001 Dr. Dolittle 2 Riley/Alligator
2002 Stolen Summer Rabbi Jacobsen
2002 Frank McKlusky, C.I. Ronnie Rosengold
2002 Juwanna Mann Lorne Daniels
2002 Mother Ghost Dr. Norris
2002 The Santa Clause 2 Cupid
2003 Rolling Kansas Agent Brinkley uncredited
2003 Blizzard Archimedes
2004 Seven Times Lucky Harlan
2004 The Whole Ten Yards Lazlo Gogolak
2004 Our Time is Up Dr. Stern
2005 Hostage Walter Smith
2005 Magnificent Desolation: Walking on the Moon 3D Director (Voice)
2005 The Aristocrats Himself
2006 The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause Cupid
2006 The Lost Room Karl Kreutzfeld mini-series
2007 Numb Tom
2007 Shark D.A. Leo Cutler television series
2008 Otis Eli
2008 Picture This Tom Gilbert straight to DVD
2008 Tortured Dr. Shaw straight to DVD
2008 Entourage Mr. Bob Levine television series, episode 503 - The All Out Fall Out
2009 2:13 Dr. Simmons
2009 Middle Men Curt Allmans
2010 Columbus Circle Klandermann co-writer & co-executive producer
2010 Cop Out Hunsaker
2010 Vamped Out Elliot Finke web series (also director, creator, writer, and producer)
2011 Choose Sheriff Tom Wagner
2011 Red State ASAC Brooks
2011 The Big Year Eli
2012 Geezers! Kevin post-production
2012 Chez Upshaw Heaton Upshaw filming
2012 Men at Work Pavel television series, episode 105 - Toilet of Eden
2012 The Magic of Belle Isle Joe Viola
2013 Grace Unplugged Mossy
2014 Mom Alvin Biletnikoff[9] television series

References[edit]

  1. ^ Pollak, Kevin; Carvey, Dana (May 31, 2009). Kevin Pollak's Chat Show. Interview with Kevin Pollak. 
  2. ^ Pollak, Kevin; Azaria, Hank (August 23, 2009). Kevin Pollak Chat Show. Interview with Kevin Pollak. 
  3. ^ SMART MOUTH KEVIN POLLAK FEELS AT HOME WHETHER IT'S STAND-UP COMEDY IN A CLUB OR DRAMATIC TURNS ON THE SCREEN
  4. ^ "Fresh Chicken and Roadents Populate New Comedy Site". TV Guide. 2008-03-31. Retrieved 2009-03-02. 
  5. ^ You Have 60 Seconds to 'Choose' Who Dies: Your Mom or Dad?
  6. ^ Vamped Out – Babelgum
  7. ^ Exclusive: Kevin Pollak Talks Vamped Out
  8. ^ [1] Kevin Pollak's Chat Show #125 Harry Shearer
  9. ^ "Kevin Pollak to Play Anna Faris' Father on CBS' 'Mom' (Exclusive)". TV Guide. 2013-12-10. Retrieved 2013-12-16. 

External links[edit]