Phil Hartman in character as Chick Hazard, Private Eye, circa 1978
|Born||Philip Edward Hartmann
September 24, 1948
Brantford, Ontario, Canada
|Died||May 28, 1998
Encino, Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Cause of death
|Ashes scattered over Santa Catalina Island's Emerald Bay|
|Education||Westchester High School|
|Alma mater||California State University, Northridge|
|Occupation||Actor, voice actor, comedian, graphic artist, screenwriter|
|Spouse(s)||Gretchen Lewis (1970–unknown)
Lisa Strain (1982–1985)
Brynn Omdahl (1987–1998); 2 children
|Children||Sean Edward (b. 1989)
Birgen Anika (b. 1992)
Philip Edward "Phil" Hartman (September 24, 1948 – May 28, 1998; born Hartmann) was a Canadian American actor, comedian, screenwriter, and graphic artist. Born in Brantford, Ontario, Hartman and his family moved to the United States when he was 10. After graduating from California State University, Northridge, with a degree in graphic arts, he designed album covers for bands like Poco, Rockin' Foo and America. Feeling the need for a more creative outlet, Hartman joined the comedy group The Groundlings in 1975 and there helped comedian Paul Reubens develop his character Pee-wee Herman. Hartman co-wrote the screenplay for the film Pee-wee's Big Adventure and made recurring appearances on Reubens' show Pee-wee's Playhouse.
Hartman became famous in the late 1980s when he joined the sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live. He won fame for his impressions, particularly of President Bill Clinton, and he stayed on the show for eight seasons. Given the moniker, "The Glue", for his ability to hold the show together and help other cast members, Hartman won a Primetime Emmy Award for his SNL work in 1989. In 1995, after scrapping plans for his own variety show, he starred as Bill McNeal in the NBC sitcom NewsRadio. He had frequent roles on The Simpsons as Lionel Hutz, Troy McClure, and others, and appeared in the films Houseguest, Sgt. Bilko, Jingle All the Way, and Small Soldiers.
Hartman had been divorced twice before he married Brynn Omdahl in 1987; the couple had two children together. However, their marriage was fractured, due in part to Brynn's drug use. On May 28, 1998, Brynn shot and killed Hartman while he slept in their Encino, Los Angeles, home, then committed suicide several hours later. In the weeks following his death, Hartman was celebrated in a wave of tributes. Dan Snierson of Entertainment Weekly opined that Hartman was "the last person you'd expect to read about in lurid headlines in your morning paper...a decidedly regular guy, beloved by everyone he worked with". Hartman was posthumously inducted into Canada's Walk of Fame in 2012.
Hartman was born Philip Edward Hartmann (later dropping the final "n") in Brantford, Ontario, Canada, on September 24, 1948. He was the fourth of eight children of Rupert, a salesman specializing in building materials, and Doris Hartmann. His parents were Catholic and their children raised in that faith. As a middle child, Hartman found affection hard to earn and stated: "I suppose I didn't get what I wanted out of my family life, so I started seeking love and attention elsewhere."
His family moved to the United States when Hartman was ten years old, gaining American citizenship in 1990. The family first lived in Connecticut, and later moved to the West Coast. There, Hartman attended Westchester High School and frequently acted as the class clown.
After graduating, Hartman studied art at Santa Monica City College, dropping out in 1969 to become a roadie with a rock band. He returned to school in 1972, this time studying graphic arts at California State University, Northridge. He developed his own graphic arts business, which he operated on his own, creating over 40 album covers for bands including Poco and America, as well as advertising and the logo for Crosby, Stills & Nash. In the late 1970s, Hartman made his first television appearance on an episode of The Dating Game; he won, but was stood up by his date.
Early career (1975–1985)
Working alone as a graphic artist, Hartman frequently amused himself with "flights of voice fantasies". Eventually he felt he needed a more social outlet and in 1975, aged 27, developed this talent by attending evening comedy classes run by the California-based improvisational comedy group The Groundlings. While watching one of the troupe's performances, Hartman impulsively decided to climb on stage and join the cast. After several years of training, paying his way by re-designing the group's logo and merchandise, Hartman formally joined the cast of The Groundlings; by 1979 he had become one of the show's stars. Hartman met comedian Paul Reubens and the two became friends, often collaborating on writing and comedic material. Together they created the character Pee-wee Herman and developed The Pee-wee Herman Show, a stage performance which also aired on HBO in 1981. Hartman played Captain Carl on The Pee-wee Herman Show and returned in the role for the children's show Pee-wee's Playhouse. Reubens and Hartman made cameos in the 1980 film Cheech & Chong's Next Movie. Hartman co-wrote the script of the 1985 feature film Pee-wee's Big Adventure and had a cameo as a reporter. Although he had considered quitting acting at the age of 36 due to limited opportunities, the success of Pee-wee's Big Adventure brought new possibilities and changed his mind. After a creative falling-out with Reubens, Hartman left the Pee-Wee Herman project to pursue other roles.
In addition to his work with Reubens, Hartman recorded a number of voice-over roles. These included appearances on The Smurfs, Challenge of the GoBots, The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo, and voicing characters Henry Mitchell and George Wilson on Dennis the Menace. Additionally Hartman developed a strong persona providing voice-overs for advertisements.
Saturday Night Live (1986–1994)
After appearing in the 1986 films Jumpin' Jack Flash and ¡Three Amigos!, Hartman successfully auditioned for NBC's variety show Saturday Night Live (SNL) and joined the cast and writing staff. He told the Los Angeles Times, "I wanted to do [SNL] because I wanted to get the exposure that would give me box-office credibility so I can write movies for myself." In his eight seasons with the show Hartman became known for his impressions, and performed as over 70 different characters. Hartman's original Saturday Night Live characters included Eugene, the Anal Retentive Chef and Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer. His impressions included Frank Sinatra, Ronald Reagan, Ed McMahon, Barbara Bush, Charlton Heston, Phil Donahue and Bill Clinton; the last was often considered his best-known impression.
Hartman first performed his Clinton impression on an episode of The Tonight Show. When he met Clinton in 1993 Hartman remarked, "I guess I owe you a few apologies", adding later that he "sometimes [felt] a twinge of guilt about [his Clinton impression]". Clinton showed good humor and sent Hartman a signed photo with the text: "You're not the president, but you play one on TV. And you're OK, mostly." For his Clinton impression, Hartman copied the president's "post-nasal drip" and the "slight scratchiness" in his voice, as well as his open, "less intimidating" hand gestures. Hartman opted against wearing a larger prosthetic nose when portraying Clinton, as he felt it would be distracting. He instead wore a wig, dyed his eyebrows brighter and used makeup to highlight his nose. One of Hartman's more famous sketches as Clinton saw the president visit a McDonald's restaurant and explain his policies by eating other customers' food. The writers told him that he was not eating enough during rehearsals for the sketch – by the end of the live performance, Hartman had eaten so much he could barely speak.
Backstage at SNL, Hartman was called "the Glue", a name coined by Adam Sandler, according to Jay Mohr's book Gasping for Airtime. SNL creator Lorne Michaels explained the reason for the name: "He kind of held the show together. He gave to everybody and demanded very little. He was very low-maintenance." Hartman often helped other cast members. For example, he aided Jan Hooks in overcoming her stage fright. Michaels added that Hartman was "the least appreciated" cast member by commentators outside the show, and praised his ability "to do five or six parts in a show where you're playing support or you're doing remarkable character work". Hartman won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing for a Variety, Music or Comedy Program for SNL in 1989, sharing the award with the show's other writers. He was nominated in the same category in 1987, and individually in 1994 for Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program.
After his co-stars Jon Lovitz, Dennis Miller, Jan Hooks and Dana Carvey had left, Hartman said he felt "like an athlete who's watched all his World Series teammates get traded off into other directions ... It was hard to watch them leave because I sort of felt we were all part of the team that saved the show." This cast turnover contributed to his leaving the show in 1994. Hartman had originally planned to leave the show in 1991, but Michaels convinced him to stay to raise his profile; his portrayal of Clinton contributed to this goal. Jay Leno offered him the role of his sidekick on The Tonight Show but Hartman opted to stay on SNL. NBC persuaded him to stay on SNL by promising him his own comedy–variety show entitled The Phil Show. He planned to "reinvent the variety form" with "a hybrid, very fast-paced, high energy [show] with sketches, impersonations, pet acts, and performers showcasing their talents". Hartman was to be the show's executive producer and head writer. Before production began, however, the network decided that variety shows were too unpopular and scrapped the series. In a 1996 interview, Hartman noted he was glad the show had been scrapped, as he "would've been sweatin' blood each week trying to make it work". In 1998, he admitted he missed working on SNL, but had enjoyed the move from New York City to Southern California.
Hartman became one of the stars of the NBC sitcom NewsRadio in 1995, portraying radio news anchor Bill McNeal. He signed up after being attracted by the show's writing and use of an ensemble cast, and joked that he based McNeal on himself with "any ethics and character" removed. Hartman made roughly $50,000 per episode of NewsRadio. Although the show was critically acclaimed, it was never a ratings hit and cancellation was a regular threat. After the completion of the fourth season, Hartman commented, "We seem to have limited appeal. We're on the edge here, not sure we're going to be picked up or not", but added he was "99 percent sure" the series would be renewed for a fifth season. Hartman had publicly lambasted NBC's decision to repeatedly move NewsRadio into different timeslots, but later regretted his comments, saying, "this is a sitcom, for crying out loud, not brain surgery". He also stated that if the sitcom were cancelled "it just will open up other opportunities for me". Although the show was renewed for a fifth season, Hartman died before production began. Ken Tucker praised Hartman's performance as McNeal: "A lesser performer ... would have played him as a variation on The Mary Tyler Moore Show's Ted Baxter, because that's what Bill was, on paper. But Hartman gave infinite variety to Bill's self-centeredness, turning him devious, cowardly, squeamish, and foolishly bold from week to week." Hartman was posthumously nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series in 1998 for his work on NewsRadio, but lost to David Hyde Pierce.
Hartman provided the voices for numerous characters on the Fox animated series The Simpsons, appearing in 52 episodes. He made his first appearance in the second season episode "Bart Gets Hit by a Car". Although he was originally brought in for a one-time appearance, Hartman enjoyed working on The Simpsons and the staff wrote additional parts for him. He voiced the recurring characters Lionel Hutz and Troy McClure, as well as several one-time and background characters. His favorite part was that of McClure, and he often used this voice to entertain the audience between takes while taping episodes of NewsRadio. He remarked, "My favorite fans are Troy McClure fans." He added "It's the one thing that I do in my life that's almost an avocation. I do it for the pure love of it."
Hartman was popular among the staff of The Simpsons. Showrunners Bill Oakley and Josh Weinstein stated that they enjoyed his work, and used Hartman as much as possible when working on the show. To give Hartman a larger role, they developed the episode "A Fish Called Selma", which focuses on Troy McClure and expands the character's backstory. The Simpsons creator Matt Groening said that he "took [Hartman] for granted because he nailed the joke every time", and that his voice acting could produce "the maximum amount of humor" with any line he was given. Before his death, Hartman had expressed an interest in making a live action film about Troy McClure. Many of The Simpsons production staff expressed enthusiasm for the project and offered to help. Hartman said he was "looking forward to [McClure's] live-action movie, publicizing his Betty Ford appearances", and "would love nothing more" than making a film and was prepared to buy the film rights himself in order to make it happen.
Hartman's first starring film role came in 1995's Houseguest, alongside Sinbad. Other films included Greedy, Coneheads, Sgt. Bilko, So I Married an Axe Murderer, CB4, Jingle All the Way, Kiki's Delivery Service, and Small Soldiers, the last of which was his final theatrically released film. At the same time, he preferred working on television. His other television roles included appearances on episodes of Seinfeld, The John Larroquette Show, The Dana Carvey Show, and the HBO TV film The Second Civil War as the President of the United States. He appeared as the kidnapper Randy in the third season cliffhanger finale of 3rd Rock from the Sun — a role reportedly written especially for him, but he died before filming of the concluding episode could take place. Executive producer Terry Turner decided to recast the part, reshoot and air the finale again, noting: "I have far too much respect for [Hartman] to try to find some clever way of getting around this real tragedy." Hartman made a considerable amount of money from television advertising, earning $300,000 for a series of four commercials for the soft drink Slice. He also appeared in advertisements for McDonalds (as Hugh McAttack) and 1-800-Collect (as Max Jerome).
Hartman wrote a number of screenplays that were never produced. In 1986, Hartman began writing a screenplay for a film titled Mr. Fix-It, and completed the final draft in 1991. Robert Zemeckis was signed to produce the film, with Gil Bettman hired to direct. Hartman called it "a sort of a merger of horror and comedy, like Beetlejuice and Throw Momma From the Train", adding, "It's an American nightmare about a family torn asunder. They live next to a toxic dump site, their water supply is poisoned, the mother and son go insane and try to murder each other, the father's face is torn off in a terrible disfiguring accident in the first act. It's heavy stuff, but it's got a good message and a positive, upbeat ending." Zemeckis could not secure studio backing, however, and the project collapsed. Another movie idea involving Hartman's Groundlings character Chick Hazard, Private Eye also fell through.
In contrast to his real-life personality which was described as "a regular guy and, by all accounts, one of show business' most low-key, decent people", Hartman often played seedy, vain or unpleasant characters as well as comedic villains. He noted that his standard character was a "jerky guy", and described his usual roles as "the weasel parade", citing Lionel Hutz, Bill McNeal, Troy McClure and Ted Maltin from Jingle All the Way as examples. Hartman enjoyed playing such roles because he "just want[ed] to be funny, and villains tend to be funny because their foibles are all there to see."
He often played supporting roles, rather than the lead part. He said "throughout my career, I've never been a huge star, but I've made steady progress and that's the way I like it," and "It's fun coming in as the second or third lead. If the movie or TV show bombs, you aren't to blame." Hartman was considered a "utility player" on SNL with a "kind of Everyman quality" which enabled him to appear in the majority of sketches, often in very distinct roles. Jan Hooks stated of his work on SNL: "Phil never had an ounce of competition. He was a team player. It was a privilege for him, I believe, to play support and do it very well. He was never insulted, no matter how small the role may have been." He was disciplined in his performances, studying the scripts beforehand. Hooks added: "Phil knew how to listen. And he knew how to look you in the eye, and he knew the power of being able to lay back and let somebody else be funny, and then do the reactions. I think Phil was more of an actor than a comedian." Film critic Pauline Kael declared that "Phil Hartman and Jan Hooks on Saturday Night Live are two of the best comic actors I've ever seen."
Writer and acting coach Paul Ryan noted Hartman's work ethic with his impressions. He assembled a collection of video footage of the figure he was preparing to impersonate and watched this continually until he "completely embodied the person." Ryan concluded that "what made [Hartman's impressions] so funny and spot on was Phil's ability to add that perfect touch that only comes from trial and error and practicing in front of audiences and fellow actors." Hartman described this process as "technical." Journalist Lyle V. Harris said Hartman showed a "rare talent for morphing into ... anybody he wanted to be."
Ken Tucker summarized Hartman's comedic style: "he could momentarily fool audiences into thinking he was the straight man, but then he'd cock an eyebrow and give his voice an ironic lilt that delivered a punchline like a fast slider—you barely saw it coming until you started laughing." Hartman claimed that he borrowed his style from actor Bill Murray: "He's been a great influence on me – when he did that smarmy thing in Ghostbusters, then the same sort of thing in Groundhog Day. I tried to imitate it. I couldn't. I wasn't good enough. But I discovered an element of something else, so in a sick kind of way I made myself a career by doing a bad imitation of another comic."
Hartman married Gretchen Lewis in 1970 and they divorced sometime before 1982. He married real estate agent Lisa Strain in 1982, and their marriage lasted three years. Strain told People that Hartman was reclusive off screen and "would disappear emotionally ... he'd be in his own world. That passivity made you crazy." Hartman married former model and aspiring actress Brynn Omdahl (born Vicki Jo Omdahl) in November 1987, having met her on a blind date the previous year. Together they had two children, Sean and Birgen Hartman. The marriage had difficulties — Brynn reportedly felt intimidated by her husband's success and was frustrated she could not find any on her own, although neither party wanted a divorce. Hartman considered retiring to save the marriage. He tried to get Brynn acting roles but she became progressively more reliant on narcotics and alcohol, entering rehab several times. Because of his close friendship with SNL associate Jan Hooks, Brynn joked on occasion that Hooks and Hartman were married "on some other level".
Stephen Root, Hartman's NewsRadio co-star, felt that few people knew "the real Phil Hartman" as he was "one of those people who never seemed to come out of character," but he nevertheless got the impression of a family man who cared deeply for his children. In his spare time, Hartman enjoyed driving, flying, sailing, marksmanship and playing the guitar.
On the evening of May 27, 1998, Brynn Hartman visited the Italian restaurant Buca di Beppo in Encino, California, with producer and writer Christine Zander, who said she was "in a good frame of mind". After returning to the couple's nearby home, Brynn started a "heated" argument with her husband, who threatened to leave her if she started using drugs again, after which he then went to bed. While Hartman slept, Brynn entered his bedroom shortly before 3 a.m. with a .38 caliber handgun and fatally shot him twice in the head and once in his side. She was intoxicated and had recently taken cocaine.
Brynn drove to the home of her friend Ron Douglas and confessed to the killing, but he did not initially believe her. The pair drove back to the house in separate cars, after which Brynn called another friend and confessed a second time. Upon seeing Hartman's body, Douglas called 911 at 6:20 a.m. Police subsequently arrived and escorted Douglas and the Hartmans' two children from the premises, by which time Brynn had locked herself in the bedroom and committed suicide, shooting herself in the head.
Los Angeles police stated Hartman's death was caused by a "domestic discord" between the couple. A friend stated that Brynn allegedly "had trouble controlling her anger ... She got attention by losing her temper." A neighbor of the Hartmans told a CNN reporter that the couple had been experiencing marital problems: "It's been building, but I didn't think it would lead to this", and actor Steve Guttenberg said they had been "a very happy couple, and they always had the appearance of being well-balanced."
Other causes for the incident were later suggested. Before committing the act, Brynn was taking the antidepressant drug Zoloft. A wrongful-death lawsuit was filed in 1999 by Brynn's brother, Gregory Omdahl, against the drug's manufacturer, Pfizer, and her child's psychiatrist Arthur Sorosky, who provided samples of Zoloft to Brynn. Hartman's friend and former SNL colleague Jon Lovitz has accused Hartman's former NewsRadio co-star Andy Dick of re-introducing Brynn to cocaine, causing her to relapse and suffer a nervous breakdown. Dick claims to have known nothing of her condition. In 2006, Lovitz claimed that Dick had approached him at a restaurant and said, "I put the Phil Hartman hex on you; you're the next one to die." The following year at the Laugh Factory comedy club in Los Angeles, Lovitz and Dick had a further altercation over the issue. Dick asserts that he is not at fault in relation to Hartman's death.
Brynn's sister Katharine Omdahl and brother-in-law Mike Wright raised the two Hartman children. Hartman's will stipulated that each child will receive their inheritance over several years after they turn 25. The total value of Hartman's estate was estimated at $1.23 million. In accordance with Hartman's will, his body was cremated by Forest Lawn Memorial Park and Mortuary, Glendale, California, and his ashes were scattered over Santa Catalina Island's Emerald Bay.
Response and legacy
Hartman was widely mourned in Hollywood. NBC executive Don Ohlmeyer stated that Hartman "was blessed with a tremendous gift for creating characters that made people laugh. Everyone who had the pleasure of working with Phil knows that he was a man of tremendous warmth, a true professional and a loyal friend." Steve Guttenberg expressed shock at Hartman's death, and Steve Martin said he was "a deeply funny and very happy person." Matt Groening called him "a master", and director Joe Dante said, "He was one of those guys who was a dream to work with. I don't know anybody who didn't like him." Dan Snierson of Entertainment Weekly concluded that Hartman was "the last person you'd expect to read about in lurid headlines in your morning paper" and "a decidedly regular guy, beloved by everyone he worked with." In 2007, Entertainment Weekly ranked Hartman the eighty-seventh greatest television icon of all time, and Maxim named Hartman the top Saturday Night Live performer of all time.
Rehearsals for The Simpsons were canceled on the day of Hartman's death, as was that night's performance by The Groundlings. The season five premiere episode of NewsRadio, "Bill Moves On", finds Hartman's character, Bill McNeal, has died of a heart attack, while the other characters reminisce about his life. Jon Lovitz joined the show in his place from the following episode. A special episode of Saturday Night Live commemorating Hartman's work on the show aired on June 13, 1998. Rather than substituting another voice actor, the writers of The Simpsons retired Hartman's characters, and the season ten episode "Bart the Mother" (his final appearance on the show) was dedicated to him, as was his final film, Small Soldiers.
At the time of his death, Hartman was preparing to voice Zapp Brannigan, a character written specifically for him on Groening's second animated series Futurama. After Hartman's death, Futurama's lead character Philip J. Fry was named in his honor, and Billy West took over the role of Brannigan. West later said that he purposely tweaked Zapp's voice to better match Hartman's intended portrayal. Hartman was also planning to appear with Lovitz in the indie film The Day of Swine and Roses scheduled to begin production in August 1998.
In 2007, a campaign was started on Facebook by Alex Stevens and endorsed by Hartman's brother, Paul Hartmann, to have Hartman inducted to Canada's Walk of Fame. Amongst the numerous events to publicize the campaign, Ben Miner of the Sirius XM Radio channel Laugh Attack dedicated the month of April 2012 to Hartman. The campaign ended in success and Hartman was inducted to the Walk of Fame on September 22, 2012, with Paul accepting the award on his late brother's behalf.
Laugh.com and Hartman's brother John Hartmann published the album Flat TV in 2002. The album is a selection of comedy sketches recorded by Hartman in the 1970s that had been kept in storage until their release. Hartmann commented: "I'm putting this out there because I'm dedicating my life to fulfilling his dreams. This [album] is my brother doing what he loved." In 2013, Flat TV was optioned by Michael "Ffish" Hemschoot's animation company Worker Studio for an animated adaptation. The deal came about after Michael T. Scott, a partner in the company, posted a hand-written letter he had received from Hartman in 1997 on the internet, leading to a correspondence between Scott and Paul Hartmann. A special prize at the Canadian Comedy Awards was named for Hartman. Beginning with the 13th Canadian Comedy Awards in 2012, the Phil Hartman Award was awarded to "an individual who helps to better the Canadian comedy community."
|1980||The Gong Show Movie||Man at airport with gun||Credited as "Phil Hartmann"|
|1980||Cheech & Chong's Next Movie||Actor being filmed in the background|
|1982||Pandemonium||Reporter||Credited as "Phil Hartmann"|
|1984||Weekend Pass||Joe Chicago|
|1985||Pee-wee's Big Adventure||Reporter
|Also co-wrote screenplay|
|1986||Jumpin' Jack Flash||Fred||Credited as "Phil E. Hartmann"|
|1986||Three Amigos!||Sam||Credited as "Philip E. Hartmann"|
|1987||Blind Date||Ted Davis|
|1987||The Brave Little Toaster||Air conditioner
|1987||Amazon Women on the Moon||Baseball announcer|
|1989||Fletch Lives||Bly manager|
|1989||How I Got Into College||Bennedict|
|1990||Quick Change||Hal Edison|
|1993||Loaded Weapon 1||Officer Davis|
|1993||So I Married an Axe Murderer||John "Vicky" Johnson|
|1994||The Pagemaster||Tom Morgan||voice|
|1995||The Crazysitter||The Salesman|
|1995||Stuart Saves His Family||Announcer||Uncredited|
|1996||Sgt. Bilko||Major Colin Thorn|
|1996||Jingle All the Way||Ted Maltin|
|1998||Kiki's Delivery Service||Jiji||voice
|1998||Small Soldiers||Phil Fimple||Posthumously released|
|1998||Buster & Chauncey's Silent Night||Chauncey||voice
|1979||Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo||Additional voices|
|1980||The Six O'Clock Follies||Unnamed role|
|1981||The Pee-wee Herman Show||Captain Carl
|1981||The Smurfs||Additional voices|
|1983||The Pop 'N Rocker Game||Announcer|
|1983||The Dukes||Various characters||voice
|1984||Challenge of the GoBots||Additional voices|
|1984||Magnum, P.I.||Newsreader||Episode 5.4: "The Legacy of Garwood Huddle"|
|1985||The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo||Additional voice||Episode 1.9: "It's a Wonderful Scoob"|
|1985||The Jetsons||School Patrol robots
Executive Vice President
|Episode 2.38: "Boy George"|
|1986||Dennis the Menace||Henry Mitchell
Replaced by Maurice LaMarche after the first season.
|1986–1987||Pee-wee's Playhouse||Captain Carl||Series regular; left after season one.|
|1986–1994||Saturday Night Live||Various characters||Also writer
Main cast member; appeared in 155 episodes, two as host
Episode 1.56: "Scrooge's Pet"
|1988||Fantastic Max||Additional voices|
|1990||Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventures||Additional voices||Episode 1.1: "One Sweet and Sour Chinese Adventure to Go"|
|1990||On the Television||Various characters||Episode 1.13: "M. Superior"|
Episode 1.56: "Mach One for the Gipper"
|1990||Gravedale High||Additional voices|
|1990||Tiny Toon Adventures||Octavius||voice
Episode 1.45: "Whale's Tales"
|1991||Captain Planet and the Planeteers||Dimitri the Russian Ambassador||voice
Episode 2.1: "Mind Pollution"
|1991||Empty Nest||Tim Cornell||Episode 3.18: "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?"|
Episode 1.56: "The Haunting of Mr. Banana Brain"
|1991||One Special Victory||Mike Rutten||TV film|
|1991–1998||The Simpsons||Troy McClure
Recurring guest star; appeared in 52 episodes.
"Bart the Mother" aired posthumously
|1991–1993||Tom & Jerry Kids||Calaboose Cal||voice|
|1992||Fish Police||Inspector C. Bass||voice
Episode 1.2: "A Fish Out of Water"
|1992||Parker Lewis Can't Lose||Phil Diamond||Episode 3.9: "Lewis and Son"|
|1992||Eek! The Cat||Monkeynaut #1
Episode 1.4: "Eek vs. the Flying Saucers"
Episode 1.6: "Cape Fur"
|1993||Daybreak||Man in abstinence commercial||TV film; uncredited|
Episode 1.41: "Broadcast Nuisance"
|1993||The Twelve Days of Christmas||Additional voice||TV film|
|1993||The Larry Sanders Show||Himself||Episode 2.4: "The Stalker"|
|1994||The Critic||Adolph Hitmaker
Episode 1.6: "Eyes on the Prize"
|1995||The Show Formerly Known as the Martin Short Show||Various characters|
|1995||The John Larroquette Show||Otto Friedling||Episode 3.4: "A Moveable Feast"|
|1995||Night Stand with Dick Dietrick||Gunther Johann||Episode 1.23: "Illegal Alien Star Search"|
|1995–1998||NewsRadio||Bill McNeal||Main cast member; appeared in 75 episodes.
Hartman died between the fourth and fifth seasons.
|1996||The Dana Carvey Show||Larry King||Episode 1.3: "The Mountain Dew Dana Carvey Show"|
|1996||Caroline in the City||Host||Episode 2.2: "Caroline and the Letter"; uncredited|
|1996||The Ren & Stimpy Show||Announcer On Russian filmreel
Episodes 5.2: "Space Dogged/Feud for Sale"
5.4: "Stimpy's Pet/Ren's Brain"
|1996||Seinfeld||Man on phone||voice
Episode 8.5: "The Package"; uncredited
|1996, 1998||3rd Rock from the Sun||Phillip
|Episodes 1.7: "Lonely Dick" and 3.27: "Eat, Drink, Dick, Mary"|
|1997||The Second Civil War||President of the United States||TV film|
|1999||Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child||Game show host||voice
Episode 6.4: "The Empress's Nightingale"
Final recorded performance; posthumously aired.
|1997||Virtual Springfield||Troy McClure
- Snierson, Dan (1998-06-12). "Man Of A Thousand Voices". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2008-10-12.
- "Profile: Phil Hartman". CBS News. 1998-05-28. Archived from the original on 2009-04-16. Retrieved 2008-10-19.
- Parish, James Robert (2004). The Hollywood Book of Scandals: The Shocking, Often Disgraceful Deeds and Affairs of More Than 100 American Movie and TV Idols. McGraw-Hill Professional. pp. 212–213. ISBN 0-07-142189-0.
- V. Harris, Lyle (1998-05-29). "Phil Hartman: An appreciation – he became anybody he wanted". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. p. F01.
- Tresniowski, Alex (1998-06-15). "Beneath the Surface". People. Retrieved 2008-10-06.
- Knutzen, Eirik (1997-06-29). "TV book". Boston Herald. p. TV 11.
- Mashberg, Tom (1992-11-29). "As Clinton goes, so goes Phil Hartman". The Boston Globe.
- Rice, Darcy (August 1996). "100 Flavors of Vanilla". Orange Coast Magazine. pp. 34–40.
- "Phil: The Jerky Guy". Canoe. 1996-12-01. Retrieved 2008-08-04.
- Rosenthal, Phil (1993-11-23). "'SNL's' Grand Old Man—With Friends Gone, Hartman Prepares To Make His Exit". Los Angeles Daily News. p. L1.
- Short, Christopher (2006-07-11). "Playhouse Party – Cartoon Network reanimates Pee-wee Herman Hartman then co-wrote the script of the 1985 feature film". The Gazette. p. Life 1.
- Thomas, Bob (1995-08-22). "'No spikes, no sudden downfalls': Slow and steady wins the race for Phil Hartman". The Hamilton Spectator. p. D3.
- "Four New Faces on 'Saturday Night'". Los Angeles Times. 1986-09-30. p. 44.
- Rohan, Virginia (1998-02-24). "Out of the Bottle—Along With Many Amusing Characters, Phil Hartman of 'Newsradio' Unleashes the Rare Exception". The Record. p. Y-01.
- Strickler, Jeff (1996-11-26). "Nice guy Phil Hartman loves playing weasels". Star Tribune. p. 01E.
- Freeman, John (1996-03-08). "'NewsRadio's' McNeal livin' it up as despicable cad". San Diego Union-Tribune. p. E-1.
- Bark, Ed (1998-05-29). "Hartman was actor who put on many faces—Impersonation of Clinton among most memorable". The Dallas Morning News. p. 25A.
- Reimink, Troy (2008-10-18). "Political impersonations always a hit on 'Saturday Night Live'". The Grand Rapids Press. p. A2.
- Mohr, Jay (2004). Gasping for Airtime. Hyperion. p. 164. ISBN 1-4013-0006-5.
- Bianculli, David (1998-06-12). "'SNL' Co-Star Remembers Her Hartman". New York Daily News. Archived from the original on 2010-11-13. Retrieved 2008-10-12.
- "Primetime Emmy Awards Advanced Search". Emmys.org. Retrieved 2008-10-31.
- Hartmann, John (2003-02-20). Interview. Interview with Larry King. Larry King Live. CNN. Los Angeles, California.
- Boss, Kitt (1992-10-01). "Phil Hartman Makes Like A Primo Pitchman". The Seattle Times.
- Tribune Media Services (1994-07-31). "Hartman's Departure Spawns Variety Show". Sun-Sentinel. p. 10.
- McDaniel, Mike (1998-08-11). "Good News/Phil Hartman brings back the Titanic on 'NewsRadio'". Houston Chronicle. p. 1.
- Rohan, Virginia (1998-09-23). "Tributes To A Star And His Voices". The Record. p. Y8.
- Tucker, Ken (1998-05-29). "Hartman Remembered". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2008-10-28.
- Millman, Joyce (1998-06-23). "Blue glow". Salon.com. Retrieved 2007-06-22.
- Groening, Matt; Brooks, James L.; Jean, Al; Cartwright, Nancy. (2003). Commentary for "Bart the Murderer", in The Simpsons: The Complete Third Season [DVD]. 20th Century Fox.
- "No raise...no big deal". Houston Chronicle. 1998-05-11. p. 1.
- Weinstein, Josh; Oakley, Bill; Silverman, David; Goldblum, Jeff. (2006). Commentary for "A Fish Called Selma", in The Simpsons: The Complete Seventh Season [DVD]. 20th Century Fox.
- Groening, Matt (2004-12-29). Fresh Air. Interview with Terry Gross. National Public Radio. WHYY-FM. Philadelphia. Retrieved 2008-11-09.
- Oakley, Bill. (2006). Commentary for "Homerpalooza", in The Simpsons: The Complete Seventh Season [DVD]. 20th Century Fox.
- Vancheri, Barbara (1994-05-29). "Hartman, Sinbad Play it for Laughs in 'Houseguest'". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. p. C-14.
- "Phil Hartman Filmography". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-08-16.
- Philpot, Robert (1998-12-06). "1998's top closing moments". Fort Worth Star-Telegram. p. Arts 1.
- Millman, Joyce (1998-05-28). "Phil Hartman 1948–1998". Salon.com.
- "'SNL' Co-star Looking For Studio". Tribune Media Services. 1991-10-09. p. 5E.
- Cartwright, Nancy (2000). My Life as a 10-Year-Old Boy. New York City: Hyperion. p. 71. ISBN 0-7868-8600-5.
- Kushman, Rick (1998-05-29). "His Intellect, Humanity Set Hartman Apart". Sacramento Bee. p. A18.
- Brantley, Will, ed. (1996). Conversations with Pauline Kael. University Press of Mississippi. p. 137. ISBN 0-87805-899-0.
- Ryan, Paul (2007). The Art of Comedy: Getting Serious About Being Funny. Watson-Guptill. p. 168. ISBN 978-0-8230-8467-8.
- Harris, Lyle V. (1998-05-30). "Whatever the role, he made it funny: Phil Hartman 1948–1998". The Hamilton Spectator. p. W11.
- Snauffer, Douglas (2008). The Show Must Go On: How the Deaths of Lead Actors Have Affected Television Series. McFarland. p. 162. ISBN 978-0-7864-3295-0.
- "Coroner: Hartman's wife on drugs, drunk". CNN. 1998-06-08. Retrieved 2008-10-25.
- "Police say Hartman's wife told friends about shooting". CNN. 1998-06-02. Retrieved 2007-06-22.
- "Phil Hartman, wife die in apparent murder–suicide". CNN. 1998-05-28. Retrieved 2007-05-25.
- "Police: 'Domestic discord' behind Hartman slayings". CNN. 1998-05-28. Retrieved 2007-06-22.
- "Hartman's friends, fans ask: 'What went wrong?'". CNN. 1998-05-29. Retrieved 2007-08-16.
- "Makers of Antidepressant Sued In Hartman Deaths". The Times Union. 1999-05-29. p. A2.
- Dick, Andy (2007-07-23). Interview. Interview with Tom Green. Tom Green's House Tonight. TomGreen.com.
- "'Hartman Hex' Led to Lovitz-Dick Dustup". CBS News. 2007-07-18. Retrieved 2010-08-24.
- Lovitz, Jon (2007-07-20). Interview. Interview with Larry King. Larry King Live. CNN. Los Angeles, California.
- "Family members hold private memorial for Hartmans". CNN. 1998-06-05. Retrieved 2008-11-01.
- "Greatest TV Icons: Nos. 100–51". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2007-12-19.
- "The Best Saturday Night Live Performers". Maxim. Archived from the original on 2007-09-30. Retrieved 2007-12-19.
- "SNL Salutes Hartman". The Plain Dealer. 1998-06-13. p. 3E.
- "Small Soldiers (1998)". The New York Times. Retrieved 2014-05-19.
- Keller, Joel (2006-06-15). "Billy West: The TV Squad Interview". TV Squad. Retrieved 2007-06-09.
- Gamble, Susan. "No star yet for Hartman". Brantford Expositor. Retrieved 2010-08-04.
- Kaplan, Ben; Hartmann, Paul (2010-03-26). "First Person: A brother's quest to enshrine Phil Hartman on Canada's Walk of Fame". National Post. Retrieved 2011-09-18.
- Wong, Tony (2012-06-19). "Phil Hartman: Comedian gets a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame". The Toronto Star. Retrieved 2012-06-19.
- Patch, Nick (2012-09-23). "Randy Bachman, Sarah McLachlan, Phil Hartman get stars on Canada's Walk of Fame". The Gazette. Retrieved 2012-09-23.
- "HOLLYWOOD CHAMBER OF COMMERCE ANNOUNCES NEW WALK OF FAME HONOREES FOR 2014". Hollywood Walk of Fame. 2013-06-20. Retrieved 2013-06-21.
- "Hartman's brother releases posthumous CD". The Hamilton Spectator. Associated Press. 2002-12-13. p. D06.
- Adams, Erik. "Phil Hartman’s Flat TV lets the late comic performer voice one final cartoon". Onion Inc. Retrieved 8 May 2013.
- Worker Studio. "Phil Hartman's Flat TV, Comedy Album In Development as Animated Film at Worker Studio". Worker Studio LLC. Retrieved May 8, 2013.
- Cangialosi, Jason (2013-07-29). "From Fan Letter to Feature Film: 'Phil Hartman's Flat TV'". Yahoo!. Retrieved 2013-07-29.
- Phan, Rachel (2012-06-07). "Cancelled series Michael: Tuesdays & Thursdays leads Canadian Comedy Awards nominees". National Post. Retrieved 2012-06-08.
- McCormick, Moira (July 25, 1998). "Musical mice enliven 'Silent Night'". Billboard (VNU/Nielsen Business Media) 110 (30): 74. Retrieved July 13, 2012.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Phil Hartman.|
- Phil Hartman at the Internet Movie Database
- Phil Hartman at Yahoo! Movies
- Phil Hartman at The New York Times
- Hartman's autopsy and death certificate