Tony Danza

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Tony Danza
Tony danza 2012.jpg
Tony Danza at the 2012 Texas Book Festival.
Born Antonio Salvatore Iadanza
(1951-04-21) April 21, 1951 (age 62)
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
Occupation Actor, television personality, tap dancer, boxer, teacher
Years active 1978–present
Spouse(s) Rhonda Yeoman Iadanza (1970–1974; 2 children)
Tracy Robinson (1986–2011; 2 children)

Tony Danza (born Antonio Salvatore Iadanza; April 21, 1951) is an American actor known for starring on the TV series Taxi and Who's the Boss?, for which he was nominated for an Emmy Award and four Golden Globe Awards. In 1998, Danza won the People's Choice Award for Favorite Male Performer in a New Television Series for his work on the 1997 sitcom The Tony Danza Show.

Early life[edit]

Danza was born in Brooklyn, New York, to parents Anne Cammisa (1925–1993) and Matty Iadanza (1920–1983), both of whom died from cancer.[1] His mother was a bookkeeper and his father worked as a garbage man in Brooklyn.[2][3] Danza's father was an American of Italian ancestry and Danza's mother was an immigrant from the town of Campobello di Mazara in the Sicilian province of Trapani.[4][1] He has a younger brother, Matty Jr. (born 1954), a Los Angeles restaurant owner.[5] When Danza was 14, he and his family relocated to Malverne, New York on Long Island. Danza attended Malverne High School, graduating in 1968.[6] In the first episode of his show Teach: Tony Danza, Danza describes himself as a "bad student" in high school. Danza earned a bachelor's degree in history in 1972 from the University of Dubuque,[7] which he attended on a wrestling scholarship.

In 1975, as a joke, Danza's friends entered him in the New York City Golden Gloves.[8] After knocking out his first six opponents, Danza was knocked out in the finals.[9]

During his first year of college, he got a Robert Crumb "Keep on Truckin'" tattoo on his upper right arm. In a 1985 interview in Us Weekly magazine, Danza remarked, "I was playing pool with a guy who had all these tattoos, and I wanted to be friends."[10] Danza also sports a "Keep Punching" boxing gloves tattoo on his right shoulder as well as "Tracy", his (former) wife's name, on his chest.[11] In college, Danza met and married his first wife.

Danza was a professional boxer with a 9–3 record, with all but one of his fights, wins and losses, ending by knockout.[12]

Tony Danza was also ordained by the Universal Life Church, and has been an ordained minister for many years.[13]

Shortly after his college graduation, Danza was discovered by a producer at a boxing gymnasium in New York.[14] He then earned a spot on the television show Taxi.

Acting, show business, and teaching[edit]

Danza is better known for his roles on Taxi, in which he played cab driver and part-time boxer Tony Banta, and Who's the Boss?, in which he portrayed retired baseball player, housekeeper and single father Tony Micelli.

Danza also starred in the short-lived sitcoms Hudson Street (1995) and The Tony Danza Show (1997), not to be confused with his talk show of the same name. He had a role in the TV drama Family Law from 2000 until 2002. He took his first role, a nonspeaking part as a poker player in National Lampoon's Animal House.

He was nominated for an Emmy Award[15] for a guest-starring 1998 role in the TV series The Practice. His movie debut was in the comedy The Hollywood Knights (1980), which was followed by Going Ape! (1981). He received critical acclaim for his performance in the 1999 Broadway revival of the Eugene O'Neill play The Iceman Cometh. In 2002, Danza released his debut album The House I Live In as a 1950s-style crooner.[16]

Danza hosted his own TV talk show, The Tony Danza Show, that was produced each weekday morning in his hometown of New York and was syndicated across the US. On May 9, 2005, during a go-kart race with NASCAR star Rusty Wallace, who was a guest on the show, Danza's kart flipped after Wallace accidentally bumped him.[17] Neither he nor Wallace was wearing a helmet at the time, but both were uninjured. Danza returned to go-kart racing on October 20, 2005, to challenge IndyCar driver Danica Patrick, but his brakes malfunctioned and he skidded into a wall, unharmed. His daytime talk show ended in May 2006; the last live episode aired on May 26, 2006.[citation needed]

He starred on Broadway as "Max Bialystock" in The Producers, from December 19, 2006, to March 11, 2007[18] and reprised his role at the Paris Las Vegas from August 13, 2007,[19] to February 9, 2008.[20]

In September 2008, it was reported that Danza would host the 4th season of The Contender, which was filmed in Singapore and began airing in December 2008 on the Versus TV sports channel.[21]

In August 2009, it was reported that Danza would appear in a new A&E reality show Teach: Tony Danza, in which he would co-instruct a 10th Grade English class at Northeast High School in Philadelphia. The series was filmed during the 2009-2010 school year and premiered on October 1, 2011. The book I'd Like to Apologize to Every Teacher I Ever Had: My Year as a Rookie Teacher at Northeast High, which was released in 2012, was based on his year of teaching.

A Broadway adaptation of 1992 film Honeymoon in Vegas opened on a pre-Broadway run at New Jersey's Paper Mill Playhouse on September 26, 2013, co-starring Danza and Tony nominee Rob McClure with Gary Griffin directing.[22]

Personal life[edit]

In 1986, Danza married for the second time, to Tracy Robinson. The couple separated in 2006 and filed for divorce on March 10, 2011. The divorce was finalized on February 6, 2013.[23] [24] They have two daughters, Katherine (born 1987) and Emily (born 1993). In 2005, Tony Danza became a grandfather when his son Marc and his son's wife, Julie, had a son, Nicholas. In 2008, Danza and his son Marc published a cookbook, Don't Fill Up on the Antipasto: Tony Danza's Father-Son Cookbook.[25]

Boxing record[edit]

Source:[26]

Result Record Opponent Type Round Time Date Location Notes
Win 9–3 United States Johnny Heard KO 3 (8) 0:45 May 14, 1979 Phoenix, Arizona, USA
Win 8–3 United States Max Hord KO 1 (10) April 27, 1979 Felt Forum, New York City, New York, USA
Win 7–3 United States Billy Perez KO 1 (8) 0:44 May 26, 1978 Brooklyn, New York, USA
Win 6–3 United States Tony Rodriguez   KO 1 (6) April 9, 1978 Brooklyn, New York, USA
Win 5–3 United States Ray Bryant KO 1 (8)   December 21, 1977   Roll-a-Rama, Brooklyn, New York, USA
Loss 4–3 United States Morris Watkins TKO 1 (8) November 9, 1977   Westchester County Center, White Plains, New York, USA  
Win 4–2 United States Ralph Garcia TKO 1 (8) September 9, 1977 Nanuet, New York, USA
Win 3–2 United States Joey Mascetti TKO 1 (6) May 24, 1977   Westchester County Center, White Plains, New York, USA  
Win 2–2 United States Tom Molloy KO 3 (6) 1:24 May 6, 1977 Long Island Arena, Commack, New York, USA
Loss 1–2 United States Barry Hill Points 4 April 21, 1977 Dover, New Jersey, USA
Loss 1–1 United States John LoCicero KO 1 (4) October 1, 1976 Sunnyside Gardens, Queens, New York, USA
Win 1–0 United States Earl Harris KO 1 (4) August 13, 1976 New York City, New York, USA

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1980 The Hollywood Knights Duke
1980 Murder Can Hurt You Pony Lambretta Television movie
1981 Going Ape! Foster
1984 Cannonball Run II Terry
1984 Single Bars, Single Women Dennis Television movie
1986 Doing Life Jerry Rosenberg Television movie
1988 Mr. Thompson and His Bananas Geraldo Thompson
1988 Freedom Fighter Vic Ross Television movie
1989 She's Out of Control Doug Simpson Nominated-Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actor
1991 The Whereabouts of Jenny Rowdy Patron Television movie
1991 Dead and Alive: The Race for Gus Farace Constiible Farace Television movie
1992 I'm From Hollywood Himself
1994 Angels in the Outfield Mel Clark
1994 The Mighty Jungle Vinnie, the Alligator Television movie
1995 Deadly Whispers Tom Acton Television movie
1996 Illtown D'Avalon
1996 Dear God Himself Uncredited
1996 North Shore Fish Sal Television movie
1997 Glam Sid
1997 The Girl Gets Moe Moe
1997 A Brooklyn State of Mind Louie Crisci
1997 Meet Wally Sparks New York Cab Driver
1997 12 Angry Men Juror #7 Television movie
1998 The Garbage Picking Field Goal Kicking Philadelphia Phenomenon Barney Gorman
1998 Noah Norman Waters Television movie
2003 Stealing Christmas Jack Clayton Television movie
2004 The Whisper Simon
2004 Crash Fred
2006 Cloud 9 Himself Uncredited
2009 The Nail: The Story of Joey Nardone Chickie
2010 Firedog Rocky
2013 Don Jon Jon, Sr.
2013 Aftermath King

Television[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1978–1983 Taxi Tony Banta 114 episodes
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor - Series, Miniseries or Television Film
1983 The Love Boat Bud O'Hara 2 episodes
1984–1992 Who's the Boss? Tony Micelli 196 episodes
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actor - Television Series Musical or Comedy (1986–1987, 1989)
Nominated—TV Land Award for Single Dad of the Year
1988 1988 Kids' Choice Awards Host
1991–1992 Baby Talk Baby Mickey Campbell 35 episodes
1995–1996 Hudson Street Tony Canetti 22 episodes
1997–1998 The Tony Danza Show Tony DiMeo 14 episodes
People's Choice Award for Favorite Male Performer in a Television Series
1998 The Practice Tommy Silva 4 episodes
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series
2000–2002 Family Law Joe Celano 25 episodes
2000 King of the Hill Himself Episode: "Peggy's Fan Fair"
2001 Family Guy Himself Episode: "Ready, Willing and Disabled"
2005 All My Children Hotel Manager Episode: "May 18, 2005"
2008 Rita Rocks Matt Morelli Episode: "The Crying Game"
2010 Teach: Tony Danza Himself 7 episodes

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Ann Iadanza". Variety. 23 June 1993. Retrieved 26 May 2012. 
  2. ^ Wharton, Rachel (13 June 2008). "Tony Danza's the boss in the kitchen with new cookbook". Daily News (New York). Retrieved 26 May 2012. 
  3. ^ http://www.filmreference.com/film/34/Tony-Danza.html
  4. ^ http://www.walkoffame.com/tony-danza
  5. ^ Tony Danza's TCM bio
  6. ^ Verne Gay (29 September 2010). "Tony Danza is not too cool for school". Newsday. Retrieved 26 May 2012. 
  7. ^ University of Dubuque website
  8. ^ bio.The Biography Channel Presents Tony Danza 2004
  9. ^ http://www.boxing-scoop.com/show_boxer.php?boxer_ID=12264
  10. ^ "Danza, Father and (Finally) Grown-up" by Steve Pond. Us Weekly, August 26, 1985
  11. ^ "Tony Danza President Puncher". Maxim. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  12. ^ Rafael, Dan (2008-10-01). "'The Contender' to feature two ex-title challengers; TV star Danza to host". ESPN.com. Retrieved 2008-12-17. 
  13. ^ http://www.ulc.org/
  14. ^ "Meet Tony". dailydanza.com. 
  15. ^ Tony Danza Emmy Nominated
  16. ^ Opinion on Tony Danza's The House I Live In. epinions.com Retrieved 2010-08-10.
  17. ^ "Wallace swaps go-cart paint with Danza". MSNBC. Associated Press. May 10, 2005. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  18. ^ Gans, Andrew (December 19, 2006). "He's the Boss: Tony Danza Joins Broadway's Producers Dec. 19". Playbill. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  19. ^ Playbill News: Tony Danza to "Flaunt It" in Las Vegas Producers This Summer
  20. ^ Playbill News: Vegas Production of The Producers Ends Feb. 9
  21. ^ John Bracchitta (30 September 2008). "Danza hosts The Contender". Realitytvworld.com. Retrieved 24 October 2010. 
  22. ^ Diamond Grant (26 September 2013). "Tony Danza Leads Honeymoon in Vegas in Pre-Broadway Run in New Jersey". BroadwayTour.net. Retrieved 28 September 2010. 
  23. ^ Visit the TMZ Store: http://tmzstore.com "TONY DANZA DIVORCED Officially The Boss ... OF HIMSELF". TMZ. Retrieved 7 February 2013. 
  24. ^ "Tony Danza Files for Divorce After 24 Years of Marriage". TV Guide. March 10, 2011. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  25. ^ "Tony and Mark Danza's Favorite Family Recipes". ABC News. May 20, 2008. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  26. ^ Professional boxing record for Tony Danza from BoxRec

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Donny and Marie Osmond
Host of Miss America
2002
Succeeded by
Wayne Brady