Avery Schreiber

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Avery Schreiber
Avery Schreiber and Jack Burns 1966.jpg
Schreiber (left) with Jack Burns, 1966.
Born Avery Lawrence Schreiber
(1935-04-09)April 9, 1935
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
Died January 7, 2002(2002-01-07) (aged 66)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Occupation Actor, comedian
Years active 1964–2001
Spouse(s) Rochelle Issacs (1962-2002; his death; 2 children)

Avery Lawrence Schreiber (April 9, 1935 – January 7, 2002) was an American comedian and actor. He was a veteran of stage, television, and film.[1][2]

Life and career[edit]

Schreiber was born in Chicago, Illinois, the son of Minnie (née Shear) and George Schreiber.[2] He started his career in Chicago at the Goodman Theatre. He joined The Second City and later teamed with Jack Burns to form the comedy team of Burns and Schreiber.[3] They recorded several comedy albums and appeared on numerous television shows.

Schreiber is remembered for his many Doritos ads in the 1970s,[4] as well as his appearances in classic television shows. He was easily recognizable for his trademark bushy moustache, curly hair, and comedic reactions. In 1965, Schreiber played the role of Captain Manzini on My Mother the Car.

In the summer of 1973, he co-hosted the ABC comedy show, The Burns and Schreiber Comedy Hour.[5]

Schreiber was a regular guest star on Chico and the Man. He was also a frequent guest on the game show Match Game and a guest in a first-season episode of The Muppet Show (written by former partner Jack Burns, whom he mentioned during a stand-up routine in the episode).

Avery continued to work in film, television and the Theater, as well as teach Improvisational Theater his technique up until the time of his death. He taught master classes at The Second City in Chicago and Los Angeles, and also taught out of his home.


In 1994, Schreiber suffered a heart attack, a complication of diabetes. Though he survived triple bypass surgery, he never fully recovered. He died of another heart attack on January 7, 2002 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.[1][6] He was residing in Los Angeles at the time of his death.[3] He was cremated.


In 2003, the Avery Schreiber Theatre was founded in North Hollywood, California. In 2013 the Avery Schreiber Theatre changed its name to "The Avery Schreiber Playhouse" with the blessing of Shelly, Avery's wife. It is located at 4934 Lankershim Blvd in the NoHo Arts District. [7]


Year Film Role
2001 Dying On the Edge
2000 Pedestrian
2000 Rebel Yell
1998 The Russian Room
1997 The Lay of the Land
1995 Dracula: Dead and Loving It Peasant on Coach
1993 Animaniacs Beanie the Brain-Dead Bison
1993 Robin Hood: Men in Tights Tax Assessor
1990 Wake, Rattle & Roll Dr. Lester T. Quirk
1988 Saturday the 14th Strikes Back Frank Baxter
1987 Hunk Constatine Constapopolis
1986 Outlaws
1985 Shadow Chasers
1984 Cannonball Run II
1983 Jimmy the Kid Dr. Stevens
1981 Caveman Ock
1980 Avery Schreiber Live From the Second City
1980 More Wild Wild West
1980 Steve Martin: All Commercials
1980 Loose Shoes Theatre Manager
1980 Galaxina Captain Cornelius Butt
1980 Silent Scream Sgt. Manny Ruggin
1979 Scavenger Hunt Zookeeper
1979 The Concorde ... Airport '79 Russian coach Markov
1979 Flatbed Annie & Sweetiepie: Lady Truckers Munroe
1978 Christmas at Walt Disney World
1977 Don't Push, I'll Charge When I'm Ready
1977 Lindsay Wagner: Another Side of Me
1977 The Southern Double Cross
1977 The Last Remake of Beau Geste Arab Chieftain / Used Camel Salesman
1976 Swashbuckler Pulaski
1975 Sammy and Company
1975 Ben Vereen... Comin' at Ya
1974 The Harlem Globetrotters Popcorn Machine Mr. Evil
1972 Deadhead Miles Boss Fulano
1972 Second Chance Roberto Gazzari
1971 Story Theatre
1971 Escape
1969 Don't Drink the Water Sultan
1969 The Monitors Max

Television work[edit]

Year Program Role
1988 A Pup Named Scooby-Doo Additional Voices
1987 Top Cat and the Beverly Hills Cats Benny the Ball
1985 The Pound Puppies Tubbs
1984 Faerie Tale Theatre Pinocchio Boatman
1981 The Smurfs
1979 The Dukes of Hazzard Wendel (Episode 1:13 - Double Sting)
1978 The Love Boat Marooned
1977 Sha Na Na
1976 The Rockford Files Azie Boyajian
1976 The Muppet Show
1974 The Harlem Globetrotters Popcorn Machine Mr. Evil
1973 The Burns and Schreiber Comedy Hour
1969 That Girl Al Taylor
1967 Our Place
1965 My Mother the Car Captain Bernard Manzini


  1. ^ a b "Avery Schreiber, 66, Doritos Funnyman". New York Times. January 9, 2002. Retrieved 2015-03-07. The comedian Avery Schreiber, who with his partner Jack Burns was a fixture on television in the 1960's and 70's, died here Monday. He was 66 and died of a heart attack, said his wife, Rochelle Isaacs Schreiber. ... 
  2. ^ a b Avery Schreiber Biography (1935-2002)
  3. ^ a b McLellan, Dennis (January 9, 2002). "Avery Schreiber, 66. Jack Burns' Comedy Partner.". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2008-04-26. Avery and Schreiber began working as a team again in 1972, after getting together for a benefit in Los Angeles. In 1973, ABC gave them a summer variety series, "The Burns and Schreiber Comedy Hour." 
  4. ^ "Frito Lay North America". Gale Directory of Company Histories. Retrieved July 31, 2014. The 'Crunch' campaign began in the early 1970s, and gained added impetus in 1976 when Avery Schreiber, a bushy-mustached character comedian, began crunching Doritos on national television. 
  5. ^ The Burns and Schreiber Comedy Hour - TV.com
  6. ^ Comic Avery Schreiber DiesAssociated Press in the Sun Journal, Lewiston p.A8, 08 January 2002 via Google News Archive. Retrieved 2011-01-23.
  7. ^ http://laist.com/2013/06/15/nohos_avery_schreiber_theater_shutt.php

External links[edit]