Melanie Chartoff

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Melanie Chartoff
Melanie Chartoff 80.jpg
Melanie Chartoff in 1980
Born (1950-12-15) December 15, 1950 (age 64)[1]
New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.
Alma mater Adelphi University
Occupation Actress, voice actress
Years active 1976–present
Spouse(s) Stan Friedman (m. July 5, 2014)
Website Official website

Melanie Chartoff (born December 15, 1950) is an American actress and voice actress. She first became famous for her comedy work on the ABC series Fridays (1980–82), and in the 1990s Fox sitcom Parker Lewis Can't Lose. She voices both Didi Pickles and grandma Minka on the animated series Rugrats.[2]


Early life[edit]

Chartoff was born on December 15, 1950, in New Haven, Connecticut, and attended West Haven High School. She went on to earn a Bachelor of Arts from Adelphi University.


Chartoff's first TV role came in 1976 when she played a nurse on Search For Tomorrow, after which came an appearance in the 1978 motion picture American Hot Wax. She first became a nationally known figure on ABC's Fridays, which was ABC's attempt to create its own version of Saturday Night Live.[citation needed] She immediately stood out on the series, partly thanks to her regular role as the anchor on the show's fake newscasts, but also due to her comedic skills (particularly a devastatingly sharp impression of Nancy Reagan) and her remarkably good looks. On one sketch, she was cold-cocked on live TV when guest host Mac Davis failed to pull his punch during a skit and chipped a tooth.[2]

Between the demise of Fridays in 1982 and her return to a regular series in 1990 with Parker Lewis Can't Lose (in which she co-starred for three seasons as the high-strung Principal Grace Musso), Chartoff continued to work steadily on television throughout the 1980s, including appearances on Mr. Belvedere, Wiseguy, and St. Elsewhere, as well as a recurring role on Newhart as Dr. Kaiser. She made two appearances on Seinfeld, including one in the 1998 series finale in which four of her former Fridays co-stars were also involved (including Michael Richards). She appeared in the 2006 season finale of Desperate Housewives[2] She appeared onstage in the La Jolla Playhouse production of Big River.


In 1991, Chartoff and fellow voice actor Michael Bell conceived the Grayway Rotating Drain, a graywater recycling device for domestic reuse of shower and sink water.[3][4]

Voice acting and current projects[edit]

Chartoff's first voiceover work was a guest role on Challenge of the Super Friends. She has continued her work as an in-demand voice actress, and also takes occasional TV and stage roles. She also works as an acting coach. In 2005, she interviewed Laraine Newman for Autograph Collector magazine.


From 1991 to 2008, Chartoff's Rugrats characters include Didi Pickles, the mother of Tommy Pickles and his younger brother Dil and Didi's mother, Minka. She continued to voice Didi on Rugrats' spin-off series, All Grown Up!.[2]


On July 5, 2014 she married Stan Friedman.[5]

Films and television[edit]


  1. ^ Profile,; accessed July 2, 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d Melanie Chartoff at the Internet Movie Database
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ "Melanie Chartoff is also an inventor". Record Journal. 1992-09-28. Retrieved July 2, 2015. 
  5. ^ Marriage details,; accessed July 2, 2015.

External links[edit]