February 22, 1928
|Alma mater||West Virginia University|
|Children||4, including Savannah Dooley|
Paul Dooley (born Paul Brown; February 22, 1928) is an American character actor, writer and comedian. He is known for his roles in Breaking Away, Popeye, Sixteen Candles, Strange Brew and many Christopher Guest mockumentaries. He co-created the PBS show The Electric Company.
Dooley was a cartoonist as a youth and drew a strip for a local paper in Parkersburg. In 1946, he joined the United States Navy and served for 2 years before returning home and graduating from West Virginia University in 1952.
After graduating from West Virginia University, Dooley went to New York City to try his luck in the entertainment industry. He initially found work as a clown for children's birthday parties.
In New York he soon found success as a regular on the stage. In the early 1950s, he made his debut on the New York stage and was discovered by Mike Nichols. The director gave him his first break by casting him in 1965's The Odd Couple on Broadway. Dooley appeared as Oscar's poker crony, Homer "Speed" Deegan and understudied Art Carney, who portrayed Felix Unger; when Carney left the play later on, Dooley assumed the role of Felix. Dooley was represented by the William Morris Agency, thanks to a referral from Walter Matthau, who played Oscar Madison in the play.
Also having an interest in comedy, Dooley was a stand-up comedian for five years, eventually landing on The Tonight Show, and a member of the Compass Players and The Second City troupe in New York City. Fellow members of The Second City at that time were Alan Arkin and Alan Alda.
Dooley also worked as a writer. He created and was one of the head writers on The Electric Company, produced by the Children's Television Workshop for PBS in the United States. Dooley wrote "runners", a series of short sketches with 8 or 10 characters that were broadcast over the course of several weeks. He found out years later that Carl Reiner had recommended him for the job. Some of the characters Dooley created for The Electric Company included Easy Reader (Morgan Freeman) and Fargo North, Decoder (Skip Hinnant), as well as the soap opera spoof Love of Chair.
Dooley formed a company with Andrew Duncan and Lynne Lipton called All Over Creation to create commercials for radio and television. They produced around 500 TV commercials and 1,000 radio spots. A character named Paul the Gorilla that appeared in television commercials was named after him.
He worked with Robert Altman regularly and is known as a prolific journeyman character actor. After Altman saw Dooley in the Jules Feiffer comedy Hold Me, he signed him for a role in his film A Wedding.
Dooley has also appeared as a variety of recurrent characters on numerous television shows, including My So-Called Life, Dream On, Grace Under Fire, thirtysomething, Curb Your Enthusiasm, ALF (playing Whizzer Deaver), Chicago Hope, and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine where he played the recurring role of Enabran Tain. He guest starred in other primetime shows like Bewitched, The Wonder Years, Sabrina, the Teenage Witch, Hot in Cleveland, and Desperate Housewives. With Rita Moreno, he appeared in The Golden Girls episode "Empty Nests" which had been intended to be a backdoor pilot for what would eventually become Empty Nest. Dooley starred in the short-lived comedy about a couple living in an Arizona retirement community, Coming of Age, opposite veteran actors Phyllis Newman, Glynis Johns and Alan Young. In 2000, he was nominated for an Emmy Award for his role as an eccentric judge on The Practice.
In 2017 he appeared in the episode "22 Steps" of the ABC series The Good Doctor as Glenn, a 72-year-old man with a failing heart who breaks his pacemaker because he wants to die due to the constant pain he is suffering.
Dooley has been married to Winnie Holzman, whom he first met at an improv acting class in New York, since November 18, 1984. The couple have a daughter Savannah and live in Toluca Lake in Los Angeles.
|1964||The Parisienne and the Prudes||Ted K. Worrie|
|1970||The Out-of-Towners||Hotel Clerk - Day|
|1972||Up the Sandbox||Statue of Liberty Guard|
|1974||The Gravy Train||Doctor|
|1974||Death Wish||Cop at Hospital||Uncredited|
|1977||Slap Shot||Hyannisport Announcer|
|1977||Raggedy Ann & Andy: A Musical Adventure||Gazooks||Voice|
|1978||A Wedding||Snooks Brenner|
|1979||A Perfect Couple||Alex Theodopoulos|
|1979||Breaking Away||Ray Stohler|
|1979||Rich Kids||Simon Peterfreund|
|1980||Health||Dr. Gil Gainey|
|1980||Popeye||J. Wellington Wimpy|
|1982||Endangered Species||Joe Hiatt|
|1982||Kiss Me Goodbye||Kendall|
|1983||Strange Brew||Uncle Claude Elsinore|
|1983||Going Berserk||Dr. Ted|
|1984||Sixteen Candles||Jim Baker|
|1985||O.C. and Stiggs||Randall Schwab|
|1986||Little Shop of Horrors||Patrick Martin||Director's cut only|
|1986||Monster in the Closet||Roy|
|1988||Last Rites||Father Freddie|
|1988||Lip Service||Gilbert 'Gil' Hutchinson|
|1991||White Hot: The Mysterious Murder of Thelma Todd||Hal Roach|
|1991||Shakes the Clown||Owen Cheese|
|1993||My Boyfriend's Back||Big Chuck|
|1993||A Dangerous Woman||Tupperware Salesman|
|1995||Out There||Emmett Davis|
|1995||The Underneath||Ed Dutton|
|1996||God's Lonely Man||Polo|
|1996||Waiting for Guffman||UFO Abductee|
|1997||Telling Lies in America||Father Norton|
|1997||Angels in the Endzone||Coach Buck|
|1999||Happy, Texas||The Judge|
|1999||Error in Judgment||Jack Albert|
|1999||Runaway Bride||Walter Carpenter|
|2000||I'll Remember April||Earl Schimmel|
|2001||Recess Christmas: Miracle on Third Street||Hank the Janitor, Mall Santa||Voice|
|2002||Crazy Little Thing||Jimmy's Dad|
|2003||A Mighty Wind||George Menschell|
|2003||Nobody Knows Anything!||Warden|
|2004||Employee of the Month||Reverend Ben Goodwin|
|2004||Adventures in Homeschooling (Short)||Pop Hemple|
|2005||Come Away Home||Grandpa Donald Brooks|
|2005||Madison||Mayor Don Vaughn|
|2006||For Your Consideration||Paper Badge Sergeant|
|2007||Hairspray||Mr. Spritzer||Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture|
|2008||Chronic Town||Eleanor's Father|
|2008||Bedtime Stories||Hot Dog Vendor|
|2012||Game Night||Marvin Garden|
|2016||The Holy Man||Lou 'The Bull' Devine|
|1963||East Side/West Side||Charlie Welty||Episode: "No Hiding Place"|
|1964||The Defenders||R.W. Wheeler||Episode: "Conflict of Interests"|
|1966||Get Smart||Hanlon||Episode: "The Greatest Spy on Earth"|
|1966||Bewitched||TV Man||Episode: "Oedipus Hex"|
|1968||A Punt, a Pass, and a Prayer||Photographer||Television film|
|1970||The Night the Animals Talked||Voice, Television special|
|1972||The Corner Bar||Unknown character||Episode: "Flanagan's Wake"|
|1974–1975||Sesame Street||Parrot||Voice, 2 episodes|
|1977||Simple Gifts||Voice, Television special|
|1981||Jules Feiffer's Hold Me||Man #1||Television film|
|1981||See China and Die||Ames Prescott||Television film|
|1982||American Playhouse||Detective||Episode: "The Shady Hill Kidnapping"|
|1982–1983||Faerie Tale Theatre||Father / The Miller||2 episodes|
|1983||The Wilder Summer||Camp Cook||Television film|
|1983||Don't Eat the Pictures||Museum Security Guard||Television special|
|1985||CBS Schoolbreak Special||Dr. Wormer||Episode: "The Day the Senior Class Got Married"|
|1985||Spenser: For Hire||Bryce Taylor||Episode: "Resurrection"|
|1986||Tales from the Darkside||Chester Caruso||Episode: "The Old Soft Shoe"|
|1986–1987||The Golden Girls||George Corliss / Isaac Q. Newton||2 episodes|
|1988||The Murder of Mary Phagan||William J. Burns||Miniseries|
|1988||Superman 50th Anniversary||John Buxton, Editor Metropolis Proclaimer||Television special|
|1988–1989||Coming of Age||Dick Hale||15 episodes|
|1989||Guts and Glory: The Rise and Fall of Oliver North||John Buxton, Editor Metropolis Proclaimer||Television film|
|1989||When He's Not a Stranger||Ben McKenna||Television film|
|1990||Thirtysomething||Bob Spano||2 episodes|
|1990||The Court-Martial of Jackie Robinson||Willy Bailey||Television film|
|1990||Guess Who’s Coming For Christmas||Doc||Television film|
|1991||Mathnet||Casey Bengal||Episode: "The Case of the Unnatural"|
|1991||Evening Shade||Rayford Taggart||Episode: "The Trials of Wood Newton"|
|1991||Coach||Horace Van Dam||Episode: "A Father and Son Reunion"|
|1991||My Life and Times||Jack Miller||Episode: "Our Wedding"|
|1991||Sunday Dinner||Jack||Episode: "My Dinner with Jack and Delores"|
|1991||Square One Television||Casey Bengal||2 episodes|
|1991||The Wonder Years||Pops||Episode: "Soccer"|
|1991||Pros and Cons||Archie Williams||Episode: "Ho! Ho! Hold Up!"|
|1992||Batman: The Animated Series||Father Michael||Voice, Episode: "It's Never Too Late"|
|1992||Perry Mason: The Case of the Heartbroken Bride||Assistant D.A. Robert Norrell||Television film|
|1992||Mad About You||Gus Stemple||Episode: "Paul in the Family"|
|1992||The Ben Stiller Show||Mr. Adult / The Professor||2 episodes|
|1992||Room for Two||Wally||Episode: "Dog Day Afternoons"|
|1992–1994||Dream On||Mickey Tupper||8 episodes|
|1993||Cooperstown||Sid Wiggins||Television film|
|1993||Mother of the Bride||Robert Becker||Television film|
|1993||Tales of the City||Herb Tolliver||3 episodes|
|1993||Tales from the Crypt||Randolph||Episode: "Forever Ambergris"|
|1993||Traveler's Rest||Andy Milligan||Television film|
|1993||L.A. Law||Karl Bullen||Episode: "Safe Sex"|
|1994||The Mommies||Frank Kellogg||Episode: "The Old Man Cometh"|
|1994||State of Emergency||Jim Anderson||Television film|
|1994||Chicago Hope||Walter McTeague||Episode: "Over the Rainbow"|
|1994||Sisters||Erin 'The Bargain' Baron||Episode: "Bombshell"|
|1994||My So-Called Life||Chuck Wood||2 episodes|
|1994–1996||Grace Under Fire||John Shirley||22 episodes|
|1994–1997||Star Trek: Deep Space Nine||Enabran Tain||4 episodes|
|1995||The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes||Sen. Thatch||Television film|
|1995–1996, 2004||ER||Henry Lewis||4 episodes|
|1996||High Society||Mel||Episode: "Touching Up Your Roots"|
|1996||Ellen||Thomas Kelsey||Episode: "Lobster Diary"|
|1996||Millennium||Joe Bangs||Episode: "The Well-Worn Lock"|
|1997||Early Edition||McGinty||Episode: "Home"|
|1997||Sabrina the Teenage Witch||Ralphie||Episode: "A Doll's Story"|
|1998||Sleepwalkers||Joel||Episode: "Passed Imperfect"|
|1998–1999||Tracey Takes On...||Cop / Agent Ivan Hamel||2 episodes|
|1999||Dharma & Greg||Judge Harper||Episode: "Dharma & Greg on a Hot Tin Roof"|
|1999–2002||The Practice||Judge Philip Swackheim||8 episodes|
|2000–2002, 2004–2005||Curb Your Enthusiasm||Cheryl's Father||7 episodes|
|2001||Ally McBeal||Nicholas Engblume||Episode: "Reasons to Believe"|
|2001||Providence||Bill Ridley||Episode: "Saved by the Bell"|
|2001||The Geena Davis Show||Bill||Episode: "Photo Finish"|
|2001||A Woman's a Helluva Thing||Hank Luckinbill||Television film|
|2001||Kate Brasher||Father||Episode: "Jeff"|
|2001||Jack & Jill||Father Conlin||Episode: "The Time/Sex Continuum"|
|2001||The Huntress||Dante Cicollo||Episode: "Undercover"|
|2001–2002||Once and Again||Les Cresswell||6 episodes|
|2003||Law & Order: Criminal Intent||Stan Coffman||Episode: "Cherry Red"|
|2003||Tracey Ullman in the Trailer Tales||Dean Duaney||Television special|
|2003||Becker||Mr. Lerner||Episode: "What's Love Got to Do with It?"|
|2003||Comfort and Joy||George||Television film|
|2004||CSI: Crime Scene Investigation||Buddy Ween||Episode: "Getting Off"|
|2005||Desperate Housewives||Addison Prudy||3 episodes|
|2006||The Jake Effect||Mr. Bernthal||Episode: "The Intervention"|
|2007||7th Heaven||Red||Episode: "Small Miracles"|
|2007||Side Order of Life||Sam Wainwright||Episode: "When Pigs Fly"|
|2007||Boston Legal||Judge Wendel Donahue||Episode: "Hope and Gory"|
|2008||Grey's Anatomy||Dr. Walter Tapley||Episode: "Losing My Mind"|
|2009||Scrubs||Paul||Episode: "Our Histories"|
|2010||Huge||Joe Sosniak||10 episodes|
|2011||Private Practice||Abe Nussbaum||Episode: "Heaven Can Wait"|
|2012||Hot in Cleveland||Bearded Man aka Santa||Episode: "Claus, Tails & High-Pitched Males: Birthdates 3"|
|2012||The Client List||Earl Hudson||Episode: "Past Is Prologue"|
|2013||Criminal Minds||Chip Gordon||Episode: "All That Remains"|
|2013||Major Crimes||Larry Murdock||Episode: "There's No Place Like Home"|
|2013||Super Fun Night||The Old Man||Episode: "Merry Super Fun Christmas"|
|2013||My Santa||Martin||Television film|
|2015||Comedy Bang! Bang!||Rocky||Episode: "Dax Shepard Wears a Heather Grey Shirt and Black Blazer"|
|2016||The Skinny!||Grandpa||Episode: "Relapse"|
|2016||Childrens Hospital||Grandpa Ben||Episode: "Grandparents Day"|
|2016||Young & Hungry||Mr. Fancy||2 episodes|
|2017||Workaholics||Ralph||Episode: "Faux Chella"|
|2017||The Good Doctor||Glen||Episode: "22 Steps"|
|2018||The Guest Book||Uncle Bill||Episode: "Killer Party"|
|2018||Bizaardvark||Uncle Morty||Episode: "A Capella Problems"|
|2018–2019||The Kids Are Alright||Father Cecil Dunne||6 episodes|
|2019||Life in Pieces||Mort Short||2 episodes|
|2019||Merry Happy Whatever||Grandpa Jack||Episode: "Merry Ex-Mas"|
|2020||Modern Family||Murray||Episode: "Dead on a Rival"|
|2007||Cars Mater-National Championship|
|2011||Cars 2: The Video Game|
|1954||The Threepenny Opera||Walt Dreary|||
|1965||The Odd Couple||Felix Ungar|||
Theme park attractions
|2012||Radiator Springs Racers||Sarge||Voice|
- Van Gelder, Lawrence (23 July 1979). "Paul Dooley, a Household Theatrical Face, Gets Used to Being a Name, Too". The New York Times. Retrieved June 1, 2022.
- Pollak, Kevin (January 17, 2011). "Episode 96 – Paul Dooley and Winnie Holzman!". Kevin Pollak's Chat Show. Retrieved 4 January 2014.
- "Paul Dooley". Biography. Archived from the original on 4 January 2014. Retrieved 4 January 2014.
- "Paul Dooley". Film Bug. Retrieved 4 January 2014.
- Friedlander, Whitney (March 29, 2013). "Wicked Writer Winnie Holzman and Her Husband Paul Dooley Wrote and Star in a Play Together. It Only Took Them 28 Years". LA Weekly. Retrieved October 29, 2021.
- "Recap / The Golden Girls S 02 E 026 Empty Nests". TVTropes. Retrieved 2023-06-15.
- Hale, Mike (June 18, 2010). "A Close-Knit Team on a Plus-Size Show". The New York Times. Retrieved 4 January 2014.
- Sepinwall, Alan (January 2, 2014). "Review: 'Parenthood' - 'Promises'". Uproxx. Retrieved October 29, 2021.
- Gans, Andrew (February 21, 2013). "EXCLUSIVE: Assisted Living, New Play By Wicked's Winnie Holzman and Husband Paul Dooley, Will Debut in April". Playbill. Archived from the original on 3 June 2013. Retrieved October 29, 2021.
- Larsen, Peter (2 February 2023). "Paul Dooley became 'Movie Dad' even as his own children disappeared for a decade". DailyNews.com. Los Angeles Daily News. Retrieved 2 February 2023.
- Nichols, David (April 10, 2013). "Review: 'Assisted Living' at the Odyssey Theatre". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 29, 2021.
- "Dooley, Paul 1928–". Encyclopedia.com. Retrieved June 1, 2022.
- Dooley, Paul (2022). Movie Dad: Finding Myself and My Family, On Screen and Off. Applause Books, New York City. ISBN 978-1493063079.
- "Paul Dooley Theatre Credits, News, Bio and Photos". broadwayworld.com.