Richard Lewis (comedian)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Richard Lewis
Lewis looking to the camera
Lewis in 2013
Birth nameRichard Philip Lewis
Born (1947-06-29) June 29, 1947 (age 71)
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
MediumStand-up, television, film
NationalityAmerican
Years active1977–present
GenresBlack comedy, surreal humor
Subject(s)Self-deprecation, neuroticism, psychotherapy, hypochondria, paranoia, depression, human sexuality, Jewish culture, pop culture, family, eating disorders
SpouseJoyce Lapinsky (January 2005 – present)
Notable works and rolesMarty Gold in Anything but Love
Himself in Curb Your Enthusiasm

Richard Philip Lewis (born June 29, 1947) is an American stand-up comedian and actor.

He came to prominence in the 1980s as a comedian specializing in self-deprecating humor before turning to acting. He is known for co-starring in the comedy series Anything but Love (1989–92) and for his recurring and semi-autobiographical role in Curb Your Enthusiasm (2000–present).

Early life[edit]

Richard Lewis was born in Brooklyn, New York, and was raised in Englewood, New Jersey, where he graduated from Dwight Morrow High School in 1965.[5] His father worked as a caterer and his mother was an actress. The Lewises are Jewish[6] but not especially religious.[7] Lewis recalls his childhood antics at school as a class clown resulted in negative reactions from teachers at times.[7]

Lewis attended Ohio State University. He was a member of the Eta chapter of Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternity during his time in college.

Career[edit]

Lewis began performing stand-up comedy in the 1970s. He worked as a copywriter for an ad agency by day, while honing his stand-up act at night. The ad agency was named Contemporary Graphics (now defunct) and was located above Lovey's pizzeria in Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey. Lewis gained popularity in the 1980s with numerous appearances on Late Night with David Letterman and his own television specials on HBO. He is noted for always wearing an all-black outfit.[8]

Lewis made his acting debut in Diary of a Young Comic. He co-starred with Jamie Lee Curtis on the TV sitcoms Anything but Love, which ran for four seasons, and with Don Rickles on Daddy Dearest. Lewis had a recurring role in Rude Awakening and as Rabbi Richard Glass in 7th Heaven. He appears in the Tales from the Crypt episode "Whirlpool." In 2007, he made a cameo appearance as Phillip in George Lopez. Recently, he also made cameos in Everybody Hates Chris as an old man in the hospital bed next to Chris Rock and as Charlie Sheen's accountant in Two and a Half Men.

Lewis has written comic articles for magazines such as Playboy and endorsed the popular early-1990s beverage Boku, as well as Snapple and Certs breath mints.

Lewis has achieved moderate success in films, appearing as Prince John in Robin Hood: Men in Tights, as a frontier doctor in Wagons East!, as an unemployed actor in Once Upon A Crime and as himself in The Wrong Guys. He plays the lead role of Jimmy Epstein in Drunks and in Game Day. Although most of his performances are in comedy, Lewis also appears in the dramatic films Leaving Las Vegas, Hugo Pool, and The Maze.

On January 9, 2001, Lewis visited The Howard Stern Show to promote his book The Other Great Depression, which described his recovery from alcoholism. Lewis has been sober since August 4, 1994.

He had a frequent recurring role as a character based on himself in Curb Your Enthusiasm. Larry David and Lewis met at summer camp in Cornwall-on-Hudson, New York when they were 13.[9]

Richard Lewis is ranked #45 on Comedy Central's list of "100 Greatest Standups of All Time."[10]

Lewis claims to be the originator of the phrase "The ______ from hell" as in "the night from hell", "the date from hell" or "the roommate from hell". This theory is expounded in the Curb Your Enthusiasm episode "The Nanny from Hell". Lewis has petitioned the editors of Bartlett's Familiar Quotations to be given credit for the coinage, but the editors claim that the phrase was a common idiom prior to Lewis's use of it.[11] (For example, during World War I, kilted Scottish soldiers were given the nickname "The Ladies from Hell" (translation of German "Die Damen aus der Hölle") by German troops. A short story, “The Man from Hell”, by John Russell Fearn was published in Fantastic Adventures in 1939.) However, the Yale Book of Quotations attributes the phrase to Lewis.[12][13]

Filmography[edit]

Year Title Role Director Notes
1977 Diary of a Young Comic Billy Goldstein Gary Weis TV movie
1980 House Calls Dr. Leon Prometheus Bob Claver TV series (1 episode: "The Phantom of Kensington")
1985 Temporary Insanity TV movie
1986 Riptide Andrew Fitzsimmons Carlton III Michael Switzer TV series (1 episode: "The Wedding Bell Blues")
1987 Harry Richard Breskin TV series (7 episodes)
CBS Summer Playhouse Joey James Komack TV series (1 episode: "King of the Building")
1988 The Wrong Guys Himself Danny Bilson
Tattingers Longo Allan Arkush TV series (1 episode : "Death and Taxis")
1989 That's Adequate Pimples Lapedes Harry Hurwitz
1989–92 Anything But Love Marty Gold TV series (56 episodes)
1992 Once Upon a Crime Julian Peters Eugene Levy
The Danger of Love: The Carolyn Warmus Story Edward Sanders Joyce Chopra TV movie
1993 Daddy Dearest Steven Mitchell TV series (13 episodes)
TriBeCa Joseph Melanie Mayron TV series (1 episode: "Stepping Back")
The Larry Sanders Show Himself Todd Holland TV series (1 episode: "Life Behind Larry")
Robin Hood: Men in Tights Prince John Mel Brooks
1994 Wagons East! Phil Taylor Peter Markle
Tales from the Crypt Vern Mick Garris TV series (1 episode: "Whirlpool")
1995 A.J.'s Time Travelers Edgar Allan Poe Mike Finney TV series (1 episode: "Edgar Allan Poe")
Drunks Jim Peter Cohn
Leaving Las Vegas Peter Mike Figgis
1996 A Weekend in the Country Bobby Stein Martin Bergman TV movie
The Elevator Phil Milowski Arthur Borman
Nigel Dick
Rafal Zielinski
1997 Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child Old Beggar Ed Bell TV series (1 episode: "The Golden Goose")
Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist Richard TV series (1 episode: "Undercover")
Hugo Pool Chick Chicalini Robert Downey, Sr.
The Maze Markov Joëlle Bentolila
1997–98 Hiller and Diller Neil Diller TV series (13 episodes)
1998 Rude Awakening Harve Schwartz TV series (6 episodes)
1999 Hercules Neurosis Eddy Houchins TV series (1 episode: "Hercules and the Tiff on Olympus")
Game Day Steve Adler Steve Klein
V.I.P. Ronald Zane Patrick R. Norris TV series (1 episode: "Big Top Val")
Larry David: Curb Your Enthusiasm Himself Robert B. Weide TV movie
2002 Presidio Med Francis Weinod Christopher Chulack TV series (1 episode: "Once Upon a Family")
2003 Alias Mitchell Yaeger Ken Olin TV series (1 episode: "A Dark Turn")
2002–04 7th Heaven Rabbi Richard Glass Ken Olin TV series (9 episodes)
2004 Two and a Half Men Stan Rob Schiller TV series (1 episode: "I Can't Afford Hyenas")
The Dead Zone Jack Jericho Anthony Michael Hall TV series (1 episode: "The Cold Hard Truth")
2005 Sledge: The Untold Story Himself Brad Martin
Las Vegas Stan Tim Matheson TV series (1 episode: "Fake the Money and Run")
George Lopez Phillip Nickleson Victor Gonzalez TV series (1 episode: "George Finds Therapy Benny-ficial")
2006 The Simpsons Golem Matthew Faughnan
David Silverman
TV series (1 episode: "Treehouse of Horror XVII")
Everybody Hates Chris Kris Victor Nelli, Jr. TV series (1 episode: "Everybody Hates Kris")
2007 BelzerVizion Himself Richard Goldstone
Matthew D. Panepinto
Short
2008 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Sportsman Larry Peter Leto TV series (1 episode: "Closet")
2009 The Cleaner Henry David Barrett TV series (1 episode: "Trick Candles")
2010 Funny or Die Presents Shades TV series (1 episode)
'Til Death Miles Tunnicliff Rob Schiller (2) TV series (3 episodes)
2000– Curb Your Enthusiasm Himself TV Series (32 episodes)
2011 Lewis on Film: The Oscar Edition Seth Morris Short
Pound Puppies Buddy Greg Sullivan TV Series (1 episode : "Rebel Without a Collar")
2012 Vamps Danny Amy Heckerling
2014 She's Funny That Way Al Patterson Peter Bogdanovich
2015 Blunt Talk Dr. Weiss TV series (6 episodes)

References[edit]

  1. ^ Interview with Bill Zehme, Richard Lewis: Concerts from Hell: The Vintage Years, Image Entertainment, Released 2005-09-13
  2. ^ Kirschling, Gregory (2008-11-07). "Artie Lange: 'F--- It, I'll Write a Book'". EW.com. Retrieved 2008-11-11.
  3. ^ "Paul Rothbart". imdb.com.
  4. ^ http://theunwritablerant.libsyn.com/ep-39-interview-with-bobby-slayton
  5. ^ Condran, Ed. "Richard Lewis: All Grown Up; Veteran comedian Richard Lewis insists he wasn't raised in New Jersey, he was, 'lowered in New Jersey.'", New Jersey Monthly, October 20, 2015. Accessed August 27, 2018. "Richard Lewis came of age in Englewood, but the veteran comic insists he wasn’t raised in New Jersey. Rather, he quips, 'I was lowered in New Jersey.' Still, the 68-year-old actor/comedian, a 1965 graduate of Dwight Morrow High School, has a soft spot for the town of his youth."
  6. ^ Firestone, Jay (2008-03-13). "Richard Lewis, comedian from heaven". The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles. Retrieved 2010-06-23. But his sense of disconnect could just as easily be attributed to his Jewish upbringing in New Jersey.
  7. ^ a b Sher, Cindy (October 4, 2012). "Veteran comics Susie Essman and Richard Lewis to bring the laughs to JUF's Vanguard Nov. 5". juf.org. Jewish United Fund. Archived from the original on July 29, 2017. Retrieved June 25, 2018.
  8. ^ Fine, Marshall (February 25, 2007). "Richard Lewis: The Metamorphosis". The New York Observer.
  9. ^ Curb Your Enthusiasm: Larry David On Richard Lewis (Paley Center, 2002). YouTube. 10 December 2008.
  10. ^ "Comedy Central 100 Greatest Standups of all Time". listology.com.
  11. ^ Flamm, Matthew (November 1, 2002). "Between the Lines". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on |archive-url= requires |archive-date= (help). Retrieved December 28, 2006.
  12. ^ Yale Press Log: Yale Gives Richard Lewis Hell Archived 2008-06-03 at the Wayback Machine., 2006-10-11. Retrieved on 2008-04-13.
  13. ^ Zwicky, Arnold. Language Log: Yet Another Snowclone Omnibus, 2007-08-11. Retrieved on 2008-04-13.

External links[edit]