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Zero Mostel

Zero Mostel

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Also Known As: Died: September 8, 1977
Born: February 28, 1915 Cause of Death: heart attack
Birth Place: Brooklyn, New York, USA Profession: Cast ...
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MILESTONES

:
Raised on NYC's Lower East Side
1937:
Hired by the Federal Arts Program to teach drawing and painting
:
In the early 1940s, began to be hired as an entertainer at private parties
1942:
Debut as a stand-up comic at Cafe Society in NYC; given nickname 'Zero' by club's press agent because he was "a guy starting from nothing"
1942:
Broadway debut in the revue "Keep 'Em Laughing"
1943:
Briefly served in the US Army
1943:
Feature film debut in "DuBarry Was a Lady"
1946:
Appeared in the stage musical "Beggar's Holiday"
1948:
Performed regularly on "Off the Record" (DuMont)
1949:
Acted alongside wife Kate in two Moliere plays, "The Imaginary Invalid" and "The Doctor in Spite of Himself", at the Brattle Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts
1950:
Had featured role in "Panic in the Streets", helmed by Elia Kazan
1951:
Called to testify before the House Committee on UnAmerican Activities; was blacklisted
1952:
Reteamed with Kazan for the stage drama "Flight into Egypt"
1952:
Last film for nearly a decade, "The Model and the Marriage Broker"
1958:
Made stage comeback in "Ulysses in Nighttown", directed by Burgess Meredith
1959:
Appeared in "The World of Sholom Aleichem" (syndicated)
1960:
Severely injured left leg when he was struck by a bus (January)
1960:
Acted in "Zero", adapted from a Samuel Beckett play; screened at Venice Film Festival but never released theatrically in the USA
1961:
Returned to Broadway after long recovery to star in Ionesco's "Rhinoceros"; received Tony Award
1962:
Enjoyed hit as the star of the vaudeville-like musical "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum"; received second Tony Award
1963:
Headlined one-person special "Zero Mostel"
1964:
Delivered a well-received stage turn as Tevye the milkman in the musical "Fiddler on the Roof", adapted from the stories of Sholom Aleichem; production directed by Jerome Robbins; garnered third career Tony Award
1966:
Recreated his stage role as Pseudolus in the film adaptation of "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum"
1967:
Starred in the variety program "Zero Hour" (ABC)
1968:
Offered what is perhaps his best recalled film performance as outsized impresario Max Bialystock in "The Producers"
1970:
Co-starred in "The Angel Levine"
1972:
Acted in the caper comedy "The Hot Rock"
1974:
Recreated another stage role in the film adaptation of "Rhinoceros"
1974:
Final Broadway appearance recreating role of Leopold Bloom in "Ulysses in Nighttown"; earned Tony nomination
1976:
Appeared alongside Woody Allen in "The Front", about the Hollywood blacklist, scripted by Walter Bernstein and directed by Martin Ritt
1977:
Last TV appearance, a guest spot on the syndicated series "The Muppet Show"
1977:
Final stage performance as Shylock in "The Merchant", Arnold Wesker's reworking of Shakespeare's "The Merchant of Venice"
1978:
Heard posthumously as the voice of Kehaar the seagull in the animated film "Watership Down"
1979:
Seen in footage of the documentary "Best Boy"

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