skip navigation
George Wendt

George Wendt

Up
Down

| VIEW ALL

TCM Messageboards
Post your comments here
ADD YOUR COMMENT>

share:

TCM Archive Materials VIEW ALL ARCHIVES (0)

Recent DVDs

 
 

Masters Of Horror: Family... You can't always trust your neighbors. In Showtime's series "Masters Of Horror"... more info $14.98was $14.98 Buy Now

The Fletch Collection DVD Chevy Chase is at his comedic best in this hilarious 2-disc set. In "Fletch"... more info $12.98was $12.98 Buy Now

The Gift Of The Magi DVD Rosemary Deleonardis, Kiah Gordon, and David A. Silverstein headline this... more info $24.95was $24.95 Buy Now

Lakeboat DVD Sometimes the biggest life lessons come from those you least expect! For his... more info $9.98was $9.98 Buy Now

Spice World DVD Zig-a-zig-aah! Hitch a double-decker ride with the Spice Girls - Ginger, Sporty,... more info $9.99was $9.99 Buy Now

King Of The Ants DVD A college campus, sexy girls and football make this sports drama a winner. Ted... more info $19.95was $19.95 Buy Now



Also Known As: George Robert Wendt, George R Wendt Died:
Born: October 17, 1948 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Chicago, Illinois, USA Profession: actor, director, construction worker, caddy

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

A hefty, curly-haired supporting player, George Wendt gained national recognition as Norm Peterson, the beer-swilling accountant-turned-housepainter-and-sometime-decorator on the long-running NBC sitcom "Cheers" (1982-93), parlaying his sudsmeister image into a run as pitchman for a national brewery. A native of Chicago, Wendt spent two years traveling throughout Europe and North Africa after earning a degree in economics, before returning home and enrolling in the Second City comedy troupe's acting workshop. Graduating to their company, he performed with the group from 1974-80. The NBC comedy pilot featuring Second City players, "Nothing But Comedy", brought him to Los Angeles where he made his feature debut in "My Bodyguard" (1980).After "Cheers" put him on the map, Wendt started getting larger movie roles. He followed supporting turns in "Dreamscape" (1984) and "Fletch" (1985) with a memorable portrayal of Buster, a welder at the auto plant who finds himself chafing under the new Japanese regime, in Ron Howard's "Gung Ho" (1986). Co-starring with Robert De Niro and Annette Bening in veteran producer Irwin Winkler's writing and directing debut, "Guilty By Suspicion" (1991), Wendt offered a strong,...

A hefty, curly-haired supporting player, George Wendt gained national recognition as Norm Peterson, the beer-swilling accountant-turned-housepainter-and-sometime-decorator on the long-running NBC sitcom "Cheers" (1982-93), parlaying his sudsmeister image into a run as pitchman for a national brewery. A native of Chicago, Wendt spent two years traveling throughout Europe and North Africa after earning a degree in economics, before returning home and enrolling in the Second City comedy troupe's acting workshop. Graduating to their company, he performed with the group from 1974-80. The NBC comedy pilot featuring Second City players, "Nothing But Comedy", brought him to Los Angeles where he made his feature debut in "My Bodyguard" (1980).

After "Cheers" put him on the map, Wendt started getting larger movie roles. He followed supporting turns in "Dreamscape" (1984) and "Fletch" (1985) with a memorable portrayal of Buster, a welder at the auto plant who finds himself chafing under the new Japanese regime, in Ron Howard's "Gung Ho" (1986). Co-starring with Robert De Niro and Annette Bening in veteran producer Irwin Winkler's writing and directing debut, "Guilty By Suspicion" (1991), Wendt offered a strong, solid turn as a screenwriter struggling with the issue of whether or not to name names when called before the House Committee on Un-American Activities. Although he has appeared in subsequent movies like "Forever Young" (1992), "The Man of the House" (1995) and "The LoveMaster" (1997), Wendt has remained best known for his small screen performances.

Anxious to capitalize on his extreme popularity from "Cheers", CBS launched "The George Wendt Show" (1995), which disappeared quickly, possibly because its format (Wendt as a radio call-in show host) was shamelessly similar to fellow "Cheers" alum Kelsey Grammer's "Frasier". NBC penciled him in as a newspaper editor in its revamp of the sitcom "The Naked Truth" (1997) but almost as quickly rubbed him out when the show's concept was again changed. He starred in the Fox movie "Hostage For a Day" (1994) as a man who stages his own abduction to get away from his overbearing wife and miserable job and portrayed Mr. MacAfee in the 1995 ABC remake of the musical "Bye Bye Birdie". Wendt has co-starred as one of the title characters in "Roger Corman Presents Alien Avengers" (Showtime, 1996) and its sequel "Alien Avengers II" (The Movie Channel, 1997). His performance as of the owner of a firm that sells funeral insurance in "The Price of Heaven" (CBS, 1997), directed by Peter Bogdanovich, garnered him critical praise and invoked comparisons to Orson Welles and Burl Ives.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Merry In-Laws (2012)
2.
 Merry-In-Laws (2012)
3.
 Bryan Loves You (2008)
4.
 Edmond (2005)
5.
 Kids in America (2005) Coach Thompson
6.
 Teddy Bear's Picnic (2002) General Edison "Pete" Gerberding
7.
 Strange Relations (2002) Howard
8.
 Lakeboat (2000) Collins
9.
 Pooch and the Pauper, The (2000) Officer Sparks
10.
 Wild About Harry (2000)
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1974:
Joined the Second City comedy troupe
1980:
Made feature debut with "My Bodyguard"
1982:
Cast as barfly Norm Peterson on the NBC sitcom "Cheers"; nominated for an Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series (1984-89)
1984:
Had a supporting role in "Dreamscape"
1985:
Played Fat Sam in "Fletch", starring Chevy Chase
1986:
Portrayed Buster, a welder at the plant who finds himself chafing under the new Japanese regime, in "Gung Ho"
1991:
Received third-billing (behnd Robert De Niro and Annette Bening) in Irwin Winkler's Hollywood blacklist drama, "Guilty By Suspicion"; played a screenwriter who is the best friend of De Niro's character
1993:
Made NYC stage debut, "Wild Men!"
1994:
Starred in Fox TV-movie "Hostage For a Day" as a man who stages his own abduction to get away from his overbearing wife and miserable job; directed by John Candy
1995:
Appeared as Mr. MacAfee in ABC remake of "Bye Bye Birdie"
1995:
Headlined the short-lived CBS sitcom "The George Wendt Show"
1997:
Returned to series TV as co-star of the NBC sitcom "The Naked Truth"; stayed with the show for half a season
1997:
Played Sam in CBS TV-movie "The Price of Heaven," directed by Peter Bogdanovich
1998:
Appeared alongside Stacy Keach and David Dukes in the London production of "Art"
1998:
Made Broadway bow in "Art" with Judd Hirsh and Joe Morton
2000:
Starred in the Off-Broadway production "Empty Plate"
2001:
Had a recurring role on the ABC series "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch"
2005:
Played a high school coach in the coming-of-age comedy "Kids in America"
2008:
Appeared as Santa on the Comedy Central special, "A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All!"
2010:
Cast as Santa in the Broadway musical adaptation of the 2003 comedy "Elf"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

University of Notre Dame: Notre Dame , Indiana -
Rockhurst College: Kansas City , Missouri -

Notes

Wendt, a six-time Emmy nominee for his portrayal of Norm Peterson on "Cheers", made his TV directing debut at the helm of a "Cheers" episode.

Wendt has hosted NBC's "Saturday Night Live" and appeared frequently on it as Chicago "super-fan" Bob Swerski.

In a rare dramatic turn, Wendt played the title role in a BBC adaptation of the classic Russian novel "Oblomov". Filmed entirely in the former Soviet Union. To date, it has not aired in the USA.

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Bernadette Birkett. Actor. Has three children with Wendt; appeared on "It's Garry Shandling's Show" and "Cheers"; married in 1978; met at Second City.

Family close complete family listing

step-son:
Joshua. Born September 12, 1968.
step-son:
Andrew. Born 1970.
daughter:
Hilary Wendt. Born c. 1985.
son:
Joe Wendt. Born c. 1987.
son:
Daniel Wendt. Born c. 1990.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

Please support TCMDB by adding to this information.

Click here to contribute