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Jesse White

Jesse White

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Also Known As: Jesse Marc White, Jesse Weidenfield Died: January 9, 1997
Born: January 3, 1917 Cause of Death: cardiac arrest following colon cancer surgery
Birth Place: Buffalo, New York, USA Profession: actor, vaudevillian, salesman

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Often remembered as one of the iconic Maytag Repairmen from the long-running ad campaign, Jesse White first took to the stage in an amateur production at 15. He eventually worked his way up from vaudeville and burlesque to legitimate theater, and by 1943, he was on Broadway as a brusque sanitarium orderly in the fantasy-infused drama "Harvey," which centers on a man whose best friend is an invisible 6-foot-tall rabbit. When the hit play was adapted into a film seven years later, White reprised his role and worked opposite movie mega star James Stewart. Between the play and the film, White was now a recognizable talent in Hollywood, and he went on to appear in a string of films before breaking into television with a variety of one-off roles. White would ultimately appear in 160 TV and film productions over a career that spanned five decades, but it was his part as the perennially bored Maytag Repairman for which White became best known. White was offered the role of the unneeded Repairman after an ad exec saw his deadpan comedy bit as a monotone-speaking yet cantankerous janitor in the 1967 Don Knotts/Leslie Nielsen space program comedy "The Reluctant Astronaut." The next year White became the face of...

Often remembered as one of the iconic Maytag Repairmen from the long-running ad campaign, Jesse White first took to the stage in an amateur production at 15. He eventually worked his way up from vaudeville and burlesque to legitimate theater, and by 1943, he was on Broadway as a brusque sanitarium orderly in the fantasy-infused drama "Harvey," which centers on a man whose best friend is an invisible 6-foot-tall rabbit. When the hit play was adapted into a film seven years later, White reprised his role and worked opposite movie mega star James Stewart. Between the play and the film, White was now a recognizable talent in Hollywood, and he went on to appear in a string of films before breaking into television with a variety of one-off roles. White would ultimately appear in 160 TV and film productions over a career that spanned five decades, but it was his part as the perennially bored Maytag Repairman for which White became best known. White was offered the role of the unneeded Repairman after an ad exec saw his deadpan comedy bit as a monotone-speaking yet cantankerous janitor in the 1967 Don Knotts/Leslie Nielsen space program comedy "The Reluctant Astronaut." The next year White became the face of Maytag and went on to reprise the role of the loveable and lonely mascot in ads until 1988, after which he became a Maytag consultant. White worked steadily in TV and film until his death from a heart attack in 1997.

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Matinee (1993) Mr Spector
2.
 Monster in the Closet (1987) Ben Bernstein
3.
 Cat From Outer Space, The (1978) Ernest Ernie
4.
 New Girl in Town (1977)
5.
 Nashville Girl (1976)
6.
 Return to Campus (1975) Sports Announcer
7.
 Las Vegas Lady (1975) Big Jake
8.
9.
 Harvey (1972) Wilson
10.
 Bless the Beasts & Children (1971) Sid Shecker
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1970:
Returned to Broadway in a revival of "Harvey" co-starring Helen Hayes and James Stewart
1950:
Film acting debut in "Harvey"
1996:
Last TV appearance on NBC series "Seinfeld"
1944:
Performed in Mary Chase's play "Harvey"
:
Professional stage debut in 1940s
:
Worked on the "Ann Southern Show"
:
Appeared in commercials as the "Maytag Repairman"
1952:
Starred in "Make Room for Daddy"
1993:
Final film role in "Matinee"
1943:
First role on Broadway
:
Performed on the "That Girl"
:
Stage debut at age 15
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Celia White. Survived him.

Family close complete family listing

brother:
Sid White. Survived him.
brother:
Al White. Survived him.
daughter:
Carole Ita White. Actor. Played Rosie Greenbaum on "Laverne & Shirley"; survived him.
daughter:
Janet Jonas. Survived him.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

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