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Louis Zorich

Louis Zorich

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Also Known As: Died:
Born: February 12, 1924 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Chicago, Illinois, USA Profession: actor, physical education instructor, bus driver

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

The son of Yugoslavian immigrants, character actor Louis Zorich began his career in Canada following his training at the Goodman School of Theater in his hometown of Chicago, IL. He made his Broadway debut in Jean Anouilh's "Becket" (1960), starring Laurence Olivier and Anthony Quinn, and has returned to the Great White Way in such productions as "Death of a Salesman" (1984) and "She Loves Me" (1993), among others. With his wife Olympia Dukakis, Zorich co-founded the Whole Theater in Montclair, New Jersey in 1972, maintaining it for 18 years before finally having to close it.After appearing in a small role as a cab driver in Don Siegel's "Coogan's Bluff" (1968), Zorich achieved a higher profile as the constable in Norman Jewison's "Fiddler on the Roof" (1971). His other feature credits include "The Muppets Take Manhattan" (1984) and "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels" (1988), both for director Frank Oz, and John Sayles' "City of Hope" (1991). Zorich has achieved his greatest exposure by far from series TV, particularly as the star of CBS' "Brooklyn Bridge" (1991-93) and in the recurring role of Paul Reiser's father on the long-running "Mad About You" (NBC, 1992-99).

The son of Yugoslavian immigrants, character actor Louis Zorich began his career in Canada following his training at the Goodman School of Theater in his hometown of Chicago, IL. He made his Broadway debut in Jean Anouilh's "Becket" (1960), starring Laurence Olivier and Anthony Quinn, and has returned to the Great White Way in such productions as "Death of a Salesman" (1984) and "She Loves Me" (1993), among others. With his wife Olympia Dukakis, Zorich co-founded the Whole Theater in Montclair, New Jersey in 1972, maintaining it for 18 years before finally having to close it.

After appearing in a small role as a cab driver in Don Siegel's "Coogan's Bluff" (1968), Zorich achieved a higher profile as the constable in Norman Jewison's "Fiddler on the Roof" (1971). His other feature credits include "The Muppets Take Manhattan" (1984) and "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels" (1988), both for director Frank Oz, and John Sayles' "City of Hope" (1991). Zorich has achieved his greatest exposure by far from series TV, particularly as the star of CBS' "Brooklyn Bridge" (1991-93) and in the recurring role of Paul Reiser's father on the long-running "Mad About You" (NBC, 1992-99).

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Outliving Emily (2014)
2.
 Detachment (2011)
3.
 Hole in One, A (2004) Sammy
4.
5.
 Joe the King (1999) Judge
6.
 Commandments (1997) Rudy Warner
7.
 Young At Heart (1995) (1995) Joe Garaventi
8.
 City of Hope (1991) Mayor Baci
9.
 Agenda For Murder (1990) Staplin
10.
 Bloodhounds of Broadway (1989) Mindy
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1943:
Served in US Army
:
First worked as actor in Canada following his studies at the Goodman Theater School of Drama
:
Landed first TV job in Canadian production of "Les Miserables"
1959:
Made New York stage debut in "Shadow of Heroes" at the York Theatre
1960:
Broadway debut in "Becket", with Laurence Olivier and Anthony Quinn
:
Returned to Broadway in cast of Neil Simon's "The Odd Couple"
1966:
Feature film debut as Russian Ambassador in Japanese sci-fi flick "Gammera the Invincible"
1967:
Acted on Broadway in "Hadrian VII"
1968:
Played a taxi driver in Don Siegel's "Coogan's Bluff"
1969:
Co-starred with Alec McCowen in the Broadway production of "Hadrian VII"; nominated for a Supporting Actor Tony Award
1971:
Portrayed the constable in Norman Jewison's "Fiddler on the Roof"
1972:
Co-founded with wife Olympia Dukakis the Whole Theater in Montclair, NJ, maintaining it for 18 years before finally having to close it
1984:
Provided the voice of Pete in Frank Oz's "The Muppets Take Manhattan"
1984:
Back on Broadway as Ben in revival of Arthur Miller's "Death of a Salesman", starring Dustin Hoffman
1985:
Reprised Broadway role in CBS version of "Death of a Salesman"
1988:
Portrayed Greek millionaire in "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels", second film with director Oz
1991:
Featured as Mayor Baci in John Sayles' "City of Hope"
:
Starred as Jules Berger opposite Marion Ross as his wife Sophie in CBS series "Brooklyn Bridge"
:
Played recurring role of Paul Reiser's father Burt Buchman in long-running CBS sitcom "Mad About You"; role made regular as of the 1997-1998 season
1993:
Appeared on Broadway as Maraczek, owner of the perfumery where the two lovers work, in the revival of the musical "She Loves Me"
1997:
Acted the part of Rudy Warner in "Commandments"
2001:
Portrayed the producer Dmitri Weisman in the Broadway revival of "Follies"
2005:
Starred opposite Michelle Williams in the drama "A Hole in One"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Roosevelt College: Chicago , Illinois -
Goodman Theater School of Drama: Chicago , Illinois -

Notes

"As a kid in Chicago, I went to vaudeville and loved it. Somehow, I think I always wanted to be on the stage. I was stationed at Fort Kilmer, NJ in World War II [before] being sent to Europe, when they brought in 'Rosalinda' a musical adaptation of 'Die Fledermaus', and I knew then I'd have to be onstage. I tried to to get into the Special Services branch, to work in projects like that, but I couldn't. I was with an Engineer battalion in Europe, but I didn't see any combat. Spent most of the time in England and France ...

"Olympia [Dukakis] and I have been married for 31 years, but except for the Whole Theater, we seldom work together. Would you believe I was up for the part of her husband in the movie 'Moonstruck', but I didn't get it? Vince Gardenia did. Norman Jewison [the director] didn't think I was right for it." --Louis Zorich to Daily News, November 2, 1993.

Zorich and wife Dukakis have performed together at the Williamstown Theatre, where they have done in Zorich's words "a lot of Chekhov."

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Olympia Dukakis. Actor. Met when they appeared together on stage in the Off-Broadway play "The Opening of a Window"; married in 1962; co-founded The Whole Theatre in New Jersey together.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Christ Zorich. Yugoslavian immigrant.
mother:
Anna Zorich. Yugoslavian immigrant.
daughter:
Christina Zorich. Actor.
son:
Peter Zorich. Co-founded a line of food products called "Famous Fixins".
son:
Stefan Zorich.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

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