Ed Begley Jr.



Also Known As
Edward James Begley Jr., Ed Begley
Birth Place
Los Angeles, California, USA
September 16, 1949


Actor and activist Ed Begley, Jr. was a constant presence in films and television for an astonishing 40 years. While he is most widely recognized from his six-year run as Dr. Victor Ehrlich in beloved 80's TV drama "St. Elsewhere" (1982-1988), Begley Jr. has acted in over 200 films and television series in the past four decades, and is one of Hollywood's most prominent advocates of clean...

Photos & Videos

Family & Companions

Ingrid Begley
Married on October 31, 1976; divorced in October 1989.
Rochelle Carson
Actor. Born c. 1960; married on August 23, 2000 in Las Vegas, Nevada.


Begley once served as Environmental Affairs Commissioner for the City of Los Angeles.

He drives an electric car.


Actor and activist Ed Begley, Jr. was a constant presence in films and television for an astonishing 40 years. While he is most widely recognized from his six-year run as Dr. Victor Ehrlich in beloved 80's TV drama "St. Elsewhere" (1982-1988), Begley Jr. has acted in over 200 films and television series in the past four decades, and is one of Hollywood's most prominent advocates of clean energy and environmental responsibility. In 2000, after a decade of low-key roles in short-lived television series and mainstream comedies, Begley Jr. appeared in Christopher Guest's improvisational hit "Best in Show," which breathed new life into his career. He has managed to keep quite busy ever since, playing sweetly zonked-out characters in hip comedies like "Arrested Development" (2005-2006) and "Veronica Mars"(2004-2007) while continuing to extol the virtues of a simple, ecologically sound existence. In 2007, he finally found a way to combine his careers as entertainer and advocate with "Living With Ed" (2007-), a popular reality series that starred Begley Jr, his wife, Rachelle Carson, their solar-powered house, and their frequently frazzled friends and neighbors. Amiable and always funny, Begley Jr. has deftly balanced his career and environmental concerns with such agility that the man and the cause have become one and the same.

Ed Begley Jr. was born on September 16th, 1949 in Los Angeles. The son of Academy Award winning actor Ed Begley and actress Allene Jeanne Sanders, Begley Jr spent his formative years in the sleepy town of Merrick, Long Island, before the family moved back to California in 1962. He graduated from Notre Dame High School in Sherman Oaks and Los Angeles Valley College in Hollywood. Inspired by his father's storied career, Begley Jr. began his acting career while still a teen, appearing in sitcoms like "My Three Sons" (1960-1972) and "Room 222" (1969-1972). He also spent eight years performing around Los Angeles as a stand-up comedian, and served as a crew member on several B-movie productions in the early 1970's. His first substantial television role came in 1979, when he portrayed Flight Sargeant Greenbeen in sci-fi series "Battlestar Gallactica" (1978-1979). Although the show only lasted a year, it was a cult hit, and the exposure pushed Begley Jr. into the public eye. In 1982, he joined the cast of "St Elsewhere" (1982-1988), a wildly popular Boston-based hospital drama that launched the careers of several then up and coming actors, including Denzel Washington, Mark Harmon, and Howie Mandel. Begley Jr portrayed conflicted doctor Victor Ehrlich for the show's entire 127 episode run. "St. Elsewhere" made Begley Jr a household name and a star, and he used his celebrity to advocate for the environment, a novel concept in the 1980's.

Begley Jr's acting career post "Elsewhere" has been a hodge-podge of one-off television appearances, voice acting, and off-kilter film appearances, usually in the role of the slightly clueless, uptight straight man. In 1990, he starred in "Parenthood" (1990), a short-lived television spin-off of the popular Steve Martin film, notable as one of future "Buffy" creator Joss Whedon's first writing projects. In 1992, he performed as the voice of super villain 'Germs' in "Batman the Animated Series" (1992-1995), and in 1995 appeared in "Batman Forever." In 2000, Begley Jr. joined the improvisational cast of Christopher Guest's "Best in Show" as a sympathetic hotel clerk. The film, and Guest's troupe of off-the-cuff actors, was a huge hit. From that point Begley's acting hit a new plateau. He began evenly dividing his time between more mainstream roles in television series like the Christian-themed "7th Heaven" (1993-2002) and "The West Wing" (1999-2006), and looser, more improvisational comedies like cult hit "Arrested Development" (2005-2006) and Guest's "Best in Show" follow-ups, "A Mighty Wind" (2003) and "For Your Consideration" (2006). At the same time, his interest in ecological concerns deepened, and he became as well known for his acting as his environmentalism, often appearing on talk shows and at political events advocating for, among other concerns, electric cars, global warming awareness, and energy conservation.

In 2007, Begley Jr. finally found the perfect vehicle to deliver his message about living an environmentally responsible life. "Living With Ed" (2007-) debuted in 2007 on the HGTV channel. A reality series that followed the day to day activities of Ed and his long-suffering wife Rachelle as they worked towards making their modest 1,500 square foot home more energy efficient, the show provided as many laughs as it did helpful hints. One memorable show found Begley Jr. timing his exasperated wife's shower with a stopwatch, to gauge how much water she wasted. "Living With Ed" also featured other like-minded celebrities on the show, including Jackson Browne, Cheryl Tiegs, Jay Leno,

Larry Hagman, and Bill Nye the Science Guy. Begley Jr. often visited with regular people as well, to see how ordinary citizens discovered unique ways to conserve energy and reduce their carbon footprint. The show was a modest hit, and was renewed for a second season on the Planet Green Channel.

Although he will always be known foremost as a comedic actor, and has continued to appear in dozens of films and television shows each year, Ed Begley Jr. has made environmentalism his life's work. In 2007, he received the Thomas Alva Edison award for his tireless ecological advocacy, and he is affiliated with a host of prominent environmental organizations, including The American Oceans Campaign, which fights to clean pollution from US waters, Friends of the Earth, the world's largest grassroots environmental organization, and the League of Conservation voters, which advocates for environmental policies. In 2007, he also introduced a line of eco-friendly cleaning products, 'Begley's Best'. In 2008, aside from his advocacy work and "Living With Ed," Begley Jr. somehow found the time to become a regular on CBS sitcom "Gary Unmarried" (2008-) and make small-but-memorable appearances on everything from Fox's cult-hit "King of the Hill"(Fox, 1997- 2008) to smash stoner-comedy "Pineapple Express." Through it all, he has remained remarkably humble and down-to-Earth. The ultimate green celebrity, Ed Begley Jr. has remained that rare commodity: an actor more concerned with living responsibly than with fame or fortune. "Live simply," he has often said, "so that others may simply live."



Cast (Feature Film)

Plus One (2019)
Book Club (2018)
Lucky (2017)
CHiPs (2017)
Girlfriend's Day (2017)
Ghostbusters (2016)
The Bronx Bull (2015)
You're Not You (2014)
Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight (2013)
What's Your Number? (2011)
Fatal Secrets (2011)
Sammy's Adventures - The Secret Passage (2010)
Transcendent Man (2009)
Georgia O'Keeffe (2009)
Whatever Works (2009)
One Long Night (2009)
Fly Me to the Moon (2008)
Finding Amanda (2008)
Pineapple Express (2008)
Recount (2008)
Walk the Talk (2007)
Running Mates (2006)
The Elder Son (2006)
For Your Consideration (2006)
Pittsburgh (2006)
Desolation Sound (2005)
Raising Genius (2004)
Hair High (2004)
Voice Of Reverend Cheddar
Stateside (2004)
Father Concoff
A Mighty Wind (2003)
Going Down (2003)
Net Games (2003)
War Stories (2002)
Auto Focus (2002)
Bug (2002)
Get Over It (2001)
Diary of A Sex Addict (2001)
Best in Show (2000)
Hotel manager [Mark Schaefer]
Homicide: The Movie (2000)
I'm Losing You (1998)
Addams Family Reunion (1998)
Phillip Adams
Murder She Purred: A Mrs. Murphy Mystery (1998)
Fitz-Gilbert Hamilton
Joey (1997)
Ambassador Ted Ross
Horton Foote's Alone (1997)
Not in This Town (1997)
The Lay of the Land (1997)
Harvey Dankworth
Ms. Bear (1997)
The Late Shift (1996)
Project: ALF (1996)
Santa With Muscles (1996)
The Crazysitter (1995)
Batman Forever (1995)
Hourglass (1995)
Columbo: Undercover (1994)
Renaissance Man (1994)
Incident at Deception Ridge (1994)
Greedy (1994)
Sensation (1994)
The Shaggy Dog (1994)
Rave Review (1994)
The Pagemaster (1994)
Even Cowgirls Get the Blues (1993)
Cooperstown (1993)
In the Line of Duty: Siege at Marion (1992)
Lieutenant Fred House
Dark Horse (1992)
Exclusive (1992)
Mastergate (1992)
The Story Lady (1991)
Meet the Applegates (1991)
Dick Applegate
Chance of a Lifetime (1991)
In the Best Interest of the Child (1990)
She-Devil (1989)
Scenes From the Class Struggle in Beverly Hills (1989)
The Accidental Tourist (1988)
Spies, Lies & Naked Thighs (1988)
Amazon Women On The Moon (1987)
Celebration Family (1987)
Roman Holiday (1987)
Transylvania 6-5000 (1985)
This Is Spinal Tap (1984)
John "Stumpy" Pepys
Streets Of Fire (1984)
Protocol (1984)
An Uncommon Love (1983)
Still the Beaver (1983)
Whitey Whitney
Get Crazy (1983)
Rascals and Robbers: The Secret Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn (1982)
Eating Raoul (1982)
Not Just Another Affair (1982)
The Entity (1982)
An Officer And A Gentleman (1982)
Buddy, Buddy (1981)
1st Lieutenant
Private Lessons (1981)
Cat People (1981)
The In-Laws (1979)
Barry Lutz
The Concorde--Airport '79 (1979)
Amateur Night at the Dixie Bar and Grill (1979)
A Shining Season (1979)
Hot Rod (1979)
Hardcore (1979)
Elvis (1979)
Goin' South (1978)
Blue Collar (1978)
Battlestar Galactica (1978)
The One And Only (1978)
Citizens Band (1977)
Record City (1977)
Stay Hungry (1976)
Cockfighter (1974)
Showdown (1973)
Charley and the Angel (1973)
Now You See Him, Now You Don't (1972)
Family Flight (1972)

Cinematography (Feature Film)

Equinox (1970)
Assistant Camera for 1970 version

Cast (Special)

Brando (Part 1) (2007)
Brando (Part 2) (2007)
Intimate Portrait: Cindy Williams (2001)
Troubled Waters (2000)
People Count Special (1999)
More True Stories From Touched By an Angel (1999)
U.S.-Mexican War (1846-1848) (1998)
Intimate Portrait: Suzanne Somers (1998)
One Day (1998)
Earth Day at Walt Disney World (1996)
Too Soon For Jeff (1996)
Shining Time Station Family Special: Once Upon a Time (1995)
Fourth Annual Environmental Media Awards (1994)
Partners (1994)
Your Toxic Waste (1993)
Death of Some Salesmen (1993)
Earth and the American Dream (1993)
Heroes of the Earth (1993)
A Party for Richard Pryor (1991)
A User's Guide to Planet Earth: The American Environment Test (1991)
Motown on Showtime: Comedy on Campus (1990)
Live! The World's Greatest Stunts (1990)
The 2nd International Rock Awards (1990)
The Ed Begley, Jr. Show (1989)
The Incredible Ida Early (1987)
Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade (1986)
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow (1986)
Ichabod Crane
Amy Grant... Headin' Home For the Holidays (1986)
You Are the Jury (1986)
The Screen Actors Guild 50th Anniversary Celebration (1984)
Tales of the Apple Dumpling Gang (1982)
Mixed Nuts (1977)
Making It (1976)
Steve; A Student
Bobby Jo and the Big Apple Goodtime Band (1972)
Virgil; Band Member

Cast (TV Mini-Series)

Life on Liberty Street (2004)
Hounded (2001)
World War II: When Lions Roared (1994)
The Great Los Angeles Earthquake (1990)
Not a Penny More, Not a Penny Less (1990)

Life Events


Made screen-acting debut at age 17 on the CBS sitcom "My Three Sons"


Made film-acting debut in "The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes"


Appeared in TV movie "Family Flight" (ABC)


Made series debut as regular on the short-lived CBS sitcom "Roll Out!"


Had a recurring roles on the syndicated series "Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman"


Appeared in a recurring role on CBS' "The New Adventures of Wonder Woman"


Played Lt. Greenbean on "Battlestar Galactica" (ABC), reprised role in the feature film version


Breakthrough role as intern Dr. Victor Ehrlich on the NBC medical drama "St. Elsewhere"; received six consecutive Emmy Award nominations


Cast as one of William Hurt's siblings in Lawrence Kasdan's "The Accidental Tourist"


Played the straying husband in "She-Devil" opposite Meryl Streep and Roseanne


Starred in the short-lived NBC sitcom "Parenthood"


Co-starred with Stockard Channing in "Meet the Applegates"


Appeared on the short-lived NBC primetime soap "Winnetka Road"


Co-starred in the off-Broadway production of David Mamet's "The Cryptogram"


Returned to series TV with the CBS sitcom "Meego"


Cast in the recurring role of Dr. Hank Hastings on The WB's "7th Heaven"


Played a hotel manager in the mockumentary "Best in Show"; co-starring and directed by Christopher Guest


Played the recurring role of Hiram Gunderson on HBO's "Six Feet Under"


Re-teamed with director Christopher Guest for the pseudo-documentary about folk music "A Mighty Wind"


Played hospital administrator Dr. Jesse James in Stephen King's thirteen-episode miniseries "Kingdom Hospital" (ABC)


Guest starred on several episodes of Fox's "Arrested Development"


Appeared in the comedy "For Your Consideration"; directed by Guest


Had a recurring guest role in season three of "Veronica Mars" (UPN)


Appeared with wife Rachelle Carson in the reality television series "Living With Ed" (aired on the Home & Garden Television channel and Discovery's Planet Green channel)


Had a recurring role on "CSI: Miami"


Appeared in the HBO movie "Recount," which profiled the 2000 Presidential Election


Co-starred with Joan Allen in the Lifetime biographical drama "Georgia O'Keeffe"


Co-starred in Woody Allen's New York-based comedy "Whatever Works"


Cast opposite Anna Faris in the romantic comedy "What's Your Number?"


Played Dr. T. Pike on "Rizzoli & Isles"


Appeared on several episodes of hit IFC series "Portlandia"


Played Murch on short-lived Silicon Valley-themed comedy "Betas"


Featured in another reality show about his family, "On Begley Street"


Played Joel on short-lived comedy series "Lady Dynamite"


Cat as Clifford Main on "Breaking Bad" spinoff "Better Call Saul"


Appeared in sci-fi drama "Amelia 2.0"


Joined the cast of John Carroll Lynch's directorial debut, "Lucky"


Ed Begley
Actor. Won the Best Supporting Actor Oscar in 1962 for "Sweet Bird of Youth".
Allene Jeanne Sanders
NBC page, schoolteacher, actor.
Allene Johanna Begley
Born in October 1948.
Amanda Begley
Born on October 3, 1977.
Nicholas Taylor Begley
Born on January 4, 1979.


Ingrid Begley
Married on October 31, 1976; divorced in October 1989.
Rochelle Carson
Actor. Born c. 1960; married on August 23, 2000 in Las Vegas, Nevada.



Begley once served as Environmental Affairs Commissioner for the City of Los Angeles.

He drives an electric car.