Alan Arkin

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Alan Arkin
Alan Arkin - 1975.jpg
Arkin in 1975
BornAlan Wolf Arkin
(1934-03-26) March 26, 1934 (age 79)
Brooklyn, New York, US
OccupationActor, director, musician, singer
Years active1957–present
Spouse(s)Jeremy Yaffe (1955–1961; divorced; 2 children)
Barbara Dana (1964–199?; divorced; 1 child)
Suzanne Newlander (1996–)
 
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Alan Arkin
Alan Arkin - 1975.jpg
Arkin in 1975
BornAlan Wolf Arkin
(1934-03-26) March 26, 1934 (age 79)
Brooklyn, New York, US
OccupationActor, director, musician, singer
Years active1957–present
Spouse(s)Jeremy Yaffe (1955–1961; divorced; 2 children)
Barbara Dana (1964–199?; divorced; 1 child)
Suzanne Newlander (1996–)

Alan Wolf Arkin (born March 26, 1934) is an American actor, director, musician and singer. He is known for starring in such films as Wait Until Dark, the Russians Are Coming, The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, Catch-22, The In-Laws, Edward Scissorhands, Glengarry Glen Ross, Thirteen Conversations About One Thing, Little Miss Sunshine, and Argo, the last two of which he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor and the former of which he won. He is the father of actors Adam Arkin, Anthony Arkin, and Matthew Arkin.

Early life[edit]

Arkin was born in Brooklyn, New York City, son of David I. Arkin, a painter and writer, and his wife, Beatrice (Wortis), a teacher.[1] He was raised in a Jewish family with "no emphasis on religion". His grandparents were immigrants from Ukraine, Russia, and Germany.[2][3] His parents moved to Los Angeles when Alan was 11,[2] but an eight-month Hollywood strike cost his father his job as a set designer. During the 1950s Red Scare, Arkin's parents were accused of being Communists, and his father was fired when he refused to answer questions about his political ideology. David Arkin challenged the dismissal, but he was only vindicated after his death.[4]

Career[edit]

Early work[edit]

Arkin in Popi (1969) (trailer)

Arkin, who had been taking acting lessons since age 10, became a scholarship student at various drama academies, including one run by the Stanislavsky student Benjamin Zemach, who taught Arkin a psychological approach to acting.[5] Arkin attended Los Angeles City College from 1951 to 1953. He also attended Bennington College. With two friends, he formed the folk music group The Tarriers, in which Arkin sang and played guitar. The band members co-composed the group's 1956 hit "The Banana Boat Song", a reworking, with some new lyrics, of a traditional, Jamaican calypso folk song of the same name, combined with another titled "Hill and Gully Rider".[6] It reached #4 on the Billboard magazine chart the same year as Harry Belafonte's better-known hit version.[7] The group appeared in the 1957 Calypso-exploitation film Calypso Heat Wave, singing "Banana Boat Song" and "Choucoune".[citation needed]

From 1958 to 1968, Arkin performed and recorded with the children's folk group, The Baby Sitters.[8] He also performed the role of Dr. Pangloss in a concert staging of Leonard Bernstein's operetta Candide, alongside Madeline Kahn's Cunegonde. Arkin was an early member of The Second City comedy troupe in the 1960s.[9] Arkin and his second wife, Barbara Dana, appeared together on the 1970–71 season of Sesame Street as a comical couple named Larry and Phyllis who resolve their conflicts when they remember how to pronounce the word "cooperate." In 1985, he sang two selections by Jones & Schmidt on Ben Bagley's album Contemporary Broadway Revisited.

Acting[edit]

With Shirley Knight in TV special, The Defection of Simas Kudirka (1978)

Arkin is one of only six[10] actors to receive an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor for his first screen appearance (for The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming in 1966). Two years later, he was again nominated, for The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter.

In 1968, he appeared in the title role of Inspector Clouseau, after Peter Sellers disassociated himself from the role, but the film was not well received by Sellers' fans.

His best known films include his Oscar-nominated Wait Until Dark, as the erudite killer stalking Audrey Hepburn; The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter; Catch-22; The Seven-Per-Cent Solution; Little Murders; The In-Laws; Glengarry Glen Ross; and Little Miss Sunshine, for which he won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar; and Argo. His portrayal of Dr. Oatman, a scared and emotionally conflicted psychiatrist treating John Cusack's hit man character Martin Q. Blank in Grosse Point Blank was also well received.

His role in Little Miss Sunshine, as the foul-mouthed Grandfather Edwin with a taste for heroin, won him the BAFTA Film Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role and the Academy Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role. On receiving his Academy Award on February 25, 2007, Arkin said, "More than anything, I'm deeply moved by the open-hearted appreciation our small film has received, which in these fragmented times speaks so openly of the possibility of innocence, growth and connection".[11] At 72 years old, Arkin was the sixth oldest winner of the Best Supporting Actor Oscar.

In 2006–07, Arkin was cast in supporting roles in Rendition as a US senator and The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause as Bud Newman (Carol's Dad), starring with Tim Allen, Martin Short, Elizabeth Mitchell, Judge Reinhold and Wendy Crewson.

On Broadway, Arkin starred in Enter Laughing, for which he won a Tony Award, and Luv. He also directed The Sunshine Boys, among others.

Directing[edit]

Arkin's directorial debut, in 1969, was a 12-minute children's film, People Soup, starring his sons Adam Arkin and Matthew Arkin. Based on a story he had published in the Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction in the 1950s, People Soup is a fantasy about two boys who experiment with various kitchen ingredients until they concoct a magical soup which transforms them into different animals and objects.

Arkin with his wife Suzanne at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival

Arkin's most acclaimed directorial effort is Little Murders, released in 1971. Written by cartoonist Jules Feiffer, Little Murders is a black comedy film starring Elliott Gould and Marcia Rodd about a girl, Patsy (Rodd), who brings home her boyfriend, Alfred (Gould), to meet her severely dysfunctional family amidst a series of random shootings, garbage strikes and electrical outages ravaging the neighborhood. The film opened to a lukewarm review by Roger Greenspan,[12] and a more positive one by Vincent Canby[13] in the New York Times. Roger Ebert's review in the Chicago Sun Times was more enthusiastic, saying, "One of the reasons it works, and is indeed a definitive reflection of America's darker moods, is that it breaks audiences down into isolated individuals, vulnerable and uncertain."[14]

Arkin also directed Fire Sale (1977), Samuel Beckett Is Coming Soon (1993) and Arigo (2000).

Writing[edit]

Arkin is the author of many books, including the children's stories Tony's Hard Work Day (illustrated by James Stevenson, 1972), The Lemming Condition (illustrated by Joan Sandin, 1976), Halfway Through the Door: An Actor's Journey Toward Self (1979) and The Clearing (1986 continuation of Lemming). In March 2011, he released his memoir, An Improvised Life.[15]

Personal life[edit]

Arkin has been married three times. He and Jeremy Yaffe, to whom he was married from 1955 to 1961, have two sons: Adam Arkin, born August 19, 1956, and Matthew Arkin, born March 21, 1959. In 1967, Arkin had son Anthony (Tony) Dana Arkin with actress-screenwriter Barbara Dana (born 1940), to whom he was married from June 16, 1964 to the mid-1990s. In 1996, Arkin married a psychotherapist, Suzanne Newlander.[4] They live in Carlsbad, California.

Filmography[edit]

Film

YearTitleRoleOther notes
1957Calypso Heat WaveTarriers lead singer(uncredited)
1966Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming, TheThe Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are ComingLt. RozanovGolden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
Laurel Award for Top Male New Face
Laurel Award for Top Male Comedy Performance (runner-up)
New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor (3rd place)
Nominated—Academy Award for Best Actor
Nominated—BAFTA Award for Most Promising Newcomer to Leading Film Roles
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for New Star of the Year – Actor
1967Woman Times SevenFredsegment: The Suicides
Wait Until DarkRoat
Roat Jr.
Roat Sr.
1968Inspector ClouseauInspector Jacques Clouseau
Heart Is a Lonely Hunter, TheThe Heart Is a Lonely HunterJohn SingerKansas City Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor
Laurel Award for Top Male Dramatic Performance (runner-up)
New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor
Nominated—Academy Award for Best Actor
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama
1969PopiAbraham RodriguezKansas City Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama
Monitors, TheThe MonitorsHimself(cameo)
1970Catch-22Capt. John YossarianNominated—Laurel Award for Top Male Dramatic Performance
Nominated—National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Actor
1971Little MurdersLt. Practice(also directed)
1972Last of the Red Hot LoversBarney Cashman
1973Deadhead MilesCooper
1974Freebie and the BeanBean
1975Rafferty and the Gold Dust TwinsGunny Rafferty(also released as Rafferty and the Highway Hustlers)
Hearts of the WestBurt KesslerNew York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor
1976Seven-Per-Cent Solution, TheThe Seven-Per-Cent SolutionDr. Sigmund Freud
1977Fire SaleEzra Fikus(also directed)
1979In-Laws, TheThe In-LawsSheldon S. Kornpett, D.D.S.
Magician of Lublin, TheThe Magician of LublinYasha Mazur
1980SimonProf. Simon MendelssohnNominated—Saturn Award for Best Actor
1981Full Moon HighDr. Brand
Improper ChannelsJeffrey MartleyGenie Award for Best Performance by a Foreign Actor
Chu Chu and the Philly FlashFlash
1982Last Unicorn, TheThe Last UnicornSchmendrick(voice only)
1983Return of Captain Invincible, TheThe Return of Captain InvincibleCaptain Invincible
1985Joshua Then and NowReuben ShapiroGenie Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
Bad MedicineDr. Ramón Madera
1986Big TroubleLeonard Hoffman
1990Coupe de VilleFred Libner
Edward ScissorhandsBillNominated—Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor
HavanaJoe Volpi
1991Rocketeer, TheThe RocketeerA. "Peevy" Peabody
1992Glengarry Glen RossGeorge AaronowValladolid International Film Festival Best Actor Award
1993Indian SummerUnca Lou Handler
So I Married an Axe MurdererPolice Captain(uncredited)
Samuel Beckett is Coming SoonThe Director(also directed)
1994NorthJudge Buckle
1995Picture WindowsTullysegment: Soir Bleu
The Jerky Boys: The MovieErnie Lazarro
Steal Big Steal LittleLou Perilli
1996Heck's Way HomeDogcatcher
Mother NightGeorge Kraft
1997Grosse Pointe BlankDr. Oatman
Four Days in SeptemberCharles Burke Elbrick
GattacaDet. Hugo
1998Slums of Beverly HillsMurray Samuel Abromowitz
1999Jakob the LiarMax Frankfurter
2000MagiciansMilo(direct-to-video)
2001America's SweetheartsWellness Guide
Thirteen Conversations About One ThingGeneBoston Society of Film Critics Award for Best Supporting Actor
Chlotrudis Award for Best Supporting Actor
Florida Film Critics Circle Award for Best Cast
National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Supporting Actor (3rd place)
San Diego Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor (runner-up)
Nominated—Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Male
Nominated—Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor
2004ErosDr. Pearl
Hal
segment: Equilibrium
2006Novice, TheThe NoviceFather Benkhe
FirewallArlin Forester
Little Miss SunshineEdwin HooverAcademy Award for Best Supporting Actor
BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Central Ohio Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor(runner-up)
Central Ohio Film Critics Association Award for Best Ensemble(runner-up)
Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Male
National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Supporting Actor (3rd place)
Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Vancouver Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Gotham Award for Best Ensemble Cast
Nominated—Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Prism Award for Best Performance in a Feature Film
Nominated—Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
The Santa Clause 3: The Escape ClauseBud Newman
Raising FlaggFlagg Purdy
2007RenditionSenator Hawkins
2008Sunshine CleaningJoe
Get SmartThe Chief
Marley & MeArnie Klein
2009Private Lives of Pippa Lee, TheThe Private Lives of Pippa LeeHerb
City IslandMichael Malakov (drama coach)
2011Thin IceGorvy Hauer
Change-Up, TheThe Change-UpMitch's Dad
Muppets, TheThe MuppetsTour Guide(cameo)
2012ArgoLester SiegelHollywood Film Award for Ensemble of the Year
Palm Springs International Film Festival Ensemble Cast Award
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated—Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated—Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated— Central Ohio Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated— Central Ohio Film Critics Association Award for Best Ensemble
Nominated—Dallas-Fort Worth Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor - Motion Picture
Nominated—London Film Critics' Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
Nominated—San Diego Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated—San Diego Film Critics Society Award for Best Performance by an Ensemble
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated—Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor
Stand Up GuysRichard Hirsch
2013The Incredible Burt WonderstoneRance Holloway
Grudge MatchLightning
2014Million Dollar ArmRay Poitevint

Television movies/miniseries

YearTitleRoleNotes
1978The Other Side of HellFrank Dole(TV movie premiering January 17, 1978)
Defection of Simas Kudirka, TheThe Defection of Simas KudirkaSimas Kudirka(TV movie premiering January 23, 1978)
1985The Fourth Wise ManOrontes(TV movie premiering March 1985)
1986A Deadly BusinessHarold KaufmanTV
1987Escape from SobiborLeon FeldhendlerNominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor – Miniseries or a Movie
1988Necessary PartiesArchie Corelli(TV movie)
1993CooperstownHarry Willette(TV movie premiering Jan. 1993)
Nominated— Cable ACE Award for Best Actor in a Movie or Miniseries
Taking the HeatTommy Canard(TV movie premiering June 1993)
1994Doomsday GunCol. Yossi(TV movie premiering July 23, 1994)
1999Blood MoneyWilly "The Hammer" Canzaro(TV movie)
2001Varian's WarFreier(TV movie premiering April 2001)
2003Pentagon Papers, TheThe Pentagon PapersHarry Rowen(TV movie)
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor – Miniseries or a Movie
And Starring Pancho Villa as HimselfSam Drebben(TV movie)
2004NoelArtie Venzuela(TV movie)

Television appearances

YearTitleRoleNotes
1964East Side/West SideTed Millerepisode: The Beatnik and the Politician
1966ABC Stage 67Barney KempinskiThe Love Song of Barney Kempinski
Nominated— Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Single Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Drama
1970–71Sesame StreetLarryunknown episodes
1979Carol Burnett & CompanyHimselfepisode: Episode #1.2
1980The Muppet ShowHimselfSeason 4, episode 20
1983St. ElsewhereJerry Singletonepisode: Ties That Bind
episode: Lust En Veritas
episode: Newheart
1985Faerie Tale TheatreBoepisode: The Emperor's New Clothes
1987HarryHarry Porschak7 episodes
1997Chicago HopeZoltan Karpatheinepisode: The Son Also Rises
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor – Drama Series
2001–02100 Centre StreetJoe Rifkind10 episodes
2005Will & GraceMarty Adlerepisode: It's a Dad, Dad, Dad, Dad World

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Alan Arkin Biography". filmReference.com. Retrieved May 12, 2008. 
  2. ^ a b Sierchio, Pat (February 16, 2007). "Alan Arkin—not just another kid From Brooklyn". The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles. Archived from the original on February 23, 2007. Retrieved February 16, 2007. 
  3. ^ "Actor brings creative ways to Honolulu for workshops | The Honolulu Advertiser | Hawaii's Newspaper". The Honolulu Advertiser. 2004-01-27. Retrieved 2013-03-28. 
  4. ^ a b "Alan Arkin biography". Yahoo! Movies. 2008. Archived from the original on December 16, 2006. Retrieved December 9, 2006. 
  5. ^ Farrell, Barry. "Yossarian in Connecticut: Since Catch-22, actor's actor Alan Arkin finally stars as ... Alan Arkin" Life magazine. October 1970.
  6. ^ Lovece, Frank. "Fast Chat: Alan Arkin". New York Newsday. January 7, 2007.
  7. ^ FolkEra.com: The Tarriers. FolkEra.com.
  8. ^ "Alan Arkin Biography". Hollywood.com. Archived from the original on January 3, 2013. Retrieved April 9, 2007. 
  9. ^ Rabin, Nathan (August 2, 2006). "Interview: Alan Arkin". The Onion AV Club. Archived from the original on February 9, 2009. Retrieved March 20, 2009. 
  10. ^ Best Actor. FilmSite.org.
  11. ^ "Dreamgirl" Jennifer Hudson Wins Oscar. NewsMax.com, February 26, 2007.
  12. ^ Little Murders Is Back as Film Arkin Directed
  13. ^ Canby, Vincent (February 21, 1971). "What's So Funny? Murders". New York: New York Times. p. D1. "Little Murders succeeds, at times triumphantly, and it does everything more or less backwards." 
  14. ^ "Roger Ebert's review". Rogerebert.suntimes.com. Retrieved 2013-03-28. 
  15. ^ "Alan Arkin Biography - life, family, children, name, story, school, mother, young, son - Newsmakers Cumulation". Notablebiographies.com. Retrieved 2013-03-28. 

External links[edit]

Videos[edit]