Stephen Tobolowsky

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Stephen Tobolowsky
Stephen tobolowsky 2012.jpg
Stephen Tobolowsky at the 2012 Texas Book Festival.
BornStephen Harold Tobolowsky
(1951-05-30) May 30, 1951 (age 63)
Dallas, Texas, U.S.
Years active1976–present
Spouse(s)Ann Hearn (1988–present; 2 children)
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Stephen Tobolowsky
Stephen tobolowsky 2012.jpg
Stephen Tobolowsky at the 2012 Texas Book Festival.
BornStephen Harold Tobolowsky
(1951-05-30) May 30, 1951 (age 63)
Dallas, Texas, U.S.
Years active1976–present
Spouse(s)Ann Hearn (1988–present; 2 children)

Stephen Harold Tobolowsky (born May 30, 1951) is an American actor, author and musician. He played annoying insurance salesman Ned Ryerson in the Bill Murray film Groundhog Day,[1] as well as such television characters as Commissioner Hugo Jarry in Deadwood and Bob Bishop in Heroes. He has had recurring roles as Sandy Ryerson on Glee, and as Stu Beggs on Californication.

In addition to acting, Tobolowsky does an audio podcast about once a month of autobiographical stories of his acting and personal life.[2] He has also authored The Dangerous Animals Club and Cautionary Tales based on these original stories.[3]


Tobolowsky has appeared in over 200 films and at least as many television projects with mostly minor roles. In 1994's Radioland Murders, he portrayed Max Applewhite, a gentle sound man with a dark secret. He appeared on Seinfeld as Tor Eckman, Kramer's holistic healer, in the second season episode, "The Heart Attack". He is also known for having played "Sammy Jankis" in 2000's Memento, starring Guy Pearce. In 2005, he was the eponymous subject of the documentary film, Stephen Tobolowsky's Birthday Party, that featured him preparing for, and hosting, his own birthday party, while delivering a series of anecdotes from his life. He was a member of the cast of NBC's television series Heroes for its second season, portraying Bob, the new boss of "The Company".

He has worked in the theater as well, directing and acting in plays in New York City, San Francisco and Los Angeles. He directed one movie, Two Idiots in Hollywood, based on his play of the same name. He also co-wrote the film True Stories with David Byrne and then-girlfriend Beth Henley.[4] He was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Play for the 2002 revival of Morning's at Seven.

On October 29, 2009, Tobolowsky started a new podcast on /Film called The Tobolowsky Files, where he tells stories, in a similar fashion to Tobolowsky's film Stephen Tobolowsky's Birthday Party.[5][6] The show was picked up by Public Radio International in 2012.[7]

Personal life[edit]

Tobolowsky was born in Dallas, Texas to a Jewish family. He graduated from Justin F. Kimball High School in Dallas and Southern Methodist University.[8][9]

Selected filmography[edit]


2014Mr. Peabody & ShermanPrincipal PurdyVoice
2012The LoraxUncle UbbVoice
2011You May Not Kiss the BridePlumber
2011Peep WorldEphraim
2010BuriedAlan Davenport
2009The Time Traveler's WifeDr. Kendrick
2008Beethoven's Big BreakSal
2007Loveless in Los AngelesJon
2007Wild HogsCharley
2007Boxboarders!Dr. Stephen James
2006National Lampoon's Totally Baked: A PotumentaryJesco Rollins
2006Failure to LaunchBud
2006Blind DatingDr. Perkins
2006Pope DreamsCarl Venable
2005Stephen Tobolowsky's Birthday PartyHimself
2005RobotsBigmouth Executive
2005Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and FabulousTom Abernathy
2004Little Black BookCarl
2004GarfieldHappy Chapman
2003National SecurityBilly Narthax
2003Freaky FridayMr. Bates
2002The Country BearsNorbert Barrington
2002Love LizaTom Bailey
2001Freddy Got FingeredUncle Neil
2001The Day the World EndedPrincipal Ed Turner
2000MementoSammy Jankis
1999Bossa NovaTrevor
1999Don't Look Under The BedMichael McCausland
1999The InsiderEric Kluster
1998Black DogMcClaren
1997Mr. MagooAgent Chuck Stupak
1996Homeward Bound II: Lost in San FranciscoBando
1996The Glimmer ManChristopher Maynard
1995Murder in the FirstMr. Henkin
1995Dr. Jekyll and Ms. HydeOliver Mintz
1994Radioland MurdersMax Applewhite
1994TrevorFather Jon
1993Groundhog DayNed
1993Calendar GirlAntonio Gallo
1993The PickleMike Krakower
1992SneakersDr. Werner Brandes
1992Single White FemaleMitchell Myerson
1992Memoirs of an Invisible ManWarren Singleton
1992Basic InstinctDr. Lamott
1991WedlockWarden Holliday
1991Thelma & LouiseMax
1990The GriftersJeweler
1990Welcome Home, Roxy CarmichaelMayor Bill Klepler
1990Funny About LoveHugo
1990Bird on a WireJoe Weyburn
1989In CountryPete
1989Great Balls of Fire!Jud Phillips
1989Checking OutPharmacist
1989Mississippi BurningClayton Townley
1987SpaceballsCaptain of the Guard
1984The Philadelphia ExperimentBarney


2014Friends with Better LivesDr. Adleman
2012-2013JustifiedFBI Agent Jerry Barkley
2012The Mindy ProjectMarc Shulman2004
2012Work ItDr. David Deutsch
2011-2014CalifornicationStu Beggs
2011CommunityProfessor Peter Sheffield
2010Law & Order: Special Victims UnitEdwin Adelson
2010True Jackson, VPLars Balthazar
2009-2011GleeSandy Ryerson
2009The New Adventures of Old ChristinePrincipal James Merrow
2008CSI: Crime Scene InvestigationSpencer Freiberg
2007-2008HeroesBob Bishop
2007EntourageMayor of Beverly Hills
2007John From CincinnatiMark Lewinsky
2006-2007Big DayThe Garf
2006Desperate HousewivesBud Penrod
2005-2006DeadwoodHugo Jarry
2005Curb Your EnthusiasmLen Dunkel
2004Complete SavagesMr. Frehley
2004The West WingDr. Max Milkman
2004Will and GraceNed Weathers
2003-2005CSI: MiamiAssistant State Attorney Don Haffman
2003Las VegasDonny Rollins
2002Law & Order: Criminal IntentJim Halliwell
2002Malcolm in the MiddleMr. Fisher
2001The Lone GunmenAdam Burgess
2001Off CentreMilt Flack
2001RoswellJulius Walters
1999That '70s ShowThe Professor
1997The Drew Carey ShowThe Councilman
1986Designing WomenBoyd


  1. ^ "The Tobolowsky Files Ep. 29 – The Classic". /Film. 
  2. ^ "iTunes - Podcasts - The Tobolowsky Files by PRI". Retrieved 2013-04-24. 
  3. ^ "Stephen Tobolowsky: Books, Biography, Blog, Audiobooks, Kindle". Retrieved 2013-04-24. 
  4. ^ Phipps, Keith (2011-08-02). "Random Roles Stephen Tobolowsky". The A. V. Club. Retrieved 2011-08-03. 
  5. ^ Tobolowsky, Stephen (September 16, 2010). "Op-Ed Contributor - They Had Great Character". ( Retrieved 2011-02-08. 
  6. ^ Chapman, Glen (March 16, 2010). "Celebrating Stephen Tobolowsky". Den of Geek. Retrieved 2011-02-08. 
  7. ^ Public Radio International® signs actor, writer Stephen Tobolowsky to create new storytelling series for radio
  8. ^ Currey, Mason. "Stephen Tobolowsky: What I learned in the seventh grade". Retrieved 2013-04-24. 
  9. ^ Cohen, Susan (2012-11-07). "Character actor Stephen Tobolowsky writes his first book | Features". Charleston City Paper. Retrieved 2013-04-24. 

External links[edit]