Deer Park, Long Island, New York, United States
Place of Death
Westwood, Los Angeles, California, United States
Cause of Death
Complications From Heart Surgery
Claim to Fame
Easy Money (1983), Back To School (1986)
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Rodney Dangerfield (November 22, 1921 – October 5, 2004), born Jacob Cohen, was a Jewish American comedian and actor, best known for the catchphrase "I can`t get no respect" and his monologues on that theme. He was born on Long Island in the town of Babylon, the son of Jewish parents, his father was the vaudevillian performer Phil Roy (Philip Cohen). His ancestors had come to the United States from Hungary. He would later say that his father "was never home — he was out looking to make other kids”, and that his mother "brought him up all wrong”. As a teenager, he got his start writing jokes for standup comics; he became one himself at 19 under the name Jack Roy. He struggled financially for nine years, at one point performing as a singing waiter (he was fired), and also working as a performing acrobatic diver before giving up show business to take a job selling aluminum siding to support his wife and family. His comedy album, No Respect, won a Grammy Award. One of his TV specials featured a musical number, "Rappin` Rodney”, which soon became one of the first MTV music videos.
His career peaked during the early 1980s, when he began acting in comedy movies. His appearance in Caddyshack led to starring roles in Easy Money and Back To School. In Back to School, Dangerfield`s writing described the character Lou (Burt Young) as "nice and tough" — he put one son through college and another through a wall. (On The Tonight Show, he applied this same description to his doctor, Dr. Vinny Boombotz.) In a change of pace from the comedy persona that made him famous, he played an abusive father in Natural Born Killers, in a scene for which he had written his own lines. In 1994, Rodney Dangerfield won an American Comedy Award for lifetime creative achievement. He was also recognized by the Smithsonian Institution, which put one of his trademark white shirts and red ties on display. When asked about the honor, he joked that the museum was using his shirt to clean Charles Lindbergh`s plane. In 2006, Dangerfield posthumously received a degree from Harvard Law School. It had always been a dream of his to earn such a degree.
He was married to Joyce Indig with whom he had a son, Brian, and a daughter, Melanie. From 1993 to his death he was married to Joan Child, who was instrumental in setting up his Internet site. He was also very good friends with comic Sam Kinison. On April 8, 2003, Dangerfield underwent brain surgery to improve blood flow in preparation for heart valve-replacement surgery on August 24, 2004. Upon entering the hospital, he uttered another one-liner of the type for which he was known: When asked how long he would be hospitalized, he said, "If all goes well, about a week. If not, about an hour-and-a-half.” In September 2004, it was revealed that Dangerfield had been in a coma for several weeks. Afterward, he began breathing on his own and showing signs of awareness when visited by friends. However, on October 5, 2004, he died at the UCLA Medical Center, where he had undergone the surgery in August. He was interred in the Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery in Los Angeles. In keeping with his "No Respect" persona, his headstone reads simply, "Rodney Dangerfield...There goes the neighborhood.”
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Jack Roy (born Jacob Rodney Cohen, November 22, 1921 – October 5, 2004), popularly known by the stage name Rodney Dangerfield, was an American stand-up comedian, actor, voice artist, filmmaker, musician and author known for his self-deprecating one-liners humor, his catchphrase "I don't get no respect!" and his monologues on that theme.
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Phil Roy (Philip Cohen)
Richmond Hill High School, Richmond Hill, Queens, New York City, New York, United States (1939)
1940–1949, 1962–2004, 1940–1949, 1962–2004
Surreal humor, Wit, Black comedy, Deadpan, Jewish humor, Insult Comedy
Depression, human sexuality, aging, deadpan, self-deprecation, alcoholism
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