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Alan Alda

Alan Alda earned the distinction of being nominated for an OscarÂ, a Tony, and an Emmy and made The New York Times bestseller list, all in the same year (2005). Alda received the Academy Award nomination (and a BAFTA Award nomination) for Martin Scorsese's The Aviator, the Emmy nomination (and a Screen Actors' Guild nomination) came from his portrayal of Arnold Vinick, the Republican candidate for the presidency in NBC's hit series The West Wing, and the Tony nomination was for his performance in the Broadway revival of David Mamet's Glengarry Glen Ross. That same year, Alda's memoir, entitled Never Have Your Dog Stuffed, and Other Things I've Learned, became a best seller.

In 2006, for his performance as Arnold Vinick in The West Wing, Alda was awarded his 6th Emmy. He also received the National Science Board's Public Service Award and he was also inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Alda has also earned international recognition as an actor, writer and director. His performance in Woody Allen's Crimes and Misdemeanors earned him the D.W. Griffith Award, the NY Film Critics Award and a BAFTA nomination for Best Supporting Actor. His additional film credits as an actor include Everyone Says I Love You, Flirting With Disaster, Manhattan Murder Mystery, And The Band Played On, Same Time, Next Year and California Suite. He wrote and starred in The Seduction of Joe Tynan, and he wrote, directed and starred in The Four Seasons, Sweet Liberty, A New Life and Betsy's Wedding.

On Broadway Alda played the physicist Richard Feynman in QED and starred in the first American production of the international hit play ART. He received Tony Award nominations for his performances in Neil Simon's Jake's Women and the musical The Apple Tree. His other appearances on Broadway include The Owl and the Pussycat, Purlie Victorious and Fair Game for Lovers, for which he received a Theatre World Award.

On television Alda hosted the award winning PBS series Scientific American Frontiers for eleven years, interviewing leading scientists from around the world. He played Hawkeye Pierce on the classic television series M*A*S*H, and also wrote and directed many of the episodes. In eleven years on M*A*S*H, Alda won an Emmy five times and is the only person to be honored by the TV Academy as top performer, writer and director.

Alda has won three Director's Guild Awards, six Golden Globe Awards, seven People's Choice Awards, and received two Writer's Guild nominations for his work in television. In all, he has been nominated for 32 Emmys including a nomination in 1999 for his performance on ER, as well as for his portrayal of Caryl Chessman, the inmate who spent 12 years on death row in Kill Me If You Can. His TV work also includes Truman Capote's The Glass House. He was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame in 1994.

Alda was born in New York City, the son of the distinguished actor, Robert Alda. He began acting in the theater at the age of 16 in summer stock in Barnesville, Pennsylvania. During his junior year at Fordham University, he studied in Europe where he performed on the stage in Rome and on television in Amsterdam with his father. After college, he acted at the Cleveland Playhouse on a Ford Foundation grant. On his return to New York, he was seen on Broadway, off-Broadway and on television. He later acquired improvisational training with Second City in New York and Compass at Hyannisport. That background in political and social satire led to his work as a regular on television's That Was the Week That Was.

For twenty years he was a member of the Board of the Museum of Television & Radio, and for ten years, from 1989 to 1999, he was a Trustee of the Rockefeller Foundation. Together with his wife, Arlene, an award winning professional photographer and author of twelve children's books, Alda has three daughters and seven grandchildren.

Note: This profile was written in or before 2007.
Read earlier biographies on this page.

Alan Alda Facts

Birth NameAlphonso Joseph D'Abruzzo
BirthdayJanuary 28, 1936 (87)
BirthplaceNew York, New York, USA
Height6' 2" (1m88)  How tall is Alan Alda compared to you?
Awards2006 Emmy Awards: Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series (for The West Wing)
1983 Golden Globe Awards: Best Actor in a Television Series - Musical or Comedy (for M*A*S*H)
1982 Golden Globe Awards: Best Actor in a Television Series - Musical or Comedy (for M*A*S*H)
1981 Golden Globe Awards: Best Actor in a Television Series - Musical or Comedy (for M*A*S*H)
1980 Golden Globe Awards: Best Actor in a Television Series - Musical or Comedy (for M*A*S*H)
1976 Golden Globe Awards: Best Actor in a Television Series - Musical or Comedy (for M*A*S*H)
1975 Golden Globe Awards: Best Actor in a Television Series - Musical or Comedy (for M*A*S*H)

Selected Filmography

Bridge of Spies
The Longest Ride
M*A*S*H: The Complete Series + Movie
What Women Want
Longest Ride, The
Bridge of Spies DVD
The Object Of My Affection
The Aviator
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