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Alan Wolf Arkin (born March 26, 1934) is an American award-winning actor and director. He is best-known for starring in such films as: Catch-22; The In-Laws; Edward Scissorhands; The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming; Glengarry Glen Ross ; and Little Miss Sunshine, for which he won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in 2007. He is the father of actor Adam Arkin.

Early life and career

Arkin was born in Brooklyn, New York City, the son of Beatrice (née Wortis), a teacher, and David I. Arkin, a painter and writer who mostly worked as a teacher.[1] Arkin was raised in a Jewish family with "no emphasis on religion;" his maternal grandfather was an immigrant from Odessa, Ukraine.[2] The family moved from Brooklyn to Los Angeles, California when Arkin was 11 years old,[2] but an eight-month Hollywood strike cost Arkin's father a set designer job he had wanted to take. Arkin's parents were accused during the 1950s Red Scare of being Communists, which led to Arkin's father losing his job after refusing to answer questions regarding his political affiliation. David Arkin challenged the dismissal and ultimately prevailed, but after his death.[3]

Arkin, who had been taking acting lessons since age 10, became a scholarship student at various drama academies, including one run by Stanislavsky student Benjamin Zemach, who taught Arkin a psychological approach to acting.[4] Arkin attended Franklin High School,[5] in Los Angeles, followed by Los Angeles City College from 1951 to 1953. 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, same-name Jamaican calypso folk song 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]

From 1958 to 1968, Arkin performed and recorded with the children's folk group, The Baby Sitters.[8]

Acting career

Arkin is one of only eight[9] 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.

Arkin is equally comfortable in comedy and dramatic roles. Among those for which he has garnered the most favorable critical attention are his Oscar-nominated turns above; Wait Until Dark, as the erudite killer stalking Audrey Hepburn; director Mike Nichols' Catch-22; The Seven-Per-Cent Solution (where he played Sigmund Freud); writer Jules Feiffer's Little Murders, which Arkin directed; the The In-Laws, co-starring Peter Falk; Glengarry Glen Ross; and Little Miss Sunshine, for which he received his third Oscar nomination, in the category of Best Supporting Actor. On the 11 February 2007 he received a BAFTA Film Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role for his portrayal of Grandfather Edwin in Little Miss Sunshine. On February 25, 2007, upon winning the Academy Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role, Arkin, who plays a foul-mouthed grandfather with a taste for heroin 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".[10] At 72 years old, Arkin became the sixth oldest winner of the Best Supporting Actor Oscar.

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

Writing career

Arkin is also the author of many books, including the children's stories The Lemming Condition and The Clearing.

Personal life

Arkin has been married three times. He and Jeremy Yaffe, to whom he was married from 1955 to 1960, have two sons: Adam Arkin, born Aug. 19, 1956 or 1957 (accounts differ), and Matthew Arkin, born in 1960. 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.[3] As of 2007, they live in New Mexico.

Year Film Role Other notes

1957 Calypso Heat Wave Tarriers lead singer uncredited
1963 That's Me Nominated - Academy Award for Live-Action Short Subject
1966 The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming Lt. Rozanov Golden Globe Award for Best Actor - Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
Nominated - Academy Award for Best Actor; Nominated - BAFTA Award
The Last Mohican Pretzel Peddler short film
1967 Woman Times Seven Fred (segment "The Suicides") released June 1967
Wait Until Dark Harry Roat released October 1967
1968 Inspector Clouseau Inspector Jacques Clouseau released July 19
The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter John Singer Nominated - Academy Award for Best Actor
Nominated - Golden Globe Award for Best Actor - Motion Picture Drama
1969 Popi Abraham Rodriguez Nominated - Golden Globe Award for Best Actor - Motion Picture Drama
The Monitors Cameo appearance released October
1970 Catch-22 Capt. John Yossarian
1971 Little Murders Lt. Practice also director
1972 Last of the Red Hot Lovers Barney Cashman released August
Deadhead Miles Cooper
1974 It Couldn't Happen to a Nicer Guy Nov. 1974 TV-movie
Freebie and the Bean Bean released December 1974
1975 Rafferty and the Gold Dust Twins Gunny Rafferty a.k.a. Rafferty and the Highway Hustlers
Hearts of the West Burt Kessler released October 1975
1976 The Seven-Per-Cent Solution Dr. Sigmund Freud
1977 Fire Sale Ezra Fikus also director
1978 The Other Side of Hell Frank Dole January 17, 1978 TV-movie
The Defection of Simas Kudirka Simas Kudirka January 23, 1978 TV-movie
1979 The In-Laws Sheldon S. Kornpett, D.D.S. released June 1979
The Magician of Lublin Yasha Mazur released November 1979
1980 Simon Prof. Simon Mendelssohn
1981 Full Moon High Dr. Brand
Improper Channels Jeffrey Martley released May 1981
Chu Chu and the Philly Flash Flash released August 1981
1982 The Last Unicorn Schmendrick voice
1983 The Return of Captain Invincible Captain Invincible
1984 A Matter of Principle Flagg Purdy TV movie
1985 The Fourth Wise Man Orontes March 1985 TV movie
Joshua Then and Now Reuben Shapiro released September 1985
Bad Medicine Dr. Ramón Madera released November 1985
1986 A Deadly Business Harold Kaufman TV
Big Trouble Leonard Hoffman released May 1986
1987 Escape from Sobibor Leon Feldhendler Nominated - Emmy Award
1988 Necessary Parties Archie Corelli TV
1990 Coupe de Ville Fred Libner released March 1990
Edward Scissorhands Bill released Dec. 7, 1990
Havana Joe Volpi released Dec. 12, 1990
1991 The Rocketeer A. 'Peevy' Peabody
1992 Glengarry Glen Ross George Aaronow
1993 Cooperstown Harry Willette Jan. 1993 TV movie
Indian Summer Unca Lou Handler released April 1993
Taking the Heat Tommy Canard June 1993 TV movie
So I Married an Axe Murderer Police Captain (uncredited) released July 1993
Samuel Beckett is Coming Soon The Director (character) short film; also director
1994 North Judge Buckle released July 22, 1994
Doomsday Gun Col. Yossi July 23, 1994 TV movie
Picture Windows Tully, in segment "Soir Bleu" Oct. 1994 TV movie
1995 The Jerky Boys Ernie Lazarro released Feb. 1995
Steal Big Steal Little Lou Perilli released Sept. 1995
1996 Heck's Way Home Dogcatcher March 1996 - TV
Mother Night George Kraft released Nov. 1996
1997 Grosse Pointe Blank Dr. Oatman released April 1997
O Que É Isso, Companheiro? Charles Burke Elbrick Brazil-U.S May 1997; U.S. Jan. 1998
Gattaca Det. Hugo released Oct. 1997
1998 Slums of Beverly Hills Murray Samuel Abromowitz
1999 Jakob the Liar Max Frankfurter released Sept. 1999
Blood Money Willy "The Hammer" Canzaro TV movie
2000 Arigo writer and director
Magicians Milo direct-to-video
2001 Varian's War Freier April 2001 TV movie
America's Sweethearts Wellness Guide released July 2001
Thirteen Conversations About One Thing Gene wide theatrical release 2002
2003 The Pentagon Papers Harry Rowen March 2003 TV-movie
Nominated - Emmy Award
And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself Sam Drebben Sept. 2003 TV movie
2004 The Novice Father Benkhe released Sept. 2004
Noel Artie Venzuela Nov. 2004 TV movie
Eros Dr. Pearl / Hal in segment "Equilibrium"
2006 Firewall Arlin Forester released Feb. 2006
Little Miss Sunshine Edwin Hoover Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor
BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role
The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause Bud Newman released Dec. 2006
2007 Raising Flagg Flagg Purdy released Feb. 2007
Rendition Senator Hawkins released October. 2007
2008 Sunshine Cleaning Joe
Get Smart The Chief scheduled July 2008
Marley & Me TBA scheduled December 2008
2009 The Private Lives of Pippa Lee Herb filming
Year Title Role Notes
1964 East Side/West Side Ted Miller "The Beatnik and the Politician"
1966 ABC Stage 67 Barney Kempinski "The Love Song of Barney Kempinski"
Nominated - Emmy Award
1970-1972 Sesame Street Larry unknown episodes
1979 Carol Burnett & Company Himself Episode 1, Season 2
1983 St. Elsewhere Jerry Singleton 3 episodes: "Ties That Bind", "Lust En Veritas", "Newheart"
1958 Faerie Tale Theatre Bo "The Emperor's New Clothes"
1987 Harry Harry Porschak March 425, ABC TV series
1997 Chicago Hope Zoltan Karpathein "The Son Also Rises"
Nominated - Emmy Award
2001-2002 100 Centre Street Joe Rifkind A&E TV series
2005 Will & Grace Marty Adler "It's a Dad, Dad, Dad, Dad World"
2006-2007 Boston Legal Prosecutor Two episodes in Season 3

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