Carl Reiner is a renaissance man who has lent his talents to many of the greatest comedy properties of all time. His career has been one of legendary partnerships (Sid Caesar, Mel Brooks, Steve Martin) and box office magic. Getting his start as a performer in Broadway musicals, Reiner went on to write a pilot for a show called Head of the Family that would eventually become The Dick Van Dyke Show.
“The absolute truth is the thing that makes people laugh.” – Carl Reiner
He soon made the jump to film, directing 1967’s Enter Laughing, which had been based on a play that was, in turn, based on his novel by the same name. Reiner’s filmography is extensive, and is punctuated by iconic movies such as The Jerk, Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid and The Man With Two Brains. He continues to work in television, having recently appeared on Parks and Recreation. He has won 12 Emmy Awards (as well as being nominated for three and elected into the Television Hall of Fame) and a Grammy.
Q&A with Carl
When did you first realize you were funny?
In 3rd grade, when I put one foot behind my neck and hopped around on the other foot and people laughed.
Who was (or is) your comic inspiration?
Jack Benny, Eddie Cantor, Buster Keaton, Charlie Chaplin
What did you think you were going to be when you grew up?