Eugene Levy | Srivideo
Born/Date of Birth: December 17, 1946
Place of Birth: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Occupation: Actor, comedian, producer, director, writer
Spouse(s): Deborah Divine (m. 1977)
Children: Dan Levy, Sarah Levy
Eugene Levy, CM (born December 17, 1946) is a Canadian actor, comedian, producer, director, and writer. He is the only actor to have appeared in all eight of the American Pie films, in his role as Noah Levenstein. He often plays flustered and unconventional figures. He is a regular collaborator of actor-director Christopher Guest, appearing in and co-writing four of his films, commencing with Waiting for Guffman (1996).
Levy received the Governor General's Performing Arts Award, Canada's highest honour in the performing arts, in 2008. He was appointed to the Order of Canada on June 30, 2011. He currently stars as Johnny Rose in Schitt's Creek, a comedy series that he co-created with his son and co-star, Dan Levy. In 2019, he was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series.
Levy was born to a Jewish family in Hamilton, Ontario. His mother was a homemaker and his father was a foreman at an automobile plant. He went to Westdale Secondary School and attended McMaster University. He was vice-president of the McMaster Film Board, a student film group, where he met moviemaker Ivan Reitman.
An alumnus of both the Second City, Toronto and the sketch comedy series Second City Television, Levy often plays unusual supporting characters with nerdish streaks. Perhaps his best-known role on SCTV is the dimwitted Earl Camembert, a news anchor for the "SCTV News" and a parody of real-life Canadian newsman Earl Cameron. Celebrities impersonated by Levy on SCTV include Perry Como, Ricardo Montalbán, Alex Trebek, Sean Connery, Howard Cosell, Henry Kissinger, Menachem Begin, Bud Abbott, Milton Berle, John Charles Daly, Gene Shalit, Judd Hirsch, Jack Carter, Muammar al-Gaddafi, Tony Dow, James Caan, Lorne Greene, Rex Reed, Ralph Young (of Sandler and Young), F. Lee Bailey, Ernest Borgnine, former Ontario chief coroner and talk show host Dr. Morton Shulman, Norman Mailer, Neil Sedaka and Howard McNear as Floyd the Barber.
Original Levy characterizations on SCTV are comic Bobby Bittman, scandal sheet entrepreneur Dr. Raoul Withers, "report on business" naïf Brian Johns, 3-D horror auteur Woody Tobias Jr., cheerful Leutonian accordionist Stan Schmenge, lecherous dream interpreter Raoul Wilson, hammer-voiced sports broadcaster Lou Jaffe, diminutive union patriarch Sid Dithers ("San Francisckie! Did you drove or did you flew?"), fey current-events commentator Joel Weiss, buttoned-down panel show moderator Dougal Currie, smarmy Just for Fun emcee Stan Kanter, energetic used car salesman Al Peck, guileless security guard Gus Gustofferson, Phil the Garment King (also of Phil's Nails), and the inept teen dance show host Rockin’ Mel Slirrup.
Though he has been the "above the title" star in only two films, Armed and Dangerous (1986) and The Man (2005), he has featured prominently in many films. He is the co-writer and frequent cast member of Christopher Guest’s mockumentary features, particularly A Mighty Wind, where his sympathetic performance as emotionally unstable folksinger Mitch Cohen won kudos; his accolades included a Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor - Musical or Comedy and the prestigious New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor. In the 1980s and 1990s, he appeared in Splash, National Lampoon’s Vacation, Club Paradise, Stay Tuned, Multiplicity and other comedies. Levy was the creator of Maniac Mansion, a television sitcom based on the LucasArts video game of the same name. He was also seriously considered for the role of Toby Ziegler on The West Wing, a role that went to actor Richard Schiff.
Levy, along with his son Dan Levy, is co-creator of the CBC/Pop TV sitcom, Schitt's Creek. He also stars in the show alongside his son as head of the Rose family, Johnny Rose. His daughter, Sarah Levy, portrays Twyla Sands, the waitress at the Schitt‘s Creek diner.
Levy, along with Christopher Guest and Michael McKean, was awarded the 2003 Grammy Award for Best Song Written for a Motion Picture, Television, or Other Visual Media for the title song from A Mighty Wind. Levy appeared in the corner of a poster hanging outside the movie theatre in Springfield in the "See Homer Run" episode of The Simpsons. (The poster was advertising for Princess Rock Star and featured a girl with an electric guitar, with Levy in the corner wearing a royal crown. A liner note under him read "Eugene Levy as the King").
In March 2006, it was announced that he would receive a star on Canada's Walk of Fame. In 2002, the entire cast of SCTV was given a group star, and although Levy is not mentioned on the actual star, he was still inducted as a part of the group. This makes him one of only four two-time honourees, alongside fellow SCTV alumni John Candy, Martin Short and Catherine O'Hara.
Levy is one of only a handful of people who have won at least five Canadian Comedy Awards, including two for Best Writing (Best in Show in 2001 and A Mighty Wind in 2004) and three for Best Male Performer (Best in Show, American Pie 2 in 2002, and A Mighty Wind).
In 2008, the Governor General of Canada presented Levy with the Governor General's Performing Arts Awards (GGPAA), a lifetime achievement award considered "for their outstanding body of work and enduring contribution to the performing arts in Canada.". In 2010, Levy was awarded the ACTRA Award by the union representing Canada's actors.
In 2011, Levy was made a Member of the Order of Canada "for his contributions as a comic actor and writer, and for his dedication to charitable causes."
On May 22, 2012, Levy delivered a commencement address at Dalhousie University, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and was awarded the degree Doctor of Laws (honoris causa).
On June 11, 2012, Levy was presented with the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal by the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario.
On March 13, 2016, Levy took home the award for "Best Performance by an Actor in a Continuing Leading Comedic Role" at the 4th Annual Canadian Screen Awards, for his performance as Johnny Rose in the CBC/Pop TV sitcom, Schitt's Creek.
Levy married Deborah Divine in 1977. They live in Los Angeles, St. Augustine, Florida and Canada and have two children together: actor Dan and actress Sarah, both of whom star alongside him on Schitt's Creek.
Levy is an advocate for autism awareness and treatment. He was a close friend of John Candy, who died of a heart attack in 1994. Levy is a member of the Canadian charity Artists Against Racism.
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