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TV

Milton Berle

Mostly Credited As: Milton Berle
Sometimes Credited As: Milton Berlinger
Uncle Miltie

Birth Name: Mendel Berlinger
Date Of Birth: July 12, 1908 (Age 93)
Country Of Birth: USA
Birth Place: New York City, New York
Date Of Death: March 27, 2002
Cause Of Death: Colon Cancer (Los Angeles, CA)
Height: 5' 10" (1.77 m)

Milton Berle


In a career that spread out over the majority of 80 years, and included everything from silent films to vaudeville to Broadway to radio, Milton Berle qualifies as one of the personifications of "show business". Despite making a mark in each of the aforesaid media, Berle achieved his greatest success as the first acknowledged superstar of television. Between 1948 and 1956, Tuesday nights belonged to the comedian. The success of his weekly variety show earned him the honorific titles of "Mr. Television" and "Uncle Miltie." Famous for his extremely high energy level and for a series of outlandish characterizations--especially those featuring the star in drag--Berle was at the top of the TV ratings for several seasons, but when the inevitable fade occurred, he was unable to find a subsequent suitable vehicle for his talents. He did, however, stay prominent in the public eye via many TV specials, both those built around him and in guest star spots, where his trademark cigar, snide wisecracks, unctuous manner and withering glare at the camera were put to good use.

Berle began his career as a child model, posing for the advertising campaign for Buster Brown shoes. He entered films in 1914, appearing in the serial The Perils of Pauline and Mack Sennett's Tillie's Punctured Romance. Reportedly, he appeared in over 50 silent films as a child performer. Berle began to perform on stage in 1920 in the Broadway production of Floradora. Appearances in vaudeville, where the comedian perfected his wiseguy persona, led to engagements in editions of Earl Carroll Vanities and the Ziegfeld Follies. He returned to features in New Faces of 1937 (1937) and made sporadic appearances in the 1940s, including Sun Valley Serenade (1941) and Always Leave Them Laughing (1949).

After establishing himself in the developing medium of TV, Berle returned to features and the stage, searching for the role that would duplicate his success on the small screen. Like others comics who became TV personalities (e.g., Lucille Ball, Red Skelton, Carol Burnett, Sid Caesar), Berle had trouble shaking the public's perception of him as anything other than Uncle Miltie. His return to Broadway in Herb Gardner's play The Goodbye People (1968) was short-lived. He had moderate success touring in Neil Simon's Last of the Red Hot Lovers (1970) and later in the sex farce Norman, Is That You? (1975).

His feature work since 1960 has also been sporadic. He appeared as himself, hired to coach a showgirl (Marilyn Monroe) in comedy in George Cukor's Let's Make Love (1960), was a henpecked motorist in Stanley Kramer's all-star It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (1963), partnered with Margaret Leighton as a mourner in Tony Richardson's sardonic The Loved One (1965), and delivered a dramatic portrayal of a Jewish gangster in Lepke (1975). He has continued to work into the 1990s, appearing in the 1995 direct-to-video children's film Storybook.

On TV, Berle has made numerous guest appearances on comedies, variety shows and specials and dramas. An attempt to revive his variety show in the mid-60s failed to attract audience attention. Berle has proven himself capable as a dramatic performer on the small screen. He earned a Best Actor Emmy nomination for his dramatic performance in the Doyle Against the House episode of The Dick Powell Show (NBC, 1961) and a Best Guest Actor Emmy nomination for his turn as a veteran actor struggling with Alzheimer's Disease in an episode of Beverly Hills, 90210 (Fox, 1995).

Uncle Miltie succumbed to colon cancer on March 27, 2002 at his home in Los Angeles, California, USA.

TV Appearances

Main cast 
The Milton Berle Show (1966) (1966)As: Himself (Host)
General Hospital (US) (1963)As: Mickey Miller (1981-1982)
The Music Shop (1959)As: Himself
Kraft Music Hall (1958)As: Host (1958-1959)
The Milton Berle Show (1948)As: Host
Episode Cast Credits 

Kenan & Kel (1996) 
  Two Heads Are Better Than None (Jul/15/2000) As Uncle Leo 

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart (1996) 
  Milton Berle 02x45: (Apr/08/1997) As Himself, [Interviewees]

Due South (1994) 
  Body Language 02x15: (Apr/25/1996) As Shelley Litvak 

The Nanny (US) (1993) 
  The Party's Over 03x08: (Nov/06/1995) As Uncle Manny 

The Critic (1994) 
  I Can't Believe It's a Clip Show 02x10: (May/21/1995) Voiced  Himself 

Beverly Hills, 90210 (1990) 
  Sentenced to Life 05x16: (Jan/04/1995) As Saul Howard, [Special Guest Stars]

Matlock (1986) 
  The Last Laugh 08x06: (Nov/04/1993) As Harvey Chase 

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (1990) 
  Ill Will 02x18: (Feb/10/1992) As Max Jakey 

Amazing Stories (1985) 
  Fine Tuning 01x07: (Nov/10/1985) As Himself 

Fame (1982) (1982) 
  Coco Returns 04x19: (Feb/25/1985) As Nathan Adler 

Murder, She Wrote (1984) 
  Broadway Malady 01x12: (Jan/13/1985) As Lew Feldman 

Diff'rent Strokes (1978) 
  The Bar Mitzvah Boy 06x21: (Mar/17/1984) As Rabbi Morris, [Special Guest Stars]

Tony Awards (1967) 
  The 36th Annual Tony Awards 16x01: (Jun/06/1982) As Himself 

The Love Boat (1977) 
  He's My Brother/Zeke and Zelda/Teach Me Tonight 05x13: (Dec/05/1981) As Zeke 
  Message for Maureen/The Acapulco Connection/Gotcha 01x04: (Oct/15/1977) As Mr. Wolfe 

The Fall Guy (1981) 
  The Rich Get Richer 01x04: (Nov/18/1981) As Himself 

CHiPs (1977) 
  The Great 5K Star Race and Boulder Wrap Party (2) 04x06: (Dec/07/1980) As Himself 
  The Great 5K Star Race and Boulder Wrap Party (1) 04x05: (Dec/07/1980) As Himself 

Saturday Night Live (1975) 
  Milton Berle/Ornette Coleman 04x17: (Apr/14/1979) As Himself (Host) 

Hallmark Hall Of Fame (1951) 
  Have I Got A Christmas For You 27x03: (Dec/16/1977) As guest star 

Donny and Marie (1976) 
  GUESTS: MILTON BERLE, CHARO, THE SYLVERS 03x09: (Dec/02/1977) As Himself 
  GUESTS: MILTON BERLE, CONNIE STEVENS 02x15: (Jan/28/1977) As Himself 
  GUESTS: ANNE MEARA, MILTON BERLE, NIPSEY RUSSELL, PAUL LYNDE 01x08: (Mar/19/1976) As Himself 

The Muppet Show (1976) 
  Milton Berle 02x03: (Sep/26/1977) As Himself 

The Brady Bunch Hour (1977) 
  Milton Berle / Larry Larson / Rip Taylor / Tina Turner 01x02: (Feb/27/1977) As Himself 

Dean Martin Celebrity Roast (1973) 
  Danny Thomas 01x39: (Dec/15/1976) As Himself 
  Dennis Weaver 01x36: (Apr/19/1976) As Himself 
  Valerie Harper 01x33: (Nov/20/1975) As Himself 
  Sammy Davis Jr. 01x30: (Apr/24/1975) As Himself 

Tony Orlando and Dawn (1974) 
  Season 2, Episode 20 02x20: (Feb/18/1976) As Himself 

Here's Lucy (1968) 
  Milton Berle is the Life of the Party 06x19: (Feb/11/1974) As Himself 
  Lucy and the Used Car Dealer 02x09: (Nov/17/1969) As Used Car Salesman 

The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour (1969) 
  Milton Berle, Freda Payne, Dom DeLuise 04x22: (Mar/07/1972) As Himself 

McCloud (1970) 
  Give My Regrets to Broadway 02x07: (Feb/23/1972) As Malcolm Garnett 

Mannix (1967) 
  Nightshade 05x15: (Dec/29/1971) As Danny Brite 

The Mod Squad (1968) 
  And a Little Child Shall Bleed Them 04x11: (Nov/23/1971) As Uncle Bobo 

Make Room for Granddaddy (1970) 
  Cheating the Cheater 01x14: (Jan/06/1971) As Himself 

The Ed Sullivan Show (1948) 
  Milton Berle, Bob Hope, Tom Jones 24x01: (Sep/20/1970) As Himself 
  Milton Berle, Al Hirt 17x11: (Dec/15/1963) As Himself 
  King Cole Trio, Nanette Fabray, Buster Keaton, Milton Berle 04x08: (Nov/05/1950) As Himself 
  Milton Berle, Ken Murray, Kathryn Lee 03x30: (Apr/09/1950) As Himself, [Guest Hosts]

Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In (1968) 
  Episode #65 03x25: (Mar/09/1970) As Himself 
  Episode #14 01x14: (Apr/29/1968) As Himself 

Playboy After Dark (1968) 
  Milton Berle; Barrie Chase; Jo Anne Worley; Tommy Joe White 02x12: (Feb/18/1970) As Himself 

The Hollywood Palace (1964) 
  Host: Milton Berle / The Youngbloods 07x06: (Nov/22/1969) As Himself, [Guest Hosts]
  Host: Milton Berle 06x19: (Feb/15/1969) As Himself, [Guest Hosts]
  Host: Milton Berle / Martha Raye 06x09: (Nov/30/1968) As Himself, [Guest Hosts]
  Host: Milton Berle / Leonard Nimoy 06x03: (Oct/12/1968) As Himself, [Guest Hosts]

Kraft Music Hall (1958) 
  The Friars Roast Milton Berle 12x03: (Oct/01/1969) As Himself 

Ironside (1967) 
  I, the People 02x06: (Oct/31/1968) As Ross Howard 

Get Smart (1965) (1965) 
  Don't Look Back 03x18: (Feb/10/1968) As Desk Clerk 

Batman (1966) 
  Louie's Lethal Lilac Time 03x18: (Jan/11/1968) As Louie the Lilac 
  Louie the Lilac 03x07: (Oct/26/1967) As Louie the Lilac 
  Ma Parker (2) 02x10: (Oct/06/1966) As Lefty, [Uncredited]

I Dream of Jeannie (1965) 
  The Second Greatest Con Artist in the World 03x03: (Sep/26/1967) As Charles 

The Big Valley (1965) 
  A Flock of Trouble 03x03: (Sep/25/1967) As Josiah (Josiah Freeman) 

The Lucy Show (1962) 
  Lucy Meets the Berles 06x01: (Sep/11/1967) As Himself 
  Lucy Saves Milton Berle 04x12: (Dec/06/1965) As Himself 

Bob Hope Presents The Chrysler Theatre (1963) 
  Murder at N.B.C. 04x05: (Oct/19/1966) As Himself 

F Troop (1965) 
  The Great Troop Robbery 02x05: (Oct/06/1966) As Wise Owl 

The Academy Awards (1953) 
  The 38th Annual Academy Awards 14x01: (Apr/18/1966) As Presenter, [Featuring]

The Red Skelton Show (1951) 
  Milton Berle / Linda Bennett 15x20: (Jan/04/1966) As Himself 

The Jack Benny Program (1950) 
  Jack Adopts a Son 15x16: (Jan/22/1965) As Himself, [Special Guest Stars]
  Milton Berle Show 11x03: (Oct/30/1960) As Himself, [Special Guest Stars]

Kraft Suspense Theatre (1963) 
  That He Should Weep for Her 02x04: (Nov/05/1964) As Sam Morris 

The Joey Bishop Show (1961) 
  Joey and Milton and Baby Makes Three 03x29: (May/23/1964) As Himself 

The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour (1957) 
  The Milton Berle Special: Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour (Nov/01/1959) As Himself, [Starring Roles]
  Milton Berle Hides Out at the Ricardo's 03x01: (Sep/25/1959) As Himself, [Special Guest Stars]

The Steve Allen Show (1956) 
  NBC Fall Preview 04x03: (Sep/21/1958) As Himself 
  Season 2, Episode 30 02x30: (May/12/1957) As Himself 

Kraft Television Theatre (1947) (1947) 
  Material Witness 11x20: (Feb/19/1958) As guest star 

This Is Your Life (1952) (1952) 
  Milton Berle 04x03: (Jun/06/1956) As Himself 

The Jimmy Durante Show (1954) 
  Milton Berle 02x14: (Feb/04/1956) As Himself 

The Colgate Comedy Hour (1950) 
  FRIAR'S FROLIC with Milton Berle 05x04: (Oct/17/1954) As Himself, [Guest Hosts]
  Eddie Cantor 04x32: (May/16/1954) As Himself 
  Jimmy Durante 04x31: (May/09/1954) As Himself 
  Milton Berle and Ezio Pinza 02x04: (Sep/23/1951) As Himself, [Guest Hosts]

The Emmy Awards (1949) 
  The 2nd Annual Emmy Awards 02x01: (Jan/27/1950) As Winner: Most Outstanding Kinescope Personality (for 'KNBH'), [Special Guest Stars]
Crew Credits

Show Crew



Episode Crew


Ironside (1967) (Credited in 1 episodes from this show) 
 
I, the People 02x06 Oct/31/1968 As: Writer
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Trivia

In an interview on the Howard Stern radio show, Milton claimed he had an affair as a young man with silent screen actress Pola Negri.

Milton died on the same day as Dudley Moore.

Milton claimed his mother was one of the first NYC policewomen and worked as a store detective prior to his birth.

In 1991, Milton was the first inductee into the International Comedy Hall of Fame.

Milton recorded and released an album, Songs My Mother Loved, on Roulette Records (R-25018) in 1958.

Milton once hosted the MTV Video Music Awards.

Milton's Star on the Walk of Fame for his contributions to Television is located at 6263 Hollywood Blvd..

In 1950, Milton won an Emmy for Most Outstanding Kinescope Personality.

In 1979, Milton won a Special Presentation Award at the Emmys - for Mr. Television.

In 1995, Milton was nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series for: Beverly Hills, 90210 (1990).

More Trivia
Milton Berle Quotes

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