Phil Leeds Poster


Jump to: Overview (3) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (1) | Trivia (3)

Overview (3)

Date of Birth 6 April 1916New York City, New York, USA
Date of Death 16 August 1998Los Angeles, California, USA  (pneumonia)
Height 5' 6" (1.68 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Phil Leeds is one of those for whom the phrase "character actor" was invented. A slight, wizened man with a rubbery face, bulging eyes and a Jimmy Durante-like nose, he excelled at playing weaselly little snitches, con artists, or just a neighborhood eccentric who always had something up his sleeve. Born in New York, his entrance into the "entertainment" business began with a job as a peanut vendor at the city's baseball stadiums, and from there, he began a stint as a stand-up comic in the "Borscht Belt" up in the Catskill Mountains, opening for many of the top acts of the day. He had a short career on the Broadway stage before entering the army during World War II, and upon his discharge, he resumed his stand-up career. Unfortunately, he got caught up in the McCarthy-era, anti-Communism hysteria in the early 1950s and found himself among many entertainers who were blacklisted, and it took him a while to work out of that. He appeared in his first film in 1969, a comedy, and from there on, his career was set. He had small roles in a good number of films, but he did a huge amount of television work starting in the mid-'50s, appearing in everything from sitcoms to westerns to cop shows.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: frankfob2@yahoo.com

Spouse (1)

Toby Brandt (? - 1987) (her death)

Trivia (3)

A stand-up comedian for years, he was the opening act for such stars as Barbra Streisand, Harry Belafonte, and the team of Mike Nichols and Elaine May.
Raised in the Bronx, he was a peanut vendor for some time near Yankee Stadium and Manhattan's Polo Grounds.
Tiny, adorable New-York born and bred character actor with an unmistakeable mug and schnozzola who came into his own late in life, particularly on TV (Barney Miller (1974), Night Court (1984) and Ally McBeal (1997)), dotting the stage and screen with scene-stealing little comic gems.

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