Yakov Smirnoff Poster


Jump to: Overview (2) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (1) | Trade Mark (1) | Trivia (9) | Personal Quotes (3)

Overview (2)

Date of Birth 24 January 1951Odessa, Ukrainian SSR, USSR [now Ukraine]
Birth NameYakov Naumovich Pokhis

Mini Bio (1)

Yakov Smirnoff was born on January 24, 1951 in Odessa, Ukrainian SSR, USSR as Yakov Naumovich Pokhis. He is an actor and writer, known for The Money Pit (1986), Brewster's Millions (1985) and The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension (1984). He was previously married to Linda Dreeszen.

Spouse (1)

Linda Dreeszen (14 February 1989 - 2001) (divorced) (2 children)

Trade Mark (1)

Performs comedic routines with a heavy Russian accent. His trademark line is: "What a country!"

Trivia (9)

Former roommate of comedian Andrew Dice Clay.
Became a U.S. citizen on July 4, 1986.
Lives and works in Branson, Missouri.
He was an art professor at Odessa Pedagogical University in Ukraine before starting his comedy career in the United States, and he remains a talented artist.
After the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade centers, he began working on a mural to commemorate the event. Just in time for the first anniversary of the event, the mural was printed on a huge banner, with the quote "The human spirit is not measured by the size of the act, but by the size of the heart." It was hung from a nearby building where it was clearly visible from Ground Zero for over a year. Yakov financed the banner with $100,000 of his own money, but kept his donation anonymous, for fear that people would see it as a joke because of his reputation as a comedian.
Performs his own comedic variety show in Branson, Missouri. [June 2005]
Has two children: a daughter, Natasha, born in 1990, and a son, Alexander, born in 1992.
Is a professor at Missouri State University and Drury University where he teaches "The Business of Laughter.".
In May 2006 he received a master's degree in positive psychology from the Penn College of Liberal and Professional Studies (Penn LPS).

Personal Quotes (3)

In Russia, if a male athlete loses, he becomes a female athlete.
What a country!
"I've gone from Red to Redneck" (On Owning and Operating an 800 seat Theater in Branson, Missouri).

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