Red Buttons Poster


Jump to: Overview (4)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (3)  | Trade Mark (3)  | Trivia (13)  | Personal Quotes (5)

Overview (4)

Born in New York City, New York, USA
Died in Century City, California, USA  (vascular disease)
Birth NameAaron Chwatt
Height 5' 6" (1.68 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Although Red Buttons is best known as a stand-up comic, he is also a successful songwriter, an Academy Award-winning actor (and has been nominated for two Golden Globe awards) and an accomplished singer. Born Aaron Chwatt in New York City's Lower East Side, Buttons (who got his name from a uniform he wore while working as a singing bellhop) started his show-business career singing on street corners as a child. At 16 he got a job as part of a comedy act playing the famed Catskills resort area in upstate New York (his partner was future actor Robert Alda). Buttons worked the burlesque circuit as a comic and even landed a role in a Broadway play, "Vicki", in 1942. He soon joined the U.S. Marine Corps, and in 1943 was picked for a role in Moss Hart's service play "Winged Victory" on Broadway, and soon afterwards journeyed to Hollywood to make the film version. After his discharge from the service he returned to Broadway, both in plays and as a comic with several big-band orchestras. He was successful enough that he got his own TV series, The Red Buttons Show (1952), on CBS. It lasted three years and won Buttons an Emmy for Best Comedian. He worked steadily for the next several years, and in 1957 got his big film break in the drama Sayonara (1957) with Marlon Brando, in which he played an American soldier stationed in Japan who struggled against the societal and racist pressures of both American and Japanese cultures because of his love for a Japanese woman. His performance garnered him an Academy Award, and more film roles followed. He played a paratrooper in The Longest Day (1962), was nominated for a Golden Globe for Harlow (1965) and again for They Shoot Horses, Don't They? (1969). He had a part in the TV series The Double Life of Henry Phyfe (1966) and has done pretty much every kind of TV show there is, from variety to comedy to soap operas. He gained further renown in the 1970s for his appearances on the "Dean Martin Celebrity Roast" where he performed his "Never Got a Dinner" act to great acclaim. He has played Las Vegas for years, has a star on Hollywood Boulevard (corner of Hollywood and Vine) and has appeared in numerous telethons and charitable events, for which he has been honored by such organizations as the Friars Club and the City of Hope Hospital.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: frankfob2@yahoo.com

Spouse (3)

Alicia Pratts (27 January 1964 - 21 March 2001) ( her death) ( 2 children)
Helayne McNorton (8 December 1949 - 1963) ( divorced)
Roxanne Arlen (1947 - 1949) ( divorced)

Trade Mark (3)

Known for his 'quick wit'
His wide grin
Fast delivery.

Trivia (13)

Got his stage name when he was a lad working at Dinty Moore's Tavern in the Bronx as a singer/waiter. He had to wear a uniform with 48 buttons, and with his red hair people started referring to him as Red Buttons.
Biography in: "Who's Who in Comedy" by Ronald L. Smith. Pg. 80-81. New York: Facts on File, 1992. ISBN 0816023387
Was the oldest guest to appear on Dennis Miller Live (1994). On the 6 August 1999 episode, he was 80 years, 6 months and 1 day old.
Father of Adam and Amy, with wife Alicia.
Has 2 children: Adam and Amy. Also, has a sister.
Member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (Actors Branch).
Made a special Academy Awards appearance in 1998, at the The 70th Annual Academy Awards (1998), and in 2005 at the The 75th Annual Academy Awards (2003) and participated in the Oscar Winners Tribute sequence along with other Academy Award winners.
Received a special tribute as part of the Annual Memorial tribute at The 79th Annual Academy Awards (2007).
He was of Russian Jewish and Polish Jewish descent.
Composer, actor, comedian and author, he joined ASCAP in 1963 and wrote several popular songs (which he often personally performed), including "Strange Things Are Happening" and "The Ho-Ho Song".
Appeared in two films nominated for Best Picture Oscar: Sayonara (1957) and The Longest Day (1962).
He was honored with the Israel Cultural Award and with an annual fellowship in his name by the Israel Cancer Research Fund.
A member of the Creative Arts Temple in Los Angeles.

Personal Quotes (5)

Ninety isn't old. You're old when your doctor doesn't X-ray you any more - he just holds you up to the light!
Elizabeth Taylor has a big heart. She recently built a halfway house for girls who don't want to go all the way.
Why are we giving this man a dinner, when some of the most famous people in history... never got a dinner?
I have whole forests in Israel planted in my name.
I'm a Jew who is doing comedy, not a "Jewish comic".

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