Joan Rivers Poster


Jump to: Overview (5)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Family (4)  | Trade Mark (8)  | Trivia (107)  | Personal Quotes (59)  | Salary (1)

Overview (5)

Born in Brooklyn, New York City, New York, USA
Died in East Harlem, Manhattan, New York City, New York, USA  (anoxic encephalopathy)
Birth NameJoan Alexandra Molinsky
Nickname The Queen of the Barbed One-liners
Height 5' 2" (1.57 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Joan Rivers was born on June 8, 1933 in Brooklyn, New York City, New York, USA as Joan Alexandra Molinsky. She was a writer and actress, known for Spaceballs (1987), Iron Man 3 (2013) and Serial Mom (1994). She was married to Edgar Rosenberg and James Bennat Sanger. She died on September 4, 2014 in East Harlem, Manhattan, New York City.

Family (4)

Spouse Edgar Rosenberg (15 July 1965 - 14 August 1987)  (his death)  (1 child)
James Bennat Sanger (19 September 1956 - March 1957)  (annulled)
Children Melissa Rivers
Parents Molinsky, Meyer
Molinsky (Grushman), Beatrice
Relatives Edgar Cooper Endicott (grandchild)

Trade Mark (8)

Had had a lot of plastic surgery, had never denied it, and as a matter of fact, made lots of jokes about her own (and other people's) plastic surgery.
Loud, raspy voice with New York City accent
Said "Can we talk?" frequently in both her acting roles and stand-up routines
Often said "What a tramp!" or "Such a tramp!"
Her and daughter Melissa Rosenberg made fun of each other
Her self-deprecating persona
Dark sense of humor
Petite figure

Trivia (107)

Mother of Melissa Rivers.
Attended Adelphi University in Garden City, New York.
Attended Connecticut College for Women in New London, Conneticut.
Received her Bachelor's degree in English literature and anthropology from Barnard College in New York City (1954).
Before she was a successful comedienne, actress, talk show hostess and a television personality, she briefly worked as a shoe buyer for Lord & Taylor, a department store in New York City, after graduation from college.
Collected Faberge eggs.
Said the most difficult celebrity she ever interviewed was Tommy Lee Jones, whom she thought was rude.
Was the national spokesperson for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
Hosted a daily talk show on WOR-AM radio in New York City from 1997 until 2002, syndicated to about 50 stations.
About 1982, she was appointed the first permanent guest hostess on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962). She infuriated Johnny Carson when she left to host her own show, The Late Show (1986) on rival Fox network. Johnny Carson never spoke to her again.
She won a Daytime Emmy Award in 1990 for best talk show host and was nominated for a Tony Award for the play "Donna Marr and Her Escorts" in 1994. She was also nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Comedy Recording in 1985.
Was one of the final guests to appear on The Wayne Brady Show (2002).
Was nominated for Broadway's 1994 Tony Award as Best Actress (Play) for portraying the title character, Sally Marr, in "Sally Marr... and Her Escorts".
Started performing as a stand-up comedienne using the stage name Pepper January.
She was a Phi Beta Kappa Sorority key holder from Barnard College, where she studied anthropology.
She had her first cosmetic surgery procedure (an eye-lift) in 1965 at age 32.
She had her nose thinned in 1983.
The majority of her plastic surgery was performed by Santa Monica surgeon Steven Hoefflin (who also performed plastic surgery on Michael Jackson's nose). She also received Botox and collagen injections every four months from New York City dermatologist Patricia Wexler.
She was an advocate of plastic surgery for older women saying that if a woman can afford it, it is worth it for her self-esteem.
Before she was a successful comedienne, actress, talk show hostess and a television personality, she performed as half of the comedy team of "Joanie and Bill". "Bill" was former actor William Perry (1936-2006) who was the nephew of actress Toby Wing.
An accomplished author, she has written several candid autobiographies, including "Enter Talking" and "Still Talking". Author of self-help books, including "Bouncing Back: I've Survived Everything... and I Mean Everything... and You Can Too!" and "Don't Count the Candles: Just Keep the Fire Lit!". Author of several comedy books, including "Having a Baby Can Be a Scream" and "The Life and Hard Times of Heidi Abromowitz".
Her father, Meyer C. Molinsky, was a doctor.
Her parents, Beatrice (Grushman) and Meyer Molinsky, were Russian Jewish immigrants.
Early in her career, she was a writer for Candid Camera (1953).
Grandmother of Edgar Cooper Endicott.
Her publicist was Judy Katz.
Used to maintain a residence in Litchfield County, Connecticut adjacent to the former Bill Blass estate.
Performed stand-up comedy, prior to hopeful Broadway run, at Club Fez in Manhattan. [June 2002].
Announced that she and her daughter, Melissa Rivers, were leaving E! Entertainment to fashion-bash red-carpet-wise over at the TV Guide Channel. They had been with E! Entertainment since 1996. [June 30, 2004].
Most recently lived in Malibu, California with her daughter, Melissa Rivers, and her grandson, Edgar Cooper Endicott.
She was awarded a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 7030 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California on July 26, 1989.
Rivers was rushed to Mount Sinai Hospital after experiencing complications during throat surgery being performed at a New York City Clinic. [28 August 2014].
Joan Rivers passed away on September 4, 2014, at age 81. This was a month, after her longtime friend Lauren Bacall had passed away.
Upon her death, Joan Rivers's body was cremated at the Garden State Crematory in Union City, New Jersey, and her ashes were scattered in Wyoming.
Her mentor was the late Phyllis Diller.
Knew Kelly Osbourne when she was only 6, she later worked with her on Fashion Police (2002).
Her older sister, Barbara Waxler, passed away on June 3, 2013 at age 82.
Attended the funeral of Ernest Borgnine, when the actor passed away in 2012.
Though she was born in Brooklyn, New York, Rivers was also raised in the following cities: Crown Heights and portions of the Prospect Heights and Brownsville neighborhoods of Central Brooklyn.
Her father, Dr. Meyer C. Molinsky, who graduated from medical school at Long Island College and in the mid-1930s kept an office at 760 Montgomery Street in Crown Heights, New York, historical records show.
Had never retired from comedy.
In 2012, Rivers protested against the warehouse-club Costco because they would not sell her New York Times bestselling book, "I Hate Everyone... Starting with Me". She handcuffed herself to a person's shopping cart and shouted through a megaphone. The police were called to the scene and she left without incident and no arrests were made.
Best remembered by the public as the hostess of The Joan Rivers Show (1989), Fashion Police (2002) and Joan & Melissa: Joan Knows Best? (2011).
Was merciless with subjects of popular piety.
Before she was a successful comedienne, actress, talk show hostess and a television personality, she was part of "Jim, Jake, and Joan", a comedic musical trio, in 1964.
Had briefly attended Brooklyn Ethical Culture School in Brooklyn, New York.
Celebrated her 80th birthday on an episode of Fashion Police (2002) and on QVC, on June 8, 2013.
While being a talk show hostess, she once worked as a waitress at Denny's Restaurant, in W. Palm Beach, Florida. She was switching jobs with Rhonda Denton who used to work at the same restaurant, when the guest host for Rivers on The Joan Rivers Show (1989) was announced in New York.
Served as an Honorary Director of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
Before an unfamiliar comedian Arsenio Hall had a successful late night talk show, she had used him for The Late Show (1986), as her replacement. Fortunately for Hall, he only got the job, because she left the show, because of the way the producers had been taken advantaged of her.
A big influence on Canadian comedian Katherine Ryan.
She was regarded in being one of the busiest personalities on television.
She graduated from the Adelphi Academy of Brooklyn in Brooklyn, New York, in 1950, at almost 17 years old.
In 1949, aged 16, she was vice president of the Dramatic Club at the Adelphi Academy in Brooklyn, New York.
Had first watched television; when she was only 6 at the World's Fair.
Lifelong friend of nearly 35 years Geraldo Rivera.
Was brought on to The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962), seven times and was turned down, until she made her first appearance.
Had changed her last name from Molinsky to Rivers; this was because she wanted to be an actress; her agent Larry Rivers talked her into doing this.
Her husband Edgar Rosenberg committed suicide by overdosing himself with a bottle of prescription pills, on August 14, 1987. Their daughter Melissa Rivers found him unconscious in a Philadelphia hotel room.
Had always wanted to be an actress. This led her parents into kicking young Molinsky out of her parents' house.
Was the only performer to have guest-hosted or have appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962), more than anyone else.
Met Barbara Walters at NBC in 1965, where there might've been a competition in between the two ladies. The two became friends for nearly 50 years, until Rivers's own death in 2014.
Joan Rivers passed away on September 4, 2014, at age 81. Just before her death, she hosted her final taping of Fashion Police (2002), about the 66th Primetime Emmy Awards and the 2014 MTV Movie Awards.
On her 100th episode of The Late Show (1986), Rivers had two separate problems: the ratings sank, and she was also separated from her husband, Edgar Rosenberg, who wasn't just depressed, but was in bad health, after years of heavy smoking, who was also deeply in debt. He tried to ask her for help, when she refused to help him. She told him he had to get help, who couldn't pull poor Rivers down. Before Edgar's suicide, she was fired from the talk show, after 1 year.
Her career almost came to an end when she feuded with Johnny Carson, off- the set of The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962), the loss of her second husband Edgar Rosenberg and her short-lived talk show The Late Show (1986), however, she attempted to make a comeback when she was hosting a Daytime Talk Show, The Joan Rivers Show (1989), in 1989.
Had started acting when she was in high school.
Had performed on television late, but her successful comedy career had lasted 55 years.
Just before Johnny Carson's death, Rivers called him many times, but refused to answer all of her calls.
Before Chris Hardwick was a comedian, game show host and a talk show host, he, alongside his family met her, when she was doing an opening act for her own mentor Johnny Carson, in Las Vegas, Nevada, when he was only 3 years old, and became friends, of nearly 40 years, until Rivers's own death in 2014.
The first joke she ever stole was on The Tonight Show Starring Jack Paar (1957).
Just before her death, she starred and hosted Fashion Police (2002) and Joan & Melissa: Joan Knows Best? (2011), at the same time.
In 1942, when young Joan was 9, she watched the movie Journey for Margaret (1942), starring Margaret O'Brien. She was very disgusted realizing she could've done better than her.
Had never performed as a child.
Almost shared the same birthday with Ruth Westheimer, by 4 days, who is 5 years Rivers's senior.
Was one of the stars to release statements in Paul Reubens defense, after he was being arrested for indecent exposure in July 1991.
Attended the funeral of Ed McMahon, when the television personality/announcer passed away on June 29, 2009.
Met a young, unfamiliar future comedienne/television personality Rhonda Shear, at a surgeon's clinic, at the time Shear needed to get her nose done. The friendship had lasted exactly 30 years, until Rivers's passing in 2014.
Her hobbies were: dancing, philanthropy, spending time with her family, social media, collecting necklaces and/or jewelry, dining, cooking, traveling and (of course) collecting faberge eggs.
Before her death, and like herself, her lifelong friend, Rhonda Shear also uses each/every social media application, but unlike Rivers, who sold products on QVC, she sell products on HSN.
Was physically healthy and physically active until her death at age 81.
Before her death, she was looking forward to working with Geraldo Rivera on a reality show, when plans were scrapped.
After being fired from her own late night talk show, and the death of her husband, Geraldo Rivera recruited her into hosting her own talk show for Daytime The Joan Rivers Show (1989), which fortunately, she did. She hosted it until the show's cancelation, at the end of 1993.
Her show The Joan Rivers Show (1989) was canceled after 5 1/2 seasons, due to low ratings.
Before she was a successful television personality and a reality show star, she was the most frequent guest on The New Truth and Consequences (1950), opposite game show legend Bob Barker, who knew she was funny and hilarious, and was also doing clubs, back in the days.
According to her daughter, Melissa Rivers, her mother was (along with her father) fastidious in keeping accurate records across the board with everything, because of her drive to always be fresh, she kept records of every appearance, every performance, all the jokes that were used on TV, all the clothes that were worn.
Unlike fellow talk show host Geraldo Rivera, Rivers was a fan of dancing and for inviting nearly every musician on both of her own talk shows.
When fellow talk show host Geraldo Rivera was writing the book "Exposing Myself," at the time she asked Liza Minnelli (on Rivera's best friends' talk series, The Joan Rivers Show (1989)) if she ever called him. Minnelli was very opened and honest about her life, although that was just a flirtation, between the two.
When she stopped breathing, her daughter Melissa Rivers had to fly over to New York City to pay visit to see her mother, at Yorkville Endoscopy Clinic to watch doctors operate on her throat, they weren't taking selfies of her, they were only taking pictures of her, prior to being in a coma, without permission, fortunately for Melissa, she didn't see any of her mother's pictures. That was one of the many incidents that went wrong, where her daughter filed a lawsuit against the clinic, where the doctors didn't pay attention to her mother's vital signs. By the time, Joan was resuscitated, she was then taken to a hospital, where she passed away. After Melissa lost her own mother, she filed a malpractice lawsuit against the clinic and doctors performing surgery on her mother. The suit was settled for an undisclosed amount in May 2016, with the doctors accepting responsibility.
A dancer, she wanted to do Dancing with the Stars (2005), with her daughter, Melissa Rivers. She wanted to do the easier steps with Melissa, while her daughter was asked to do the harder steps with her mother, when it didn't work, as opposed to fellow talk show host, Geraldo Rivera, who appeared and unfortunately, was the first contestant to be knocked out of the contest, on the show's 22nd season.
Was the only talk show hostess and/or comedienne to have nearly guest-starred on every talk show, either daytime or prime-time.
She supported the Elton John AIDS Foundation and God's Love We Deliver, which delivers meals to HIV/AIDS patients in New York City.
Her father, Dr. Meyer Chaim Molinsky, passed away on January 22, 1985. He lived to be 84.
Her mother, Beatrice Grushman Molinsky, passed away in 1975. She lived to be 69.
Met a young, struggling radio personality and an unknown television personality, Howard Stern, when he was working at NBC Radio, in 1983, when he wanted to be the guest host of a talk show, which (of course) was: The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962) that was hosted by his mentor's, mentor/best friend: Johnny Carson. It didn't work. The two have been friends until Rivers's own passing in 2014.
Almost frequently talked about the feud and the breakup of Johnny Carson in several interviews.
Just before her death, she attended the 60th birthday of her lifelong friend/understudy, Howard Stern, in New York City. [31 January 2014].
Had disliked politics in her comedy routines, but during interviews, she enjoyed skewering politicians by insulting both their policies and their fashion.
At age 39, Rivers moved to Los Angeles, California, in 1972, to author a book and to pursue a career as a talk show host and a television personality.
She said in interview she was overweight throughout her childhood and adolescence, and that it had a profound impact on her body image, which she would struggle with throughout her life.
Joan Rivers was the only comedienne to have hosted both successful talk shows and a successful reality show during her 55 years in television that revolved around her controversial comedic persona-heavily self-deprecating and sharply acerbic, especially towards celebrities and politicians.
Between 1996 and 2004, Rivers was the longtime host of E! Entertainment's Live from The Red Carpet.
Great niece of Fanny Fields.
Lifelong friend of 30 years was Regis Philbin.

Personal Quotes (59)

[on her idea of a perfect childbirth experience] Knock me out with the first pain, and wake me up when the hairdresser arrives.
If you're not a wreck in this business, you're not around.
Once I was having lunch in a fancy restaurant with Lily Tomlin and Richard Pryor. We were all struggling comics together and the day we had lunch, any one of us could have picked up the check. That's when I knew I'd made it.
Camilla Parker-Bowles is an earthy, funny woman. You can swear in front of her.
[on Parkinson (1971), when entering] I am a dyke! And I'm DAMN proud of it!
I want them to know I don't think I'm wonderful, or better than they are. Part of comedy is saying: "I am you and you are me, and we're all feeling the same thing".
I'm in nobody's circle, I've always been an outsider. I don't have those wonderful dinners with Woody, I've never been asked by Jay. And it makes you sad, because I think it would be wonderful to sit and talk about things that very few people understand. But I'm very competitive, and I'm sure they feel that. I'm jealous of that little slut Paris Hilton. Why? I'm very competitive. And I think that's what has kept me going. I'm not gracious.
The only thing that's saving me is my age. Because I don't care. I've been up, I've been down. I've been fired, I've been hired. I've been broke. What are you gonna to do me? Not like me? I don't give a damn.
There is not one female comic who was beautiful as a little girl.
[on young female comics]: They all come up to me and say, "Without you, I couldn't be here, the barriers you broke down." I say, "Get the f*** away from me. I still could take every one of you with one hand behind my back. Outta here. Talk like that at my funeral, but not till then".
[June 29, 2008] One of the reasons I am so happy - there's lots happening again. Four times in my life, I woke up and the diary was empty. That's the worst feeling in the world. My Broadway show and my talk show were canceled on the same Friday. And I went that night to see Barbra Streisand, whom I'd started with, perform for 20,000 people at Madison Square Garden. That was a very bad night. Now I'm doing a pilot, I have two books coming, I have my play, I'm in a series that they've shot and they hope will be successful, I'm doing stand-up and I've got my jewelry company. At this age, to be wanted - you are fighting every single step of the way.
I was just interviewed for a documentary [Making Trouble (2007)] on my least favorite subject - women comedians and how we've all been kept out. These two women came to my house, very serious, and asked, "How long did it take for you to get into the room?". I said, "Let me tell you something: if Adolf Hitler had four good jokes, he'd be in the room." It has to do with funny. Then they talked about how women help each other. I said, "I hate to tell you, but if it was between Sarah Silverman and me for a job? I'll kill her and she'll kill me. There's no sisterhood in comedy".
There is not one female comic who was beautiful as a little girl. Tell me one funny woman who was ever beautiful. Gwyneth Paltrow, stop, please, stop, I can't stand it. Angelina Jolie? Men don't want you funny. It's all about coping when you're not being the pretty girl, and you're not being the first one asked to dance, and the bottle spins and lands on you and Stuart Wein doesn't want to kiss you.
One of the earliest jokes I did about my husband was that I was the one who really caused Edgar's suicide, because, while we were making love, I took the bag off my head.
My husband wanted to be cremated. I told him I'd scatter his ashes at [the department store] Neiman Marcus - that way, I'd visit him every day.
I knew I was an unwanted baby when I saw my bath toys were a toaster and a radio.
[In an interview, on the British chat show Loose Women (1999) in 2008, on working the red carpet for the E! Channel]: You get someone like Russell Crowe, and you want to say to the camera, he is a piece of - get ready to bleep this - f***ing shit. (Rivers was immediately pulled from the British chat show - they had no bleep.) These idiots came running onto the set, ripped me off my seat and dragged me off, saying, "Let's go, let's go, let's go." When the audience saw my empty chair, I worried that, because of my age, they might think I'd wet it because my diaper leaked. People always ask me, "What haven't you done, Miss Rivers? You've done this and that, been nominated for an Emmy and a Tony. You've hosted shows, you've acted, done stand-up, lost your husband to suicide, been bankrupted by a business partner [who made off with $37m in the 1990s] - what haven't you done?". Well, until today, I'd never been kicked off live television. Assholes.
[Interview with Andrew Scott, June 10, 2010] I've never been in the "in" group. I've never been considered. But that's what keeps me punching, if that makes sense. I'm still in the "I'll show you" mentality.
[on the passing of Elaine Kaufman] Elaine's was a place you went to let everyone know you were in town. It was first stop L.A./N.Y. You knew your name was above the title when Elaine sat with you. I also loved that the prices changed constantly.
[on reality shows] When was the last time you went to a dinner party where three women got up and slapped each other? Everybody's punching and slapping. This is not reality. We got a second season because everybody that has a parent, a mother, anyone can relate to what really happens between adult children and parents.
Having my daughter, I screamed for twenty-three hours straight. And that was just during conception.
Boy George is all England needs. Another queen who can't dress.
New York was the magic city. New York was Oz. All I wanted to do was get out of Brooklyn and get into Oz. We'd go to the theater district -- I saved my money, and I would go with a girlfriend and sit in Sardi's, order an avocado for 60 cents, and wait to be discovered. They must have been thrilled to see us. We went to Howard Johnson's, and my friend smoked a cigarette. We're sitting at the Howard Johnson's, and we're smoking cigarettes -- say no more.
Men who look down my dress usually compliment me on my shoes.
That awful, vulgar, loud woman on stage, that's not me. I wouldn't want to be her friend.
[on antiques] If Louis XIV hasn't sat on it, I don't want it.
[In 2010, on Twitter] With all the plastic surgery I've had, I'm worried that when I die, God won't recognize me!
I don't exercise. If God had wanted me to bend over, he would have put diamonds on the floor.
[on the red-carpet] Who are you wearing?
[her trademark line] Can we talk?
My best birth control now is just to leave the lights on.
The secret of my success is just saying what everybody else has been thinking.
I haven't missed the Emmys since that year my makeup team was nominated for "Best Special Effects"!
Look at Gwyneth Paltrow being named the Most Beautiful this year. Congratulations, Gwyneth! Now look at who she got to vote: Ray Charles, José Feliciano, Helen Keller, Ronnie Milsap, Tom Sullivan, and Stevie Wonder.
Never be afraid to laugh at yourself; after all, you could be missing out on the joke of the century.
I hate housework. You make the beds, you do the dishes...and six months later, you have to start all over again.
There are three things all children should be taught never to do: touch a hot stove; pull lamps off tables; and wake their mother before noon.
A study says owning a dog makes you 10 years younger. I'd rescue two more, but who wants to go through menopause twice?
[on daughter Melissa Rivers] She and I are very close. We speak every single day. Literally, I call her every day and leave the same message on her answering machine: "Pick the hell up, Melissa. I know you're there, damn it." And she always calls me back with the same response: "Mom, how in God's name did you get this new number?"
At my funeral, I want Meryl Streep crying in five different accents.
[on Justin Bieber] He looks like the daughter Cher wishes she'd had.
Want to know why women don't blink during foreplay? Not enough time.
[on Renee Zellweger] Push her face against a glass door, and you'll see what all babies look like at birth.
If you don't want gays in the military, make the uniforms ugly.
My love life is like a piece of Swiss cheese: much of it's missing, and what's there stinks.
The great thing about irrigating your colon is that sometimes you find old jewelry.
People say that money is not the key to happiness. But I've always figured that, with enough money, you can hire a battering ram.
All I ever heard when I was a kid was,"Why can't you be more like your cousin Sheila?" And Sheila had died at birth.
I wish I had a twin, so I could know what I'd look like without plastic surgery.
I have no sex appeal. If my husband didn't toss and turn, we'd never have had any kids.
All my mother told me about sex was that the man goes on top, and that the woman goes on bottom. For three years, my husband and I slept in bunk beds.
My sex life is so bad, my G-spot has been declared a historical landmark.
[on turning 50]: Our natures are a lot like oil, mix us with anything else, and we strive to swim on top.
[When constantly thought about dying]: In your 80s, you'd be foolish not to think about that. I am definitely going to be cremated. I've left money so the dogs can be taken care of. I've said to Melissa, 'Sell anything and everything you don't want. Don't feel beholden to my possessions.' I feel almost hysterical on that. I don't want them to have a sense of guilt.
'Beyonce' said she delivered her baby naturally, which for her meant no wind machine or back-up dancers.
I feel so sorry for that British woman who was born with two vaginas. Can you imagine having to fake orgasm twice?
I love photo-shopping. It's God's gift to ugly people.
Ever since the divorce announcement, Heidi Klum looks angry. She gives new meaning to the word sauerkraut.
"Happy Hollywood Homes" is really a contradiction in terms. Like "attractive leper", "huge miniature poodle", "well-read Kardashian".

Salary (1)

The Late Show (1986) $5,000,000 /year

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