Ed O'Neill Poster


Jump to: Overview (3)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (1)  | Trade Mark (2)  | Trivia (16)  | Personal Quotes (1)

Overview (3)

Born in Youngstown, Ohio, USA
Birth NameEdward Leonard O'Neill
Height 6' 1" (1.85 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Ed O'Neill is an American actor best known for playing Al Bundy on Married... with Children (1987), the most iconic working class character on television since Archie Bunker. Upon his debut on the world stage in Youngstown, Ohio on April 12, 1946, he was christened Edward Philip O'Neill, Jr. Both his father, Ed, Sr., a steelworker and truck driver, and his social worker mother, the former Ruth Ann Quinlan, were Irish-Americans.

A gifted athlete, the 6'1" O'Neill attended Ohio University on a football scholarship, but transferred after his sophomore year to Youngstown State University, where he played as a defensive lineman. In 1969, he was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers, but was cut in training camp. (Al Bundy was a former high-school football star constantly reminiscing about his glory days on the high school gridiron. Terry Bradshaw, the Hall of Fame Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback, twice appeared on "Married with Children".)

After being cut by the Steelers, O'Neill went back to YSU to join the new theater department. After graduating, he became a social studies teacher at his alma mater, Ursuline High School, before fully committing to acting. He was a member of the company at the American Repertory Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts, one of the top regional theaters in America.

After numerous supporting parts in movies and television, he was cast as the New York City detective Popeye Doyle in the 1986 television movie that was a pilot for a proposed television series. "Popeye Doyle" was based on the classic police drama The French Connection (1971), with O'Neill playing the role originated by Gene Hackman). The television movie and O'Neill's performance got good reviews, but it was not picked up as a series.

A year later, O'Neill was cast as Al Bundy in the sitcom "Married with Children", which debuted on the then-new Fox Network in April 1987. It ran 10 years, until June 1997, and made O'Neill a star.

During the production of "Married with Children" and after its cancellation, O'Neill appeared in movies, guested on television shows, and made television commercials. The second iconic fictional policeman role that O'Neill took over was Sgt. Joe Friday in his 2003 remake of Jack Webb's classic crime series Dragnet (2003), which appeared on ABC. The network canceled the show during its second season. Since 2009, O'Neill has played Jay Pritchett on the ABC's sitcom Modern Family (2009), for which he was nominated for an Emmy Award in 2011.

Since 1986, O'Neill has been married to actress Catherine Rusoff. They have two daughters, Claire and Sophia.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Jon C. Hopwood

Spouse (1)

Catherine Rusoff (1986 - present) ( 2 children)

Trade Mark (2)

Frequently plays ordinary working class family men
Sarcastic world weary sense of humour

Trivia (16)

Was nearly cast as Sam Malone on the situation comedy Cheers (1982); the role went to Ted Danson instead.
Taught Social Studies in Youngstown, Ohio before acting.
Expected Married... with Children (1987) to be canceled within the first six episodes.
Was considered for the role of Steven Keaton on the situation comedy Family Ties (1982); the role went to Michael Gross instead.
Attended and graduated from Ursuline High School in Youngstown, Ohio.
Often plays policemen on television series or movies. On an episode of Married... with Children (1987), he dreamed that he was a detective.
Learned (and still practices) Brazilian Ju-Jitsu from the famous Gracie family.
The first actor from Fox to host Saturday Night Live (1975) in 1990; three years later his Married... with Children (1987) co-star, Christina Applegate hosted the show.
Invented the popular sandwich called the "Boone" at the famous Se-port Deli in Setauket, New York.
Father, with Catherine Rusoff, of daughters Claire O'Neill and Sophia O'Neill.
In 2007, Ed earned his black belt in Brazilian Ju-Jitsu after 15 years of training.
O'Neill was signed by the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1969 as an outside linebacker. He was released before the start of the 1969 regular season.
Received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 7021 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California on August 30, 2011. Was joined by his television wives, Katey Sagal and Sofía Vergara, and his real-life wife, Catherine Rusoff.
In both real life and on his series Modern Family (2009), he has a daughter named Claire.
Ed O'Neill is exactly one year older than Dan Lauria whose iconic character, Jack Arnold on The Wonder Years (1988) wore the same beige jacket that Ed O'Neill's character, Al Bundy, wore. Al Bundy is also one year older than Jack Arnold from an "original air date" standpoint, as Married... with Children (1987) premiered the year before The Wonder Years (1988). In addition, Al Bundy's birthday (November 7, 1948) is the day after Jack Arnold's (November 6, 1927).
Because of his signature role playing Al Bundy, a character who had no interest in politics outside of some extremely conservative/reactionary episodes, fans assumed that O'Neill was also conservative and/or a Republican. In real life, O'Neill is a longtime Democrat who publicly opposed the Iraq War in 2003 and did a campaign ad for future President Barack Obama in 2008 (playing a character named "Al the Shoe Salesman").

Personal Quotes (1)

When I read the pilot [for Married... with Children (1987)], it just reminded me of my Uncle Joe... just a self-deprecating kind of guy. He'd come home from work, and the wife would maybe say, "I ran over the dog this morning in the driveway." And he would say "Fine, what's for dinner?".

See also

Other Works |  Publicity Listings |  Official Sites

View agent, publicist, legal and company contact details on IMDbPro Pro Name Page Link

Contribute to This Page

Recently Viewed