Everybody Loves Raymond
Emmy and Screen Actors Guild Award winning actor/comedian Brad Garrett garnered rave reviews for his role of Robert Charles Barone on the CBS critically-acclaimed sitcom starring Ray Romano, "Everybody Loves Raymond" (1996-2005). He now stars as Eddie Stark, half of a middle aged couple (Joely Fisher plays his loving wife Joy Stark), in the Fox comedy, "'Til Death" (2006-Present), which he also produces.
This 6' 8½'' performer is also one of the busiest voice-over actors in the industry and has provided his voice for such films as "Casper" (1995), "A Bug's Life" (1998), "Stuart Little 2" (2002), "Finding Nemo" (2003), "Garfield" (2004), "Night at the Museum" (2006), "Ratatouille" (2007) and "Underdog" (2007). This versatile-voiced performer will lend his voice in the upcoming 2010 sequel to 2005's "Hoodwinked!," "Hoodwinked 2: Hood vs. Evil," which features characters voiced by Hayden Panettiere, Glenn Close, Patrick Warburton, Martin Short, Amy Poehler, and Bill Murray.
Garrett, who has sometimes struggled for acting work due to his towering height, appeared in the films "Suicide Kings" (1997), "Sweet and Lowdown" (1999), "The Trailer" (2003), "The Moguls" (2005; "The Amateurs"), "The Pacifier" (2005) and "Music and Lyrics" (2007).
On Broadway, Garret appeared in the hit revival of "Chicago" in 2002 and "The Odd Couple" play by Neil Simon in October 2005.
Garret was married to Jill Diven from 1999 to 2005 and has two children with her. Following his divorce, Garrett launched his own online reality dating series called “Dating Brad Garrett.”
Dating Brad Garrett
Childhood and Family:
In Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, California, Bradley H. Gerstenfeld was born on April 14, 1960. Son of a hearing aid specialist father named Al Gerstenfeld and a homemaker mother named Barbara Gerstenfeld, Brad has two older brothers, Paul Gerstenfeld (salesman; born in 1955) and Jeff Gerstenfeld (music promoter; born in 1952).
Brad attended Hale Jr. High School in Woodland Hills, California, from where he was once suspended for several days for launching a paper clip from a rubber band into the chest of another student. He attended El Camino Real High School, in Woodland Hills, California, and graduated in 1978. Brad then studied at the University of California for 6 weeks before dropping out to pursue a career in comedy. He also honed in on his craft at the Lee Strasberg Theater Institute.
On the set of his show “Everybody Loves Raymond” in August 1998, Brad proposed to his then girlfriend, Jill Diven. They were married on May 18, 1999, and have two children, son Maxwell Bradley Garrett (born on October 14, 1998) and daughter Hope Violet Garrett (born in January 2000). Brad and Jill separated in 2005 and Diven filed for divorce in July 2006. The divorce was finalized on November 2, 2007. After his divorce with Jill, Brad launched his own online reality dating series called “Dating Brad Garrett.”
Brad currently resides in Hollywood, California, with his two Labradors, Gus and Mabel.
Dropping out of college after he was cast in a 7-Up commercial, Brad Garrett began to work as a stand-up comic while supporting himself as a waiter at a TGI Fridays in Woodland Hills, California. Getting his start at the Ice House in Pasadena and the Improv in Hollywood, Garrett soon performed regularly on the Los Angeles comedy club circuit. In 1984, he got his first break when he participated in the comedy competition on “Star Search” (syndicated; 1983-1995) and became the first $100,000 grand champion. That same year, then 24-year-old Garrett made a guest appearance on "The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson," becoming one of the youngest comedians to ever appear on the NBC late talk show program.
Following his "Tonight Show" appearance, Garrett headlined gigs at several national venues and opened for such artists as Diana Ross and Liza Minnelli. He also performed at The Sands Hotel in Las Vegas with Frank Sinatra, Caesar's Palace with David Copperfield, and Smokey Robinson, Harrah's with Sammy Davis Jr., and The Beach Boys, and Radio City Music Hall with Julio Iglesias. Garrett also voiced Trypticon in the animated television series "Transformers" (1984-1987) and provided the voice of the title character on the CBS Saturday morning cartoon series "Hulk Hogan's Rock 'n' Wrestling" (1985-1987). He also made his feature film debut in John Sayles’ dramatic sports film based on the 1963 book by Eliot Asinof, "Eight Men Out" (1988; starring Jace Alexander, John Cusack, and Gordon Clapp), and starred on the CBS summer comedy series "First Impressions" (1988). Additionally, he was named “Best Comedian Working on the Strip” by the Las Vegas Review Journal in 1989.
In the early 1990s, Garrett voiced the title role on the CBS 13-episode animated series based on Martin Handford's books, "Where's Waldo?" (1991), and co-starred on the short-lived NBC sitcom "The Pursuit of Happiness" (1995). He also lent his voice to Fatso, one of Casper's taunting uncles, in director Brad Silberling's live-action feature film based on the cartoons and comic strips about the friendly ghost, "Casper" (1995).
From 1996 to 2005, Garrett played his most famous role to date, that of Robert Charles Barone, the brother of the title character (played by Ray Romano) and the son of Frank (played by Peter Boyle) and Marie (played by Doris Roberts), on the CBS critically-acclaimed sitcom "Everybody Loves Raymond." The show won him three Emmy Awards for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series (2002, 2003 and 2005) and a Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series (2003).
Garrett, who was paid $160,000 an episode for “Everybody Loves Raymond” and guest-starred in an episode of “The King of Queens” (1998), declined to do a spin-off with his character from “Everybody Loves Raymond” (1996). He later explained, “You say to yourself, 'How could I spin off the number one comedy on television?' But it was definitely something being considered. But as an actor, you want to do something new, so this was very exciting too. I was open to both ideas but for the spin-off to happen there were some creative choices that really had to come to pass for it to make sense and we couldn’t get the writers from ‘Raymond.’ And while we kept going back and forth on those kind of details, this script was sent to me and that was that.”
During his "Everybody Loves Raymond" tenure, Garrett appeared in an a "Got Milk?" (2000) print ad, portrayed Amos Hart on Broadway in the hit revival of "Chicago" (2002), and was cast as Jackie Gleason in the CBS television movie "Gleason" (2002), which earned him SAG and Emmy nominations for Best Actor. He also played Murray, opposite Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick, in "The Odd Couple" play by Neil Simon at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre, in New York City in October 2005.
“Broadway was without doubt the hardest I ever worked in my life and the highest highs I've ever had as an actor. The unadulterated fear was on a level that was hard to explain.” Brad Garrett
Garrett, with his deep booming voice, became the voice of Dim the rhinoceros beetle, in the popular Pixar computer animated film "A Bug's Life" (1998), voiced Plumber in Rob Minkoff's family film "Stuart Little 2" (2002), provided the voice of Bloat in the blockbuster computer animated family film "Finding Nemo" (2003), and lent his voice to the dog Luca in Peter Hewitt's live-action movie based on the Jim Davis comic strip, "Garfield" (2004; starring Breckin Meyer, Jennifer Love Hewitt, and Bill Murray as the voice of Garfield).
In 2005, Garrett appeared in Michael Traeger's comedy film starring Jeff Bridges, "The Amateurs" ("The Moguls") and Adam Shankman's action comedy movie starring Vin Diesel, "The Pacifier," in which he played strict vice principal Murney.
Following the demise of "Everybody Loves Raymond," Garrett was cast as Eddie Stark, one half of a middle aged couple (Joely Fisher plays his loving wife Joy Stark), in the Fox comedy "'Til Death," which he also produces. The show premiered on September 7, 2006.
On going from “Everybody Loves Raymond” to his own sitcom, Garrett said, “I wasn’t looking to run back into something. The pilot wasn’t written for me but I read it and loved the writing and I knew that if I wanted to go back into television. I’d want to do a character that was very far removed from Robert on ‘Raymond.’ It also just reminded me of a lot of the writing on ‘Raymond.’ It was believable stuff we were all familiar with.”
Meanwhile, Garrett continued doing voice over work and was heard as Easter Island Head in Shawn Levy's adventure comedy film based on a 1993 children's book by Milan Trenc, "Night at the Museum" (2006; starring Ben Stiller), as the late Chef Gusteau in Pixar’s computer animated family film "Ratatouille" (2007), and as Riff Raff in the live-action version of the classic cartoon, "Underdog" (2007). He also co-starred as Hugh Grant's manager in Marc Lawrence's romantic comedy film "Music and Lyrics" (2007; also starring Drew Barrymore) and appeared in print ads for Mars Candies' M&M's "Become an M&M" ad campaign (2007).
Garrett is currently filming "Hoodwinked 2: Hood vs. Evil," the upcoming 2010 sequel to 2005's "Hoodwinked," which will be directed by Michael D'Isa-Hogan. In the film, Garrett will voice The Giant, alongside Hayden Panettiere, Glenn Close, Patrick Warburton, Martin Short, Amy Poehler, and Bill Murray.
Following his divorce from Jill Diven, Garrett launched his own reality dating series called “Dating Brad Garrett.” In his web show, Garrett is advised by a panel that includes his ex-wife and his mother as they follow him on a string of blind dates.
Emmy: Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series, “Everybody Loves Raymond,” 2005
Emmy: Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series, “Everybody Loves Raymond,” 2003
Emmy: Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series, “Everybody Loves Raymond,” 2002
Screen Actors Guild: Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series, “Everybody Loves Raymond,” 2003