Richard Dreyfus - Film & Theater Personalities, Family and Childhood

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Richard Dreyfus's Personal Details

Richard Dreyfus is a talented and skilled American actor who is best known for his roles in ‘The Goodbye Girl, ‘Jaws’ and ‘Mr Holland’s Opus’ Explore his biography to learn more about him.

InformationDetail
BirthdayOctober 29, 1947
NationalityAmerican
FamousFilm & Theater Personalities, Actors
SpousesSvetlana Erokhin (m. 2006), Janelle Lacey (m. 1999–2005), Jeramie Rain (m. 1983–1995)
SiblingsLorin Dreyfuss
Known asRichard Stephen Dreyfuss
Childrens Ben Dreyfuss, Emily Dreyfuss, Harry Dreyfuss
Birth PlaceBrooklyn, New York City, New York
Height165cm
GenderMale
FatherNorman Dreyfuss
MotherGeraldine Dreyfuss
Net Worth$65 Million as of April 28,2017
Sun SignScorpio
Born inBrooklyn, New York City, New York
Famous asActor

// Famous Actors

Richard Dreyfus's photo

Who is Richard Dreyfus?

Richard Dreyfus is a highly acclaimed American actor who is known for playing a variety of roles in his five decades and on-going career. Coming from a non-media family, Dreyfus tryst with acting started early. He started acting at the age of fifteen and made his debut on big screen when he was 20. Unlike most of the actors who go through a troubled early phase of discovering their own talent, Dreyfus had a strong beginning. In 1973, he bagged a Golden Globe nomination for his role in the film, ‘American Grafitti’. From then on, there was no looking back for this great actor who gave one blockbuster after the other, with films like, ‘Jaws’, ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind’, and ‘The Goodbye Girl’ for which won an Oscar , Golden Globe and BAFTA. Dreyfus drug addiction primarily hampered his career during the first half of the 1980s but he bounced back from the same in style. In 1986, he made a comeback with ‘Down and Out in Beverly Hills’. Since then, he has been part of several interesting projects in films, television, and theatre. He jumped to fame once again with ‘Mr Holland’s Opus’ in 1995. Recently, Dreyfus was seen in the teleseries ‘Madoff’.

// Famous Film & Theater Personalities

Childhood & Early Life

Richard Stephen Dreyfus was born on October 29, 1947, in Brooklyn, New York to Geraldine and Norman Dreyfus. His mother was a peace activist while his father was an attorney and restaurateur.

Dreyfus was brought up as a Jewish. Due to his father’s aversion towards New York City, the family first moved to Europe and later settled at Los Angeles. Young Dreyfus gained his early education from Beverly Hills High School.

Career

Dreyfus’ career as an actor began early. At the age of 15, Dreyfus made his debut for the television production, ‘In Mama’s House’. Following this, he briefly attended San Fernando Valley State College, (now California State University), for a year.

During Vietnam War, Dreyfus worked as a clerk in a Los Angeles hospital. He returned to acting, making guest appearance in television shows such as ‘Peyton Place’, ‘Gidget’, ‘That Girl’, ‘Bewitched’ and ‘The Big Valley’.

Drefus made his debut on the big screen with a small, uncredited role in the 1967 film ‘The Graduate’. Next, he featured in ‘Valley of the Dolls’ (1967) wherein he had a small role yet again.

During the late 1960s and early 1970s, Dreyfus performed on stage on Broadway, Off-Broadway, repertory, and improvisational theatre. He shared the stage with Henry Fonda, Gloria Grahame, Ron Thompson, Strother Martin, Jane Alexander, Lewis J. Stadlen, Richard X. Slattery and Pepper Martin for the play ‘The Time of Your Life’.

In 1973, Dreyfus played a significant role in the flick, ‘American Graffiti’. The movie was a major hit and had him share the screen space with Harrison Ford and Ron Howard.

In 1974, Dreyfus f played the lead role in the Canadian film, ‘The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz’. The film was positively received by the audience and the critics alike. Dreyfus acting talent was praised and appreciated.

Year 1975 was a prosperous year for Dreyfus in terms of career. He starred in the box office blockbuster, ‘Jaws’, directed by Steven Spielberg. The film was one of the top grossing films of the decade and established Dreyfus’ reputation as a star actor.

Dreyfus repeated his success story with Spielberg yet again in the 1977 flick, ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind’. The film went on to become one of the biggest hits of the decade. Same year, he was seeing playing a romantic lead in ‘The Goodbye Girl’. Such was the finesse with which he played the role of a struggling actor in the film that he bagged the 1978 Academy Award for Best Actor. With this, he became the youngest actor to claim the award. His record stood for 25 years before it was broken by Adrian Brody in 2003.

Following ‘The Goodbye Girl’ success story, Dreyfus produced and starred in the movie ‘The Big Fix’ in 1978. It was around this time that Dreyfus’ addiction for cocaine began. For most of the early 1980s, he suffered from drug addiction. In 1982, he was arrested for possession of drugs. His films of this period were major duds at the box-office.

Around mid-1980s, Dreyfus entered rehabilitation. He made his comeback with the 1986 Paul Mazursky's film, ‘Down and Out in Beverly Hills’, starring alongside Bette Midler and Nick Nolte. Same year, he capped the role of narrator Gordie LaChance in Rob Reiner’s ‘Stand By Me’, a coming-of-age comedy-drama adapted from Stephen King’s novella ‘The Body’.

In 1987, Dreyfus starred in the films, ‘Stakeout’, ‘Nuts’ and ‘Tin Men’. Following year, he once again united with director Paul Mazursky for the romantic comedy ‘Moon Over Parador’.

In the second innings of his career, Dreyfus established himself as an engaging lead actor. In 1989, he reunited with Steven Spielberg for the film, ‘Always’ co-starring with Holly Hunter. The film was a remake of ‘A Guy Named Joe’.

He started the decade of 1990s with the films, ‘Postcards from the Edge’ and Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead’. In 1991, he was a part of the ensemble cast in the rom-com, ‘Once Around’. Same year, he starred in Bill Murray’s popular comedy ‘What About Bob?’ In it, he played the role of a psychiatrist who goes crazy while treating his obsessive new patient. He ended the year with the film, ‘Prisoner of Honor’ which he produced and starred in.

In 1994, he was one of the participants of the historic Papal Concert commemorating the Shoah at the Vatican amidst Pope John Paul II, Rav Elio Toaf - chief rabbi of Rome, and Oscar Luigi Scalfaro - President of the Italian Republic. He recited Kaddish as part of a performance of Leonard Bernstein's Third Symphony with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Gilbert Levine.

Year 1995 was a big year for Dreyfus in terms of career. He started the year with a supporting role in ‘The American President’ but ended it on a handsome note as Glenn Holland in ‘Mr. Holland's Opus’. His role of a determined and inspiring musical teacher to a deaf son earned him nomination for Best Actor in both Academy and Golden Globe Awards.

Beginning 2000, he appeared in several films, including ‘The Crew’, ‘The Old Man Who Read Love Stories’, ‘Who Is Cletis Tout?’ and ‘Silver City’.

He featured as one of the survivors in the 2006 film, ‘Poseidon’. In 2008, he played the character of U.S Vice President Dick Cheney in Oliver Stone's George W. Bush’s biopic ‘W’.

In 2010, he made a cameo appearance in ‘Piranha 3D’ as Matt Hooper. Same year, he also starred in the film, ‘RED’. In 2015, he was seen playing the role of George Hiller in the film, ‘Zipper’.

In 2016, Dreyfus portrayed the role of Bernie Madoff in the miniseries ‘Madoff’ co-starring Blythe Danner.

In addition to films, theatre and television, Dreyfus made his presence felt in literary world too with his book, ‘The Two Georges’, which he co-authored with science-fiction writer Harry Turtledove.

Major Works

Dreyfus most promising work as an actor came in 1977 with the film, ‘The Goodbye Girl’. A romantic film, it had him play the character of an out-of-work actor Elliot Garfield. Dreyfus’ spellbinding performance earned him an Academy, BAFTA and Golden Globe award. Dreyfus became the youngest actor to receive an Academy, a record which he held for 25 years before it was broken by Adrian Brody in 2003.

In 1995, Dreyfus capped the role of Glenn Holland, a determined and inspiring musical teacher who aims to compose one great piece of music, in ‘Mr. Holland's Opus’. The authenticity that he imparted to the character and the magnificence that he showed on screen earned him nomination for Best Actor in both Academy and Golden Globe Awards.

Awards & Achievements

In 1977, he won an Academy Award, a Golden Globe Award, a BAFTA and a Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award in Best Actor category for the film ‘The Goodbye Girl’.

In 2002, he won the Satellite Awards in Best Actor for Miniseries or Television Film category for his performance in ‘The Day Reagan Was Shot’.

In 2010, he won the Ride of Fame Award for his outstanding achievements as an actor.

In 2011, he was presented with the Saturn Award for Best Guest Starring Role on Television for ‘Weeds’.

Dreyfus has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 7021 Hollywood Blvd.

Personal Life & Legacy

Dreyfus has married thrice till date. His first was marriage to Jeramie Rain in early 1980s. The couple was blessed with three children, Emily, Benjamin and Harry. They separated in 1995.

In 1999, Dreyfus married Janelle Lacey but the two divorced in 2005.

In 2006, he married Russian-born Svetlana Erokhin and since then the couple lives in San Diego.

Dreyfus initiated the Dreyfus Civics Initiative which aims to revive civic education in order to teach future generations about the power of their citizenship and the principles that hold America together. It is a non-profit and pre-partisan organization that advocates teaching of civics in United States classrooms.

// Scorpio Celebrities

Richard Dreyfus biography timelines

  • // 29th Oct 1947
    Richard Stephen Dreyfus was born on October 29, 1947, in Brooklyn, New York to Geraldine and Norman Dreyfus. His mother was a peace activist while his father was an attorney and restaurateur.
  • // 1967
    Drefus made his debut on the big screen with a small, uncredited role in the 1967 film ‘The Graduate’. Next, he featured in ‘Valley of the Dolls’ (1967) wherein he had a small role yet again.
  • // 1973
    In 1973, Dreyfus played a significant role in the flick, ‘American Graffiti’. The movie was a major hit and had him share the screen space with Harrison Ford and Ron Howard.
  • // 1974
    In 1974, Dreyfus f played the lead role in the Canadian film, ‘The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz’. The film was positively received by the audience and the critics alike. Dreyfus acting talent was praised and appreciated.
  • // 1975
    Year 1975 was a prosperous year for Dreyfus in terms of career. He starred in the box office blockbuster, ‘Jaws’, directed by Steven Spielberg. The film was one of the top grossing films of the decade and established Dreyfus’ reputation as a star actor.
  • // 1977 To 2003
    Dreyfus most promising work as an actor came in 1977 with the film, ‘The Goodbye Girl’. A romantic film, it had him play the character of an out-of-work actor Elliot Garfield. Dreyfus’ spellbinding performance earned him an Academy, BAFTA and Golden Globe award. Dreyfus became the youngest actor to receive an Academy, a record which he held for 25 years before it was broken by Adrian Brody in 2003.
  • // 1977
    In 1977, he won an Academy Award, a Golden Globe Award, a BAFTA and a Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award in Best Actor category for the film ‘The Goodbye Girl’.
  • // 1978 To 1982
    Following ‘The Goodbye Girl’ success story, Dreyfus produced and starred in the movie ‘The Big Fix’ in 1978. It was around this time that Dreyfus’ addiction for cocaine began. For most of the early 1980s, he suffered from drug addiction. In 1982, he was arrested for possession of drugs. His films of this period were major duds at the box-office.
  • // 1986
    Around mid-1980s, Dreyfus entered rehabilitation. He made his comeback with the 1986 Paul Mazursky's film, ‘Down and Out in Beverly Hills’, starring alongside Bette Midler and Nick Nolte. Same year, he capped the role of narrator Gordie LaChance in Rob Reiner’s ‘Stand By Me’, a coming-of-age comedy-drama adapted from Stephen King’s novella ‘The Body’.
  • // 1987
    In 1987, Dreyfus starred in the films, ‘Stakeout’, ‘Nuts’ and ‘Tin Men’. Following year, he once again united with director Paul Mazursky for the romantic comedy ‘Moon Over Parador’.
  • // 1989
    In the second innings of his career, Dreyfus established himself as an engaging lead actor. In 1989, he reunited with Steven Spielberg for the film, ‘Always’ co-starring with Holly Hunter. The film was a remake of ‘A Guy Named Joe’.
  • // 1991
    He started the decade of 1990s with the films, ‘Postcards from the Edge’ and Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead’. In 1991, he was a part of the ensemble cast in the rom-com, ‘Once Around’. Same year, he starred in Bill Murray’s popular comedy ‘What About Bob?’ In it, he played the role of a psychiatrist who goes crazy while treating his obsessive new patient. He ended the year with the film, ‘Prisoner of Honor’ which he produced and starred in.
  • // 1994
    In 1994, he was one of the participants of the historic Papal Concert commemorating the Shoah at the Vatican amidst Pope John Paul II, Rav Elio Toaf - chief rabbi of Rome, and Oscar Luigi Scalfaro - President of the Italian Republic. He recited Kaddish as part of a performance of Leonard Bernstein's Third Symphony with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Gilbert Levine.
  • // 1995
    Year 1995 was a big year for Dreyfus in terms of career. He started the year with a supporting role in ‘The American President’ but ended it on a handsome note as Glenn Holland in ‘Mr. Holland's Opus’. His role of a determined and inspiring musical teacher to a deaf son earned him nomination for Best Actor in both Academy and Golden Globe Awards.
  • // 1995
    In 1995, Dreyfus capped the role of Glenn Holland, a determined and inspiring musical teacher who aims to compose one great piece of music, in ‘Mr. Holland's Opus’. The authenticity that he imparted to the character and the magnificence that he showed on screen earned him nomination for Best Actor in both Academy and Golden Globe Awards.
  • // 1995
    Dreyfus has married thrice till date. His first was marriage to Jeramie Rain in early 1980s. The couple was blessed with three children, Emily, Benjamin and Harry. They separated in 1995.
  • // 1999 To 2005
    In 1999, Dreyfus married Janelle Lacey but the two divorced in 2005.
  • // 2000
    Beginning 2000, he appeared in several films, including ‘The Crew’, ‘The Old Man Who Read Love Stories’, ‘Who Is Cletis Tout?’ and ‘Silver City’.
  • // 2002
    In 2002, he won the Satellite Awards in Best Actor for Miniseries or Television Film category for his performance in ‘The Day Reagan Was Shot’.
  • // 2006 To 2008
    He featured as one of the survivors in the 2006 film, ‘Poseidon’. In 2008, he played the character of U.S Vice President Dick Cheney in Oliver Stone's George W. Bush’s biopic ‘W’.
  • // 2006
    In 2006, he married Russian-born Svetlana Erokhin and since then the couple lives in San Diego.
  • // 2010 To 2015
    In 2010, he made a cameo appearance in ‘Piranha 3D’ as Matt Hooper. Same year, he also starred in the film, ‘RED’. In 2015, he was seen playing the role of George Hiller in the film, ‘Zipper’.
  • // 2010
    In 2010, he won the Ride of Fame Award for his outstanding achievements as an actor.
  • // 2011
    In 2011, he was presented with the Saturn Award for Best Guest Starring Role on Television for ‘Weeds’.
  • // 2016
    In 2016, Dreyfus portrayed the role of Bernie Madoff in the miniseries ‘Madoff’ co-starring Blythe Danner.

// Famous American

Richard Dreyfus's FAQ

  • What is Richard Dreyfus birthday?

    Richard Dreyfus was born at 1947-10-29

  • Where is Richard Dreyfus's birth place?

    Richard Dreyfus was born in Brooklyn, New York City, New York

  • What is Richard Dreyfus nationalities?

    Richard Dreyfus's nationalities is American

  • Who is Richard Dreyfus spouses?

    Richard Dreyfus's spouses is Svetlana Erokhin (m. 2006), Janelle Lacey (m. 1999–2005), Jeramie Rain (m. 1983–1995)

  • Who is Richard Dreyfus siblings?

    Richard Dreyfus's siblings is Lorin Dreyfuss

  • Who is Richard Dreyfus childrens?

    Richard Dreyfus's childrens is Ben Dreyfuss, Emily Dreyfuss, Harry Dreyfuss

  • How tall is Richard Dreyfus?

    Richard Dreyfus's height is 165

  • Who is Richard Dreyfus's father?

    Richard Dreyfus's father is Norman Dreyfuss

  • Who is Richard Dreyfus's mother?

    Richard Dreyfus's mother is Geraldine Dreyfuss

  • What is Richard Dreyfus's sun sign?

    Richard Dreyfus is Scorpio

  • How famous is Richard Dreyfus?

    Richard Dreyfus is famouse as Actor