66 Facts About Alan Alda


Alan Alda is an American actor, comedian, screenwriter and director.


Alan Alda wrote and directed numerous episodes of the series.


Alan Alda won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series for his role as Senator Arnold Vinick in the NBC series The West Wing.


Alan Alda had recurring roles in The Big C, Horace and Pete, Ray Donovan, and The Good Fight.


Alan Alda has received three Tony Award nominations for his Broadway performances in The Apple Tree, Jake's Women, and Glengarry Glen Ross.


In 2019, Alan Alda received the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award.


Alan Alda was born Alphonso Joseph D'Abruzzo on January 28,1936, in the Bronx, New York City.


Alan Alda spent his childhood travelling around the United States with his parents, in support of his father's job as a performer in burlesque theatres.


Alan Alda's father was of Italian descent and his mother of Irish.


Alan Alda attended Archbishop Stepinac High School in White Plains, New York.


Alan Alda studied English at Fordham University in the Bronx, where he was a student staff member of its FM radio station, WFUV.


Alan Alda's half-brother Antony Alan Alda was born in 1956 and became an actor.


Alan Alda began his career in the 1950s as a member of the Compass Players, an improvisational comedy revue directed by Paul Sills.


Alan Alda later joined the improvisational group Second City in Chicago.


Alan Alda said he became a Mainer in 1957 when he played at the Kennebunkport Playhouse.


Alan Alda was part of the cast, along with David Frost, Henry Morgan and Buck Henry, of the American television version of That Was The Week That Was, which ran as a series from January 10,1964 to May 1965.


Alan Alda wrote several of the stories and poems featured in Marlo Thomas' television show Free to Be.


Alan Alda was nominated for 21 Emmy Awards, and won five.


Alan Alda took part in writing 19 episodes, including the 1983 2.5-hour series finale "Goodbye, Farewell and Amen", which was the 32nd episode he directed.


Alan Alda was the only series regular to appear in all 256 episodes.


Alan Alda wrote and starred in the title role of the 1979 political drama film The Seduction of Joe Tynan.


In 1996, Alan Alda was ranked 41st on TV Guides 50 Greatest TV Stars of All Time.


Alan Alda has been a strong and vocal supporter of women's rights and the feminist movement.


Alan Alda co-chaired, with former First Lady Betty Ford, the Equal Rights Amendment Countdown campaign.


Alan Alda then partnered with producer Martin Bregman on various films, first with an agreement at Universal Pictures in 1983, then it was moved to Lorimar Motion Pictures in 1986.


In 1988, Alan Alda starred opposite Ann-Margret in the marital comedy A New Life.


Alan Alda appeared frequently in the films of Woody Allen, beginning with Crimes and Misdemeanors.


Betsy's Wedding is Alan Alda's last directing credit to date.


Alan Alda was a guest star five times on ER, playing Dr Kerry Weaver's mentor, Gabriel Lawrence.


Alan Alda had a co-starring role as Dr Robert Gallo in the 1993 TV movie And the Band Played On.


Alan Alda continued appearing in the films of his friend Woody Allen, including Manhattan Murder Mystery and Everyone Says I Love You.


Around this time, rumors circulated that Alan Alda was considering running for the United States Senate in New Jersey, but he denied this.


In 1996, Alan Alda played Henry Ford, founder of the Ford Motor Company, in Camping With Henry and Tom, based on the book by Mark St Germain and appeared in the comedy film, Flirting with Disaster.


In 1997 Alan Alda played National Security Adviser Alvin Jordan In Murder at 1600.


In 1999, Alan Alda portrayed Dr Gabriel Lawrence in NBC program ER for five episodes and was nominated for Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series.


Alan Alda made his premiere in the sixth season's eighth episode, "In The Room", and was added to the opening credits with the 13th episode, "King Corn".


Alan Alda appeared in a total of 28 episodes during the show's sixth and seventh seasons.


Alan Alda had been a serious candidate, along with Sidney Poitier, for the role of President Josiah Bartlet before Martin Sheen was ultimately cast in the role.


In 2004, Alan Alda portrayed conservative Maine Senator Owen Brewster in Martin Scorsese's Academy Award-winning film The Aviator, in which he co-starred with Leonardo DiCaprio.


Alan Alda received his first Academy Award nomination for this role in 2005.


Alan Alda had a part in the 2000 romantic comedy What Women Want, as the CEO of the advertising firm where the main characters worked.


In early 2005, Alan Alda starred as Shelly Levene in the Tony Award-winning Broadway revival of David Mamet's Glengarry Glen Ross, for which he received a Tony Award nomination for Best Featured Actor in a Play.


In January 2010, Alan Alda hosted The Human Spark, a three-part series originally broadcast on PBS discussing the nature of human uniqueness and recent studies on the human brain.


In 2006, Alda contributed his voice to a part in the audio book of Max Brooks' World War Z In this book, he voiced Arthur Sinclair, Jr.


Alan Alda returned to Broadway in November 2014, playing the role of Andrew Makepeace in the revival of Love Letters at the Brooks Atkinson Theater alongside Candice Bergen.


In 2015, Alan Alda appeared as a lawyer, Thomas Watters, alongside Tom Hanks as James Donovan, in Steven Spielberg's critically acclaimed cold war drama film Bridge of Spies which received an Academy Award nomination for Best Picture.


Also in 2016, Alan Alda took part in the opening night show of John Mulaney and Nick Kroll's Oh, Hello at the Lyceum Theatre on Broadway.


From 2018 to 2020, Alan Alda portrayed psychiatrist Dr Arthur Amiot in the Showtime's Ray Donovan.


Alan Alda reprised this role in Ray Donovan: The Movie.


In 2019, Alan Alda appeared in Noah Baumbach's thirteenth film, Marriage Story, as a warm-hearted lawyer who represents a stage director during the divorce proceedings.


Alan Alda helped narrate a 2005 St Jude Children's Hospital-produced one-hour special TV show Fighting for Life.


Alan Alda chaired "Men for the Equal Rights Amendment" and was appointed to the International Women's Year Commission.


Alan Alda continues as a member of its advisory board.


Alan Alda is on the advisory board of the Future of Life Institute.


Alan Alda serves on the board of the World Science Festival and is a judge for Math-O-Vision.


Alan Alda has an avid interest in cosmology, and participated in BBC coverage of the opening of the Large Hadron Collider, at CERN, Geneva, in September 2008.


Alan Alda was named an Honorary Fellow by the Society for Technical Communication in 2014 for his work with the Center for Communicating Science and the annual Flame Challenge.


In 2014 Alda was awarded the American Chemical Society's James T Grady-James H Stack Award for Interpreting Chemistry for the Public for his work in science communication.


Alan Alda was awarded the National Academy of Sciences Public Welfare Medal in 2016 "for his extraordinary application of the skills honed as an actor to communicating science on television and stage, and by teaching scientists innovative techniques that allow them to tell their stories to the public".


In 1956, while attending Fordham, Alan Alda met Arlene Weiss, who was attending Hunter College.


In Things I Overheard While Talking to Myself, Alan Alda described how as a teen he was raised as a Roman Catholic and eventually he realized he had begun thinking like an agnostic or atheist.


Alan Alda argues he simply is not a believer and questions why people are so frightened of others who hold beliefs different from their own.


In 2005, Alan Alda published his first round of memoirs, Never Have Your Dog Stuffed: and Other Things I've Learned.


The title comes from an incident in his childhood, when Alan Alda was distraught about his dog dying and his well-meaning father had the animal stuffed.


Alan Alda was horrified by the results, and took from this that sometimes we have to accept things as they are, rather than desperately and fruitlessly trying to change them.


Alan Alda has been awarded several honorary degrees in recognition of his acting career and promotion of educational initiatives.