45 Facts About Richard Dreyfuss


Richard Dreyfuss has won a Golden Globe Award, a BAFTA Award, and was nominated in 2002 for two Screen Actor's Guild Awards for his portrayal of former Secretary of State Alexander Haig in the Showtime Networks ensemble film The Day Reagan Was Shot.


Richard Dreyfuss was born on October 29,1947, in Brooklyn, New York, the second and younger son of Norman Richard Dreyfuss, an attorney, restaurateur and plastics company owner originally from a "violent gang culture in Brooklyn", and Geraldine, a peace activist.


Richard Dreyfuss had an older brother, Lorin Dreyfuss, who was an actor, film producer and screenplay writer, and a younger sister, Cathy.


Richard Dreyfuss left the family when his son was 21 years old, and remarried more than once; he and his son were not on speaking terms at the time of his death.


Richard Dreyfuss was raised in the Bayside area of Queens, New York.


Richard Dreyfuss's family is Jewish, descended from immigrants from Russia and Poland.


Richard Dreyfuss has commented that he "grew up thinking that Alfred Dreyfus and [he] are from the same family" and that his great-grandaunt was Hesya Helfman, one of the assassins of Tsar Alexander II of Russia and the only one to escape execution for the deed.


Richard Dreyfuss's father disliked New York, and moved the family first to Europe, and later to Los Angeles, California, when Dreyfuss was nine.


Richard Dreyfuss began acting in his youth, at Temple Emanuel of Beverly Hills Arts Center and the Westside Jewish Community Center, under drama teacher Bill Miller.


Richard Dreyfuss debuted in the TV production In Mama's House, when he was fifteen.


Richard Dreyfuss attended San Fernando Valley State College, now California State University, Northridge, for a year, and was a conscientious objector during the Vietnam War, working in alternate service for two years, as a clerk in a Los Angeles hospital.


Richard Dreyfuss played a larger role in an episode in the second season of Judd, fFor the Defense.


Richard Dreyfuss appeared in the play The Time of Your Life, which was revived on March 17,1972, at the Huntington Hartford Theater in Los Angeles, and directed by Edwin Sherin.


Richard Dreyfuss's first film role was a small, uncredited appearance in The Graduate.


Richard Dreyfuss appeared in the subsequent Dillinger, and landed a role in the 1973 hit American Graffiti, acting with other future stars such as Harrison Ford and Ron Howard.


Richard Dreyfuss played his first lead role in the Canadian film The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz, receiving positive reviews, including praise from Pauline Kael.


Richard Dreyfuss went on to star in box office blockbusters Jaws and Close Encounters of the Third Kind, both directed by Steven Spielberg.


Richard Dreyfuss won the 1978 Academy Award for Best Actor at the 50th Academy Awards ceremony for his portrayal of a struggling actor in The Goodbye Girl, becoming the youngest actor to do so, besting Marlon Brando, who had won his first Oscar in 1955 at the age of 30 years, 360 days old.


In just five years, between 1973 and 1978, the films that Richard Dreyfuss appeared in grossed upwards of $900 million.


Around 1978, Richard Dreyfuss began using cocaine frequently; his addiction came to a head four years later in 1982, when he was arrested for possession of the drug after he blacked out while driving, and his Mercedes-Benz 450 SL struck a tree.


Richard Dreyfuss entered rehabilitation and eventually made a Hollywood comeback with the films Down And Out In Beverly Hills in 1986 and Stakeout the following year.


Richard Dreyfuss plays the elder Gordie Lachance, who narrates the film.


In 1989, Richard Dreyfuss reunited with Spielberg on Always, a remake of A Guy Named Joe in which he co-starred with Holly Hunter.


That same year, Richard Dreyfuss produced and starred as Georges Picquart in Prisoner of Honor, an HBO movie about the historical Dreyfus Affair.


Richard Dreyfuss recited Kaddish as part of a performance of Leonard Bernstein's Third Symphony with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Gilbert Levine.


Richard Dreyfuss was nominated for an Oscar and a Golden Globe for his performance as Glenn Holland in Mr Holland's Opus.


In 1997, Richard Dreyfuss recorded a voiceover for the Apple Computer "Think Different" ad campaign, and provided the voice of the narrator in The Call of the Wild: Dog of the Yukon.


Richard Dreyfuss spent four years as a research adviser at St Antony's College, Oxford, from 2004 until 2008.


Richard Dreyfuss ultimately made his West End debut at The Old Vic in 2009.


Richard Dreyfuss's performance was subject to some controversy, owing to his use of an earpiece onstage, reportedly because of his inability to learn his lines in time.


Richard Dreyfuss was focused on learning the lines of his script at the time and did not notice the harassment occur.


Richard Dreyfuss guest-voiced as himself in the "Three Kings" episode of Family Guy in 2009, and later appeared again in the episode "Peter-assment".


Richard Dreyfuss guest starred in the sixth season of Weeds as Warren Schiff, Nancy's high school teacher to whom she had lost her virginity.


Richard Dreyfuss was inducted as a "star" on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on October 10,1996.


On February 18,2015, it was announced that Richard Dreyfuss would portray Bernie Madoff in the miniseries Shots Fired.


Richard Dreyfuss seeks to revive civics education to teach future generations about the power of their citizenship and the principles that supposedly hold America together.


On November 17,2006, Richard Dreyfuss appeared on HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher as a panel member to discuss teaching Civics in schools.


In 2007, Richard Dreyfuss appeared in the youth voting documentary film 18 in '08.


Richard Dreyfuss has been outspoken regarding the media's influence in shaping public opinion, policy, and legislation.


In 2011 and 2014, Richard Dreyfuss was elected to the Common Cause National Governing Board.


In 1995, Richard Dreyfuss co-authored with science-fiction writer Harry Turtledove the book The Two Georges, a novel set in the year 1995 of a timeline in which the American Revolution was peacefully avoided.


Richard Dreyfuss's elder son, Benjamin, was born with Peters Anomaly, a rare genetic eye disorder which, despite many operations, left him blind in his left eye.


In 2006, Richard Dreyfuss discussed his diagnosis of bipolar disorder in the documentary Stephen Fry: The Secret Life of the Manic Depressive, in which Fry interviewed Richard Dreyfuss about his experience being bipolar.


Richard Dreyfuss and Russian-born Svetlana Erokhin married in 2006 and as of February 2020 they live in San Diego, California, although they have frequently visited New York City, London, and Sun Valley, Idaho, where Richard Dreyfuss once lived.


Richard Dreyfuss said he had been overly flirtatious in his past, and that he regretted that behavior, but he emphasized that he "value[s] and respect[s] women" and is "not an assaulter".