Dick Van Dyke

Dick Van Dyke Headshot

Actor

Birth Date: December 13, 1925

Age: 98 years old

Birth Place: West Plains, Missouri

Children: Barry Van Dyke

Siblings: Jerry Van Dyke

Dick Van Dyke is an American actor, comedian, singer, and dancer who has been one of the most well-rounded and beloved entertainers in American history. His career spanned seven decades, and saw him working in nearly every medium, from vaudeville to radio to television to Broadway and film, and find success in pretty much all of them. With his winning smile, fearless physicality, and affable manner, Van Dyke charmed audiences well into his nineties, and shows no signs of stopping.

Richard Wayne Van Dyke was born on December 13, 1925 in West Plains, MO. Growing up in Danville, IL, Van Dyke was around a number of people who would go on to careers in show business: two of his high school pals, Donald O'Connor and Bobby Short, became an actor and a jazz singer, respectively, while one of Van Dyke's closest friends was the cousin of another famous Danville resident, Gene Hackman. Despite growing up around so many creative people, Van Dyke was originally planning to join the priesthood, inspired by his mother's devout religious belief. Eventually, a high school drama class helped him realize that acting was his true passion, and Van Dyke decided to dedicate himself to do what he had originally wanted to do through religion with his acting: touch people's lives and put smiles on their faces. In 1944, his senior year of high school, Van Dyke dropped out so that he could enlist in the Air Force and fight in World War II. After being denied a number of times (due to being underweight), he was eventually accepted for service as a radio announcer, which kickstarted his career as an entertainer.

After the war, in 1947, Van Dyke was working as a radio DJ back home in Danville, when a friend of his named Phil Erickson approached him about starting a comedy duo. They soon became Eric and Van the Merry Mutes, a pair of mimes who found some level of success touring across the country, eventually settling in Atlanta, GA. The next year, Van Dyke married his first wife, Margie Willett. The couple would go on to have four children, including Van Dyke's future co-star, Barry Van Dyke.

After finding success in radio and vaudeville, Van Dyke soon moved on to the nascent format known as television, appearing on WDSU-TV New Orleans Channel 6 as a comedian and later as an emcee of a comedy program. In 1954, Van Dyke made his first network TV appearance on an episode of "Chance of a Lifetime" (ABC, 1952-56). He soon landed guest spots on shows such as "The Phil Silvers Show" (CBS, 1955-59), "The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom" (ABC, 1957-1960), and "The Polly Bergen Show" (NBC, 1957-58).

In 1959, Van Dyke made his Broadway debut in the show "The Girls Against the Boys." This lead director and choreographer Gower Champion to cast Van Dyke in the lead role of Albert Peterson in the musical "Bye Bye Birdie," which ran from 1960 to 1961. Despite his initial hesitations (he had never danced professionally before), the show was a smash hit, and Van Dyke won a Tony award for his performance. He would go on to reprise the role for the 1963 film adaptation, which was a hit at the box office.

By this time, of course, Van Dyke was already a superstar, thanks to a groundbreaking sitcom that bore his name: "The Dick Van Dyke Show" (CBS, 1961-66). Created by Carl Reiner and based on his own career as a TV comedy writer, the show centered around the everyday lives of Van Dyke's neurotic, accident-prone comedy writer, Rob Petrie, and his eternally patient wife, Laura Petrie, played by Mary Tyler Moore. Van Dyke would go on to win three Emmy awards for his efforts, while the show would be crowned Outstanding Comedy Series four times. While "The Dick Van Dyke Show" was on the air, Van Dyke managed to pull off what was in that day impossible: he became just as big a star in the movies as he was on TV.

In 1964, he pulled double duty as Bert the chimney sweep and the banker Mr. Dawes Senior in Walt Disney's adaptation of "Mary Poppins" (1964). Though Van Dyke's attempts at a cockney accent were widely mocked, the film became an instant family classic. After a cool period which saw a number of his films flop, including the likes of "The Art of Love" (1965), "Divorce American Style" (1967), and "Never A Dull Moment" (1968), Van Dyke bounced back when he played Caractacus Pott in yet another instant family classic, "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" (1968). He rounded out the decade by getting dark, playing a self-destructive silent film era comedian in Carl Reiner's film "The Comic" (1969). Though it wasn't a huge hit, critics were impressed with Van Dyke's dramatic range. Van Dyke soon returned to familiar territory, starring in "The New Dick Van Dyke Show" (CBS, 1971-74). Once again developed by Carl Reiner, this series saw Van Dyke playing a local TV talk show host, with Hope Lange as his wife. Unfortunately, the creative team were unable to catch lighting in a bottle for a second time, and the series was cancelled after three seasons.

Van Dyke quickly bounced back, earning an Emmy nod for his portrayal of an alcoholic businessman in the made-for-TV movie "The Morning After" (ABC, 1974). It was fitting, as Van Dyke had recently overcome a real-life drinking problem, one which sadly ended his marriage to Margie Willett, though the two would wait until 1984 to officially finalize their divorce. 1976 proved to be a banner year for Van Dyke: he lead the cast of the short-lived sketch comedy show "Van Dyke and Company" (CBS, 1976), which helped launch the careers of Andy Kaufman and Bob Einstein and won an Emmy for Outstanding Comedy-Variety Series, despite being on the air for only three months. That same year he also met his long-time partner, Michelle Triola, whom he would live with for more than 30 years, until her death in 2009.

The next year, Van Dyke joined the cast of "The Carol Burnett Show" (CBS, 1967-1978) just in time for the legendary sketch program's final season. After this, Van Dyke slowed down a bit, and spent most of the 80s appearing in forgettable made-for-TV movies and making one-off guest appearances on shows like "Matlock" (NBC, 1986-1992/ABC, 1992-95), "Airwolf" (CBS, 1984-87), and "The Golden Girls" (NBC, 1985-1992). However, Van Dyke was able to mount a comeback in 1990, when he earned critical acclaim for his villainous turn as D.A. Fletcher in Warren Beatty's adaptation of the pulp comic series "Dick Tracy" (1990). From there, Van Dyke also returned to TV, playing Dr. Mark Sloan on the hugely popular procedural "Diagnosis: Murder" (CBS, 1993-2001), with his real-life son Barry co-starring as Dr. Sloan's son, Lieutenant Detective Steve Sloan. After playing this character for eight seasons and multiple TV movies, Van Dyke returned to the movies, playing villainous types in the films "Curious George" (2006) and "Night at the Museum" (2006). The latter was a big hit, and Van Dyke would return for the sequel, "Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian" (2009). Sadly, that same year, his longtime partner, Michelle Triola, passed away.

In 2012, Van Dyke remarried, this time to makeup artist Arlene Silver, a longtime friend whom he first met at the SAG Awards in 2006. Most recently, Van Dyke delighted audiences by reprising the role of Mr. Dawes Sr. in the long-awaited sequel "Mary Poppins Returns" (2018), complete with a dance number with co-stars Lin-Manuel Miranda and Emily Blunt.

Credits

Dick Van Dyke: 98 Years of MagicStream

Producer
Special
2023

Dick Van Dyke: 98 Years of MagicStream

Self
Special
2023

Disney 100: A Century of DreamsStream

Self
Movie
2023

The Carol Burnett Show

Actor
Show
2023

A Oscara dobiva...: Mary Poppins

Actor
Show
2022

The 43rd Annual Kennedy Center Honors

Self
Show
2021

The Dick Van Dyke Show -- Now in Living Color!

Actor
Rob Petrie
Show
2021

The Dick Van Dyke Show -- Now in Living Color! A Special Tribute to Carl Reiner

Actor
Rob Petrie
Show
2020

Today All Day

Guest
Show
2020

Holiday Classics

Music Performer
Show
2019

The Dick Van Dyke Show -- Now in Living Color!

Actor
Rob Petrie
Show
2018

Today 3rd Hour

Guest
Show
2018

Mary Poppins Returns

Actor
Mr. Dawes Jr.
Movie
2018

Buttons

Actor
The Angel
Movie
2018

The Dick Van Dyke Show -- Now in Living Color!

Actor
Rob Petrie
Show
2017

The Year in Memoriam 2017

Guest
Show
2017

Jim Brickman: A Joyful Christmas

Music Performer
Show
2017

If You're Not in the Obit, Eat BreakfastStream

Actor
Movie
2017

Dick Van Dyke: We're Going Caroling

Music Performer
Show
2017

Wait for Your Laugh

Self
Movie
2017

The Dick Van Dyke Show - Now in Living Color!

Actor
Rob Petrie
Show
2016

Style-City Music Presents

Music Performer
Show
2016

Harry

Guest
Talk
2016

The Wonderful World of Disney: Disneyland 60

Guest
Show
2016

Trolland

Voice
Yusop
Movie
2016

Tim Janis The Button Girl

Actor
Show
2015

Merry Xmas

Actor
Father
Movie
2015

Night at the Museum: Secret of the TombStream

Actor
Cecil
Movie
2014
47%

Inside Comedy

Actor
Docuseries
2012

TV's Funniest Comedians

Actor
Show
2011

ConanStream

Guest
Talk
2010

The Talk

Guest
Talk
2010

Access Hollywood Live

Guest
Show
2010

Stars in Shorts

Actor
Father
Show
2010

Dreams Come True: A Celebration of Disney Animation

Guest Star
Show
2009

The MiddleStream

Guest Star
Dutch Spence
Series
2009

The Joy Behar Show

Guest
Show
2009

The Bonnie Hunt Show

Guest
Talk
2008

The Doctors

Guest
Talk
2008

Studio Spotlight

Actor
Show
2008

Murder 101: Locked Room Mystery

Actor
Dr. Jonathan Maxwell
Movie
2008

Murder 101: College Can Be Murder

Actor
Dr. Jonathan Maxwell
Movie
2007

Murder 101: If Wishes Were Horses

Actor
Dr. Jonathan Maxwell
Movie
2007

Rachael Ray ShowStream

Guest
Talk
2006

Mickey Mouse ClubhouseStream

Guest Voice
Capt. Goof Beard/Grandpappy Goof
Series
2006

Curious George

Voice
Mr. Bloomsberry
Movie
2006

Murder 101

Actor
Dr. Jonathan Maxwell
Movie
2006

Night at the MuseumStream

Actor
Cecil
Movie
2006
43%

Heroes of Comedy

Guest Star
Show
2005

The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson

Guest
Talk
2005

The Dick Van Dyke Show Revisited

Actor
Show
2004

Tavis Smiley

Guest
Talk
2004

The Alan Brady Show

Voice
Show
2003

The Gin Game

Actor
Show
2003

Diagnosis Murder: Town Without Pity

Actor
Dr. Mark Sloan/Gangster John 'Mr. G' Gotti/J. Edison Nash
Movie
2002

Diagnosis Murder: Town Without Pity

Executive Producer
Movie
2002

Diagnosis Murder: Without Warning

Actor
Dr. Mark Sloan
Movie
2002

Diagnosis Murder: Without Warning

Executive Producer
Movie
2002

ScrubsStream

Guest Star
Dr. Townshend
Series
2001
83%

PBS Hollywood Presents

Actor
Show
2001

Walt: The Man Behind the Myth

Narrator
Movie
2001

BeckerStream

Guest Star
Series
1998

The View

Guest
Talk
1997

Sabrina the Teenage WitchStream

Guest Star
Series
1996

Access Hollywood

Guest
News
1996

Le Monde merveilleux de Disney

Actor
Show
1996

The Town Santa Forgot

Narrator
Show
1993

Diagnosis MurderStream

Actor
Dr. Mark Sloan
Series
1993

Diagnosis MurderStream

Executive Producer
Series
1993

Diagnosis MurderStream

Writer
Series
1993

A Twist of the Knife

Actor
Doctor Mark Sloan
Movie
1993

Vanishing Act

Actor
Movie
1993

The Tonight Show With Jay Leno

Guest
Talk
1992

Remedy for Murder

Actor
Dr. Mark Sloan
Movie
1992

Diagnóstico de Muerte

Actor
Movie
1992

The House on Sycamore Street

Actor
Doctor Mark Sloan
Movie
1992

Diagnosis of Murder

Actor
Dr. Mark Sloan
Movie
1992

Daughters of Privilege

Actor
Buddy Keys
Movie
1991

Dick TracyStream

Actor
D.A. Fletcher
Movie
1990
61%

The SimpsonsStream

Guest Voice
Self
Series
1989
85%

The Van Dyke Show

Actor
Dick Burgess
Show
1988

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Clown College 20th Anniversary

Actor
Show
1988

Jake and the Fatman

Guest Star
Series
1987

Ghost of a Chance

Actor
Bill Nolan
Movie
1987

MatlockStream

Guest Star
Series
1986

The Golden GirlsStream

Guest Star
Ken Whittengham
Series
1985

Donald Duck's 50th Birthday

Host
Show
1984

Highway to HeavenStream

Guest Star
Wally Dunn
Series
1984

AirwolfStream

Guest Star
Malduke
Series
1984

My Secret Angel

Actor
Max Sheppard
Movie
1983

Found Money

Actor
Max Sheppard
Movie
1983

Robin des Bois chez les ordinateurs

Actor
Movie
1983

Drop-Out Father

Actor
Ed McCall
Movie
1982

Entertainment Tonight

Guest
News
1981

CBS News Sunday Morning

Guest
News
1979

The Runner Stumbles

Actor
Father Brian Rivard
Movie
1979

20/20Stream

Guest
News
1978

Tubby the Tuba

Voice
Tubby the Tuba
Movie
1977

CBS Salutes Lucy: The First 25 Years

Guest
Show
1976

Dick Van Dyke & Company

Host
Show
1976

Columbo: Negative Reaction

Actor
Paul Galesko
Movie
1974

The Morning After

Actor
Charlie Lester
Movie
1974

Great PerformancesStream

Guest
Franchise
1972

The New Dick Van Dyke Show

Actor
Dick Preston
Show
1971

ColumboStream

Guest Star
Paul Galesko
Series
1971
84%

The First Nine Months are the Hardest

Actor
Movie
1971

Cold Turkey

Actor
Rev. Clayton Brooks
Movie
1971

The Wonderful World of Disney

Narrator
Series
1969

Dick Van Dyke and the Other Woman

Actor
Show
1969

Some Kind of a Nut

Actor
Fred Amidon
Movie
1969

The Comic

Actor
William Simon aka Billy Bright
Movie
1969

The 20th Emmy Awards

Host
Show
1968

The Dick Cavett ShowStream

Guest
Talk
1968

Chitty Chitty Bang BangStream

Actor
Caractacus Potts
Movie
1968
70%

Never a Dull Moment

Actor
Jack Albany
Movie
1968

The Carol Burnett ShowStream

Actor
Variety Show
1967

The Carol Burnett ShowStream

Guest
Variety Show
1967

FitzwillyStream

Actor
Claude Fitzwilliam
Movie
1967

Divorce American StyleStream

Actor
Richard Harmon
Movie
1967
100%

Lt. Robin Crusoe, U.S.N.

Actor
Lt. Robin Crusoe
Movie
1966

A Salute to Stan Laurel

Actor
Show
1965

Days of our LivesStream

Guest Star
Soap
1965

The Art of Love

Actor
Paul Sloane
Movie
1965
0%

Mary Poppins

Actor
Bert/Mr. Dawes, Sr.
Show
1964

Julie Andrews & Dick Van Dyke: Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious (from Mary Poppins) - Julie Andrews, Dick Van Dyke

Music Performer
Show
1964

What a Way to Go!Stream

Actor
Edgar Hopper
Movie
1964
18%

Mary PoppinsStream

Actor
Bert/Mr. Dawes, Sr.
Movie
1964
96%

The Danny Kaye ShowStream

Guest
Variety Show
1963

Bye Bye BirdieStream

Actor
Albert Peterson
Movie
1963
86%

The Andy Williams Special

Self
Show
1962

Henry Fonda and the Family

Actor
Guest
Show
1962

The Dick Van Dyke ShowStream

Actor
Rob Petrie
Series
1961

Trouble With Richard

Actor
Richard Abernathy
Show
1960

Laugh Line

Host
Show
1959

Mothers Day

Actor
Show
1958

To Tell the Truth

Actor
Panelist
Game Show
1956

CBS Cartoon Theater

Actor
Show
1956

Alfred Hitchcock PresentsStream

Actor
Thomas Craig
Series
1955

I've Got a SecretStream

Guest
Game Show
1952

Today

Guest
News
1952

The Ed Sullivan ShowStream

Guest
Variety Show
1948

News aboutDick Van Dyke