Richard Benjamin

Richard Benjamin Headshot

Actor • Director

Birth Date: May 22, 1938

Age: 85 years old

Birth Place: New York City, New York

Best known for his characterizations of two Philip Roth characters, in "Goodbye Columbus" (1969) and "Portnoy's Complaint" (1972), Benjamin had walk-on juvenile parts in some 1950s films and first earned adult recognition on Broadway, starring in Neil Simon's "Star-Spangled Girl" (1966). He had directed "Barefoot in the Park" in London the previous year. Other off-beat acting highlights include "Catch-22" (1970) and "The Sunshine Boys" (1975).

Benjamin made a promising directorial debut with "My Favorite Year" (1982), a comic look at the early days of TV featuring a glorious performance by Peter O'Toole. However his subsequent directorial efforts have not been comparable commercially or critically. A conventional storyteller, Benjamin has worked with a wide assortment of actors in several genres. His second film, "Racing With the Moon" (1984), was a war romance starring Sean Penn and Elizabeth McGovern. Benjamin followed up with a pair of undistinguished comedies: "City Heat" (1984), a period detective comedy starring Burt Reynolds and a surprisingly funny Clint Eastwood and "The Money Pit" (1986), featuring Tom Hanks, Shelly Long, and a collapsing house in a Steven Spielberg-produced comedy which confused laughs with special effects. Benjamin's spy drama, "Little Nikita" (1988), offered the intriguing pairing of Sidney Poitier and River Phoenix, but audiences steered clear. Benjamin also tried his hand at high-concept comedy with "My Stepmother Is an Alien" (1988) with Dan Aykroyd and Kim Basinger and moved on to an action comedy, "Downtown" (1990), with Anthony Edwards and Forest Whitaker. Benjamin regained some degree of critical success that same year with "Mermaids," a touching mother-daughter comedy starring Cher, Winona Ryder, and Bob Hoskins. After a hiatus, he directed Whoopi Goldberg and Ted Danson in the romantic comedy, "Made in America" (1993) and helmed the pallid "Mrs. Winterbourne" (1996), which starred Ricki Lake and Shirley MacLaine.

Credits

You PeopleStream

Actor
Dr. Green
Movie
2023
40%

Ex-Husbands

Actor
Simon Pearce
Movie
2023

Ray DonovanStream

Guest Star
Series
2013
72%

Henry Poole Is Here

Actor
Dr. Fancher
Movie
2008

Pushing DaisiesStream

Guest Star
Series
2007
96%

Lucky 13

Actor
Rabbi Schulberg
Movie
2006

A Little Thing Called Murder

Director
Movie
2006

The Goodbye Girl

Actor
Oliver Fry
Movie
2004

The Goodbye Girl

Director
Movie
2004

Marci X

Actor
Ben Feld
Movie
2003

Marci X

Director
Movie
2003

The Sports Pages

Director
Movie
2001

Laughter on the 23rd Floor

Director
Movie
2001

Titus

Actor
Series
2000

The Shrink Is In

Director
Movie
2000

Tourist Trap

Director
Movie
1998

The Pentagon Wars

Actor
Casper Weinberger
Movie
1998

The Pentagon Wars

Director
Movie
1998

Deconstructing HarryStream

Actor
Ken
Movie
1997
73%

Ink

Guest Star
Show
1996

Mrs. WinterbourneStream

Director
Movie
1996
15%

EllenStream

Guest Star
Series
1994

Milk Money

Director
Movie
1994

Made in America

Director
Movie
1993

Mad About YouStream

Guest Star
Series
1992

Lift

Actor
Rabbi Brill
Movie
1991

DowntownStream

Director
Movie
1990

MermaidsStream

Director
Movie
1990
72%

Little Nikita

Director
Movie
1988

My Stepmother Is an Alien

Director
Movie
1988

J'ai épousé une extra-terrestre

Director
Movie
1988

The Money PitStream

Director
Movie
1986
50%

The Ray Bradbury TheaterStream

Actor
Mr. Howard
Series
1985

Adiós a la Inocencia

Director
Movie
1984

Racing With the MoonStream

Director
Movie
1984
60%

City HeatStream

Director
Movie
1984
22%

Packin' It In

Actor
Gary Webber
Movie
1983

My Favorite YearStream

Director
Movie
1982
97%

Saturday the 14thStream

Actor
John
Movie
1981
10%

Semi-Tough

Director
Show
1980

The Last Married Couple in America

Actor
Marv Cooper
Movie
1980

Witches' Brew

Actor
Joshua Lightman
Movie
1980

First Family

Actor
Press Secretary Bunthorne
Movie
1980

Love at First Bite

Actor
Doctor Jeff Rosenberg
Movie
1979

Le Vampire de ces dames

Actor
Movie
1979

How to Beat the High Cost of Living

Actor
Albert
Movie
1979

Scavenger Hunt

Actor
Stuart Selsome
Movie
1979

Fame

Actor
Meyer Shine
Movie
1978

House Calls

Actor
Dr. Norman Solomon
Movie
1978

No Room to Run

Actor
Nick Loomis
Movie
1978

Quark

Actor
Adam Quark
Series
1977

Saturday Night LiveStream

Host
Series
1975

The Sunshine BoysStream

Actor
Ben Clark
Movie
1975
71%

WestworldStream

Actor
Peter Martin
Movie
1973
84%

The Last of SheilaStream

Actor
Tom
Movie
1973
90%

Portnoy's Complaint

Actor
Alexander Portnoy
Movie
1972

The Steagle

Actor
Harold Weiss
Movie
1971

The Marriage of a Young Stockbroker

Actor
William Alren
Movie
1971

Catch-22Stream

Actor
Maj. Danby
Movie
1970
81%

Diary of a Mad Housewife

Actor
Jonathan Balser
Movie
1970

Goodbye, ColumbusStream

Actor
Neil Klugman
Movie
1969
92%

He & She

Actor
Dick Hollister
Show
1967

Vacation Playhouse

Actor
Ted Penny
Show
1963

The Tonight Show Starring Johnny CarsonStream

Guest
Talk
1962

Alfred Hitchcock HourStream

Actor
Series
1962

Dr. Kildare

Guest Star
Series
1961

Thunder Over the Plains

Actor
Sergeant Shaw (uncredited)
Movie
1953

What's My Line?Stream

Guest
Game Show
1950