Burgess Meredith

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Oliver Burgess Meredith

Birthdate: (89)
Birthplace: Cleveland, OH, USA
Death: September 9, 1997 (89)
Malibu, CA, USA
Immediate Family:

Son of William George Meredith and Ida Beth Meredith
Ex-husband of Paulette Goddard; Kaja Meredith; Margaret Perry and Helen Derby Berrien

Occupation: Actor
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Burgess Meredith

Originally a newspaper reporter, Burgess Meredith came to the screen in 1936, repeating his stage role in Winterset, a part written for him by Maxwell Anderson. He was best-known for portraying Rocky Balboa's trainer Mickey Goldmill in the Rocky films and the Penguin in the television series Batman. He also earned a new generation of fans, portraying the father of Jack Lemmon's character in the 1993 film Grumpy Old Men, and the sequel, 1995's Grumpier Old Men, which was his final film role. For his contribution to the motion picture industry, he was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6904 Hollywood Blvd.

He was born Oliver Burgess Meredith on November 16, 1907 Cleveland, Ohio, the son of Ida Beth (née Burgess) and Canadian-born William George Meredith, M.D. He graduated from Hoosac School in 1926 and then attended Amherst College as a member of the Class of 1931.

Meredith has had a long and varied film career, playing everything from George in Of Mice and Men (1939) to Sylvester Stallone)'s trainer in Rocky (1976). He received Oscar nominations for The Day of the Locust (1975) and Rocky. As comfortable with comedy as with drama, Meredith also appeared in Idiot's Delight (1939); Second Chorus (1940), with Fred Astaire; Diary of a Chambermaid (1942), which he also wrote and produced; The Story of G.I. Joe (1945); and Mine Own Executioner (1947). He also directed Man on the Eiffel Tower (1949). On television, he made countless guest appearances in dozens of dramatic and variety productions, including one of the first episodes of The Twilight Zone, the touching Time Enough at Last, and as host on the first episode of Your Show of Shows. He was a regular on Mr. Novak (1963-64) and Search (1972-73), hosted Those Amazing Animals (1981), co-starred with Sally Struthers in Gloria (1982-83), and made classic appearances as the Penguin on Batman (1966-68). He won an Emmy in 1977 for Tailgunner Joe and has done voiceover work for innumerable commercials, notably Volkswagen. Meredith made his final feature film appearance playing crusty Grandpa Gustafson in Grumpier Old Men (1995), the sequel to Grumpy Old Men (1993) in which he also appeared. In 1996, he played a role in the CD-rom video game Ripper.

He was briefly married to Paulette Goddard in the 1940s. Meredith died from complications of Alzheimer's disease and melanoma in his Malibu home at the age of 88 on September 9, 1997.


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Burgess Meredith's Timeline

November 16, 1907
Cleveland, OH, USA
September 9, 1997
Age 89
Malibu, CA, USA