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Jack Gilford
Birth: Jul. 25, 1908
New York
New York County (Manhattan)
New York, USA
Death: Jun. 4, 1990
Greenwich Village
New York County (Manhattan)
New York, USA

Actor. Born Jacob Aaron Gellman in New York City, New York, his father worked in the fur industry, and his mother owned a restaurant. Discovered working in a pharmacy by comedian Milton Berle, he began performing in amateur theater, where he started doing imitations and impersonations. His first appearance in motion pictures was in a short entitled "Midnight Melodies." In 1938, he worked as the MC in the first downtown New York integrated nightclub, "Cafe Society". He created original spoofs on movies -- in one of them, he coined the now-common phrase "The butler did it". He believed deeply in social change in the United States, integration and Unions. He was quite active both socially and politically. He was put on the Hollywood blacklist in the 1950s, but managed to become successful mostly through roles on the Broadway stage, such as "Drink to me only," "Romanoff and Juliet," "The Diary of Anne Frank," and "No, No, Nanette." He met his future wife, Madeline, at political meetings in 1947. He was a blend of the earlier style of the Yiddish theater, Vaudeville and Burlesque and one of his specialties was pantomime, which was employed to a great extent in the ten years he was the face of the Cracker Jack TV commercials. He was nominated for several Tony awards for best supporting actor in "A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum" (1963), and for his role as Herr Schultz in "Cabaret" (1966). He was nominated for an Academy Award for best supporting actor in 1972 for his role as Phil Green in "Save the Tiger." In 1976, Jack and Madeline Gifford joined forces with their longtime friends Zero and Kate Mostel to pen their joint autobiography, "170 Years in Show Business." Jack started to perform his one man shows in the 1980s. This included appearances at the Paramount Theater in Denver, as well as Town Hall NYC. He became a highly recognizable and loved comedic, serious and character actor. He made numerous appearances in television shows over the years. One of his last performances (if not the very last) was on the ABC TV series "Thirtysomething." After a three-year battle with stomach cancer, he died peacefully in his Greenwich Village home in Manhattan in 1990. (bio by: Jane Stacy Eubanks) 
Family links: 
  Madeline Lee Lederman Gilford (1923 - 2008)*
*Calculated relationship
Mount Hebron Cemetery
Queens County
New York, USA
Plot: 76D-3/4 OF LOT 13A-2
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Record added: Jan 14, 2000
Find A Grave Memorial# 8128
Jack Gilford
Added by: Ron Moody
Jack Gilford
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Jack Gilford
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