Birthplace: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Eugene Levy, CM (born December 17, 1946) is a Canadian actor, comedian, producer, director, musician and writer. He is the only actor to have appeared in all eight of the American Pie films, in his role as Noah Levenstein. He often plays nerdy, unconventional figures, with his humour often deriving from his excessive explanations of matters and the way in which he deals with sticky situations. Levy is a regular collaborator of actor-director Christopher Guest, appearing in and co-writing four of his films, commencing with Waiting for Guffman (1997).
Levy received the Governor General's Performing Arts Award, Canada's highest honour in the performing arts, in 2008. He was appointed to the Order of Canada on June 30, 2011.
Levy was born to a Russian Jewish family in Hamilton, Ontario. His mother was a housewife and his father was a foreman at an automobile plant. He went to Westdale Secondary School, and attended McMaster University. He was vice-president of the McMaster Film Board, a student film group, where he met moviemaker Ivan Reitman.
An alumnus of both the Second City, Toronto and the sketch comedy series Second City Television, Levy often plays unusual supporting characters with nerdish streaks. Perhaps his best-known role on SCTV is the dimwitted Earl Camembert, a newsanchor for the "SCTV News" and a parody of real-life Canadian newsman Earl Cameron. Celebrities impersonated by Levy on SCTV include: Perry Como, Ricardo Montalban, Alex Trebek, Sean Connery, Howard Cosell, Henry Kissinger, Menachem Begin, Bud Abbott, Milton Berle, John Charles Daly, Gene Shalit, Judd Hirsch, Jack Carter, Muammar al-Gaddafi, Tony Dow, James Caan, Lorne Greene, Rex Reed, Ralph Young (of Sandler and Young), F. Lee Bailey, Ernest Borgnine, former Ontario chief coroner Dr. Morton Schulman, Norman Mailer, Neil Sedaka and Howard McNear as Floyd the Barber.
Original Levy characterizations on SCTV are comic Bobby Bittman, scandal sheet entrepreneur Dr. Raoul Withers, "report on business" naïf Brian Johns, 3-D horror auteur Woody Tobias Jr., cheerful Leutonian accordionist Stan Schmenge, lecherous dream interpreter Raoul Wilson, hammer-voiced sports broadcaster Lou Jaffe, diminutive union patriarch Sid Dithers ("San Francisckie! Did you drove or did you flew?"), fey current-events commentator Joel Weiss, buttoned-down panel show moderator Dougal Currie, smarmy Just for Fun emcee Stan Kanter, energetic used car salesman Al Peck, guileless security guard Gus Gustofferson, Phil the Garment King (also of Phil's Nails), and the inept teen dance show host Rockin’ Mel Slirrup.
Though he has been the "above the title" star in only two films, Armed and Dangerous (1986) and The Man (2005), he has featured prominently in many films. He is the co-writer and frequent cast member of Christopher Guest’s mockumentary features, particularly A Mighty Wind, where his sympathetic performance as emotionally unstable folksinger Mitch Cohen won kudos; his accolades included a Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor - Musical or Comedy and the prestigious New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor. In the 1980s and 1990s, he appeared in Splash, National Lampoon’s Vacation, Club Paradise, Stay Tuned, Multiplicity and other comedies. Levy was the creator of Maniac Mansion, a television sitcom based on the LucasArts video game of the same name. He was also seriously considered for the role of Toby Ziegler on The West Wing, a role that went to actor Richard Schiff.
Levy, along with his son Dan Levy, is co-creator of the popular CBC/PopTV sitcom, Schitt's Creek. He also stars in the show alongside his son as head of the Rose family, Johnny Rose. His daughter, Sarah Levy, portraits Twyla Sands, the waitress at the Schitt‘s Creek diner.
Levy's career received a tremendous boost in 1999, when he was cast as the clueless but loving dad in the blockbuster American Pie. Reprising the role in three film sequels and starring in four straight-to-video sequels made him something of a cult hero. Levy has been quoted as saying the American Pie series was a particular turning point in his career, affording him "a new perspective on his career at the time". Since working on the first two American Pie movies, Levy has worked with Steve Martin and Queen Latifah in Bringing Down the House, and most recently appeared with Martin in Cheaper by the Dozen 2. Levy again appeared as his famous character, Noah Levenstein, in the fourth theatrical film in the American Pie series, American Reunion. He is the only actor to appear in all eight American Pie films.
Levy, along with Christopher Guest and Michael McKean, was awarded the 2003 Grammy Award for Best Song Written for a Motion Picture, Television, or Other Visual Media for the title song from A Mighty Wind. Levy appeared in the corner of a poster hanging outside the movie theatre in Springfield in the "See Homer Run" episode of The Simpsons. (The poster was advertising for Princess Rock Star and featured a girl with an electric guitar, with Levy in the corner wearing a royal crown. A liner note under him read “Eugene Levy as the King”).
In March 2006, it was announced that he would receive a star on Canada's Walk of Fame. In 2002, the entire cast of SCTV was given a group star, and although Levy is not mentioned on the actual star, he was still inducted as a part of the group. This makes him one of only four two-time honourees, alongside fellow SCTV alumni John Candy, Martin Short and Catherine O'Hara.
Levy is one of only a handful of people who have won at least five Canadian Comedy Awards, including two for Best Writing (Best in Show in 2001 and A Mighty Wind in 2004) and three for Best Male Performer (Best in Show, American Pie 2 in 2002, and A Mighty Wind).
On May 3, 2008, the Governor General of Canada presented Levy with the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards (GGPAA), a lifetime achievement award considered Canada's "most prestigious artistic honour". In 2010, Levy was awarded the ACTRA Award by the union representing Canada's actors.
In 2011, Levy was made a Member of the Order of Canada "for his contributions as a comic actor and writer, and for his dedication to charitable causes."
On May 22, 2012, Levy delivered a commencement address at Dalhousie University, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and was awarded the degree Doctor of Laws (honoris causa).
On June 11, 2012, Levy was presented with the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal by the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario.
On March 13, 2016, Levy took home the award for "Best Performance by an Actor in a Continuing Leading Comedic Role" at the 4th Annual Canadian Screen Awards, for his performance as Johnny Rose in the CBC/PopTV sitcom, Schitt's Creek.
Levy married Deborah Divine in 1977 and together have two children: Dan and Sarah.
Levy is an advocate for autism awareness and treatment. He was a close friend of John Candy, who died of a heart attack in 1994.
|1971||Foxy Lady||Coffee Boy|
|1973||Cannibal Girls||Clifford Sturges|
|1983||National Lampoon’s Vacation||Ed the Car Salesman|
|1983||Going Berserk||Sal DiPasquale|
|1986||Club Paradise||Barry Steinberg|
|1986||Armed and Dangerous||Norman Kane|
|1987||Bride of Boogedy||Tom Lynch|
|1989||Speed Zone||Leo Ross|
|1991||Father of the Bride||Singer at Audition|
|1992||Once Upon a Crime||Casino Cashier||Uncredited
|1994||I Love Trouble||Ray, Justice of the Peace|
|1995||Father of the Bride Part II||Mr. Habib|
|1996||Waiting for Guffman||Dr. Allan Pearl||Also Writer|
|1998||Almost Heroes||Guy Fontenot|
|1998||Holy Man||Guy on Background TV||Uncredited|
|1998||Richie Rich's Christmas Wish||Professor Keanbean||Direct-to-Video|
|1999||The Secret Life of Girls||Hugh Sanford|
|1999||American Pie||Noah Levenstein|
|2000||Best in Show||Gerry Fleck||Also Writer|
|2000||The Ladies Man||Bucky Kent|
|2001||American Pie 2||Noah Levenstein|
|2001||Down to Earth||Keyes|
|2001||Josie and the Pussycats||Himself|
|2002||Like Mike||Frank Bernard|
|2003||Bringing Down the House||Howie Rottman|
|2003||A Mighty Wind||Mitch Cohen||Also Writer|
|2003||Dumb & Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd||Principal Collins|
|2003||American Wedding||Noah Levenstein|
|2004||New York Minute||Max Lomax|
|2005||The Man||Andy Fiddler|
|2005||American Pie Presents: Band Camp||Noah Levenstein||Direct-to-DVD|
|2005||Cheaper by the Dozen 2||Jimmy Murtaugh|
|2006||Over the Hedge||Lou||Voice|
|2006||For Your Consideration||Morley Orfkin||Also Writer|
|2006||American Pie Presents: The Naked Mile||Noah Levenstein||Direct-to-DVD|
|2007||American Pie Presents: Beta House||Noah Levenstein||Direct-to-DVD|
|2009||Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian||Albert Einstein Bobbleheads|
|2009||Taking Woodstock||Max Yasgur|
|2009||American Pie Presents: The Book of Love||Noah Levenstein||Direct-to-DVD|
|2012||American Reunion||Noah Levenstein|
|2012||Madea's Witness Protection||George Needleman|
|2017||Goon: Last of the Enforcers||Dr. Glatt|
|1975, 1979||King of Kensington||Bernie / Freddie Cohen||2 episodes|
|1976||The Sunshine Hour||Various|
|1985||The Last Polka||Stan Shmenge||Television film; also writer|
|1985||George Burns Comedy Week||Robert||Episode: "Home for Dinner"|
|1985||Martin Short: Concert for the North Americas||Stupid Eddie / Buddy (voice)||Television special|
|1986||Billy Crystal: Don't Get Me Started||Morty Arnold||Television special|
|1987||The Disney Sunday Movie||Tom Lynch||Episode: "Bride of Boogedy"|
|1988||The Ray Bradbury Theater||Bert Harris||Episode: "Skeleton"|
|1992||I, Martin Short, Goes Hollywood||Studio Head (voice)||Television special|
|1992||Partners 'N' Love||David Grodin||Television film|
|1992||Camp Candy||Unnamed character (voice)||Episode: "When It Rains... It Snows"|
|1993||Maniac Mansion||Doc Ellis||Episode: "Freddie Had a Little Lamb"
Also creator, writer, director, and executive producer
|1994||The Martin Short Show||Directed two episodes|
|1995||Harrison Bergeron||President McCloskey||Television film|
|1996||Road to Avonlea||Rudy Blaine||Episode: "King of the Great White Way"|
|1996-1997||Duckman||Dr. Craig Ehrlich (voice)||2 episodes|
|1997-1998||Hiller and Diller||Gordon Schermerhorn||13 episodes|
|1998||Mad About You||Doctor||Episode: "Nat & Arley"|
|1998||Hercules||King Midas (voice)||Episode: "Hercules and the Golden Touch"|
|1998||The Drew Carey Show||Dr. Rider||Episode: "The Engagement"|
|1999||The Wonderful World of Disney||Larry||Episode: "Dogmatic"|
|2000||Dilbert||Plug Guard (voice)||Episode: "The Return"|
|2002||Off Centre||Dr. Barry Wasserman||2 episodes|
|2002-2004||Greg the Bunny||Gil Bender||13 episodes|
|2012||I, Martin Short, Goes Home||Mr. Mortimer Rickards||Television special|
|2013-2014||Package Deal||McKenzie||3 episodes|
|2014||Working the Engels||Arthur Horowitz||Episode: "Meet Irene Horowitz"|
|2015-||Schitt's Creek||Johnny Rose||Also creator, writer, and executive producer|
|1993||The Wacky World of Miniature Golf with Eugene Levy (Philips CD-i game)||Voice-over|
|1996||Creature Crunch (PC game)||Brian, additional characters (voice)|
|2015||R40 Live||Rockin' Mel - Host/Emcee of early 1970's era spoofed rock show.
Video used as an introduction for the band's encore, which consisted of early career material dating to that era.