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Rob Reiner

The German premiere of The Bucket List, 2008
Born Robert Reiner
3 June 1947 (1947-06-03) (age 62)
Bronx, New York, United States
Occupation actor, director, producer, writer, political activist
Years active 1959–present
Spouse(s) Penny Marshall (1971–1981)
Michele Singer (1989–present)

Robert "Rob" Reiner (born March 6, 1947 in New York, United States) is an American actor, director, producer, writer and political activist. As an actor, Reiner first came to national prominence as Archie and Edith Bunker's (played by Carroll O'Connor and Jean Stapleton, respectively) son-in-law, Michael "Meathead" Stivic, on All in the Family. That role earned him two Emmy Awards during the 1970s. As a director, Reiner was recognized by the Directors Guild of America (DGA) with nominations for Stand by Me, When Harry Met Sally..., and A Few Good Men. He was trained at the UCLA Film School.[1]


Early life

Reiner was born in The Bronx, New York, and is the son of Estelle Reiner (née Lebost), an actress, and Carl Reiner, a comedian, actor, writer, producer, and director.[2] As a child, Reiner lived in New Rochelle, New York, where his family lived at 48 Bonnie Meadow Road. This is similar to 148 Bonnie Meadow Road, the fictional address of the Petries on The Dick Van Dyke Show, the 1960s CBS sitcom created by his father. Also, his latest film Flipped takes place at the corner of Bonnie Meadow Lane and Renfrew Street.

At the age of 13, Rob relocated with his family to the Los Angeles area, where he attended Beverly Hills High School with Richard Dreyfuss, Bonnie Franklin and Albert Brooks. He went on to enroll at the University of California, Los Angeles. He also has a sister, Sylvia Anne (Annie) Reiner (born 1957), who is a poet, playwright, and author; and a brother, Lucas Reiner (born 1962), a painter, actor, and director.


Reiner became famous playing Michael "Meathead" Stivic, Archie Bunker's liberal son-in-law, on Norman Lear's 1970s sitcom All in the Family, which was the most-watched television program for five years (1971–1976) in the United States. The nickname "Meathead," referring to Reiner's character Mike Stivic in All in the Family, became a pop culture reference. Indeed, Reiner has stated, "I could win the Nobel Prize and they'd write 'Meathead wins the Nobel Prize'."[3] In a 2004 interview on A&E Biography, Reiner said that he often enjoyed working with Carroll O'Connor on-screen, as well as becoming best friends and for having a second father-in-law, off-screen. Reiner continued being loyal to him until O'Connor's death on June 21, 2001. At the time, he, alongside Sally Struthers and Danielle Brisebois, attended O'Connor's funeral.

Rob Reiner at the 1988 Emmy Awards

In the 1980s and 1990s, Reiner was best known as a director of successful Hollywood films. Some of these films—The Princess Bride, Stand By Me, and This Is Spinal Tap— have achieved cult status. He has stated that the film which will go down as his masterpiece is Stand by Me. The film is also his favorite film of his own work. In 1994 (after a three-year development period), Reiner was slated to direct the big-screen adaptation of Stephen Sondheim's Into the Woods, with Robin Williams as The Baker, Goldie Hawn as The Baker's Wife, Cher as The Witch, and Roseanne Barr as Jack's Mother. For unspecified reasons (although it is speculated to be due to the decline in popularity of musical films),[citation needed] this production fell through, and the film was never started.

Reiner went on to direct other critically and commercially successful films with his own company, Castle Rock Entertainment, such as When Harry Met Sally..., Misery, and his most commercially successful work A Few Good Men.[4]

However, his career has seen less commercial success in recent years, starting with North, which was critically panned (notoriously by Roger Ebert: "I hated this movie. Hated hated hated hated hated this movie."[5]). Reiner's subsequent films Alex and Emma and Rumor Has It have been unsuccessful both critically and commercially. His next feature, The Bucket List, was released in December 2007 and starred Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman as two terminally ill men who escape from a cancer ward and head off on a road trip with a wish list of tasks to accomplish before they die. Although it was more commercially successful, it too was met with poor critical reviews. Ebert, a thyroid cancer sufferer, was especially off-put by treatment of the disease in the film: "'The Bucket List' thinks dying of cancer is a laugh riot followed by a dime-store epiphany."[6]

Reiner has made cameos in a number of movies, including Throw Momma from the Train, Sleepless in Seattle, Bullets Over Broadway, The First Wives Club, Primary Colors, and Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star.

Personal life

Reiner was married to actress-director Penny Marshall from 1971 to 1981 and adopted Marshall's daughter from a previous marriage, actress Tracy Reiner. Reiner and Marshall divorced in 1981.

Reiner married photographer Michele Singer in 1989. In 1997, Reiner and wife Michele founded the "I Am Your Child Foundation," now "Parents' Action for Children," a non-profit organization promoting early childhood development by producing and distributing celebrity-hosted educational videos for parents.


Reiner has devoted considerable time and energy to liberal and progressive activism in recent years.

In 1998, Reiner chaired the campaign to pass Prop 10, the California Children and Families Initiative, which created First 5 California, a program of early childhood development services, funded by a tax on tobacco products. He served as the first chairman of First 5 California, from 1999 to 2006. Reiner came under criticism for campaigning for a ballot measure (Prop 82) to fund state-run preschools while still chair of the First Five Commission, causing him to resign from his position on March 29, 2006. An audit was conducted, and it concluded that the state commission did not violate state law and that it had clear legal authority to conduct its public advertising campaigns related to preschool. In the end, Prop 82 failed to win approval, garnering only 39.1% support.

Reiner was mentioned as a possible candidate to run against California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2006 but decided to not run for personal reasons. He campaigned extensively for Democratic presidential nominee Al Gore in 2000, and he campaigned in Iowa for Democratic Presidential candidate Howard Dean just before the 2004 Iowa caucuses. He endorsed Hillary Clinton for president for the 2008 election cycle.

Reiner is a member of the Social Responsibility Task Force, an organization advocating moderation where social issues (such as violence and tobacco use) and the entertainment industry meet. He has tried to limit the amount of cigarette smoking in his own films.[7]

Reiner is also active in environmental issues, and he successfully led the effort to establish California's Ahmanson Ranch as a state park and wildlife refuge rather than as a commercial real estate development. He introduced Spinal Tap at the London Live Earth concert in July 2007.

Reiner has been a contributing blogger for The Huffington Post since May 2005.[8]

Reiner's activism was the subject of South Park episode Butt Out, which satirizes his anti-smoking efforts.





External links

Simple English

Rob Reiner
File:Rob Reiner.
The German premiere of The Bucket List, 2008
Born Robert Norman Reiner
March 6, 1947 (1947-03-06) (age 63)
Bronx, New York, United States
Occupation Actor, director, producer, writer, activist
Years active 1959–present
Spouse Penny Marshall (1971–1981)
Michele Singer (1989–present)

Rob Reiner is an American director and actor. He acted in the All in the Family television series. He directed films, such as This is Spinal Tap, The Princess Bride, When Harry Met Sally and The Bucket List.[1]

Reiner's father is Carl Reiner.[1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Southern, Nathan (1945-03-06). "Rob Reiner > Biography". AllMovie. Retrieved 2009-12-29. 

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