Biography of Steve Martin
American actor, comedian and musician Steve Martin gained popularity thanks to his participation in the films “All of Me”, “Junk”, “Father of the Bride”, “Pink Panther” and other films. Today he is known all over the world as a stand-up artist, producer, screenwriter and musician.
Pictured: Steve Martin
The comedian’s unique style has evolved over the course of his acting career. He has gone from sharp irreverent satire to jokes that cause good-natured laughter, not hurting human feelings.
Family and childhood
The full name of the celebrity is Stephen Glenn Martin. He was born in the small town of Waco, Texas on August 14, 1945, but spent most of his life in Southern California. His parents Mary Lee and Glenn Vernon Martin were devout people: regular participation in worship, prayer and attendance at Baptist meetings was an integral part of their lives. The family also had a daughter, Melinda.
Steve Martin as a child
Steve’s relationship with his father did not work out: Glenn was unemotional, silent and overly harsh with his son. Because of the guy’s passion for theater in childhood, his father called him “a mediocrity, a monkey, a little imp.”
Steve Martin in high school
Young Steve Martin combined schooling and work in the Disneyland amusement park near their home – he was a souvenir seller. During breaks, he managed to entertain people with tricks. The joy of admiring people gave him incomparable pleasure. Before classes, he managed to deliver morning newspapers – Steve’s family did not live well, and he grabbed every opportunity to earn money.
At Work at Disneyland (1957)
After leaving school in the early 1960s, Steve Martin entered the Philosophy Department at Long Beach State College. In 1964, he became disillusioned with the chosen path and transferred to the theater department of the University of California.
Steve Martin on the theater stage (1965)
In 1967-1968, the young comedian often performed on the stages of pubs and clubs with stand-up. In addition, he wrote jokes for entertainment shows and dialogue for comedy scenes, inspired by Charlie Chaplin, Steve Allen, Jack Benny and other American comedians.
The performances and scripts of the young artist were noticed by the producers, and in 1973 the guy as an author was invited to the television show The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, an American show popular in those years. For this job, Steve dropped out of college in 1968 and worked as a screenwriter until 1975, while also appearing on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.
Steve Martin in his youth
Back in the sixties, Steve Martin became interested in cinema, but his acting debut came in 1977 – it was a short comedy “The Absent-minded Waiter”, by the way, nominated for an Oscar. The hero of Martin, an inattentive waiter, confused orders, created a commotion in the restaurant, forcing the audience to laugh heartily.
Frame from “The absent-minded waiter”
The first major role of the comedian, which brought him popularity and success, was the participation in the film by Carl Reiner “Junk” (1979). It’s a tongue-in-cheek comedy about dim-witted village goof Navin Johnson, who finds out he’s adopted and sets off in search of a “better life.”
In addition to comedy roles, the actor successfully proved himself in a different role: in 1981, he played Arthur Parker in Herbert Ross’s musical drama Pennies from Heaven.
Steve Martin in “Penny from Heaven”
Important milestones in Martin’s film career were his participation in the popular films Dead Men Don’t Wear Blankets (1982), Sideways Brains (1983), The Lonely Guy (1984), Little Shop of Horrors (1986).
The later period of the acting career of the American actor was replenished with roles in films with well-known partners: “The Mistress of the House” with Goldie Hawn, “Cool Guy” with Eddie Murphy, “Upside Down House”, “Saleswoman”.
With Eddie Murphy in The Cool Guy
In many works, the comedian combined the activities of an actor and screenwriter: “The Absent-minded Waiter”, “Junk”, “The Dead Don’t Walk in Plaid”, “Three Amigos”, “Roxanne”, “Brains on One Side” and others.
One of the brightest roles of Steve Martin was the absent-minded and incompetent French police inspector Jacques Clouzot in the 2006 crime drama The Pink Panther. According to critics, Steve approached this role perfectly – thanks to his art of making people laugh with the help of facial expressions and body.
As Jacques Clouzot
Many actors believe that Martin made Clouseau not only funny, but also touching. The comedian himself considers this role a challenge to himself. At first, he considered a remake of this film absolutely impossible, but gradually the taboo turned into an interesting task. Steve admitted that he had great pleasure in “turning over” the old series.
Music and literature
Steve Martin was fond of music since childhood, but he managed to thoroughly allocate time for this hobby in the 70s.
As part of his own group “Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers” from 1977 to 1981, he released four albums. Two of them were awarded Grammys: for “Let’s Get Small” in 1977 and “A Wild and Crazy Guy” in 1978.
In 2016, Steve Martin was awarded the prestigious Tony Award for his score for Bright Star (co-written by Edie Brickell). In 2017, the solo album “So Familiar” was released, recorded together with Edie Brickell. It includes 14 songs.
The big humorous concert in which Martin took part in 2018, in addition to comedy scenes, also included jazz compositions “The Steep Canyon Rangers”.
Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers
Steve Martin is the author of several dozen books. He wrote scripts, plays and tried his hand at prose. Together with Noah Goldstein, Steve published a book called: The Psychology of Persuasion. 50 proven ways to be persuasive.
His short story “Saleswoman”, which tells about the life of a disappointed woman, received public recognition and was filmed in 2005. Other literary works were also popular: “The Joy of My Society”, “Pure Bullshit” and, of course, the autobiography of the stand-up comedian “Foreword to my autobiography”.
Hobbies and personal life
The love stories of Steve Martin have always been at the hearing of the public. At first it was an affair with American actress Bernadette Peters, which ended in the late seventies.
He was followed by a relationship and marriage with Victoria Tennant. In 1986, Victoria became the first Mrs. Martin. In 1994, the marriage broke up. The couple had no children.
With first wife Victoria Tennant
Collaborating with The New Yorker, the comedian met the main love of his life – the journalist of this edition, Ann Stringfield. In the summer of 2007, Steve Martin proposed his hand and heart to her, and on this occasion a luxurious wedding was arranged at Steve’s mansion in Los Angeles. The ceremony was hosted by Alan Nyerob, a former Nebraska state senator and a close friend of the actor.
Steve Martin and Ann Stringfield
In this marriage, the Martins had a daughter in the winter of 2012. So at the age of 67, the comedian first became a father. Within a few years after the birth of the child, he began to refuse roles in the cinema – he enjoyed the home lifestyle and playing with little Mary.
Steve is often reproached for such late paternity, but he himself is glad that the circumstances turned out this way and not otherwise:
It seems to me that if the child had appeared earlier, I would have been a useless father – I devoted too much time to my career. The daughter was long-awaited, and it’s great. She gives me more than I give her.
The American actor is an art collector. He is the owner of original works by famous masters: Pablo Picasso, Lucian Freud, Maxifeld Parrish.
In 2004, he became involved in a well-known scandal involving the acquisition of a fake reproduction of Heinrich Campendonk. The collector bought the painting “Landscape with Horses” for 850 thousand dollars, without doubting its authenticity. When trying to sell it, it turned out that it was a reproduction. The scandal was hushed up, because there was no malicious intent here – Steve himself became a victim of scammers.
Walking with wife and daughter
Steve Martin now
Unfortunately for fans, Steve Martin does not have an Instagram page, but is an active Twitter user. He has over nine million followers who follow their idol’s posts. The comedian shares sandwich recipes with fans and entertains the audience with jokes. Being a professional in humor, Steve still believes that making a person laugh is an incredibly difficult thing. In his own words, this talent can only be mastered with time and experience.
One of the comedian’s current projects is a show together with Martin Short – “Standup Evening”. In 2023, viewers also saw Steve in the detective story Murders in the same building. Along with Selena Gomez and Martin Short, he played one of the key roles.
Steve Martin in “The Same Building Murders”
The actor makes music and writes books. Music is still one of his favorite hobbies, despite the appearance of the first signs of hearing loss – the comedian is known to suffer from tinnitus. He is still energetic and full of energy, but devotes most of his time to raising his daughter.
- At twenty, Steve Martin could have become related to the famous writer Dalton Trumbo. The future actor met with his daughter Melissa, but this romance never ended in marriage.
- In 2010, Steve Martin appeared on stage at the Oscars with Alec Baldwin. The couple literally fell off the ceiling. In keeping with the tradition of holding a celebration that requires sharp jokes, Baldwin and Martin deftly teased each other. Unlike his partner, this is not the first time the comedian has taken part in the Oscar ceremony. He had such experience in 2001 and 2003.
- Steve Martin is one of the members of the Mensa organization for people with a record high IQ. And he is the oldest member of the group.