First coming to prominence as a writer for the “Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour,” Steve Martin is now widely recognized as an American stand-up comedian, actor, and writer. Starting off, he was a stand-up comedian who did gigs at small bars and restaurants. As time went on, he began appearing on television shows, beginning with “The Steve Allen Show” and continuing on to “The Virginia Graham Show.” As a result of his successful entry into television in the mid-1970s, he became a major star and appeared on many shows. His breakout role as a host on NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” (SNL) led to 15 invitations as a guest host for the show and made him a household name. A Wild and Crazy Guy, Steve Martin’s second comedy album, debuted at No. 2 on Billboard’s Pop Albums Chart and was certified double-platinum, adding to his already substantial body of work. He had built up a sizable fan base by this point, and decided to try his hand at movies.
Childhood and Early Years
Stephen Glenn “Steve” Martin was born on August 14, 1945, in Waco, Texas to Mary Lee and Glenn Vernon Martin. His father was a real estate agent.
When he was in high school, he worked part-time selling guidebooks at Disneyland on the weekends and throughout the summer. The Main Street Magic shop was where he learned and refined a wide variety of tricks and illusions, and he used both there in his performances.
He attended Santa Ana Junior College to study English poetry and theater after graduating from high school. Next, he enrolled in California’s Long Beach State University to pursue a degree in philosophy.
In 1967 he decided to follow his newfound interest in the performing arts and enrolled at UCLA. He also started performing stand-up comedy at local taverns and restaurants around this time. Early in his life, he made the choice to skip academic training in favor of working in his chosen field.
One of his most famous roles was as the cat juggler Navin R. Johnson in the 1979 comedy picture The Jerk. Premiere magazine ranked Martin’s performance as the 99th greatest of all time and called the film one of Martin’s best comic works.
In the film Father of the Bride, Steve Martin also played the role of George Banks, the hesitant bride’s father, and he received a lot of positive critical acclaim for his performance (1991). He was a successful businessman whose daughter was about to be engaged. The film did very well at the box office.
Commendations and Honors
Grammys have been awarded to him for a number of his albums, most notably “Let’s Get Small” (1978) and “A Wild and Crazy Guy” (1979).
In recognition of his many contributions to the comedy industry throughout the course of his career, the American Comedy Awards bestowed upon him the Lifetime Achievement Award in the year 2000.
An Honorary Award was bestowed upon Steve Martin by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 2013, in recognition of his “extraordinary talents and one-of-a-kind inspiration that he has contributed to the art of motion pictures.”
Individual History and Future Influence
On November 20, 1986, he wed Victoria Tennant, an actress. In 1994, they decided to end their marriage by getting a divorce.
In 2007, he wed author and former ‘New Yorker’ worker Anne Stringfield. He became a father for the first time in 2012, at the age of 67, when his girlfriend gave birth to a baby girl.