Dan Frischman

Dan Frischman
Born (1959-04-23) April 23, 1959
Whippany, New Jersey, U.S.
Occupation Actor
Years active 1981 – present
Website www.danfrischman.com

Daniel Frischman (born April 23, 1959) is an American actor, noted for playing socially inept "geeks" and "nerds". Frischman's birthdate is often listed as 1964, because early in his career his acting agent encouraged him to falsify his age to make himself more eligible for teenaged acting roles. He was born in Whippany, New Jersey.[1]

Before television

Before Frischman's television breakthrough, he often worked as a magician in the Los Angeles area, performing at, amongst other things, children's birthday parties. He brought his brand of comedy to his magic shows and was a popular hire in the mid-1980s.

Early appearance

He was first noticed in a March 17, 1982, episode of the NBC television series The Facts of Life. In the episode, titled "Kids Can Be Cruel" Frischman played high school student "Carl 'Rocky' Price" who was picked on by his peers because of his acne and nerd-like personality. The students in the episode referred to Frischman's character as "Pizzaface", because of his pronounced acne blemishes and scars. In the episode the character Natalie Green, played by actress Mindy Cohn, gets angry at her roommate Blair Warner (Lisa Whelchel) and sets her up with Frischman's character "Rocky" as a cruel joke.

In 1983, Frischman appeared in the comedy cult film Get Crazy as Joey, a typically nerdy (and virginal) stagehand who ultimately gets the girl. Also in 1983, he starred in the "Things your Parents Used to Say" sequence in Good-bye, Cruel World.

Frischman appeared in both these projects alongside his sometime roommate, comedian Andrew J. Lederer, who played smaller roles). Frischman and Lederer also appeared together as two of the "Schlongini Singers" in the Andrew "Dice" Clay horror comedy, Wacko and (with Mad TV creator Adam Small and Felice Seiler) in the comedy group, The Ding Dongs.

Head of the Class

Frischman's first co-starring role was that of Manhattan-based high school student Arvid Engen on ABC-TV's late 1980s/early 1990s series Head of the Class.

Arvid was a bespectacled geek who was an early connoisseur of computer culture as well as a budding scientist. Arvid and his classmates were considered possible geniuses and were placed in the "I.H.P. Individualized Honors Program" for advanced and gifted students.

On Saturday December 20, 1986, Frischman and the cast of Head of the Class were the celebrity guests on the long running urban music series Soul Train. Musical guests that week were Al Jarreau and Vesta Williams.

On Wednesday July 15, 1987 Frischman appeared as that evening's guest on NBC-TV's highly rated evening talk show Late Night with David Letterman.

Kenan & Kel

Frischman's second co-starring role was the character of Chris Potter in the 1990s Nickelodeon TV series Kenan & Kel, a spin-off of Nickelodeon's All That starring Kenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell. (Frischman's fellow HOTC alumni, Dan Schneider and Brian Robbins were producers of Kenan & Kel.) Once again Frischman played a socially awkward nerd, this time as Chris Potter, Kenan's boss at Rigby's, a small grocery store.

Chris often informs customers and other guests that he has a radio in his car in an attempt to make conversation. One of Chris' anxieties was a recurring dream that he was being chased by a giant bunny.


Frischman made a short appearance on the 1990s series Seinfeld. In episode 93, titled "The Mom & Pop Store" (which originally aired on Thursday November 17, 1994 on U.S. television network NBC), Frischman plays a man who phones Jerry Seinfeld to tell the comedian that he has found his stolen sneaker collection at a yard sale in Parsippany, New Jersey (one town north of the town Frischman grew up in).

On October 24, 2005, Frischman was a celebrity panelist on I Love the '80s 3-D, a television program on VH1.


Frischman admits that, namewise, he is frequently confused with the older and much-shorter actor Daniel Frishman (whose credits include Lone Wolf McQuade and Under the Rainbow).


  1. Johnson, Janis. "PLAYING A NERD IS 'TOO EASY'", The Miami Herald, February 16, 1987. Accessed December 11, 2007. "But is the 23-year-old Whippany, N.J., native, actor and stand-up comedian a nerd."

External links

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