Ron Carey (actor)
Ronald Joseph Cicenia|
December 11, 1935
Newark, New Jersey
January 16, 2007 71) (aged|
Los Angeles, California
Ron Carey (December 11, 1935 – January 16, 2007) was an American film and television actor. The 5-foot 4-inch actor was best known for playing ambitious NYPD Police Officer Carl Levitt on TV's Barney Miller, in which he was almost always surrounded by male actors (and sometimes female guest stars) who stood at least four inches taller. The series' stars (Hal Linden, Max Gail, Abe Vigoda, Ron Glass) all stood six feet or more. Carey appeared in the recurring role for the last six of the eight seasons of Barney Miller's run. He first appeared on the show as a criminal, Angelo Molinari (aka The Mole), in Season 2, Episode 22.
Carey was also among the slate of actors who frequently appeared together in Mel Brooks films; appearing in Silent Movie, High Anxiety, and History of the World: Part I. He also appeared in Fatso, directed by Brooks' wife Anne Bancroft and featuring several Brooks regulars.
Life and career
Carey was born Ronald Joseph Cicenia in Newark, New Jersey, the son of Fanny and John Cicenia, and was raised in an Italian American Catholic family. Carey did stand-up comedy in the 1960s, after earning a bachelor's degree in communications from Seton Hall University in 1956. His comedy centered mostly on Catholicism and his childhood of being the undersized but quick-witted kid on the block. His break came in 1966 when he appeared on The Merv Griffin Show and in 1967 he released a comedy album entitled The Slightly Irreverent Comedy of Ron Carey.
From the mid-1970s on, Carey was a member of Mel Brooks' comedy troupe, appearing in featured roles in films such as High Anxiety, Silent Movie, and History of the World, Part I. He also appeared in supporting roles in other films and on television, and was seen in scores of commercials, including some T-shirt ads for Hanes, and an ad for Nabisco's snack cracker Better Cheddars where he sang. He is most remembered for his role as the diligent but somewhat obsequious and passive-aggressive Officer Carl Levitt, which he played from 1976 to 1982 on the TV series Barney Miller.
- The Out-of-Towners (1970)
- Who Killed Mary What's 'Er Name? (1971)
- The Montefuscos (1975) TV Series
- Silent Movie (1976)
- Barney Miller (1976–1982) TV Series
- High Anxiety (1977)
- Fatso (1980)
- History of the World: Part I (1981)
- Johnny Dangerously (1984)
- Have Faith (1989) TV Series
- Lucky Luke (1991)
- Food for Thought (short) (1999)
- Ron Carey at the Internet Movie Database
- New York Times obituary
- Playbill.com obituary
- The Final Taxi podcast on Ron Carey's life