Stephen Tobolowsky

Stephen Tobolowsky

Tobolowsky at the 2012 Texas Book Festival
Born Stephen Harold Tobolowsky
(1951-05-30) May 30, 1951
Dallas, Texas, United States
Occupation Actor
Years active 1976 – present
Spouse(s) Ann Hearn (m. 1988)
Children 2

Stephen Harold Tobolowsky (born May 30, 1951) is an American actor, author, and musician. He is known for film roles such as annoying insurance salesman Ned Ryerson in Groundhog Day[1] and amnesiac Sammy Jankis in Christopher Nolan's Memento, as well as such television characters as Commissioner Hugo Jarry (Deadwood), Bob Bishop (Heroes), Sandy Ryerson (Glee), and Stu Beggs (Californication).

Tobolowsky has a monthly audio podcast, The Tobolowsky Files, of autobiographical stories of his acting and personal life.[2] He has also authored The Dangerous Animals Club and Cautionary Tales based on these original stories.[3] Since March 2015 he has run a weekly second podcast called Big Problems - An Advice Podcast.[4]


Tobolowsky has appeared in over 200 films, plus many television projects. He has worked in the theater as well, directing and acting in plays in New York City, San Francisco and Los Angeles. He directed one movie, Two Idiots in Hollywood, based on his play of the same name. He also co-wrote the film True Stories with David Byrne and Beth Henley.[5] He was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Play for the 2002 revival of Mornings at Seven.

On October 29, 2009, Tobolowsky started a new podcast on /Film called The Tobolowsky Files, where he tells stories, in a similar fashion to Tobolowsky's film Stephen Tobolowsky's Birthday Party.[6][7] The show was picked up by Public Radio International in 2012.[8]

Personal life

Tobolowsky was born in Dallas, Texas, to a Jewish family. He graduated from Justin F. Kimball High School and Southern Methodist University.[9][10] He is the cousin of former Dallas attorney, Ira Tobolowsky.[11]

Selected filmography


Year Title Role Notes
2016 The Confirmation Father Lyons
2015 Mamaboy Reverend Weld
2015 Hollywood Adventures Wronald Wright
2014 Christian Mingle Douglas McCarver
2014 Atlas Shrugged: Part III Dr. Hugh Akston
2014 Mr. Peabody & Sherman Principal Purdy Voice
2012 The Lorax Uncle Ubb Voice
2011 The Last Ride Ray
2011 You May Not Kiss the Bride Plumber
2011 Peep World Ephraim
2010 Buried Alan Davenport
2009 The Time Traveler's Wife Dr. Kendrick
2008 Beethoven's Big Break Sal
2007 Loveless in Los Angeles Jon
2007 Wild Hogs Charley
2007 Boxboarders! Dr. Stephen James
2006 National Lampoon's Totally Baked: A Potumentary Jesco Rollins
2006 Blind Dating Dr. Perkins
2006 Pope Dreams Carl Venable
2006 Failure to Launch Bud
2006 The Sasquatch Gang Ernie Dalrymple
2005 Stephen Tobolowsky's Birthday Party Himself
2005 Robots Bigmouth Executive, Forge Voice
2005 Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous Tom Abernathy
2004 Debating Robert Lee Debate Judge
2004 Little Black Book Carl
2004 Garfield Happy Chapman
2004 Win a Date with Tad Hamilton! George Ruddy
2003 Frankie and Johnny Are Married Murray Mintz
2003 Freaky Friday Mr. Bates
2003 View from the Top Frank Thomas Uncredited
2003 National Security Billy Narthax
2002 Adaptation Ranger Steve Neely Scenes cut
2002 The Country Bears Norbert Barrington
2002 Love Liza Tom Bailey
2001 Freddy Got Fingered Uncle Neil Scenes cut
2001 The Day the World Ended Principal Ed Turner
2000 Memento Sammy Jankis
1999 Bossa Nova Trevor
1999 Don't Look Under The Bed Michael McCausland
1999 The Insider Eric Kluster
1998 The Brave Little Toaster Goes to Mars Calculator Voice
1998 Black Dog McClaren
1997 Mr. Magoo Agent Chuck Stupak
1996 Homeward Bound II: Lost in San Francisco Bando Voice
1996 The Glimmer Man Christopher Maynard
1995 Murder in the First Mr. Henkin
1995 Dr. Jekyll and Ms. Hyde Oliver Mintz
1994 Radioland Murders Max Applewhite
1994 Trevor Father Jon
1993 Groundhog Day Ned Ryerson
1993 The Pickle Mike Krakower
1993 Calendar Girl Antonio Gallo
1993 Josh and S.A.M. Thom Whitney
1992 Sneakers Dr. Werner Brandes
1992 Single White Female Mitchell Myerson
1992 Memoirs of an Invisible Man Warren Singleton
1992 Hero Wallace
1992 Basic Instinct Dr. Lamott
1991 Wedlock Warden Holliday
1991 Thelma & Louise Max
1990 Mirror, Mirror Mr. Anderson
1990 The Grifters Jeweler
1990 Welcome Home, Roxy Carmichael Mayor Bill Klepler
1990 Funny About Love Hugo
1990 Bird on a Wire Joe Weyburn
1989 In Country Pete
1989 Great Balls of Fire! Jud Phillips
1989 Checking Out Pharmacist
1988 Mississippi Burning Clayton Townley
1987 Spaceballs Captain of the Guard
1984 The Philadelphia Experiment Barney


Year Title Role Notes
2017 One Day at a Time Dr. Berkowitz
2016 Silicon Valley Jack Barker 7 episodes
2016 Fuller House Mr. Gerald Episode: "The Not-So-Great Escape"
2015 Another Period Thomas Edison Episode: "Rejects Beach"
2015 Big Time in Hollywood, FL Alan Dolfe
2014 Friends with Better Lives Dr. Adleman
2014–2016 The Goldbergs Principal Ball 16 episodes
2012–2013 Justified FBI Agent Jerry Barkley 3 episodes
2012 & 2016 The Mindy Project Marc Shulman 4 episodes
2012 Work It Dr. David Deutsch Episode: "Shake Your Moneymaker"
2011–2014 Californication Stu Beggs 30 episodes
2011 Community Professor Peter Sheffield Episode: "Competitive Wine Tasting"
2010 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Edwin Adelson
2010 True Jackson, VP Lars Balthazar
2009–2011 Glee Sandy Ryerson
2009 The New Adventures of Old Christine Principal James Merrow
2008 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Spencer Freiberg Episode: "Two and a Half Deaths"
2007–2008 Heroes Bob Bishop 11 episodes
2007 Entourage Mayor of Beverly Hills Episode: "Sorry, Harvey"
2007 John From Cincinnati Mark Lewinsky
2006–2007 Big Day The Garf
2006 Desperate Housewives Bud Penrod Episode: "No One Is Alone"
2005–2006 Deadwood Hugo Jarry
2005 Curb Your Enthusiasm Len Dunkel
2004 Complete Savages Mr. Frehley
2004 The West Wing Dr. Max Milkman Episode: "The Stormy Present"
2004 Will and Grace Ned Weathers
2003–2005 CSI: Miami Assistant State Attorney Don Haffman
2003 Las Vegas Donny Rollins
2002 Law & Order: Criminal Intent Jim Halliwell
2002 Malcolm in the Middle Mr. Fisher
2001 The Lone Gunmen Adam Burgess
2001 Off Centre Milt Flack
2001 Roswell Julius Walters
1999 That '70s Show The Professor
1997 The Drew Carey Show The Councilman Episode: "The Dog and Pony Show"
1995 Dweebs Karl
1993 Civil Wars Eugene Paxton Episode: "A Liver Runs Through It"
1991 Seinfeld Tor Episode: "The Heart Attack"
1989 L.A. Law Dr. Michael Segal Episode: "Lie Down and Deliver"
1986 Designing Women Boyd


  1. "The Tobolowsky Files Ep. 29 – The Classic".
  2. "iTunes - Podcasts - The Tobolowsky Files by PRI". Retrieved 2013-04-24.
  3. "Stephen Tobolowsky at". Retrieved 2013-04-24.
  4. "Big Problems". Retrieved 2015-04-24.
  5. Phipps, Keith (2011-08-02). "Random Roles Stephen Tobolowsky". The A. V. Club. Retrieved 2011-08-03.
  6. Tobolowsky, Stephen (September 16, 2010). "Op-Ed Contributor - They Had Great Character". Retrieved 2011-02-08.
  7. Chapman, Glen (March 16, 2010). "Celebrating Stephen Tobolowsky". Den of Geek. Retrieved 2011-02-08.
  8. Public Radio International® signs actor, writer Stephen Tobolowsky to create new storytelling series for radio,; accessed April 8, 2015.
  9. Currey, Mason. "Stephen Tobolowsky: What I learned in the seventh grade". Retrieved 2013-04-24.
  10. Cohen, Susan (2012-11-07). "Character actor Stephen Tobolowsky writes his first book". Charleston City Paper. Retrieved 2013-04-24.
  11. . 18 May 2016 Retrieved 6 July 2016. Missing or empty |title= (help)

External links

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