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Ed Asner
Full name: Edward David Asner
Birth date: November 15, 1929
Birth place: Kansas City, Missouri
Occupation: Actor
Voice artist
Former assembly worker
Former Screen Actors Guild President
Education: Wyandotte High School
University of Chicago
Religion: Jewish
Parents: Morris David Asner (deceased)
Elizabeth Seliger (deceased)
Spouse(s): Nancy Lou Sykes (1959-1988; divorced)
Cindy Gilmore (m. 1998-2007; divorced)
Children: Matthew Asner
Liza Asner
Kathryn Asner
Charles Asner (b. 1987)
Robin Gilmore (stepson)
Website: Website

Edward David "Ed" Asner[1] (born November 15, 1929)[1] is an American actor and voice artist.

On Regular Show, he was the voice of Santa Claus in "The Christmas Special."

Early life

Asner was born Edward David Asner in Kansas City, Missouri on November 15, 1929 to his Orthodox Jewish immigrant parents, Elizabeth (née Seliger) (1885-1967), a homemaker, and Morris David Asner (1877-1957), who ran a second-hand shop and was Lithuanian.[1][2][3][4][5][6][7] Asner was the youngest of five children, having had four siblings, Benjamin (1915-1986), who was a record shop owner, Esther, Labe, and Eva. Benjamin died from a cerebral hemorrhage in 1986.[5][8] Asner's father was also unable to read or write in English, though he could speak in Yiddish and read in Hebrew.[6]

Asner would be enrolled in a Hebrew school at a local synagogue.[6] He later moved to Kansas to attend high school at Wyandotte High School, where he played on a championship football team, served as the school's sports announcer for their radio station and wrote for the school's newspaper.[6][9] He then moved to Illinois to attend college at the University of Chicago, where he was a student from 1947 through 1949 before dropping out.[10][11] After college he worked at a Ford auto plant before serving in the United States Army's Signal Corps from 1951 through 1953.[5][12][13] After the war he moved to New York in an attempt to act on Broadway.[10] He also worked as an assembly worker at a plant for General Motors at one point, as well as driving taxis, selling encyclopedias, and working at a steel mill.[5][9]


In 1953, Asner made his acting debut on Broadway.[14] He is known for providing the voice of Carl Fredricksen in the Pixar movie Up[15] and for portraying Lou Grant on the Mary Tyler Moore Show, for which he earned three Emmy awards and two Golden Globe awards.[5][13] He also earned an Emmy and Golden Globe each for acting in Rich Man, Poor Man.[5] He then won two Emmys and two Golden Globes for acting in the Mary Tyler spin-off of the character he played entitled Lou Grant.[5]

He has also ventured into the world of voice acting, having provided the voices of Santa Claus in a variety of Christmas specials, both animated and live-action, Granny Goodness in the Superman animated series, and has also guest starred on King of the Hill and The Simpsons.[5][16] His voice acting agency is VOX, Inc.[16] He was nominated for a Daytime Emmy award for providing the voice of Kid Potato in WordGirl in the category of "Outstanding Performer in an Animated Program."[17] For his contributions to acting, he has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.[5] Other awards he has received include the 1981 Fund for Higher Education Flame of Truth award, the Eugene Debs award, the Worker's Rights Committee award, the Organized Labor Publications Humanitarian award, the National Emergency Civil Liberties award, and the 2002 Screen Actors Guild Lifetime Achievement award.[6][14]

Outside of acting, he has ventured into politics, having served as the Screen Actors Guild President from 1981 for two terms before resigning in 1985.[5][11][14]

Voice credits

This section may be incomplete

Season 4

Personal life

Asner had been married twice.

On March 23, 1959, He married Nancy Lou Sykes and they had three children: Twins Matthew, a director, Liza, an executive, and Kathryn (nicknamed Kate), an actress.[5] Matthew has directed The Bible Code II: Apocalypse and Beyond, Liza serves as an executive for the Cascade Blues Association, and Kathryn has acted in Wedding Bell Blues.[5] In 1988, they divorced.[3]

After this marriage ended, he became engaged to producer Cindy Gilmore (born 1940) in 1991 and the couple eventually married on August 2, 1998.[5] Gilmore has produced such films as Sister Act.[5] Asner then adopted Gilmore's son Robin as his own.[5] However, the couple divorced in 2007.[5] He has a son named Charles (born 1987) from a previous relationship with Carol Jean Vogelman.[3][5][18] Asner is also Jewish.[19] Asner's political affiliation is democratic.[5]

He resides in Los Angeles, California.[20]


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External links

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