Image of Louis Nye

Louis Nye

Louis Nye, born Louis Neistat, was an American comedic actor. He was an entertainer to the troops during World War II and is best known for his work on countless television, film and radio programs. Nye decided to go to New York City, where he worked in radio, playing various roles on soap operas. He recalled "I still think of myself as an actor. In the radio days, I was busy playing rotten Nazis, rich uncles and emotional juveniles -- the whole span -- and the only time I tried to be funny was at parties." Nye served in the United States Army during World War II, and because he earned laughs by mimicking other soldiers, he was assigned to run the recreation hall. Following his discharge, he returned to New York and began working in live television. He also appeared in several plays on Broadway, and made many appearances on television variety shows such as The Jack Benny Program (including one memorable turn as a crying cab driver), The Jimmy Durante Show, The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom and The Victor Borge Show. He earned his greatest fame as a regular on The Steve Allen Show, performing with Allen, Don Knotts, Tom Poston, Pat Harrington Jr., Dayton Allen, Gabriel Dell and Bill Dana. He primarily played urbane, wealthy, and often fey bon vivants; as part of the weekly "Man on the Street" sketches, his characterization of the pretentious country-club braggart Gordon Hathaway, with his catchphrase, "Hi-ho, Steverino," plus Allen's inability to resist bursting into hysterical laughter at his ad-libs, made Nye one of the favorites on Allen's show. When production moved to Los Angeles, Nye went too and became a character actor in Hollywood. Nye was cast as a guest star on many television series, including Make Room for Daddy; Guestward, Ho!; Burke's Law; The Munsters; Love, American Style; Laverne & Shirley; Starsky and Hutch; Police Woman; Fantasy Island; St. Elsewhere; and The Cosby Show. Nye played dentist Delbert Gray on several episodes of The Ann Sothern Show from 1960 to 1961, the romantic interest of Olive Smith, played by Ann Tyrrell. Nye also played Sonny Drysdale, the spoiled rich stepson of Milburn Drysdale on The Beverly Hillbillies during the 1962 season. He did six episodes, and received more mail than from anything else he had ever done on television, but the character was dropped. It was rumored that someone in the CBS network, or a sponsor, thought Sonny was too "sissified". However, Nye revived the character briefly during the 1966 season. During this period, Nye appeared in several television commercials for various products, including Rath brand lunch meats and the Better Business Bureau. Nye appeared as a celebrity judge on The Gong Show during the late 1970s. He also recorded a few comedy LPs, doing a variety of characterizations. Unfortunately, he never had the opportunity to reach his potential in movies. Many of his character roles were little more than cameos. Nevertheless, he performed with Lucille Ball, Bob Hope, Jack Lemmon, Dean Martin, Walter Matthau, Robert Mitchum, Jack Webb and Joanne Woodward, and others. Nye also appeared on the lecture circuit, in concerts and in nightclubs, and did voice work in animation, such as Inspector Gadget with Don Adams.


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Born:
May 1, 1913 In Hartford, Connecticut, USA
Movie/TV Credits:
44
First Appeared:
In the series The Honeymooners 1952-09-20
Latest Project:
Movie The Adventures of Errol Flynn 2005-04-05
Known For
Poster of Curb Your Enthusiasm
Poster of The Reluctant Dragon
Poster of The Love Boat
Poster of The Dick Cavett Show
Filmography
Movie The Adventures of Errol Flynn Himself (archive footage) 2005-04-05
Series Curb Your Enthusiasm Jeff Greene's Dad 2000-10-15
Series Alice in Wonderland Carpenter 1985-12-09
Movie Cannonball Run II Fisherman #3 1984-06-29
Series The Cosby Show Unknown 1984-09-20
Series St. Elsewhere Unknown 1982-10-26
Series Aloha Paradise Unknown 1981-02-25
Movie The Reluctant Dragon St. George 1981-12-01
Movie Full Moon High Reverend 1981-08-04
Movie Steve Martin: Comedy Is Not Pretty Laundry Customer 1980-02-14
Movie All Commercials... A Steve Martin Special Himself 1980-09-30
Movie Harper Valley P.T.A. Kirby Baker 1978-07-02
Series The Love Boat Glenn Dobson 1977-09-24
Series Laverne & Shirley Unknown 1976-01-27
Series Starsky & Hutch Unknown 1975-09-10
Series Police Woman Unknown 1974-09-13
Movie The City That Forgot About Christmas (voice) 1974-12-01
Series Needles and Pins Harry Karp 1973-09-21
Series The Don Knotts Show Unknown 1970-09-15
Series The Dick Cavett Show Himself - Guest 1968-06-06
Movie A Guide for the Married Man Technical Adviser (Irving, House Buyer) 1967-01-01
Series The Pruitts of Southampton Unknown 1966-09-06
Movie Salute to Stan Laurel Himself 1965-11-23
Movie Good Neighbor Sam Reinhold Shiffner 1964-07-22
Series The Hollywood Palace Unknown 1964-01-04
Series The Munsters Unknown 1964-09-24
Series The Lieutenant Unknown 1963-09-14
Movie The Stripper Ronnie Cavendish 1963-06-19
Series Burke's Law Unknown 1963-09-20
Movie The Wheeler Dealers Stanislas 1963-11-14
Series Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre Unknown 1963-10-04
Movie Who's Been Sleeping in My Bed? Harry Tobler 1963-12-25
Series The Beverly Hillbillies Unknown 1962-09-26
Movie Zotz! Hugh Fundy 1962-10-03
Movie The Last Time I Saw Archie Pvt. Sam Beacham 1961-05-27
Movie Sex Kittens Go to College Dr. Zorch 1960-08-24
Series Guestward, Ho! Unknown 1960-09-29
Movie The Facts of Life Hamilton Busbee 1960-11-14
Series Naked City Unknown 1958-09-30
Series Kraft Music Hall Self 1958-10-08
Series The Dinah Shore Chevy Show Unknown 1956-10-05
Series The Steve Allen Show Unknown 1956-06-24
Series The Honeymooners Unknown 1952-09-20
Series This Is Your Life Unknown 1952-10-01