Fast Facts

  • Father was a jazz producer and owned a record shop; his uncle Milton Gabler began the first independent jazz label, Commodore Records.
  • Singer Billie Holiday was one of his babysitters.
  • Went to Marshall University on a baseball scholarship, but transferred after one year when the baseball program was eliminated after his freshman year.
  • Studied film under Martin Scorsese at NYU.
  • Was to appear as a guest on the first episode of Saturday Night Live in 1975, but backed out after he was told that his segment had to be shortened.
  • Got his break on TV with his role on Soap, Jodie Dallas, the first regular prime-time gay character.
  • Made his feature-film directorial debut with Mr. Saturday Night (1992).
  • Co-wrote and starred in the autobiographical one-man production 700 Sundays, for which his wife won a 2005 Tony (Special Theatrical Event) as a producer. The title refers to the amount of Sundays Crystal spent with his father, who died suddenly when he was 15.
  • A life-long New York Yankees fan, was signed to a minor-league contract for one day by the club in 2008 so he could officially participate in a spring-training game. He had one at bat and struck out after facing six pitches. He was released the following day on his 60th birthday.
  • Is part owner of the Arizona Diamondbacks baseball team.

Awards

  • 1993, Emmy — Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program: Nominee
  • 1990, Emmy — Outstanding Writing in a Variety or Music Program: Winner
  • 1996, Emmy — Outstanding Performance for a Variety or Music Program: Nominee
  • 1985, Emmy — Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program: Nominee
  • 1988, Emmy — Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program: Nominee
  • 1992, Emmy — Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program: Nominee
  • 2001, Emmy — Outstanding Directing for a Miniseries, Movie or a Special: Nominee
  • 1988, Emmy — Outstanding Individual Achievement - Special Events: Nominee
  • 1992, Emmy — Outstanding Individual Achievement in Writing in a Variety or Music Program: Winner
  • 1990, Emmy — Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program: Nominee
  • 1993, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy: Nominee
  • 1990, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy: Nominee
  • 2001, Emmy — Outstanding Made for Television Movie: Nominee
  • 1992, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy: Nominee
  • 1987, Emmy — Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program: Nominee
  • 1991, Emmy — Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program: Winner
  • 1998, Emmy — Outstanding Performance in a Variety or Music Program: Winner
  • 1989, Emmy — Outstanding Performance in Special Events: Winner
  • 1997, Emmy — Outstanding Performance in a Variety or Music Program: Nominee
  • 1990, Emmy — Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy Special: Nominee
  • 2012, Emmy — Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special: Nominee
  • 2012, Emmy — Outstanding Special Class Programs: Nominee
  • 2014, Emmy — Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special: Nominee
  • 2014, Emmy — Outstanding Variety Special: Nominee
  • 2000, Emmy — Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program: Nominee
  • 2004, Emmy — Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program: Nominee
  • 1991, Emmy — Outstanding Writing in a Variety or Music Program: Winner

Relationships

  • Joel Crystal — Brother
  • Helen Gabler — Mother
  • Lindsay Crystal — Daughter
  • Jack Crystal — Father
  • Janice Goldfinger — Wife
  • Jennifer Crystal Foley — Daughter
  • Richard Crystal — Brother

College

  • Attended Marshall University, Huntington, WV; attended Nassau Community College, Garden City, NY; New York University, Tisch School of the Arts, New York, NY (BFA in Film and TV Direction, 1970)

Details

  • Birth Name: William Edward Crystal
  • Birth Place: Long Beach, NY
  • Birthday: March 14, 1948, Pisces
  • Profession: Actor, Comedian, Writer, Director, Producer, Author
  • User Rating:4.21 out of 5 (29 ratings)
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