Fast Facts

  • Appeared on The Gong Show 15 times in the late 1970s.
  • Originally created the character of Pee-wee Herman, along with Phil Hartman, for a Groundlings improv-group sketch.
  • Auditioned for Saturday Night Live in the early 1980s, but was not cast.
  • Pee-wee's Playhouse won 22 Daytime Emmys.
  • Pee-wee's Playhouse had a budget of $325,000 per episode, one of the largest ever for a children's show.
  • His career was damaged by a 1991 arrest for exposing himself in an adult theater, resulting in a no-contest plea and a period of self-imposed seclusion.
  • In 2007, during a Spike TV event, made his first appearance as Pee-wee since 1992.
  • In 2010, presented The Pee-Wee Herman Show at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre in New York; his Broadway debut did millions in ticket sales...and offered up a racier menu than did his TV show. One review recommended, "don't bring the kids unless you're prepared to do a fair amount of heavy-duty explaining."
  • Drew a positive response for a 2011 Saturday Night Live appearance in a digital short with Andy Samberg.


  • 1995, Emmy — Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series: Nominee
  • 2011, Emmy — Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy Special: Nominee
  • 1989, Emmy — Outstanding Art Direction for a Variety or Music Program: Nominee


  • Judy Rubenfeld — Mother
  • Abby Rubenfeld — Sister
  • Luke Rubenfeld — Brother
  • Chandi Heffner — Ex-wife
  • Milton Rubenfeld — Father


  • Attended Boston University, Boston, MA; California Institute of the Arts, Valencia, CA (1975)

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  • Birth Name: Paul Rubenfeld
  • Birth Place: Peekskill, NY
  • Birthday: August 27, 1952, Virgo
  • Profession: Actor, Comedian
  • User Rating:4.78 out of 5 (58 ratings)
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