Born on December 13, 1925, Dick Van Dyke is a renowned American actor, comedian, and singer whose career has spanned over seven decades. Famed for his multifaceted roles in beloved TV show “The Dick Van Dyke Show,” as well as beloved movies like “Mary Poppins” and “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang,” he has made a lasting impression on the entertainment business.
In addition to his skill as an actor, Van Dyke is honored for his lasting impact and contributions to humor. Dick Van Dyke’s wealth as of 2023 is evidence of his continued success and influence in the film industry.
Dick Van Dyke Net Worth
With a $50 million fortune, Dick Van Dyke is a renowned actor, comedian, director, and producer. Dick Van Dyke’s performing credits in numerous hit movies, musicals, sitcoms on television, and dramas, together with his skills as a producer and director, have contributed to his wealth.
His roles in classic musical films like “Bye Bye Birdie” (1963), “Mary Poppins” (1964), and “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” (1968), among others, are arguably what made him most famous.
In the 1940s, Van Dyke started his professional dancing career on Broadway. After making his feature film debut in 1949, he went on to feature in several popular comedies, such as Thoroughly Modern Millie (1967) and Bye Bye Birdie (1963).
But it was his performance in Mary Poppins as Bert that made him a household name around the world. He was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor because of his role in the movie.
Van Dyke is not just an accomplished actor but also a gifted singer and dancer. He is a multi-album artist and has acted in multiple Broadway musicals. In addition, he has years of experience as a ventriloquist, having performed with his dummy, Mortimer Snerd.
Other noteworthy accomplishments in Van Dyke’s career include the following:
- He is the recipient of three Golden Globes, five Emmys, and a Tony Award.
- In 2004, he received the Kennedy Center Honor.
- In 1996, he was admitted to the Television Hall of Fame.
- In 2007, he received the National Medal of Arts.
Dick Van Dyke’s Biography
On December 13, 1925, Richard Wayne Van Dyke was born in West Plains, Missouri, to stenographer Hazel Victoria (née McCord; 1896-1992) and salesman Loren Wayne “Cookie” Van Dyke (1898-1976).
He was raised in Danville, Illinois. Actor Jerry Van Dyke (1931–2018), who portrayed his brother in The Dick Van Dyke Show, is his older brother. Despite his Scottish, Irish, and English origins, Van Dyke is a Dutch surname. His ancestry begins with John Alden, a passenger on the Mayflower.
After graduating from Danville High School in 1944, Van Dyke became active in the dramatic club and a cappella choir. He thought about a future in the ministry, but his involvement in the drama program persuaded him to pursue a career in entertainment.
In order to enlist in the US Army Air Forces and undergo pilot training during World War II, Van Dyke dropped out of high school during his senior year. After being turned down for enlistment on multiple occasions due to his low weight, he was eventually approved for duty as a radio host.
Later, he joined the Special Services and provided entertainment for soldiers stationed around the continental United States. 1946 saw his discharge. In 2004, Van Dyke graduated from high school.
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Dick Van Dyke’s Personal Life
Dick Van Dyke wed Margerie Willett, his first wife, in a live broadcast of “Bride and Groom” in February 1948. Together, they were parents to four kids. In 1984, Van Dyke and Willett got divorced following a protracted split.
After that, Van Dyke shared a home with Michelle Triola Marvin, his lifelong partner, until she died in 2009. They had spent over thirty years together. Van Dyke wed makeup artist Arlene Silver in 2012; Silver is 46 years his junior.
Van Dyke has always been honest and outspoken about his battle with alcoholism. He last went to therapy for his addiction in 1972. He also smoked heavily for the majority of his adult life, although he disclosed in 2013 that he had stopped and was now using Nicorette gum to suppress his cravings.
Dick Van Dyke’s Career
Van Dyke started his career as a radio DJ in his hometown in the late 1940s. In the early 1950s, he performed as a comedy pair with pantomime performer Phil Erickson, with whom he traveled the West Coast and made an appearance on a local television program called “The Merry Mutes” in Atlanta, Georgia.
He also had appearances on “Chance of a Lifetime” in 1954, “The Phil Silvers Show” (1957–1958), “The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom” (ABC), and “The Polly Bergen Show” (NBC) in his early television career. Van Dyke made his Broadway debut in “The Girls Against the Boys” in 1959.
He then appeared in “Bye Bye Birdie” as the lead actor from 1960 to 1961. Van Dyke received four additional Tony Awards for the musical “Bye Bye Birdie” in addition to a 1961 Tony Award for Best Featured Actor for his role in the production.
In 1961, Van Dyke played the part of comedy writer Rob Petrie in his sitcom on CBS called “The Dick Van Dyke Show.” During the program’s run until 1966, he was recognized with three Emmy Awards for Best Lead Actor in a Comedy Series.
Four Emmy Awards for Outstanding Comedy Series were also given to the show. An all-star cast that included well-known actresses, including Rose Marie, Morey Amsterdam, Jerry Paris, Ann Morgan Guilbert, and Mary Tyler Moore, made appearances alongside him on the show.
The New Dick Van Dyke Show, an unrelated sitcom that aired from 1971 to 1974, was Van Dyke’s subsequent endeavor. Even though this show didn’t do as well as his first, he was nominated for a Golden Globe for his performance.
“Van Dyke and Company,” the third program bearing his name, was a brief sketch comedy series that starred Super Save Osborne and Andy Kaufman. Despite having a three-month run, it was able to win an Emmy for Best Comedy-Variety Series.