Don Rickles

American stand-up comedian (1926–2017)

Donald Jay "Don" Rickles (May 8, 1926 – April 6, 2017) was an American stand-up comedian, actor, voice actor and author, best known for his role as Mr. Potato Head in Toy Story, Toy Story 2, and Toy Story 3. He was also known for being an on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, and in The Dean Martin Celebrity Roasts.

Don Rickles
Don Rickles 1.jpg
Rickles in 2010
Birth nameDonald Jay Rickles
Born(1926-05-08)May 8, 1926
Queens, New York, U.S.
DiedApril 6, 2017(2017-04-06) (aged 90)
Beverly Hills, California, U.S.
MediumStand-up, movie, television
Years active1948–2017
GenresImprovisational comedy, observational comedy, musical comedy, insult comedy
Subject(s)United States culture, Racism, Self-deprecation, Everyday life, Religion, Current events
InfluencesMilton Berle
InfluencedJay Leno, David Letterman, Howard Stern, Russell Peters,[1] Dave Attell,[2] Lisa Lampanelli[3] Jerry Seinfeld, Norm Macdonald, Larry the Cable Guy
SpouseBarbara Sklar (1965–2017; his death) (2 children)
Notable works and rolesHello Dummy!
Q M 1/C Ruby in Run Silent, Run Deep
Sgt. Crapgame in Kelly's Heroes
Billy Sherbert in Casino
Mr. Potato Head in the Toy Story franchise

Early lifeEdit

Rickles was born in Queens, New York on May 8, 1926[4] to Max Rickles, who immigrated to the United States in 1902, and to Etta (née Feldman), who was from New York City. Rickles' parents were of Jewish ancestry. Rickles was educated at American Academy of Dramatic Arts.


Rickles' career began in 1958 in Run, Silent, Run Deep. Since then Rickles has appeared in movies such as Casino, Toy Story, Toy Story 2, Denice the Menace Strikes Again, Toy Story 3, Zookeeper, Toy Story 3, and Small Fry.

Influences and influencedEdit

Rickles' only influence was Milton Berle. Rickles and Berle appeared in The Dean Martin Celebrity Roasts. Rickles influenced Jay Leno, David Letterman, Dana Snyder, Howard Stern, Russell Peters, Dave Attell, Lisa Lampanelli, Jerry Seinfeld, Norm Macdonald, and Larry the Cable Guy.

Personal lifeEdit

Rickles married Barbara Sklar in 1965. They have two children; Larry Rickles (who died in 2011), and Mindy. Rickles also has 2 grandchildren who enjoy his role of Mr. Potato Head more than any other role Rickles ever had. Rickles currently lived in Los Angeles, California. He was a lifelong supporter of the Democratic Party.[5]


Rickles died on April 6, 2017 of kidney failure in his home in Beverly Hills, California at the age of 90.[6]

Some movies he was inEdit


  • Rickles' Book: A Memoir by Don Rickles and David Ritz (2007)
  • Rickles' Letters by Don Rickles and David Ritz (2008)


  • Hello Dummy! (1968)
  • Don Rickles Speaks! (1969)


  1. "Gauntlet Entertainment – Comedy Preview: Russell Peters won't a hurt you real bad – 2005-11-24". Archived from the original on 2009-06-04. Retrieved 2013-03-16.
  2. Insomniac's Dave Attell, Pt. 1 |
  3. Reno/Tahoe – Look out: Here comes Lisa Lampanelli –[permanent dead link]
  4. "Don Rickles Biography (1926-)". Retrieved 2012-05-11.
  5. "Time Magazine Interview: Don Rickles" Archived 2013-07-18 at the Wayback Machine, from Time Magazine
  6. Schudel, Matt (April 6, 2017). "Don Rickles, lightning-fast launcher of comic insults, dies at 90". The Washington Post. Retrieved April 6, 2017.

Other websitesEdit