Dick Van Dyke Biography
Dick Van Dyke is widely known for his role as Robert Petrie in the Dick Van Dyke Show starring opposite Mary Tyler Moore who played his onscreen wife, Laura.
Dick Van Dyke is widely known for his role as Robert Petrie in the "Dick Van Dyke Show" starring opposite Mary Tyler Moore, who played his onscreen wife, Laura. The series lasted five years. People thought that Mary Tyler Moore and Dick Van Dyke were married to each other off screen when in actuality they were both married to someone else.
Richard Wayne Van Dyke was born on December 13, 1925 in West Plains, Missouri. Around the 1930’s, his family moved to Illinois where his younger brother Jerry Van Dyke was born. His brother is actor Jerry Van Dyke who has starred on his shows besides having several television series himself. By the time Dick was eleven years old, he had grown to his present height of 6’1" tall. He served in the Air Force during World War II where he was a radio announcer of the show "Flight Time."
In the 1950’s, he relocated to Atlanta, Georgia where he hosted several variety shows "Mother's Day" and "Laugh Line." Before that, he turned down hosting "The Price Is Right" in 1956. In 1956, he hosted "Cartoon Theatre" for CBS which was his first network appearance.
It wasn’t until the movie "Bye-Bye Birdie" in the 1960’s did his career take off although he did have some minor roles before that. In between acting roles, Dick Van Dyke hosted several game shows. We have seen him in movies such as "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" and "Mary Poppins." He has been in over fifty-five films and television movies or shows. He has been acting in the television series "Diagnosis Murder" since the early 1990’s starring opposite his son, Barry Van Dyke. Throughout his acting career, Mr. Van Dyke’s family has appeared in guest appearances on his television shows.
He had a very bad drinking problem for many years, although you would never know it when he was in front of the camera. In the 1970’s after almost thirty years of marriage and four children later, Dick Van Dyke divorced his wife Margie Willett to start his life anew being sober. He also publicly confessed to being an alcoholic. After this statement, Dick Van Dyke had disappeared for several years. When he came back to acting, he was sober and has had a life of sobriety ever since.
Since the 1980’s Mr. Van Dyke as been living with Michelle Triola Marvin in their home in Malibu, California. He has a lot of interests and has his own private film studio in which he experiments with special effects.