Steve Martin Then and Now

By / June 23, 2024

Steve Martin Then

Steve Martin, born on August 14, 1945, in Waco, Texas, is the son of a real estate executive. 

His early years saw significant moves as his family relocated from Waco to Inglewood, California when he was just five years old. 

By the time he was ten, they had settled in Garden Grove, California. 

These moves played a formative role in Martin’s childhood, exposing him to different environments and cultures within the state of California, which would later influence his diverse comedic style.

During his teenage years, Martin developed a strong interest in entertainment and performance. 

He worked at Disneyland and Knott’s Berry Farm, where he sold guidebooks and honed his skills in performing magic tricks. 

steve martin young
via steve martin instagram

These experiences were crucial in shaping his early understanding of show business and entertainment. 

The unique blend of practical work and performance at these iconic amusement parks provided Martin with invaluable hands-on experience and an early appreciation for the art of engaging an audience.

Martin’s academic journey began with an enrollment at Long Beach State College, where he initially pursued a degree in philosophy.

Related Article: Christine Baranski Then and Now

However, his passion for performing arts soon led him to transfer to the theater program at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). 

This switch marked a pivotal moment in Martin’s life, allowing him to immerse himself in the study of theater and further develop his skills as a performer. 

His time at UCLA was instrumental in laying the foundation for his illustrious career in comedy, acting, and writing.

Related Article: Henry Winkler Then and Now

Steve Martin Acting Career

Steve Martin’s illustrious career began while he was still a student when he accepted a contract to write for the hit television show The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour in 1967. 

His exceptional writing skills earned him an Emmy Award in 1969. 

Building on this success, Martin wrote for The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour and other popular variety shows of the time, establishing his reputation as a talented comedy writer.

Related Article: Alan Alda Then and Now

In the early 1970s, Martin began performing his stand-up routine on various television shows, most notably The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson. 

His unique blend of absurdist humor and clever wit garnered him a modest but loyal following. 

Martin’s breakthrough came in 1976 when he hosted an episode of NBC’s Saturday Night Live (SNL).

Related Article: Ron Howard Then and Now

steve martin career
via steve martin instagram

This appearance catapulted him to national fame, and he went on to make over 25 appearances on SNL. By the late 1970s, Martin was the top comic in the United States, drawing large crowds to his performances. 

His catchphrases “Well, excuuuuse me!” and “I am a wild and crazy guy!” became part of the cultural lexicon. 

During this period, he also found success as a recording artist, with his comedy albums Let’s Get Small (1977) and A Wild and Crazy Guy (1978) both winning Grammy Awards, and his single “King Tut” becoming a million-seller.

Related Article: Sigourney Weaver Then and Now

Martin transitioned to film with his debut in the Academy Award-nominated short subject The Absent-Minded Waiter in 1977. 

This led to a fruitful collaboration with writer-director-actor Carl Reiner, resulting in hit comedies such as The Jerk (1979), Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid (1982), The Man with Two Brains (1983), and All of Me (1984).

Related Article: Mel Gibson Then and Now

These films cemented Martin’s status as a top-tier movie star, prompting his retirement from stand-up comedy. 

He continued to demonstrate his versatility by taking on roles in critically acclaimed films like Pennies from Heaven (1981), The Lonely Guy (1984), L.A.

Story (1991), and Leap of Faith (1992), while also maintaining his popular appeal with hits such as Little Shop of Horrors (1986), Roxanne (1987), Planes, Trains and Automobiles (1987), Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (1988), Parenthood (1989), Father of the Bride (1991), and its sequel Father of the Bride Part II (1995).

Related Article: Danny Glover Then and Now

Entering the 21st century, Martin continued his box-office success with Bringing Down the House (2003), Cheaper by the Dozen (2003), and its sequel Cheaper by the Dozen 2 (2005).

He also portrayed Inspector Jacques Clouseau in The Pink Panther (2006) and The Pink Panther 2 (2009). 

Other notable films include It’s Complicated (2009), The Big Year (2011), Home (2015), and Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk (2016).

Martin returned to television with Only Murders in the Building (2021– ), where he starred alongside longtime friend and collaborator Martin Short and Selena Gomez.

Related Article: Samuel L. Jackson Then and Now

In addition to his acting career, Martin is an accomplished writer. His plays include Picasso at the Lapin Agile, which premiered in 1993, and Meteor Shower, which ran on Broadway in 2017-18 starring Amy Schumer. 

He has written satirical articles for The New Yorker, compiled in the best-selling collection Pure Drivel (1998). 

His novella Shopgirl (2000) was adapted into a film in 2005, and his follow-up, The Pleasure of My Company (2003), was a best-seller. 

Related Article: Viola Davis Then and Now

Martin’s autobiography, Born Standing Up: A Comic’s Life, was published in 2007, and he received a Kennedy Center Honor the same year. He also delved into the art world with his novel An Object of Beauty (2010).

Martin’s musical talents are equally impressive. He released The Crow in 2009, a critically acclaimed banjo album that won a Grammy Award for bluegrass album of the year. 

He continued to explore bluegrass with albums like Rare Bird Alert (2011) and Love Has Come for You (2013), the latter a collaboration with Edie Brickell that inspired the Broadway musical Bright Star.

Related Article: LL Cool J Then and Now

Martin, Short, and the Steep Canyon Rangers also embarked on a comedy and bluegrass tour, culminating in the 2018 special Steve Martin and Martin Short: An Evening You Will Forget for the Rest of Your Life. 

He continued his musical endeavors with the Steep Canyon Rangers on The Long-Awaited Album (2017).

Overall, Steve Martin’s career spans numerous fields, from comedy and acting to writing and music, showcasing his remarkable versatility and talent.

Related Article: Lucy Liu Then and Now

Steve Martin Movies

steve martin movies list
via steve martin instagram
  • Another Nice Mess (1972)
  • The Absent-Minded Waiter (1977) (short film)
  • Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (1978)
  • The Jerk (1979)
  • Pennies from Heaven (1981)
  • Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid (1982)
  • The Man with Two Brains (1983)
  • The Lonely Guy (1984)
  • All of Me (1984)
  • Movers & Shakers (1985)
  • ¡Three Amigos! (1986)
  • Little Shop of Horrors (1986)
  • Roxanne (1987)
  • Planes, Trains and Automobiles (1987)
  • Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (1988)
  • Parental Guidance Suggested (1988)
  • Parenthood (1989)
  • My Blue Heaven (1990)
  • L.A. Story (1991)
  • Father of the Bride (1991)
  • Grand Canyon (1991)
  • HouseSitter (1992)
  • Leap of Faith (1992)
  • A Simple Twist of Fate (1994)
  • Mixed Nuts (1994)
  • Father of the Bride Part II (1995)
  • Sgt. Bilko (1996)
  • The Spanish Prisoner (1997)
  • The Prince of Egypt (1998) (voice)
  • The Out-of-Towners (1999)
  • Bowfinger (1999)
  • Joe Gould’s Secret (2000) (cameo)
  • Novocaine (2001)
  • Bringing Down the House (2003)
  • Looney Tunes: Back in Action (2003)
  • Cheaper by the Dozen (2003)
  • Shopgirl (2005)
  • Cheaper by the Dozen 2 (2005)
  • The Pink Panther (2006)
  • Baby Mama (2008)
  • The Pink Panther 2 (2009)
  • It’s Complicated (2009)
  • The Big Year (2011)
  • Home (2015) (voice)
  • Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk (2016)
  • The American Epic Sessions (2017)
  • Howard (2018)
  • Love, Gilda (2018)
  • I Am Mother (2019)
  • Father of the Bride Part 3 (ish) (2020)
  • Count Me In (2021)
  • Like a Rolling Stone: The Life & Times of Ben Fong-Torres (2021)
  • Show Business Is My Life But I Can’t Prove It (2022)
  • Thank You Very Much (2023)

Steve Martin’s Wife and Children

Steve Martin’s personal life has seen notable relationships and milestones. In 1986, Martin married actress Victoria Tennant. 

The two met during the production of a film and went on to co-star in L.A. Story (1991), a romantic comedy that highlighted their on-screen chemistry. 

Despite their professional and personal collaborations, the marriage ended in divorce in 1994.

Related Article: Elisabeth Shue Then and Now

This period was a time of significant professional success for Martin, but his personal life saw this major transition.

In the early 2000s, Martin’s personal life took a new turn when he began dating Anne Stringfield, a writer and former staffer at The New Yorker. 

Their relationship culminated in a surprise wedding in 2007, which was attended by 75 guests.

Related Article: Cameron Diaz Then and Now

The event was notable for its secrecy and the presence of close friends and family who celebrated the unexpected union. This marriage marked a new chapter for Martin, bringing stability and companionship.

In 2012, at the age of 67, Martin experienced fatherhood for the first time with the birth of his daughter. 

This milestone was significant as it introduced a new dimension to Martin’s life, balancing his successful career with the joys and responsibilities of parenthood. 

His late entrance into fatherhood has been a unique aspect of his personal narrative, showcasing his ability to embrace new roles and experiences at various stages of his life.

Related Article: Drew Barrymore Then and Now

This period of his life highlights his commitment to family and his capacity to adapt and find joy in new beginnings.

Steve Martin Now

steve martin age
via steve martin instagram

Steve Martin, at 78 years old, remains a multifaceted talent in the entertainment industry. 

As an American comedian, actor, writer, producer, and musician, he has left an indelible mark across various media. 

Martin’s work in comedy films, television, and music has garnered him numerous accolades, including five Grammy Awards, a Primetime Emmy Award, and an Honorary Academy Award.

Related Article: Bob Saget Then and Now

Additionally, he has been nominated for two Tony Awards, underscoring his versatility and broad appeal. His achievements reflect a career that spans decades and showcases his ability to excel in diverse artistic fields.

In 2024, Martin added another notable project to his extensive portfolio by casting for “Steve! (Martin) A Documentary in 2 Pieces.” 

This documentary promises to offer a deep dive into his life and career, providing audiences with a comprehensive look at his journey and contributions to the entertainment world.

Related Article: Jon Hamm Then and Now

This project highlights Martin’s continued relevance and active engagement with his craft, even as he approaches eight decades of life.

With a net worth of $140 million, Martin’s financial success is a testament to his enduring popularity and the high regard in which he is held within the industry. 

His wealth has been accumulated through a combination of his film roles, television appearances, live performances, book sales, and music endeavors.

Related Article: James Earl Jones Then and Now

Martin’s financial acumen and talent management have enabled him to maintain a prominent position in the entertainment industry, demonstrating his capability not just as a performer, but as a savvy businessperson as well.

Steve Martin’s career trajectory showcases his extraordinary ability to adapt and thrive in various entertainment realms. 

His impact on comedy, film, television, and music is profound, and his ongoing projects, like the 2024 documentary, ensure that his legacy will continue to influence and entertain future generations.

Related Article: John Stamos Then and Now

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top