The Working Actor EDITOR'S INTRO
This is the twelfth in a continuing feature at IndustryCentral profiling "The Working Actor".
William Shakespeare said "There are no small parts.....". William Shatner may have said it too, but the longhair with the tights was first, or so the reports go. In this feature we will explore what it really means to be an actor working in Motion Pictures and Television.
Broad public acknowledgment may have eluded some who find their way to these pages, or perhaps they may have brushed against what is referred to as stardom by virtue of one or more remarkable performances. However for many, the rewards of plying their craft in a field which has allowed them to earn a living may exceed the burdens of public acclaim. Given the chance, some in this clan might prefer the longevity offered by anonymity over the potential for short lived fame.
These individuals, either by design or fate, have managed to sustain a career by crafting performances which rendered them a good casting choice. They are usually thought of as a face you recognize, but you just can't get the name past the tip of your tongue.
Most of these folks have spent countless hours on stage in theaters ranging from 20 seats to 2000, building characters from the works of Ibsen, to Eliot, to Williams, to yes even Shakespeare, and so many of the modern Playwrights. They have rounded their skills doing drama, comedy, & musicals. Their work is a serious venture.
These people have given us screen performances which quite often were the catalyst that brought an Oscar or Emmy to another and yet they continue to work as "Characters" or "Co-Stars" without the trophies and plaques adorning their mantle.
Charlie Brill
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Charlie Brill is what is known as a "Natural Entertainer", in fact some believe that it's tough to say how much Charlie Brill is in show business and how much show business is in Charlie Brill. At just 11 years old, Brooklyn-born Brill bagged a day at grammar school, boarded a subway train, and bounded to Broadway to audition for "Peter Pan". He got the role of John - all before his 13th birthday. And like a fine wine, as he got older, he got better.

Charlie has managed to be successful in virtually every entertainment medium. In the theater, he went on to star in a myriad of productions and won the Drama-Logue Award for his performance as "Billy Einhorn" in "The House of Blues Leaves". In 1992, he won again for "Last of the Red Hot Lovers". His feature film credits include DEAD MEN DON'T DIE, WISHFUL THINKING, SHARK, and MIDNIGHT MADNESS, among others. On television, Charlie's popularity grew as well. He has appeared on a score of series from "Candid Camera" to "Married....With Children" He was also a regular on the Fox television series "Totally Hidden Video"

Charlie recently completed seven seasons as Police Captain Harry Lipschitz on the Stu Segall produced, USA Cable series, "Silk Stalkings". Harry is a hypochondriac whose homocide beat is often spent popping antacid and mixing up doses of bromide. Captain Lipschitz is a tough cop with a weak stomach.

Luckily for Harry, behind every great man is a woman making him that way. Coincidentally, that woman is the same one for both Charlie Brill and his character, Harry Lipschitz. She is Mitzi McCall, Brill's wife and long time comedy team partner. "Fran is there to support Harry and help him find the light at the end of the tunnel", explains Brill, "especially when he is sure that light is an oncoming train."

In real life, Charlie and Mitzi have given support to each other from the very beginning. They first met when Mitzi appeared at the Jerry Lewis Comedy Workshop at Paramount Studios in 1959. Charlie saw Mitzi's performance in a skit and told her he thought she was great. Soon after, Mitzi saw Charlie perform and returned the compliment. They decided that it would be wonderful to tell each other that every day and subsequently, they were married.

It wasn't long before they discovered that something they loved as much as being with each other was performing that way. They have traded comic banter on nearly every stage of every major nightclub in the country. In 1964, the duo appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show following a group of mop-haired, skinny boys from Liverpool, England who drove the young crowd wild. The Beatles had come to America and Charlie and Mitzi were part of television history in the making.

To keep family life "normal" during the busy time, Charlie and Mitzi packed up their young daughter, Jennifer, (now in her 20's) and their pets and they rented a house wherever they were performing. "That way, we were always home" smiles Mitzi. That attempt at normalcy has made their marriage one that has endured longer than most almost any couple in Hollywood. When asked about the perfect formula - "The main thing is, no matter how many arguments we have during the day, we have never, ever gone to bed without starting another one!"

Charlie and Mitzi know that kind of lighthearted teasing is what has endeared them to each other and to audiences around the world for so long. and now that they have had the opportunity to work together on "Silk Stalkings", a whole new generation of fans have come to know it too!

Public Relations:
Warren Cowan & Associates
(310) 281-4868

Charlie Brill's advice to the aspiring actor:

"There are two reasons I went into acting. Love of the craft and per deim."

Charlie Brill's Credits (partial)

Film and Television

  • Suddenly Susan (1999)  .... Recurring as "Leon" Kathy Griffith's father.
  • Hollyrock-a-Bye Baby (1993) (TV) (voice)
  • I Yabba-Dabba Do! (1993) (TV) (voice)
  • Silk Stalkings (1991) (TV Series)  .... Captain Harry Lipschitz (1993-1999)
  • Deep Blood (1989) (TV)  .... Ben's Father Bloodstone (1988)
  • Malibu Bikini Shop, The (1985)  .... Sol Felderman
  • Man Who Wasn't There, The (1983)  .... Rostoloni
  • Off the Wall (1983)  .... Machine Shop Foreman
  • Young Doctors in Love (1982)  .... Doctor Quick
  • Midnight Madness (1980)  .... Tennant #1
  • Matilda (1978)  .... Barker
  • Amazing Dobermans, The (1976) 
  • Blackbeard's Ghost (1968)  .... Edward
  • Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In (1968) (TV Series) Regular Performer (1968-1969)
  • Beast of Budapest, The (1958)  .... Josef, radio station worker

Notable Tv Guest Appearances

  • "Sliders" (1995) as "Barry Lipschitz"
  • "Ellen" (1994) as "Del Shapiro"
  • "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" (1993) as "Arne Darvin"
  • "Flying Blind" (1992) as "Saul"
  • "Married... with Children" (1987) as "Eugene Bundy"
  • "Charles in Charge" (1984) as "Jamal"
  • "Murder, She Wrote" (1984) as "Rudy Plansky, P.I."
  • "Hill Street Blues" (1981) as "Sal DiNapoli"
  • "Scarecrow and Mrs. King" (1983) as "Jango Hart"
  • "Fame" (1982) as "Jennings"
  • "Hart to Hart" (1979) as "Marty"
  • "Galactica 1980" (1980) as "Police Officer" 1980
  • "Wonder Woman" (1976)
  • "CHiPs" (1977) as "Tow Truck Driver"
  • "Star Trek" (1966) as "Arne Darvin"

For more info and credits see IMDb

-- ---End

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Miguel Sandoval
April 2000
Tom Bower [March 2000]
Tom Bower
March 2000
Amy Aquino [February 2000]
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February 2000
Danny Chambers [January 2000]
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January 2000
Eve Gordon [December 1999]
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December 1999
Barbara Niven [November 1999]
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November 1999
Bill Lucking [October 1999]
Bill Lucking
October 1999
Richard Roundtree [September 1999]
Richard Roundtree
September 1999
Pat Harrington [August 1999]
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Robert Donner [July 1999]
Robert Donner
July 1999
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