Dom Irrera turns 70 today. With over 30 years in comedy, Irrera has done a little bit of everything. Audiences might recognize him from TV shows like Dr. Katz: Professional Therapist or roles in movies like The Big Lebowski, but Irrera’s true home is on the stand-up stage. In 2005, Los Angeles Magazine wrote of Irrera, “In an era that equates comedic success with film and TV, Irrera is an oddity: an enormously successful comedian who spends most of his time doing stand-up.” In honor of 70 years, here are 7 things you might not have known about the comedian:
1. He was named the 79th Greatest Stand-up of All-Time by Comedy Central.
2. While his IMBD says his first TV appearance was in 1985, he was an extra on Saturday Night Live in 1980 when he briefly worked for the show.
3. He isn’t shy to voice his opinion on other stand-ups. He doesn’t like Andrew Dice Clay but thinks Zach Galifianakis is funny and a great actor.
4. He provided multiple voices for the first season of the Rugrats uncredited. He also did multiple voices on Hey Arnold! another popular Nickelodeon show.
5. He made 11 appearances as himself on Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist, making him the only comedian to appear in all six seasons
6. He was once on an improv team with Sex & The City producer Michael Patrick King. The team was called the Broadway Local.
7. The Coen Brothers asked Irrera to be in the Big Lebowski after seeing him perform stand-up at Carolines. In 2011, he spoke candidly with The Interrobang about the film, “The first time I saw Lebowski, I didn’t even like it. Then I saw it again, and I really liked it. It was like Scarface in the sense that when I first saw Scarface it was like, well, that’s disgusting. Then I looked at it like it was a comedy.”
Happy Birthday, Dom!