|David Letterman Quick Info|
|Height||6 ft 2 in|
|Date of Birth||April 12, 1947|
David Letterman is an American TV personality, comedian, writer, and producer who rose to fame after hosting Late Night with David Letterman on NBC. He became the longest-serving late night talk show host, serving for a total of 33 years starting from 1982 to 2015, after hosting a total of 6,028 episodes of Late Night and Late Show. He has a huge fanbase with over 350k followers on Twitter.
David Michael Letterman
Earl Hofert, Dave, The Big Man
Indianapolis, Indiana, United States
New York City, New York, United States
Letterman studied at Broad Ripple High School in his neighborhood area. He ended up attending Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana as his grades were not good enough to get him into Indiana University. He is a member of the Sigma Chi fraternity and received a scholarship while at the university. In 1969, he graduated from what was then called the Department of Radio and Television.
Television Host, Comedian, Writer, Producer
- Father – Harry Joseph Letterman (Florist) (Died of Heart Attack in 1973)
- Mother – Dorothy Marie Letterman Mengering (née Hofert) (Church Secretary at the Second Presbyterian Church of Indianapolis) (Died in 2017)
- Siblings – Janice Letterman (Older Sister), Gretchen Letterman (Younger Sister) (Journalist and Editor of the St. Petersburg Times Lifestyles Section)
- Others – Earl Jacob Hofert Jr. (Maternal Uncle) (Died in 2009), Hazel Hofert (Maternal Aunt) (Died in 2017), Hans Mengering (Stepfather) (Died in 2013), Earl Jacob Hofert (Maternal Grandfather), Lena M. (née Strietelmeier) (Maternal Grandmother), Liam Letterman Shelton (Nephew) (Gretchen’s Son)
David is represented by the California-based Creative Artists Agency.
6 ft 2 in or 188 cm
78 kg or 172 lbs
Girlfriend / Spouse
David Letterman has dated –
- Michelle Cook (1968-1977) – Michelle and Letterman were high school sweethearts and got married on July 2, 1968, in Muncie, Indiana. They were a very young couple having married in their early 20s. Sadly, they decided to head for divorce in October 1977 after spending nearly 10 years together.
- Merrill Markoe (1978-1988) – After his divorce, David found companionship with Merrill Markoe who was a former head writer and producer on Late Night. They were in a live-in relationship from 1978 to 1988. Merrill was his writing partner and is credited with putting David in the spotlight and cementing his surreal brand of comedy.
- Regina Lasko (1986-Present) – Towards the end of his relationship with Markoe, he forged a new alliance with Regina Lasko. They began dating in February 1986 and had a son together, David’s only child, named Harry Joseph Letterman on November 3, 2003. Harry is named after his late grandfather. After living together for more than 2 decades, the couple tied the knot in a courthouse civil ceremony in Montana on March 19, 2009.
- Holly Hester – In 2009, former CBS employee Holly Hester came forward asserting that she had a year-long secret affair with Letterman in the early 1990s while working as his intern.
- Stephanie Birkitt – Stephanie Birkitt was a longtime assistant of David, who later started working as an attorney. In the light of the scandal surrounding his extramarital affairs in 2009, their secret relationship came under the scanner. Birkitt was dating CBS television producer Joe Halderman in 2009 when he found out about her clandestine affair with Letterman. Joe came across copies of her diary and emails while they were living together and used that evidence to send a blackmail package in Letterman’s car. He tried to extort US$2 million by threatening to expose his past affairs. Joe was sentenced to 6 months of jail time for his extortion attempt.
- Terri Garr – Terri Garr is an American actress who is well known for appearing on Late Night on several occasions. Her sparkling chemistry with David Letterman and on-screen flirtations soon caught the eye of audiences. They were rumored to be dating in 1990.
- Bonnie Hunt (2008) – Bonnie Hunt is another actress who was rumored to be dating David Letterman. After Hunt’s 2-decade-long marriage to the investment banker husband John Murphy ended in 2008, many believed that her affair with Letterman was the reason behind the split. However, no concrete evidence could be found confirming the same.
Race / Ethnicity
He is of German descent on his mother’s side and has English, Scots-Irish, and German ancestry on his father’s side.
With advancing age, his hair has turned gray.
The gap between his front teeth
David Letterman has endorsed –
- CBS TV Spot for Red Cross
- Super Bowl
David has been following the religion since childhood as it was a part of his upbringing.
Best Known For
- Having served as a late night talk show host for 33 years starting from 1982 to 2015
- His late night talk show Late Night with David Letterman on NBC
- The popularity of his shows which have been nominated and became the recipient of innumerable Emmy awards throughout his career
As a Singer
David has performed the song on his show the Late Show with David Letterman in 2010. However, his performance was uncredited.
His first credited performance was in 2011 when he performed the song The Way We Were on the Late Show with David Letterman.
He made his theatrical film debut with the adventure film Cabin Boy in 1994 playing the role of Old Salt in Fishing Village.
First TV Show
Letterman made his first TV show appearance on the comedy game-show The Gong Show in 1976.
David Letterman Things
- Movie – Once Upon a Time in the West (1968)
- Song – I’ll Be Around (Whenever You Want Me) by The Spinners, Everlong by Foo Fighters
- Band – Foo Fighters
- Musician – Warren Zevon
Source – IMDb, Wikipedia, Washington Post
David Letterman Facts
- He was considered a fan favorite to be the successor to host The Tonight Show after Johnny Carson‘s retirement in 1992. However, NBC hired Jay Leno as the host for the show, prompting Letterman to depart NBC and start his own show the Late Show with David Letterman on CBS at the same time slot. Both the shows and the hosts became competitors vying for highest rating throughout their tenure as hosts of the respective shows.
- He is a partner of the Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, which is an auto racing team along with Bobby Rahal (former auto racing driver) and businessman Michael Lanigan. The team was declared a winner at the 2004 Indianapolis 500 with driver Buddy Rice.
- David owns a production company called Worldwide Pants which was founded in 1991. Previously, he also owned 2 other production companies called Space Age Meat and Cardboard Shoe Productions.
- While working on the Late Night show, he had not missed a single day of work in his 18-year long career. But the successful streak was broken when he had a quintuple bypass surgery in January 2000.
- Letterman made into the list of People Magazine’s ’25 Most Intriguing People of 2001′.
- In 2012, he received the Kennedy Center Honors along with the names like Dustin Hoffman, Buddy Guy, Natalia Makarova, and the rock band Led Zeppelin.
- His mother Dorothy Mengering passed away due to natural causes on April 11, 2017, which happened to be the day just before Letterman’s 70th birthday.
- Letterman has hosted a total of 6,028 episodes of the Late Night and the Late Show making him the longest-serving late night talk show host in the history of American television. His feat also managed to surpass his good-friend and mentor Johnny Carson’s records.
- David is notorious for his acerbic tone which was also responsible for his 16-year-long feud with Oprah Winfrey. The discord started when Winfrey appeared on his Late Night Show on NBC in 1989. She later confessed that she felt uncomfortable with his tone and did not wish to experience it again. The two, however, buried the hatchet with her appearing on the Late Show with David Letterman on December 2, 2005. He referenced to the specific episode as “The Superbowl of Love”.
- When he made a joke about the death of Al-Qaeda leader Ilyas Kashmiri, he immediately became the subject of a death threat. According to reports, in August 2011, the Islamist militant had urged American Muslims to kill Letterman for the joke.
- In 2005, his house painter Kelly Frank became involved in a plot to kidnap Letterman’s son Harry and to extort a ransom of US $5 million. The police found out in time and the charges for conspiracy were pressed against Frank.
- His show The Late Show With David Letterman made to the 7th spot on the 50 Greatest Shows of All Time by TV Guide in 2002.
- He suffers from tinnitus which is characterized by a ringing sound in the ears and is considered a symptom of hearing loss. In 1996 on the Late Show, he mentioned that he hears noises and ringing sounds throughout the day.
- David, in conjunction with Canadian author Bruce McCall, released a fiction satire book named This Land Was Made for You And Me (But Mostly Me) in November 2013.
- He inducted the rock band Pearl Jam into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in April 2017.
- Letterman had revealed that he was a ‘horrible alcoholic’ having started when he was 13 and managed to kick the habit in 1981 at the age of 34. He credits transcendental meditation and low doses of medication in helping him reach a calmer state in his life.
- Margaret Mary Ray gained national attention as Letterman’s stalker from May 1988. She was suffering from schizophrenia and had managed to steal his Porsche, break into his house several times, and had also camped out on his tennis court. She committed suicide in October 1998 and Letterman expressed his grief at her sad demise.
- David is a car enthusiast and has an impressive car collection. In 2012, his collection included 10 Ferraris, 8 Porsches, 4 Austin Healeys, 2 Honda motorcycles, 1 Chevy pickup, 1 Mercedes-Benz, 1 MG, 1 Volvo, 1 Pontiac, and 1 Jaguar.
- In 2009, Letterman admitted to having extramarital affairs with his female employees. After he was blackmailed and threatened with disclosing his affairs in a screenplay or book if he didn’t comply with the ransom money of US$2 million, he decided to come clean about his past affairs. Letterman sought the help of the police and with a sting operation nabbed Joe Halderman who was eventually charged with grand larceny in October 2009.
- At around the same time, he issued a public apology to his wife and staff on his show. On October 15, CBS announced an in-depth investigation into Letterman but many prominent media figures began questioning the unfair nature of the working environment created for women in the entertainment world.
- Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.
Featured Image by U.S. Department of State / Flickr / Public Domain