Alan Alda Net Worth Estimate
Alan Alda net worth is estimated at being between $40 million and $45 million. Most of Alan Alda’s net worth can be said to have come from his long, illustrious career as a hugely successful Hollywood actor and director.
Starring in one of the most iconic and long-running television shows of all time, in addition to a number of other major, beloved roles, made him a household name. This was helped in no small part by his enormous talent.
Who is Alan Alda?
Alan Alda is an actor, writer, and director best known for his work on the legendary dramatic sitcom M*A*S*H, on which he starred as Hawkeye Pierce for 11 groundbreaking seasons from 1972 to 1983. Over that time, he won numerous major industry awards, such as the Emmys.
Later in his career, he added another two iconic roles to his resume, playing the Republican presidential candidate Arnold Vinick on The West Wing and Jack’s dad on 30 Rock.
Alan Alda’s Career
Alan Alda’s career really kicked off in the 50s, when he started out in various improv comedy troupes. His first was in the Compass Players, and then Chicago’s legendary Second City troupe, which remains a cultural touchstone to this day.
Due to the immense strength of his talents, he then got a Ford Foundation grant to become part of the Cleveland Play House’s regular company of actors in 1958. While a member, he appeared in various plays such as Job, Heaven Come Wednesday, and To Dorothy a Son.
That same year, he made his television debut on the popular sitcom, The Phil Silvers Show, later known as Sergeant Bilko due to its beloved lead character. His role was Carlyle Thompson III on one episode.
He debuted on Broadway in 1964, starring as Felix the Owl in a Bill Manhoff play called The Owl and the Pussycat. His next, even bigger Broadway show was The Apple Tree in 1966. Starring opposite Barbara Harris, he nabbed a Tony Award nomination for Best Actor in a Musical.
This rather unusual musical is composed of three short stories. The first act is the story of Adam and Eve, the second a twist on the classic short story, The Lady or the Tiger? by Frank R. Stockton, and the third a twist on Cinderella. Alda and Harris each played a different role in each act.
Alan Alda got his first regular TV gig in 1964, on an American remake of the British satire show, That Was the Week That Was, which made fun of the news of the week and other topical issues. This show would pair him with legendary figures such as Henry Morgan, the journalist and comedian David Frost, and Buck Henry, co-creator of Get Smart with Mel Brooks. It lasted only one season.
From that point on, Alan Alda spent the next bunch of years mainly as a screen actor. In 1963, appeared in Gone Are The Days!, which was based on Purlie Victorious, a successful play from Broadway. In 1968, he starred in Paper Lion, a film based on the true story of when American sports journalist George Plimpton went undercover as a quarterback for an article in Sports Illustrated.
He followed this in 1969 with the role of Lt. Morton Krim in The Extraordinary Seaman and the role of Myles Clarkson in 1971’s The Mephisto Waltz, a supernatural thriller. He also made frequent appearances on various television game shows at the time, such as I’ve Got a Secret and What’s My Line?
Alan Alda then stretched his writing muscles for Free to Be…You and Me, a highly lauded television special produced by and starring Marlo Thomas. He wrote a number of poems and stories featured in this groundbreaking show that advocated for revoking gender stereotypes.
Alan Alda’s biggest break, however, came in 1972, when Alda was cast as Captain Benjamin Franklin “Hawkeye” Pierce in the legendary television show, M*A*S*H, based on the hugely successful smash hit film of the same name from 1970. The show, about a mobile army hospital in the Korean War, ran for 11 seasons, 8 years more than the actual war itself!
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Due to numerous cast changes over the years, Alan Alda is the only M*A*S*H actor to have appeared in every single episode, of which there were 256.
The reason it seemed to really strike a chord with the audience was that, although it was nominally about the Korean War, it actually spoke to the Vietnam War, which was still going on when the show began, and whose aftereffects were still having an impact on American viewers in the following decade.
Over the course of this incredible time in his career, Alan Alda won five Emmy Awards, though was nominated for 21 overall. He also himself took on the task of writing 19 of the show’s staggering 256 episodes, and he directed 32. This means he cumulatively directed over a season’s worth of the show, which usually ran approximately 24 a year.
M*A*S*H began as more of a sitcom, and stayed that way for the first 5 years, albeit one with dramatic elements. As the show carried on from that point, however, it became darker. The comedy never went away, but it evolved into more of drama with comedic elements than the other way around.
It also became more overtly political, directly addressing issues of the day, and Alda’s increasing power on set has often been attributed as being the reason it became a more important show.
Alan Alda’s favourite episodes of the show are the fifth season’s “Dear Sigmund” and the sixth season’s “In Love and War,” both of which he wrote and directed himself.
Other episodes he wrote and directed are the fifth season’s “Hepatitis”, the sixth season’s “Fallen Idol”, “War of Nerves”, and the “Comrades in Arms” two parter, the seventh season’s “Dear Sis” and “Inga”, the eighth season’s “Lend a Hand”,“Life Time” and “Dreams”, the ninth season’s “The Life You Save”, and the tenth season’s “Follies of the Living – Concerns of the Dead”.
He also wrote the first season’s “The Long John Flap” and “Dr Pierce and Mr Hyde”, the seventh season’s “The Party” and the eleventh season premiere, “Hey, Look Me Over”.
Alan Alda’s final directing job for M*A*S*H was the show’s epic two and a half hour final episode, entitled “Goodbye, Farewell and Amen,” which when it aired was watched by more people than any other TV episode in history.
It was viewed in over 83 million homes. The record has never been beaten to this day, and given the wider number of channels and entertainment options today, never will be.
Almost as remarkable as these facts are the fact that Alan Alda didn’t actually live in Los Angeles, California, where the show was filmed. He lived across the continent in New Jersey with his family and commuted back and forth every single week of every year that the show was in production. Not knowing how long M*A*S*H would run, he didn’t want to disrupt his daughters and wife’s lives.
M*A*S*H allowed Alan Alda the ability to become extremely politically active. He would often use his platform to advocate for feminism and equal rights for women. He even co-chaired a campaign called the Equal Rights Amendment Countdown, with Betty Ford, the former First Lady of the United States.
The Boston Globe praised him as being “the quintessential Honorary Woman: a feminist icon” in 1976. This was due to the work he did for the Equal Rights Amendment.
Throughout the next decade, Alan Alda continued to write and direct, including the 1981 hit, The Four Seasons, co-starring with Carol Burnett, and finally Betsy’s Wedding, in 1990, co-starring with the legendary comedy icon Madeline Kahn.
Perhaps his most prominent role in the 1990s was another doctor role. It was Dr Gabriel Lawrence,, a recurring part on the enormous NBC hit, ER, which got him yet another Emmy nomination, although he didn’t win. This period also saw him appearing in the Woody Allen films, Manhattan Murder Mystery, Crimes and Misdemeanors, and the musical comedy, Everyone Says I Love You.
Another passion project of his happened in 2001, when he starred as Richard Feynman, the famous physicist who won the Nobel Prize, in QED, a play that he also produced. It premiered in Los Angeles, California before transferring it to Broadway.
He then had another major career resurgence when he was cast on yet another hugely hit show, The West Wing, in 2004. He played Republican presidential candidate Arnold Vinick, a part that was praised for depicting a kind, moderate Republican with surprisingly progressive views for the time. He was in 28 episodes, and won yet another Emmy for the role.
Just as playing a doctor became a theme that would recur in his career, this wouldn’t be the only tie he’d find success playing a Republican senator. That same year, he also appeared in Martin Scorsese’s Leonardo DiCaprio starring film about troubled pilot, engineer, and business magnate Howard Hughes, The Aviator, as Owen Brewster, a conservative politician.
This role earned him an Oscar nomination in the following year, 2005. Later that year, he starred on Broadway in a revival of famous playwright David Mamet’s popular work, Glengarry Glen Ross, which garnered him another Tony nomination.
He followed this up with yet another well-known TV role, as the Alec Baldwin character, Jack Donaghy’s, dad on the satirical Tina Fey starring and produced cult hit sitcom 30 Rock.
Alan Alda: Early Life
Alan Alda was born on 28 January 1936 in the Bronx borough of New York City, New York. His name at birth was Alphonso Joseph D’Abruzzo. He got his stage name from his dad’s stage name, Robert Alda, which was also an Americanization of an Italian name: Alfonso Giuseppe Giovanni Roberto D’Abruzzo. The name Alda is a combination of the first two letters of Alfonso and D’Abruzzo.
He also seems to have got his desire to be a stage performer from his dad, who was a singer and actor in the burlesque circuit. In fact, Alan Alda grew up on the road, travelling across the country with his parents. Although his mom, Joan Browne, was no longer performing once he was born, she had been a former model and winner of pageants.
At the age of seven, Alan Alda was struck with polio. In order to fight the disease, he had to undergo an extremely painful treatment that was his first real exposure to the medical profession and set the stage for some of his most famous and iconic roles he’d take in his career.
As a teenager, Alan Alda went to high school in White Plains, New York, at Archbishop Stepinac High School. He then attended Fordham University for college. He was an English major and also took a job at the university’s radio station.
He also took advantage of the university’s study abroad program when he was a junior. Amongst the many fantastic life experiences he gained this year, he attended school in Paris, France, performed on stage in Rome, Italy, and even got the chance to appear on TV with his dad in Amsterdam, Holland.
Alan Alda graduated from university in 1956, and soon afterwards joined the army. As part of the army reserve, he spent a year at Fort Benning in Georgia, and then actually served in Korea, yet another part of his early life that would be reflected in his later career.
Alan Alda’s Personal Life and Family
Alan Alda met his future wife, Arlene Weiss, in 1956, at a friend’s house when he was a student at Fordham University, and she a student at the nearby Hunter College.
The beginning of their relationship is a very sweet story. At some point during the party they were attending, a cake fell onto the floor, and the two of them were the only guests willing to eat it.
He actually verified the truth of this story himself, after the story went viral online. He explained, “We did eat the rum cake off the floor and were inseparable after that. But I was captivated by her even earlier in the meal when I heard her at the end of the table laughing at my jokes. She had me at Ha.”
They married a year after his gradation and are still together this day. Together, they had three children, all girls, their names being Eve, Elizabeth, and Beatrice. He now has 8 grandchildren.
Although raised as a Catholic, Alan Alda now considers himself an agnostic, although he admits that when he does pray, he sees it more as fulfilling a psychological need than to genuinely believing in God.
In 2015, doctors told Alan Alda he had Parkinson’s. He is of Italian and Irish heritage.
Alan Alda has also always been extremely devoted to performing charitable works throughout his life and career. One the most prominent examples is the work he has done for St. Jude Children’s Hospital in New York.
He appeared in a one hour special to help the hospital in 2005 called Fighting for Life, focusing on children being treated for cancer.
Alan Alda’s Social Media Influence
For a man of his age, 86, Alan Alda has a surprisingly robust social media presence, due to his status as a beloved cultural icon. You expect social media savvy from younger performers like Bo Burnham, but Alan Alda more than holds his own.
Alan Alda has a public Facebook account, although he hasn’t updated it in a long time. On this platform, he has 70,000 followers and is himself following only 10. Overall, when he did use it, it seemed to mostly just be a place to plug new episodes of the podcast he hosts, called “Clear + Vivid with Alan Alda”.
Alan Alda has a Twitter account where he tweets from the handle @alanalda. On this platform, he has over 275,000 followers and is himself following only 193. He generally uses his account to plug his podcast.
Alan Alda has an Instagram account under the name @thealanalda. He has 18.6 thousand followers there and is himself following just 10 people. He doesn’t seem to use the account very frequently but it currently has a number of pictures of his family and plugs for his podcast.
Alan Alda does not appear to have a LinkedIn account at the present time. If he should do so in the future, we will be sure to update this information.
Perhaps surprisingly for a man of his age, Alan Alda has a TikTok, which is also under @thealanalda, like his Instagram. He has over 32,000 followers on this platform, along with over 62,000 likes. He is currently following only 7 people.
Alan Alda: Height, Weight
Alan Alda’s height is estimated to be at about 6 feet, 1 inch, which 188 in centimeters. His weight isn’t public knowledge but is estimated at about 178 lbs, which is 81 in kilos. He has blue eyes and his hair is now grey, but was brown when he was a young man.
Alan Alda Net Worth & Bio Summary
|Alphonso Joseph D’Abruzzo
|Place of Birth
|New York City, New York, USA
|Net Worth Estimate
|$40Million - $45Million