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Ed Asner

March 30, 1998

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"Mary Tyler Moore is a rich lady in New York, and I' m just a poor actor in California," remarked Asner.

I was extremely doubtful, and Asner argued, "Would I lie to you?"

He continued, " Actually, I'm taking 15 minutes out from standing on the sidewalk with my tin cup," he countered. "Too bad you're in Arkansas - you can't put any money in my cup."

I doubt if Asner needs money in a cup. He's been nominated for 15 "Emmys" and has won seven Emmys (3 for the MTM show), 5 Golden Globe awards, and 2 Critics Circle Awards. Yet he's proudest of his kids. "My four children make me proud...my youngest daughter, Kate Asner is a fine actress, and I'm proud of the beliefs that I've stood up for - nuclear disarmament, peace in the Middle East, and I've fought against backing bad government in South America. I'm also an activist for decent peace in Yugoslavia, and recognition of Vietnam."

Asner has been so busy defending his beliefs that he's been thrown in jail. That's right, demonstrations and standing up for his beliefs got Asner sent up the river! Okay, okay, it was only for a few hours each time, and he was treated fairly well. But jail?

Asner has done it all. Besides the Mary Tyler Moore and Lou Grant shows, Asner has acted in so many TV/Cable movies, TV Cable Miniseries, TV series, Broadway and Off Broadway plays, and feature films - most recently, Hard Rain. And now he's costarring in the television series The Closer with Tom Selleck.

Will Asner ever give up acting? "No! Never! I will never retire. Death before dishonor!" he stated, sounding mortified at the thought of retiring.

Yet with all his many roles, people still think of Asner as Lou Grant. Remember when you think of Ed Asner as Lou Grant picture him standing on the sidewalk with his tin cup, and ask yourself: Do I really believe this?

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