Bob Newhart is an iconic comedian who rose to fame via his unique comedy routines before achieving even greater success as a television star on shows such as The Bob Newhart Show, a 1970s sitcom that was actually the second show to bear the actor’s name. Nowadays, Bob refuses to retire but still likes to take it easy and live a quiet life with his wife of over 50 years. Join Facts Verse as we take a look at Bob Newhart’s lifestyle at 92 years old.
Bob Newhart came into this world on September 5, 1929, in Oak Park, Illinois. His father was the partial owner of a plumbing and heating company, which was how he provided for his family. Bob received a Roman Catholic education, attending Oak Park’s St. Catherine of Siena Grammar School and then Chicago’s St. Ignatius College Prep. Bob graduated from the prep school in 1947, after which time he decided to enroll at the Loyola University Chicago. He graduated from Loyola University Chicago in 1952, receiving a bachelor’s degree in the field of business. Before Bob could put his bachelor’s degree to good use, he found himself drafted into the Korean War. Bob served in the United States Army until being honorably discharged from his service in 1954.
After being honorably discharged from the United States Army in 1954, Bob decided that he wanted to further his education. He began attending the Loyola University Chicago School of Law in hopes of getting a higher degree, but he ended up dropping out of the school after an internship required him to act in a way that he believed was unethical.
It became apparent to Bob that he was going to have to find something to do outside of practicing law, so he began for a period of time to put his bachelor’s degree in business to use working for various employers as a clerk. Bob didn’t much enjoy the work and found himself struggling financially. He took a job as a copywriter for an ad agency in 1958, and while there, he began practicing comedic routines during his downtime.
It has been said that Bob developed his first comedy routines while talking to a coworker on the phone, which is why so much of Bob’s comedy consisted of phone monologues. As Bob got better at being funny, he decided to record some of his monologues and start sending them around to local radio stations. Those who listened to the tapes received Bob’s act favorably, and it wasn’t long before Bob was a promising young comedian performing in nightclubs around Chicago.
Quickly into Bob’s career as a comedian, he developed a relationship with Warner Bros. then-new record division. The film studio had recently decided it was time to get into music, though they hadn’t yet found the success in the arena that they maintain today. Warner Bros. Records had only just been established in 1958. In 1960, Warner Bros. Records released Bob’s comedy album, The Button-Down Mind of Bob Newhart. The album went on to become the first-ever comedy album to reach the highest position on the Billboard charts, and even earned Bob a Grammy Award.
While Bob initially found the most success with his comedic albums, he soon began being offered roles on television. His comedic success resulted in NBC giving him his own variety show in 1961, though the program was only around for less than a year before being canceled due to dwindling viewership. The show was titled The Bob Newhart Show, though that name would later become more closely associated with the 1970s sitcom that also used it.
Despite the fact that Bob Newhart’s 1960s variety series didn’t draw in great amounts of viewers, the critics loved it. Bob was becoming more and more of a player in the industry and made his film debut acting in the 1962 feature Hell Is for Heroes. Bob would continue being a popular comedic figure over the remainder of the decade before truly attaining the status of an icon with 1972’s The Bob Newhart Show. Unlike the show of the same name that preceded it, 1972’s The Bob Newhart Show was a sitcom.
The Bob Newhart Show of the 1970s lasted much longer than the variety series that it had taken its name from, with new episodes being produced until 1978. After the show came to an end, Bob attempted to recreate its success multiple times to increasingly less avail. Still, Bob continues to work to this day and has a vast amount of wealth to his name, given the success of his various ventures. If you’re enjoying this video so far, be sure to hit the like button to show your support! As well, subscribe to the channel if you’d like to be among the first to know when more Facts Verse videos are on their way!
After all that Bob Newhart has done in his career, he is estimated to be worth around $65 million. This vast amount of wealth has afforded Bob the ability to live a life of luxury with his longtime wife, including having previously owned a lavish estate in Bel Air that was recently sold for nearly $15 million. Bob had purchased the estate for around $4 million in 1990, and one can imagine that this exchange certainly helped provide Bob with some extra spending money!
In Bob’s old age, he not only refuses to retire, but he also makes sure to answer all of his fans’ letters! Answering his fans’ letters gives Bob a close and personal connection to them, something that has arguably helped him thrive into his twilight years. One of the main reasons that Bob doesn’t want to retire is because he believes that his ability to make people laugh is a gift that he has a responsibility to share with as many people as possible. Seeing the fruits of his labor in the form of adoring letters from fans of all ages gives the aging actor the validation to keep moving forward.
Bob continues to perform comedy and write new material, and one of his favorite ways to express his comedic voice is still on the radio. On Bob’s more recent radio appearances, he still has the same energy that he exhibited on late-night programs back during the peak of his success. In addition to Bob continuing to practice and perform new material, fans can also look forward to him sporadically popping up in front of the camera in the upcoming years, as the comedian has expressed that he’s anxious to return to the screen.
In 2003, Bob Newhart was introduced to an entirely new generation of fans thanks to his performance in the holiday comedy Elf. Bob played an elf that becomes the adopted father of a human played by Will Ferrell, and the film has since become a beloved holiday classic that families return to again and again every year. According to Bob, he knew he had to take part in the film as soon as he got the script as he had a feeling that it was going to become a holiday favorite. His intuition turned out to be correct, as the film surpassed expectations and went on to become one of the most widely accepted additions to the classic holiday film canon in recent years.
While Elf has had a large impact on family holiday viewing, it has had an even larger impact on Bob’s aforementioned stack of fan mail that he feels obligated to continue to respond to into his twilight years. Bob has shared that roughly half of the fan mail that he receives is letters from children and parents expressing just how much their families love to watch Elf every year around the holidays.
While many stars Bob’s age have been married and divorced multiple times, Bob has been married to the same woman for well over 50 years. Bob’s first and only wife is Ginny, whom he married in 1962. Bob and Ginny met when they were set up on a blind date by comedian Buddy Hackett. Buddy had hired Ginny as a babysitter, and he saw something in her that he thought would be perfect for Bob. He ended up setting the two up despite some initial hesitancy from both of them, and it turned out that Buddy was right! Few Hollywood relationships have lasted as long as Bob and Ginny’s, and the couple is still together to this day!
Apparently, the late Buddy Hackett had hoped that Bob and Ginny would end up naming one of their children after him due to the fact that he was the one that had set the two up. However, Bob and Ginny ended up having four children together, and none of them are named Buddy. Instead, Bob and Ginny’s four children are named Timothy, Courtney, Jennifer, and Robert. In addition to these four children, Bob and Ginny are also now grandparents!
One might wonder how exactly Bob and Ginny have managed to stay together for nearly 60 years, and Bob claims that it’s due to the fact that the two share a similar sense of humor. According to Bob, if you can make your spouse laugh, that can add a lot of longevity to a marriage. Ginny is only slightly younger than Bob, having been born in 1940. Although Bob is certainly the bigger star of the two, Ginny has tried her hand at entertainment many times, mainly appearing as an extra in various television shows.
When he’s not working, Bob likes to take it easy with his wife, kids, and grandchildren. Bob enjoys passing his comedic skills along to his grandson, who is apparently beginning to practice some comedy of his own at his young age. Bob has been sure to instill perseverance into the boy, believing that if one joke doesn’t work, the next will!
Bob Newhart claims that he will never retire, and some of his more recent roles besides Elf include a memorable turn in the film Horrible Bosses. Comment down below to share if you’ve seen Bob in anything good recently or if you’re hoping that he sticks around for more years to come! As always, give this video a like to show us a little support, and subscribe to our channel and hit the notification bell if you’d like to be among the first to know when more Facts Verse videos are on their way!