Elliott Gould (born Elliott Goldstein; August 29, 1938) is an American actor. He began acting in Hollywood films during the 1960s, and has remained prolific ever since. Some of his most notable films include his role as Trapper John McIntrye in the Robert Altman directed film M*A*S*H as well as Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice, for which he received an Oscar nomination. In recent years, he has starred as Jack Geller on Friends and as Reuben Tishkoff in Ocean's Eleven (2001), Ocean's Twelve (2004), and Ocean's Thirteen (2007).
Gould was born in Brooklyn, New York. His mother, Lucille (née Raver), sold artificial flowers to beauty shops, and his father, Bernard Goldstein, worked in the Garment District, Manhattan|garmen business as a textiles buyer. His family was Jewish, and his grandparents were immigrants from Ukraine, Poland, and Russia. He graduated from the Professional Children's School.
Gould was one of the most prominent American film actors in the early-1970s, best known for playing Trapper John in Robert Altman's satirical 1970 film MASH. Time magazine placed him on one of its covers in 1970, when he was at the brief height of his long career, calling him a "star for an uptight age".
Other notable film roles include, Capricorn One (1977), and a remake of The Lady Vanishes (1979). Gould played the detective Philip Marlowe in Altman's 1973 film The Long Goodbye (the role had previously been played by such distinguished actors as Humphrey Bogart and Dick Powell, and later Robert Mitchum). He hosted Saturday Night Live six times, his final time being the first episode of the disastrous Jean Doumanian season (season 6) in November 1980, where he was shocked to find that the original cast and producer had left and a new cast and producer had taken their place. He has never hosted after that, but has appeared in a season 16 (1990–1991) episode hosted by Tom Hanks where Hanks is welcomed into the Five-Timers club, a society for celebrities who have hosted SNL five times or more. Also in 1980, Gould filmed two movies for Walt Disney Studios, The Last Flight of Noah's Ark and The Devil and Max Devlin, in which he co-starred with Bill Cosby.
Gould's Broadway theatre credits include Irma La Douce, Say, Darling, I Can Get It for You Wholesale (in which he met Barbra Streisand), Drat! The Cat!, and Little Murders. He purchased the screen rights to Little Murders, and in addition to acting in the film version, served as uncredited executive producer.
His career slowed down after a series of critical and commercial flops in the mid-to-late 1970s, but he has remained steadily employed in supporting and character roles in television and movies. He starred in a sitcom called E/R in 1984–1985, and had a recurring guest role on Friends as Jack Geller, the father of sisters Monica and Ross Geller.
Gould received critical praise for his role as an aging mobster in Warren Beatty's 1991 film Bugsy. In addition, he appeared in American History X as the boyfriend of Edward Norton's character's mother. He also co-starred as Reuben Tishkoff in the popular "caper" film Ocean's Eleven (2001), and its sequels: Ocean's Twelve (2004), and Ocean's Thirteen (2007).
In 2005, Gould was the guest star in a feature-length episode of the UK TV series Poirot, The Mystery of the Blue Train.
Gould is most recently seen on advertisements for Save Ellis Island and is heard on radio commercials, most notably introducing himself by name on spots for the Gordon Flesch Company, a Madison, Wisconsin-based office products supplier.
He has also loaned his voice to several animated series, most notable among them, the Disney Channel animated series Kim Possible and the 2006 video game Scarface: The World Is Yours.
Gould became one of the many celebrity producers of The 1 Second Film collaboration in June 2009.
In November 2009 Elliott Gould signed on for a guest spot on Law & Order, playing a disgruntled business owner who takes the law into his own hands after a crime spree in his Harlem neighborhood.
In July 2010 it was announced that Gould had signed on to guest-star in the second episode of the next season of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.
Gould currently serves on the Screen Actors Guild National Board of Directors and has done so for the past six years. He has recently undergone hip replacement surgery.
Gould has said that he has a "very deep Jewish identity". He has been married three times, twice to the same woman:
- Barbra Streisand (March 21, 1963 – July 9, 1971; divorced; 1 child, actor Jason Gould)
- Jennifer Bogart (December 8, 1973 – 1976; divorced; 2 children)
- Jennifer Bogart (June 9, 1978 – 1989; separated)
- Elliott Gould: Reel to real
- Elliott Gould Biography - Yahoo! Movies
- Walters, Ben (12 August 2008). It's okay by him. Guardian. Retrieved on 21 July 2012. “In 1970, Time magazine put Gould on its cover, declaring him a "Star for an Uptight Age"....”
- Agatha Christie Poirot: The mystery of the Blue Train at The Internet Movie Database (IMDB)
- Mickey O'Connor. "Exclusive: Elliott Gould Signs On to Law & Order", TVGuide.com.
- Exclusive: Elliott Gould to Guest-Star on CSI, TVGuide.com, July 2010, accessed September 14, 2012.
- An Angsty Leading Man Who Caught the Spirit of His Times by Dennis Lim, New York Times article, NYTimes.com August 1, 2008.
- Elliott Gould: An Actor's Life