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Wayne Knight
Knight looking to one side with his mouth open
Knight in August 2013
Born
Wayne Elliot Knight

(1955-08-07) August 7, 1955 (age 68)
Alma mater University of Georgia
Occupation Actor
Years active 1977–present
Spouse(s)
Paula Sutor
(m. 1996; div. 2003)
Clare de Chenu
(m. 2006)
Children 1

Wayne Elliot Knight (born August 7, 1955) is an American actor. In television, he played recurring roles such as Newman on the NBC sitcom Seinfeld (1992–1998) and Officer Don Orville on the NBC sitcom 3rd Rock from the Sun (1996–2001). Knight also voiced Igor on Toonsylvania (1998–1999), Mr. Blik on Catscratch (2005–2007) and Baron Von Sheldgoose on Legend of the Three Caballeros (2018).

In film, he played Dennis Nedry in Jurassic Park (1993), which earned him a Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor nomination. Knight additionally acted in the films Dead Again (1991), JFK (1991), Basic Instinct (1992), Space Jam (1996), For Richer or Poorer (1997), and Rat Race (2001). He provided the voices of Tantor in Tarzan (1999), Al McWhiggin in Toy Story 2 (1999) and The Elf Elder in Tom and Jerry: The Lost Dragon (2014).

Early life

Wayne Elliot Knight was born on August 7, 1955, in New York City to Grace (née Monti) and William Knight. He was raised Catholic. The family moved to Cartersville, Georgia, where his father worked in the textile industry. Knight attended local schools and was a lineman on his high school's football team.

Knight attended the University of Georgia. Although an honors student, he left college one credit shy of completing his degree to pursue his acting career. He completed his degree in 2008.

Career

Knight received an internship at the Barter Theatre in Abingdon, Virginia, which produced repertory works. After completing his internship, he joined the company and gained standing as an Equity actor. Knight subsequently moved back to his hometown New York City and after two years landed his first role on Broadway. After his time on Broadway, he also worked as a private investigator for five years.

Knight appeared in various films in the late 1980s and early 1990s, including Dirty Dancing (1987), Born on the Fourth of July (1989), JFK (1991) and Basic Instinct (1992). He was the first actor cast in Jurassic Park after director Steven Spielberg saw his performance in Basic Instinct. Knight was cast as InGen Corporation's chief programmer for the park and secret spy for Biosyn, Dennis Nedry.

He also appeared in Dead Again, To Die For, and Space Jam. In the 1990s, Knight played supporting roles on two television series on NBC. He played the mailman Newman, Jerry's neighbor and nemesis, in Seinfeld, and Officer Don Orville, Sally's love interest, in 3rd Rock from the Sun. He had earlier appeared in Against the Grain. He also appeared as a regular on two sketch comedy series, The Edge for Fox and Assaulted Nuts for Cinemax and Channel 4 in the United Kingdom.

Knight also appeared on Broadway in productions of Gemini, Mastergate, 'Art' and Sweet Charity with Christina Applegate.

Knight has done voice work for numerous animations, including the black cat Mr. Blik in Catscratch, Igor in Toonsylvania, the dragon Dojo Kanojo Cho in the Kids' WB! animated series Xiaolin Showdown, Emperor Zurg on Buzz Lightyear of Star Command on Toon Disney and Disney Channel; Al McWhiggin, the toy store manager of Al's Toy Barn, in Toy Story 2; Tantor the elephant in Tarzan, Demetrius the shopkeeper in Hercules, and the bug Juju on Tak and the Power of Juju. He made guest appearances on Billy & Mandy's Jacked-Up Halloween as Jack O'Lantern, Dilbert as the Security Guard, and Brandy & Mr. Whiskers as Mr. Cantarious the snail.

Knight appeared on the pilot episode of the American version of Thank God You're Here. He made a second appearance, on the last episode of the first season of the television series. He won the Thank God You're Here blue door award. He played the Punisher's techno sidekick Microchip in Punisher: War Zone. Knight guest starred in The Penguins of Madagascar as Max the Cat, in the episodes "Launchtime" and "Cat's Cradle".

In November 2009, Knight reprised his role as the Seinfeld character Newman, for the seventh season of Curb Your Enthusiasm. He also guest starred on CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Season 10 in the episode "Working Stiffs".

Knight guest starred on a 2010 episode of Fox's drama series Bones, in the first season of the TV Land comedy series Hot in Cleveland (2010), where he became a recurring character for season two, and on an episode of The Whole Truth in the fall of 2010. He played an Internet fixated couch potato in the TV Land sitcom, The Exes. In the summer of 2011, he appeared in the BBC/Starz series Torchwood: Miracle Day as Brian Friedkin.

Knight appeared as Santa in Elf: The Musical in November 2012. He previously appeared on Broadway in Art in 1999. In April 2012, Knight was featured in the romantic comedy, She Wants Me. In February 2014, Knight reprised the character Newman, during one commercial during the Super Bowl, alongside Jerry Seinfeld and Jason Alexander. In December 2017, Knight was featured in an advertisement for KFC depicting Colonel Sanders.

Personal life

Knight married makeup artist Paula Sutor on May 26, 1996, in a ceremony held in fellow Seinfeld cast member Michael Richards's home. They had divorced by December 2003. He married his second wife Clare de Chenu on October 15, 2006; together they have a son, Liam. The family lives in Toluca Lake, Los Angeles, an area where Knight has resided for many years.

Knight was in attendance at the 2012 Democratic National Convention. Ahead of the 2020 United States presidential election, Knight appeared in an advertisement that examined "ethical breaches" of mail workers in the U.S. and the lack of support they received from the government. The advertisement was in support of the Democratic Party and anti-Donald Trump.

Filmography

Film

Year Title Role Notes
1979 The Wanderers Waiter Uncredited
1987 Dirty Dancing Stan
1988 Everybody's All-American Fraternity Pisser
1989 Born on the Fourth of July Official #2 – Democratic Convention
1991 V.I. Warshawski Earl 'Bonehead' Smeissen
1991 Dead Again Pete 'Piccolo' Dugan
1991 JFK Numa Bertel
1992 Basic Instinct John Correli
1993 Jurassic Park Dennis Nedry Nominated—Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor
1995 To Die For Ed Grant
1995 Chameleon Stuart Langston
1996 Space Jam Stan Podolak
1997 Hercules Demetrius Voice
1997 For Richer or Poorer Bob Lachmen
1998 The Brave Little Toaster Goes to Mars Microwave Voice, direct-to-video
1998 Soundman Tim Voice
1999 My Favorite Martian Zoot The Suit Voice, Uncredited
1999 Pros & Cons Wayne
1999 Tarzan Tantor Voice
1999 Toy Story 2 Al McWhiggin Voice
2000 Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins Zurg Voice, direct-to-video
2001 Rat Race Zach Mallozzi
2003 Cheaper by the Dozen Electrician Uncredited cameo
2004 Black Cloud Mr. Tipping
2005 Dinotopia: Quest for the Ruby Sunstone Thudd Voice, direct-to-video
2007 Forfeit Bob
2008 Kung Fu Panda Gang Boss Voice
2008 Scooby-Doo! and the Goblin King The Amazing Krudsky Voice, direct-to-video
2008 Punisher: War Zone Linus Lieberman / Microchip
2012 She Wants Me Walter Baum
2012 Excuse Me for Living Albert
2014 Tom and Jerry: The Lost Dragon Elf Elder Voice, direct-to-video
2016 Kung Fu Panda 3 Big Fun / Hom-Lee Voice
2016 Hail, Caesar! Lurking Extra #1
2018 Blindspotting Patrick
2020 The Very Excellent Mr. Dundee Wayne
2021 12 Mighty Orphans Frank Wynn
2021 Back to the Outback Phil Voice
2022 Darby and the Dead Mel
2023 Urkel Saves Santa: The Movie Mr. Hodges Voice; direct-to-video
2024 The Day the Earth Blew Up: A Looney Tunes Movie Voice

Television

Year Title Role Notes
1982 For Lovers Only Video Game Fanatic TV film
Uncredited
1983 The Day After Man In Hospital TV film
1984 The Burning Bed Juror TV film
Uncredited
1985 Assaulted Nuts Various Main role (seven episodes)
1988 Tattingers Kenny Axelrod 2 episodes
1990 Mathnet Peter Pickwick Episode: "The Case of the Parking Meter Massacre"
1990 Square One TV 3 episodes
1992–1998 Seinfeld Newman Recurring role
Nominated—Q Award for Best Recurring Player (1998)
1992 Double Edge Tommy White TV film
1992–1993 The Edge Various Characters Main role
1992 T Bone N Weasel Roy Kramp TV film
1993 Fallen Angels Leo Cunningham Episode: "Dead End Delia"
1993 Against the Grain 'Froggy' Wilson Episode: "Pilot"
1993–1994 The Second Half Robert Piccolo Main role
1994 Golden Gate Arthur Genopopoulos TV film
1996–2001 3rd Rock from the Sun Don Orville Main role
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series (1998–1999)
1997 Contempt of Court Merill Bushman TV film
1998 Hercules Orthos (ponytail head) Voice, 2 episodes
1998 Toonsylvania Igor Voice, main role
2000 Dilbert Security Guard Voice, episode: "The Security Guard"
2000–2001 Buzz Lightyear of Star Command Zurg Voice, main role
2001 That '70s Show The Angel Episode: "It's a Wonderful Life"
2001 Bleacher Bums Zig TV film
2002 Becker Wally Episode: "Picture Imperfect"
2002 Master Spy: The Robert Hanssen Story Walter Ballou TV film
2003 The Twilight Zone Nick Dark Episode: "How Much Do You Love Your Kid?"
2003–2006 Xiaolin Showdown Dojo Kanojo Cho Voice, main cast
2003 Gary the Rat Gary's Rival Voice, episode: "The Reunion"
2003 The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy Jack O'Lantern Voice, episode: "Billy & Mandy's Jacked-Up Halloween"
2004 I'm with Her Kevin Episode: "Friends in Low Places"
2004 The Drew Carey Show Owen Episode: "Liar Liar House on Fire"
2004 Listen Up Buddy Episode: "Sweet Charity"
2005–2007 Catscratch Mr. Blik / Blik Robot / Chicken Harold / Donkey / Granny Voice, main role
2005 Justice League Unlimited Abnegazar Voice, episode: "The Balance"
2006 CSI: NY Truman Bosch Episode: "Fare Game"
2006 Brandy & Mr. Whiskers Mr. Cantarius Voice, episode: "You've Got Snail"
2006 How I Met Your Mother Lily's Landlord Voice, uncredited, Episode: "How Lily Stole Christmas"
2007 Tak and the Power of Juju Bug Juju Voice, episode: "Our Favorite Juju"
2009–2012 The Penguins of Madagascar Max The Cat Voice, 3 episodes
2009 WordGirl Police Commissioner Watson Voice, episode: "The Wrong Side of the Law"
2009 Woke Up Dead Andrew Batten Main role
2009 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Mr. Terrence Lombard Episode: "Working Stiffs"
2009 Nip/Tuck Don Hoberman Episode: "Don Hoberman"
2009–2011 The Super Hero Squad Show Elihas Starr / Egghead Voice, 3 episodes
2009 Curb Your Enthusiasm Himself Uncredited
Episode: "The Table Read"
2010–2011 Hot in Cleveland Rick Recurring role
2010 The Good Guys Perry Black Episode: "Little Things"
2010 The Whole Truth Judge Mark Hulverson Episode: "Uncanny"
2010 Bones Jimmy Walpert III Episode: "The Babe in the Bar"
2011 Torchwood Brian Friedkin 3 episodes
2011–2012 Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness Jong / Jong's Son Voice, 2 episodes
2011–2015 The Exes Haskell Lutz Main role
2012 Green Lantern: The Animated Series Captain Goray Voice, episode: "Into the Abyss"
2012 Pound Puppies Ralphie / Construction Worker #1 Voice, episode: "Good Dog, McLeish!"
2013 Regular Show Guardian of The Friend Zone / God of Street Performing Voice, 2 episodes
2014 Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee Newman Episode: "The Over-Cheer"
2014 Unforgettable Dr. Theodore Blumer Episode: "East of Islip"
2015 Sirens Richard Episode: "Sub-Primal Fears"
2015 TripTank Greg / Customer Voice, 2 episodes
2015 Doc McStuffins Viewy Stewie Voice, episode: "Fully Focused"
2016 Home: Adventures with Tip & Oh Boovius Voice, episode: "The Gray Matter"
2016 StartUp Benny Blush 3 episodes
2017 Still the King Dan Episode: "Still Still the King"
2017 Narcos Alan Starkman 2 episodes
2017 The Young and the Restless Irv 2 episodes
2017 Stretch Armstrong and the Flex Fighters Brick Voice, 2 episodes
2018 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Grigor Episode: "Service"
2018 Legend of the Three Caballeros Baron Von Sheldgoose / Shieldgoose Ancestors Voice, main role
2018 The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair Benjamin Roth Main role
2019–20 Harley Quinn Oswald Cobblepot / Penguin Voice, 2 episodes
2019 Robot Chicken Nutsy Goldberg Voice, episode: "Robot Chicken's Santa's Dead (Spoiler Alert) Holiday Murder Thing Special"
2020 Infinity Train Marcel Voice, episode: "The Map Car"
2021 Amphibia Ned Voice, episode: "Thai Feud"
2023 Monster High Ralph Voice, episode: "Moonlit Fieldtrip/A Little Boost"
2023 Bookie Cowboy 2 episodes
2024 Them Lieutenant Schiff 5 episodes
TBA Among Us Lime Voice

Video games

Year Title Role Notes
1999 Toy Story 2 Al McWhiggin Voice
2007 Catscratch Mr. Blik Voice
2007 Nicktoons: Attack of the Toybots Mr. Blik Voice, (Nintendo DS version only)
2011 Jurassic Park: The Game Dennis Nedry Voice, Uncredited
2011 The Penguins of Madagascar: Dr. Blowhole Returns – Again! Max Voice
2019 Jurassic Park (Pinball) Dennis Nedry Voice

Theatre

Year Title Role Notes
1977–1981 Gemini Herschel Weinberger Broadway
1989 Mastergate Steward Butler, Senator Knight, Representative Byers Broadway
1999 Art Yvan Broadway
2005 Sweet Charity Herman Broadway
2006 Measure for Pleasure Sir Peter Lustforth
2007 The Front Page Sheriff Hartman
2008 The Odd Couple Murray
2012–2013 Elf Santa Claus Broadway

Awards and nominations

Awards and nominations
Year Award Category Title Result
1994 Saturn Award Best Supporting Actor Jurassic Park Nominated
1998 OFTA Television Award Best Guest Actor in a Comedy Series Seinfeld Nominated
Q Awards Best Recurring Player Nominated
Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series 3rd Rock from the Sun Nominated
1999 Nominated
Stinker Award Most Botched Comic Relief My Favorite Martian Nominated

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Wayne Knight para niños

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