Peter Falk

Peter Falk

Highest Rated: 98% The Player (1992)

Lowest Rated: 5% Vibes (1988)

Birthday: Sep 16, 1927

Birthplace: New York City, New York, USA

Best known as the rumpled television detective Columbo, character actor Peter Falk also enjoyed a successful film career, often in association with the groundbreaking independent filmmaker John Cassavetes. Born September 16, 1927, in New York City, Falk lost an eye at the age of three, resulting in the odd, squinting gaze which later became his trademark. He initially pursued a career in public administration, serving as an efficiency expert with the Connecticut Budget Bureau, but in the early '50s, boredom with his work sparked an interest in acting. By 1955, Falk had turned professional, and an appearance in a New York production of The Iceman Cometh earned him much attention. He soon graduated to Broadway and in 1958 made his feature debut in the Nicholas Ray/Budd Schulberg drama Wind Across the Everglades.A diminutive, stocky, and unkempt presence, Falk's early screen roles often portrayed him as a blue-collar type or as a thug; it was as the latter in 1960's Murder Inc. that he earned a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination, a major career boost. He was nominated in the same category the following year as well, this time as a sarcastic bodyguard in Frank Capra's Pocketful of Miracles. In 1962, Falk won an Emmy for his work in the television film The Price of Tomatoes, a presentation of the Dick Powell Theater series. The steady stream of accolades made him a hot property, and he next starred in the 1962 feature Pressure Point. A cameo in Stanley Kramer's 1963 smash It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World preceded Falk's appearance in the Rat Pack outing Robin and the Seven Hoods, but the film stardom many predicted for him always seemed just out of reach, despite lead roles in 1965's The Great Race and 1967's Luv.In 1968, Falk first assumed the role of Columbo, the disheveled police lieutenant whose seemingly slow and inept investigative manner masked a steel-trap mind; debuting in the TV movie Prescription: Murder, the character was an immediate hit, and after a second telefilm, Ransom for a Dead Man, a regular Columbo series premiered as part of the revolving NBC Mystery Movie anthology in the fall of 1971, running for seven years and earning Falk a second Emmy in the process. In the meantime, he also continued his film career, most notably with Cassavetes; in 1970, Falk starred in the director's Husbands, and in 1974 they reunited for the brilliant A Woman Under the Influence. In between the two pictures, Falk also returned to Broadway, where he won a Tony award for his performance in the 1972 Neil Simon comedy The Prisoner of Second Avenue. In 1976, Cassavetes joined him in front of the camera to co-star in Elaine May's Mikey and Nicky, and directed him again in 1977's Opening Night.After Columbo ceased production in 1978, Falk starred in the Simon-penned mystery spoof The Cheap Detective, followed by the William Friedkin caper comedy The Brink's Job (1978). After 1979's The In-Laws, he starred two years later in ...All the Marbles, but was then virtually absent from the screen for the next half decade. Cassavetes' 1986 effort Big Trouble brought Falk back to the screen (albeit on a poor note; Cassavetes later practically disowned the embarrassing film) and and in 1987 he starred in Happy New Year along with the Rob Reiner cult favorite The Princess Bride. An appearance as himself in Wim Wenders' masterful Wings of Desire in 1988 preceded his 1989 resumption of the Columbo character for another regular series; the program was to remain Falk's focus well into the next decade, with only a handful of film appearances in pictures including 1990's Tune in Tomorrow and a cameo in Robert Altman's The Player. After the cancellation of Columbo, he next turned up in Wenders' Desire sequel Far Away, So Close before starring in the 1995 comedy Roommates. Falk continued to work in both film and television for the next decade and a half, starring in various Columbo specials through 2003, appearing with Woody Allen in the made-for-TV The S


Highest Rated Movies



No Score Yet Char-ac-ter Actor 2012
No Score Yet American Cowslip Father Randolph 2009
No Score Yet Character Actor 2009
28% Next Irv $18M 2007
No Score Yet Three Days to Vegas Gus Fitzgerald 2007
40% Three Days of Rain Waldo 2005
45% The Thing About My Folks Sam Kleinman $0.8M 2005
43% Checking Out Morris Applebaum 2005
No Score Yet When Angels Come to Town Max 2004
36% Shark Tale Don Feinberg $160.8M 2004
No Score Yet Finding John Christmas Max 2003
No Score Yet Wilder Days James `Pop Up' Morse 2003
57% Enemies of Laughter Paul's Father 2003
No Score Yet Columbo: Columbo Likes the Nightlife Lt. Columbo Executive Producer 2003
48% Undisputed Mendy Ripstein 2002
No Score Yet The Lost World Rev. Theo Kerr 2001
No Score Yet A Town Without Christmas Max 2001
7% Corky Romano Pops Romano 2001
71% Made Max $3.7M 2001
83% Lakeboat Pierman 2000
No Score Yet A Storm in Summer Abel Shaddick 2000
No Score Yet Money Kings Vinnie 1998
No Score Yet Columbo: Ashes to Ashes Actor 1998
No Score Yet Vig Actor 1998
No Score Yet Pronto Harry Arno 1997
No Score Yet The Sunshine Boys Willie Clark 1997
29% Roommates Rocky Holeczek 1995
58% Faraway, So Close! (In weiter Ferne, so nah!) Himself 1993
No Score Yet Columbo Actor 1993
98% The Player Himself 1992
No Score Yet Columbo: No Time to Die Lt. Columbo 1992
No Score Yet Columbo Lt. Columbo 1991
No Score Yet Caution: Murder Can Be Hazardous to Your Health Lt. Columbo 1991
50% Tune in Tomorrow... (Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter) Pedro Carmichael 1990
No Score Yet In The Spirit Roger Flan 1990
15% Cookie Dominick Capisco 1989
No Score Yet Columbo: Murder, A Self-Portrait Lt. Columbo 1989
5% Vibes Harry Buscafusco 1988
97% The Princess Bride Grandpa 1987
No Score Yet Happy New Year Nick 1987
98% Wings of Desire Himself 1987
17% Big Trouble Steve Rickey 1986
No Score Yet I'm Almost Not Crazy: John Cassavetes Actor 1984
No Score Yet ... All the Marbles Harry 1981
76% The Great Muppet Caper Tramp 1981
87% The In-Laws Vincent J. Ricardo 1979
75% The Brink's Job Tony Pino 1978
47% The Cheap Detective Lou Peckinpaugh 1978
No Score Yet Scared Straight! Host 1978
96% Opening Night Himself 1977
No Score Yet Columbo: The Bye-Bye Sky High I.Q. Murder Case Actor 1977
84% Mikey and Nicky Mikey 1976
63% Murder by Death Sam Diamond 1976
No Score Yet Griffin and Phoenix: A Love Story ''Geoffrey Griffin'' 1976
93% A Woman Under the Influence Nick Longhetti 1975
No Score Yet Columbo: Double Shock Actor 1973
No Score Yet Columbo Lt. Columbo 1973
No Score Yet Columbo: Requiem for a Falling Star Actor 1973
No Score Yet Columbo: Dagger of the Mind Actor 1972
No Score Yet Columbo: The Most Crucial Game Actor 1972
No Score Yet Columbo: The Greenhouse Jungle Actor 1972
No Score Yet Columbo: Étude in Black Actor Director 1972
No Score Yet Columbo: Blueprint for Murder Director Actor 1972
No Score Yet Columbo: Short Fuse Actor 1972
No Score Yet Columbo: Lady in Waiting Actor 1971
No Score Yet Suitable for Framing Actor 1971
No Score Yet Columbo: Dead Weight Actor 1971
No Score Yet Columbo: Death Lends a Hand Actor 1971
No Score Yet Columbo: Murder by the Book Actor 1971
No Score Yet Ransom for a Dead Man Actor 1971
67% Husbands Archie Black 1970
No Score Yet Machine Gun McCain Charlie Adamo 1970
38% Castle Keep Sgt. Orlando Rossi 1969
67% Anzio (Lo sbarco di Anzio) Corporal Jack Rabinoff 1968
No Score Yet Luv Milt Manville 1967
No Score Yet Columbo: Prescription Murder Actor 1967
No Score Yet Penelope Lieutenant Horatio Bixbee 1966
74% The Great Race Max 1965
No Score Yet Italiani brava gente (Attack and Retreat) Medic Captain 1965
44% Robin and the Seven Hoods Guy Gisborne 1964
69% It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World Cab Driver 1963
60% The Balcony Police Chief 1963
No Score Yet Pressure Point Young psychiatrist 1962
56% Pocketful of Miracles Joy Boy 1961
No Score Yet The Secret of the Purple Reef Tom Weber 1960
No Score Yet Murder, Inc. Abe Kid Twist Reles 1960
No Score Yet Pretty Boy Floyd Shorty Walters 1960
No Score Yet The Bloody Brood Nico 1959
No Score Yet Wind Across the Everglades Writer 1958


No Score Yet The Ellen DeGeneres Show
Guest 2005
No Score Yet Columbo
Director Screenwriter Columbo Lieutenant Inspector Columbo Lt. Columbo Executive Producer 2003
100% The Larry Sanders Show
No Score Yet Alfred Hitchcock Presents
Meyer Fine 1961
80% The Twilight Zone
Ramos Clemente 1961


Sam Diamond says: Stop that. Stop that, I said.

Dick Charleston says: What is it, Diamond?

Sam Diamond says: The nurse is giving my palm the finger, the dirty old broad.

Max says: Here comes the marines!

Max says: Here come the Marines!

Max says: [talking to Fate] Would you like me to feed you?

Max says: Would you like me to feed you?

Max says: Rise and shine, Professor.

Prof. Fate says: You rise! You shine!

Vince Ricardo says: Shell! SERPENTINE Shell!

Iris says: I hate your guts Harry, I hate everything about you. I can't stand the sight of you any more. You're fired so get the hell out. Get the hell out of my life. You're a lousy lover, you're a lousy manager, you're a lousy human being!

Harry says: Now that really hurts. I am not a lousy manager.

Harry says: Lousy no good son of a bitch!

Iris says: You quoting Roger and Odets again? Who's a lousy no good son of a bitch?

Harry says: Never mind. What can you expect from a a day that starts with getting up in the morning?

Harry says: They're the hottest tag team in the state, they're like rock stars, and beautiful. Face facts we both know most lady wrestlers are dogs. So now they expect a pekingese and out come Marilyn Monroe, they go wild.

Iris says: You're playing around with the wrong guy.

Molly says: Come on Harry, don't do it. Harry don't you dare.

Iris says: You're not... (Harry smashes Eddies Mecedes up with a baseball bat.

Iris says: You're not... [Harry smashes Eddies Mecedes up with a baseball bat]

Molly says: What was that all about?

Harry says: I was thinking about buying a Mercedes, but first I had to give it a stress test.

Molly says: Stress test?

Harry says: Didn't pass.

Sam Diamond says: You're good, Charleston. You're not my kind of cop, but you're smart and you smell good.

Sam Diamond says: I owe Miss Skeffington here two years and three months back pay.

Tess Skeffington says: I don't care about the money, Sam.

Sam Diamond says: Neither do I.

Tess Skeffington says: First kiss me, Sam.

Sam Diamond says: I don't kiss.

Tess Skeffington says: Just this once.

Sam Diamond says: I don't like kissing. Now leave me alone.

Sam Diamond says: The last time I trusted a dame was in Paris in 1940. She said she was going out to get a bottle of wine. Two hours later, the Germans marched into France.

Prof. Fate says: What's next?

Max says: Car number five, the engine falls out!

Prof. Fate says: Car number five! Ha ha ha ha! [beat] Er, Max... *we're* number five.

Harry Buscafusco says: "Maybe she bounced, like, out of the hotel. Women are soft."

Harry Buscafusco says: Maybe she bounced, like, out of the hotel. Women are soft.

Sam Diamond says: That can only mean one thing...and I don't know what it is.

Tess Skeffington says: ...He was my uncle. He was very good to me; he used to take me to the circus and give me candy. We stopped going when I was...about twenty-six

Tess Skeffington says: He was my uncle. He was very good to me, he used to take me to the circus and give me candy. We stopped going when I was...about twenty-six.

Sam Diamond says: Twenty-six? What the hell kind of circus was it?

The Grandfather says: Okay.... Alright....Okay....Alright

The Grandfather says: Okay... Alright... Okay... Alright.

Tess Skeffington says: Twain picked up Sam in a gay bar.

Sam Diamond says: I was working on a case! Working.

Tess Skeffington says: Every night for six months?

The Grandfather says: As you wish.

Max says: Who's Texas JACK?!