- Mel Brooks is a famous comedian and filmmaker whose credits include 1974’s ‘Blazing Saddles’ and ‘Young Frankenstein’ and 1987’s ‘Spaceballs’
- The Brooklyn native is one of 18 entertainers to win the EGOT
- He shares four children with his two former wives
Mel Brooks is showing no signs of slowing down after 70 years in Tinseltown, as he will be accepting an honorary Oscar at the 14th Governors Awards in November 2023. “First of all, I am very happy to still be alive!” the 97-year-old EGOT winner hilariously said of the distinction, per People. “But secondly, it is so nice to be recognized by my peers in The Academy over 50 years after my last Oscar,” he added, referencing his 1969 win for Best Original Screenplay for The Producers. “A long time ago I was given a choice: I had an offer to be working as an apprentice accountant or as a coffee runner in show business. I’m still glad I chose the coffee.”
Born Melvin James Kaminsky on June 28th, 1926 in Brooklyn, New York, the gifted comedy writer got his start writing for the TV show The Admiral Broadway Revue in 1949, A year later, he wrote for Your Show of Shows. Eventually, the success from these programs brought Mel to Get Smart, a show he co-created with Buck Henry that parodied James Bond-esque spy-thrillers.
After turning to the big screen with The Producers, Mel followed up with Blazing Saddles, which poked at the western genre, and Young Frankenstein, a spoof of the story of popular horror franchise, Frankenstein. He would continue his film career into his old age, eventually directing and starring in Space Balls, Robin Hood: Men in Tights, and his last directorial credit, Dracula: Dead and Loving It. Regarded as one of the greatest comedic writers of all time, he was awarded the highest honors from the American Film Institute: the AFI Life Achievement Award in 2013.
Mel was just as successful in his personal life as well. He had three children with his first wife Florence Baum: Stephanie, Nicky, and Eddie. Not much is known about their marriage and they divorced in 1962. Two years later, Mel would meet the love of his life on the set of The Perry Como Variety Show. Anne Bancroft, also known as the seductress Mrs. Robinson in The Graduate, would eventually marry Mel in 1964. The two would stay together until her death in 2005, having one child together, Max Brooks.
As Mel prepares to accept his second Oscar and continues to keep his audience in stitches, learn more about his big brood, below.
On Feb. 21, 1956, Stephanie Brooks was welcomed as the first child of Mel and Florence. Quickly succumbing to the Hollywood bug, Stephanie found success in a role in Human Traffic in 1999. She also worked as a production assistant on Tootsie and I, the Jury and as a casting assistant for Speed. She does not appear to have a social media account at this time.
In 1975, Mel told The New York Times that Eddie should do “film or theater,” Nicky could be a “doctor or filmmaker” and Stephanie should try something a little different. “My daughter Stephanie should write — she’s at Brandeis,” Mel told the newspaper. “Papers about Henry James, that kind. Very smart, brilliant.”
Nicholas “Nicky” Brooks was born on Dec. 13, 1957, in N.Y.C. Like his brother Eddie, Nicky has a few acting credits to his name, in addition to a writer/director credit for his film Sam, per his IMDB.He has also produced films, including Beautiful and Confession on Pleasant Street. Nicky does not appear to have a social meeting account at this time.
Edward “Eddie” Brooks was born on May 24, 1959, in N.Y.C. to Mel and Florence. He waded in the Hollywood child actor pool for a hot second, as his two cinematic roles of note were as Sheldon Hocheiser in “Where’s Poppa?” in 1970 and the New Son in “Armchair Theatre” in 1961, per his IMDB. Later in life, Eddie directed the short films The Green Room and Of the Woods: Prologue. He and his wife Sarah have a daughter, Samantha Brooks.
The only child of Mel and Anne, who died in 2005, Maximillian “Max” Michael Brooks was born on May 22, 1972, in N.Y.C. Max graduated with a bachelor’s degree in history from Pitzer College and a master’s degree in film from American University, according to the Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity.
Max would go on to follow in his parents’ Hollywood footsteps, largely in voice work with a few live-action appearances in shows like Melrose Place, 7th Heaven and Roseanne. Max was also a writer on Saturday Night Live from 2001 to 2003, per People. His biggest success, however, came as a New York Times best selling author, which hit a high note with his post-apocalyptic novel, World War Z, which became a vehicle for Brad Pitt.
Although Max does not appear to have a social media account, he did go viral in 2020 when making a Covid safety video with his dad Mel. “Hi, I’m Max Brooks, I’m 47 years old. This is my dad, Mel Brooks, he’s 93,” Max said, standing outside as Brooks stood behind a glass door. “If I get the coronavirus, I’ll probably be okay. But if I give it to him, he could give it to Carl Reiner, who could give it to Dick Van Dyke, and before I know it, I’ve wiped out a whole generation of comedic legends. When it comes to coronavirus, I have to think about who I can infect. And so should you.” Watch above.