James Coco

Toy salesman, Actor, Dishwasher
Rotund, comic supporting actor who after establishing himself as an Off-Broadway and Broadway star began to be cast in TV and film, yet never found "the perfect role" to catapult him into true star status. Coco often ... Read more »
Born: 03/21/1930 in Bronx, New York, USA

Filmography

Actor (38)

That's Adequate 1989 (Movie)

Max Roebling (Actor)

Hunk 1987 (Movie)

Dr D (Actor)

The Chair 1987 (Movie)

Dr Harold Woodhouse Langer (Actor)

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade 1985 - 1986 (TV Show)

Actor

Alice 1976 - 1985 (TV Show)

Actor

Day-to-Day Affairs 1984 - 1985 (TV Show)

Actor

Murder, She Wrote 1984 - 1985 (Tv Show)

Actor

Mr. Success 1983 - 1984 (TV Show)

Actor

The Bradbury Trilogy 1984 (Movie)

John Braling (Actor)

The Muppets Take Manhattan 1984 (Movie)

(cameo appearance) (Actor)

Lily For President 1981 - 1982 (TV Show)

Actor

Only When I Laugh 1981 (Movie)

Jimmy Perino (Actor)

Raquel 1980 - 1981 (TV Show)

Actor

The Diary of Anne Frank 1980 - 1981 (TV Show)

Actor

The French Atlantic Affair 1979 - 1980 (TV Show)

Actor

Wholly Moses! 1980 (Movie)

Hyssop (Actor)

Scavenger Hunt 1979 (Movie)

Henri (Actor)

Bye Bye Monkey 1978 (Movie)

Flaxman (Actor)

The Cheap Detective 1978 (Movie)

Marcel (Actor)

Charleston 1977 (Movie)

Texan (Actor)

That Was the Year That Was 1976 - 1977 (TV Show)

Actor

The Dumplings 1975 - 1976 (TV Show)

Actor

Murder By Death 1975 (Movie)

Milo Perrier (Actor)

Calucci's Department 1973 - 1974 (TV Show)

Actor

The Wild Party 1974 (Movie)

Jolly Grimm (Actor)

The Trouble With People 1972 - 1973 (TV Show)

Actor

Man of La Mancha 1972 (Movie)

Sancho Panza (Actor)

Such Good Friends 1971 (Movie)

Dr Spector (Actor)

A New Leaf 1970 (Movie)

Uncle Harry (Actor)

Tell Me That You Love Me, Junie Moon 1970 (Movie)

Mario (Actor)

The End of the Road 1970 (Movie)

School Man (Actor)

The Strawberry Statement 1970 (Movie)

Grocer (Actor)

Generation 1969 (Movie)

Mr Blatto (Actor)

Ensign Pulver 1964 (Movie)

Skouras (Actor)

The Booth (TV Show)

Actor

The Littlest Angel (TV Show)

Actor

The Stepford Children (TV Show)

Actor

There Must Be a Pony (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

Rotund, comic supporting actor who after establishing himself as an Off-Broadway and Broadway star began to be cast in TV and film, yet never found "the perfect role" to catapult him into true star status. Coco often came off as fey and gluttonous in his TV and film portrayals, yet he was one of famed acting teacher Uta Hagen's star pupils and worshipped her in kind. He made an impact almost immediately after establishing himself -- after years of menial jobs -- on stage in "The Moon in the Yellow River" and did play after play until Neil Simon created the role of Barney Cashman specifically for Coco on "Last of the Red Hot Lovers" on Broadway, for which Coco received a Tony nomination. Coco began to get film roles after that and subsequently appeared less frequently on stage. He was in support of Liza Minnelli in "Tell Me What You Want, Junie Moon" in 1970, and Sancho Panza in the unsuccessful film adaptation of "Man of La Mancha" in 1972. His two best film roles came thanks to Neil Simon (again). In "Murder By Death" (1978) he was a Hercule Poirot take-off, and in "Only When I Laugh" he gave a sensitive and endearing performance as Jimmy Perino, friend to Marsha Mason but enabling her dependencies. He was Oscar-nominated for the latter. He was also known to the public for two TV series that won the critics but failed in the ratings: "Calucci's Department," in which he was the wisecracking head of an unemployment office, and "The Dumplings," in which he was the male half of a married couple who loved each other, didn't mind being chubby, and ran a lunch counter in an office building. Just before he died, Coco did two episodes of "Who's the Boss?" as Tony's ne'er-do-well father-in-law. Coco, who was known for his girth, often demonstrated recipes on talk shows and wrote a diet book.

Relationships

Feliche Coco

Father

Ida Detestes Coco

Mother

EDUCATION

Herbert Berghof Studio

New York , New York
trained with Uta Hagen

Milestones

1983

Guest-starred on "St. Elsewhere"

1981

Jimmy Perino in "Only When I Laugh"

1976

Series star, "The Dumplings"

1974

Series star, "Calucci's Department"

1972

Sancho Panza in film version, "Man of La Mancha"

1968

Barney in "Last of the Red Hot Lovers" on Broadway

1964

Film acting debut, "Ensign Pulver"

1957

New York stage debut, "Hotel Paradiso"

Stage debut, "Old King Cole" at Clare Tree Majors Theatre

Had recurring role on the ABC sitcom "Who's the Boss?" as Tony's father-in-law

Bonus Trivia

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Coco estimated that he had lost and regained hundreds and hundreds of pounds during his lifetime.

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