Jeffrey Garlin (born June 5, 1962) is an American stand-up comedian and actor. He is best known for playing Murray Goldberg, patriarch of the eponymous family in the ABC sitcom The Goldbergs, and Jeff Greene on the HBO sitcom Curb Your Enthusiasm. He also played Marvin on Mad About You and Mort Meyers on Arrested Development for Fox and Netflix.
When Garlin was in sixth grade, his father sold his supply business and the family relocated to South Florida. He graduated from Nova High School in Davie, Florida, in 1980. He attended Broward Community College, followed by an aborted stint studying film at the University of Miami, where he first began to perform stand-up comedy.
In 1984, aged 22, Garlin moved back to Chicago to pursue a stand-up comedy career. He performed with the comedy troupe The Second City. He worked in the box office with Stephen Colbert.
Nine years after making an uncredited début as Gut Gut in Spring Break (1983), Garlin earned his first film credit in 1992, in Dolly Parton's comedy Straight Talk. He had a small role in RoboCop 3 as "Donut Jerk" after a member of the casting crew witnessed Garlin eating a doughnut while leaving Krispy Kreme with an additional two dozen doughnuts. He also had a cameo appearance in Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me in 1999.
Garlin married Marla Beth Cahan on July 24, 1994. The couple have two sons, James (b. 1996) and Duke (b. 2000). In September 2018, the couple announced their intention to divorce after 24 years of marriage. In March 2020, Garlin stated that he and Cahan were at the end of their divorce proceedings.
In February 2000, before filming began on Curb Your Enthusiasm, he had a stroke at the age of 37. During the early episodes of Season One, he had noticeably slurred speech that later improved. In addition to epilepsy and attention deficit disorder, he also has type II diabetes, which he controls with diet and exercise. Garlin has written about his problems with food and has discussed his weight problems publicly. In an October 2011 interview, Garlin said: "I think people look at fat people as having a lack of willpower when willpower has nothing to do with it. I didn’t change my life until I approached everything like an addict. I haven’t had sweets in almost three years because I know if I have one cookie, just like if an alcoholic has his first drink, I’m off to the races and I’m back eating sugar again."
Other cameo appearances include Run Ronnie Run!, After the Sunset, Fat Albert, and Sleepover. He appeared in Steven Soderbergh's Full Frontal (2002) and with Eddie Murphy in Daddy Day Care (2003). In 2005, he had a small role in Fun with Dick and Jane.
In 2006, Garlin directed This Filthy World, a one-man show performed by director John Waters. He was a voice actor in WALL-E, an animated film by Pixar that was released June 27, 2008, as B. McCrea, the Captain of the Axiom spaceship. Garlin executive produced the documentary Finding Vivian Maier (2013).
His feature directorial debut, I Want Someone to Eat Cheese With (which he also wrote), premiered to favorable reviews at the 2006 Tribeca Film Festival. It opened in September 2007. The film co-starred Sarah Silverman and Bonnie Hunt.
In 2008, Garlin appeared in The Rocker as Stan, and also played Ed Lawson in Strange Wilderness. He lent his voice to the Disney/Pixar films Toy Story 3 and Toy Story 4, as Buttercup. He appeared as Sid, alongside Jennifer Aniston and Gerard Butler, in the 2010 comedy action film The Bounty Hunter. He played Ed Burch in Laggies, released in 2014.
While living in Wrigleyville, Chicago during the 1980s, Garlin was briefly roommates with Conan O'Brien, who was then a comedy writer. He remains close to O'Brien, and after O'Brien was removed as host of The Tonight Show in 2010 so that Jay Leno could return, Garlin stated that he would not be a guest on the show again.
On February 23, 2010, Garlin released a book, My Footprint: Carrying the Weight of the World, a memoir which documents his journey to lessen both his physical and carbon footprint.
In 2013, Garlin signed onto the ABC sitcom The Goldbergs, which premiered September 24, 2013. He would play Murray Goldberg, the father of the title family. However, in December 2021, as shooting neared completion for the show's ninth season, Garlin exited the series, following misconduct allegations and investigations by the show's human resources department, initially reported in November 2019. For the remainder of the season, Garlin's character continued to appear on the show, portrayed via the use of outtakes, a stand-in, and CGI.
In July 2013, Garlin directed his second film, Dealin' with Idiots, which was inspired by his experiences with his two sons in Little League. The entire movie was improvised.
On the comedy podcast network Earwolf Garlin hosted a show, called By the Way, In Conversation with Jeff Garlin, which consisted of unscripted talks rather than formal interviews. The debut episode featured Garlin's Curb Your Enthusiasm co-star Larry David. The twice monthly installments were recorded in front of a live audience at Largo at the Coronet in Los Angeles. The last episode of the podcast was released in February 2015.
In March 2018, Garlin was one of the actors who voiced the audiobook A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo.
In October 2019, Garlin revealed he would have a role in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, the final installment of the Star Wars saga, which was released on December 20, 2019. He played Junn Gobint.
In August 2020, Garlin was a guest DJ on SiriusXM's Tom Petty Radio.
Garlin announced on September 22, 2022 that he has been struggling with bipolar disorder, with the following caption "Bipolar is a m*****f*****. Sometimes it’s just too much to deal with. I’m doing the best I can. This the first time that I’ve opened up about this."