Danny De Vito Daniel Michael DeVito (born November 17, 1944) is an American actor, director, and Oscar nominated producer known for being very short (he is 5 ft, or 152 cm).
DeVito was born in Neptune, New Jersey to Italian-American Catholic parents. He boarded at Oratory Preparatory School, in Summit, New Jersey, graduating in 1961. DeVito became famous in the United States for his portrayal of "Louie De Palma" on the popular ABC and NBC TV series, Taxi (1978-1983). Because this sitcom was not widely distributed abroad, he is known primarily for his movie work in most other countries.
He married actress Rhea Perlman on January 28, 1982. The couple met while both were working on Taxi. They have three children, Lucy Chet DeVito (born March 1983), Grace Fan DeVito (born March 1985) and Jacob Daniel DeVito (born October 1987).
He co-starred with Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner in the highly successful 1984 action adventure film, Romancing the Stone and reprised his role with them in the 1985 sequel, The Jewel of the Nile. In 1987, DeVito directed and starred with Billy Crystal in Throw Momma from the Train, then two years later reunited with Douglas and Turner to direct and star with them in the dark comedy, The War of the Roses. In 1988 he starred with Arnold Schwarzenegger in the comedy hit Twins, which took over $200 million world-wide at the box office. In 1992, he portrayed the villain The Penguin in Tim Burton's Batman Returns at the suggestion of his friend Jack Nicholson - who had achieved astounding success with his portrayal of the Joker in 1989's Batman.
DeVito has voiced the animated character Herb Powell on two episodes of The Simpsons. He has also been the voice of Philoctetes (Phil) in the 1997 Disney animated movie Hercules.
Although he came to be thought of as a predictable light-comedy actor, DeVito fought against this, bringing highly respected performances in such movies as Hoffa (1992) which he directed and co-starred in alongside Jack Nicholson as the title character, L.A. Confidential as a nosy reporter (1997), The Big Kahuna as a compassionate salesman (1999) and Heist (2001), a gangster nemesis to Gene Hackman, who undergoes one of the crime genre's best death scenes.
In 1999, Devito produced and co-starred in Man On The Moon, a movie about the unusual life of his former Taxi co-star, Andy Kaufman.
In addition to acting, DeVito has become a major film and television producer. Through his production company, Jersey Films, he has produced many movies, including Pulp Fiction, Get Shorty, Erin Brockovich, and Garden State. Devito has also produced the Comedy Central series Reno 911!.
He now lives in Manalapan, New Jersey.