Thursday, June 3, 2010

Henry "The Fonz" Winkler at Kewadin

We really wanted to make our first summer fest special - so in addition to the amazing entertainment (Bret Michaels, Vince Neil, 3 Doors Down & Meat Loaf) we sprinkled in some special apperances! On Saturday July 24, Henry "The Fonz" Winkler will be on site to meet and mingle with guests at the festival from 1 - 3 p.m.

Henry Winkler knows a thing or two about Hollywood, having spent nearly three decades enjoying success in the business. Winkler’s portrayal of “The Fonz” for 10 seasons on Happy Days (1974-84) made him one of the most recognized actors in the world. He won two consecutive Golden Globe Awards for Best Actor in a Comedy Series (1976 and 1977), and three Emmy nominations in the same category. He was also honored with a “star” on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

In 2003, he began writing a series of children’s novels entitled, “Hank Zipzer: The World’s Most Amazing Under-Achiever.” The books are inspired by Winkler’s struggle throughout his education due to his learning challenges and have appeared on several Best Seller lists including The New York Times and The Los Angeles Times, among others.

Winkler has been busy producing and acting while continuing work on the Hank Zipzer series. He served as Executive Producer for Hollywood Squares,MacGyver, Dead Man’s Gun, Sightings, and the Disney series So Weird, starring Mackenzie Phillips, which was named one of the Top 10 New Children’s Programs by TV Guide two years in a row. Under JMZ Productions (named after his children) Winkler created numerous projects geared for a young audience, including Happily Ever After, Two Daddies to Love Me, Run, Don’t Walk; and All the Kids Do It, the latter directed by Winkler and which won the daytime Emmy for Best Children’s Program that year.

Winkler’s film and television credits include The Water Boy, Scream,Down To You, Nightshift, Holes, Fox’s highly acclaimed series Arrested Development; NBC’s Third Watch, NBC’s Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and ABC’s The Practice for which he received an Emmy nomination for outstanding actor. His is also the voice of Norville the Bird on the Award Winning animated children’s series Clifford: The Puppy Years. In 2001, Winkler starred on Broadway in Neil Simon’s The Dinner Party, marking his return to the Broadway stage after an absence of 30 years and winning the cast the Outer Critics Circle Special Achievement Award for Best Ensemble.

As Winkler became increasingly visible, he found that he could use his position to help others, particularly children. The list of groups with which he is associated includes honorary chairman of United Friends of the Children; founding member of the Children’s Action Network; co-host of the annual Cerebral Palsy Telethon; the first national honorary chairman of the Epilepsy Foundation of America; National Chairman of the annual Toys for Tots campaign; The National Committee for arts for the handicapped; the Special Olympics; and the Los Angeles Music Center’s Very Special Arts Festival for Children .

While Winkler’s personal commitment to helping others is reward enough, his efforts have been recognized by a variety of prestigious organizations including B’nai B’rith (“Champion of Youth,”) United Nations (“Peace Prize,”) and the French Government (“Chevallier de l’Ordre des Artes et Lettres.”) Winkler and his wife, Stacey, have been presented with Women in Film’s Norma Zarky Humanitarian Award for their tireless efforts and devotion to the “improvement of the human condition,” as well as the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Support Group Service’s Helping Hand Award in recognition for all they have done for the children of Los Angeles.

Winkler was born in New York City, the son of Ilse and Harry Winkler. Winkler made his acting debut as Billy Budd in the eighth grade and played Wintergreen in “Of Thee I Sing” in the eleventh grade. He received his B.A. from Emerson College in Boston (which, in 1978, presented him with a Doctorate of Humane Letters,) and an M.A from Yale School of Drama. Winkler made his motion picture debut in “The Lords of Flatbush.” That was followed by his first starring role on Broadway -- 42 Seconds from Broadway -- which ran only slightly longer than 42 seconds (from 8:00-11:00 p.m.) The very next week he flew to Cincinnati to star in Arthur Miller’s, “Incident at Vichy.” His early television credits include The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Bob Newhart Show,The Paul Sand Show and Rhoda. He was cast as “The Fonz” on ABC-TV’s Happy Days on his birthday in 1973.

It should come as no surprise that Henry Winkler places great value on family. He currently lives in Los Angeles with his wife Stacey. They have three children; Jed, Zoƫ and Max, and two dogs, Charlotte and Linus

Don't miss your chance to see The Fonz on Saturday July 24 at Kewadin's Summer Festival! Your festival ticket is not only good for the nightly out of this world concert and fireworks display - it's for the activities happening all day long including the chance to meet The Fonz!

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