Seinfeld Cast Then And Now

By Aaron Love 1 year ago

Jerry Seinfeld (Jerry Seinfeld) Then

Image Source: CinemaBlend
Jerry Seinfeld, played by himself, was the titular character of the show. Although he can go off the rails himself (on occasion) he is usually the voice of reason; he's very grounded. He always makes sarcastic comments towards his friends and is eternally optimistic when it comes to his working life and also romantically (despite superficial reasons always ending his relationships!).

Jerry Seinfeld (Jerry Seinfeld) Now

Image Source: Page Six
Seinfeld played the fictionalized version of himself for 9 years between '89 and '98 becoming known worldwide. In 2007 Seinfeld produced and co-wrote the kids animated film Bee Movie, where he also voiced the main character Barry B. Benson. He also created the web series Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, and most recently appeared as himself for an episode of Huge in France in 2019.

Jason Alexander (George Constanza) Then

Image Source: Entertainment Weekly
George is Jerry's best friend in the show, and is the crazier of the two. It's probably likely that his bitterness and greediness come as a result of being bullied by his gym teacher at school who would pronounce his name as 'can't stand ya'. He often developed elaborate and stupid plans in order get out of legal or financial situations that usually ended negatively for him.

Jason Alexander (George Constanza) Now

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Following Seinfeld, Alexander has remained on our screens frequently. He appeared in the comedy Shallow Hal, starring Jack Black and also made guest appearances in Friends and Malcolm in the Middle! In fact much of his career has come in the form of singular guest appearances in a number of sitcoms. He has also tried his hand at voice acting, he voice Goji in Kody Kapow and has credits in The Simpsons, American Dad and Robot Chicken.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Elaine Benes) Then

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Elaine is the only one of the main cast members to have missed the pilot episode, and she is introduced as a former flame of Jerry. She is obviously the most intelligent of the group of friends (although her IQ test is debatable!) Throughout the seasons, as with the others. her characteristics develop, with Elaine becoming more and more cynical; This is due to her inadequate relationships and her weird employers.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Elaine Benes) Now

Image Source: Variety
Dreyfus rose to fame working alongside comedians like Eddie Murphy and Jim Belushi throughout the 80's. Following Seinfeld, she lent her voice to Pixar's A Bug's Life and then starred as the titular character Ellie Riggs in NBC's Watching Ellie. She also appeared in a recurring role as the love interest to Michael Bluth on Arrested Development for a year. She has had two other sitcom 'runs' during her career both garnering success; The New Adventures of Old Christine and Veep. She has appeared in the Marvel Cinematic Universe in recent years as Valentina.

Michael Richards (Cosmo Kramer) Then

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The traditional wacky sitcom neighbour. You can't go without one! We actually didn't find out his first name until season six! He is obliviously truthful at times, never afraid to say exactly what is on his mind. And surprisingly in the show, most people take kindly to his words. He often schemes with George's father, developing stupid and unnecessary products like the male bra!

Michael Richards (Cosmo Kramer) Now

Image Source: The Sun
Following the end of Seinfeld, Richards began working on his self titled sitcom, although it only survived a couple of weeks of poor ratings before being cancelled. He also continued working in stand-up until after an incident when he made racist comments which tarnished his reputation. He retired from stand-up as a result of this incident. He has continued to work with Seinfeld in a few projects including: Bee Movie and Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.

Wayne Knight (Newman) Then

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Newman is introduced as a mail carrier living in the same building as Seinfeld and Kramer. He often relates well with Kramer, taking part in his elaborate schemes, but holds a grudge against Jerry throughout the series. Although it isn't ever mentioned specifically, its likely that this hatred of Jerry is due to him being jealous of his success. He is also very passionate about his job as a mailman (unless its raining!)

Wayne Knight (Newman) Now

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Throughout his role as Newman, Knight also appeared in a number of very popular films during the 90's. Basic Instinct, Dead Again, Jurassic Park and  Space Jam to name a few. He also started a seperate 'proper' run on a sitcom as Officer Don in 3rd Rock from the Sun. He has turned to voice acting at times in his career also, voicing Dojo in Xiaolin Showdown and Mr Blik in Catscratch. He had a starring role in another sitcom 'The Exes' throughout the early 2010's and even appeared as a guest for two episodes of Netflix's popular show Narcos.

John O'Hurley (Jacopo Peterman) Then

Image Source: The Hollywood Reporter
Maybe better known as J Peterman, the owner of J Peterman Catalog, which makes him Elaine's boss for a brief period on the show. Although, he obviously has a lot of money, he is quite awkward in social situations; he doesn't seem to know how to act around people. Following a nervous breakdown, he runs away to Burma; but after Elaine doesn't do a great job he returns and takes control again.

John O'Hurley (Jacopo Peterman) Now

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O'Hurley was involved in one of the most random pieces of television drama during the first season of Dancing with the Stars; after losing in the final the fans were so angry with the result that a 'grudge match' was announced where he got his revenge. He has had a number of popular animated voice roles including: Phineas and Ferb as Roger Doofenshmirtz and King Neptune in the Spongebob series. He also hosted Family Feud for 4 years between 2006 and 2010 before being replaced by the current host Steve Harvey.

Patrick Warburton (David Puddy) Then

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Puddy, as mentioned before, was the on and off boyfriend of main character Elaine. He is introduced as Jerry's mechanic, and Elaine's flame. They regularly broke up as a result of something stupid, and this became a recurring gag. You will likely remember Puddy for his monotone voice, and perfect comedic timing!

Patrick Warburton (David Puddy) Now

Image Source: The A.V. Club
Following Seinfeld, Warburton has made a massive amount of appearances on our screens through different mediums. He has worked in voice acting a lot with notable roles as: Kronk (The Emperor's New Groove) Joe Swanson (Family Guy) Ken (Bee Movie and Steve (Kim Possible). He also appeared as Jeff Bingham for 100 episodes of Rules of Engagement opposite David Spade. Most recently we have seen him play Lemony Snicket in Netflix's A Series of Unfortunate Events and appearances in Space Force and Agents of Shield.

Jerry Stiller (Frank Constanza) Then

Image Source: BGR
Frank is George's father the former Christian artifacts salesman (bizzare!). As with most of the characters, Frank is evidently eccentric and has some spouts of craziness throughout the series. At one point, so angry with the commercialism of christmas, he creates Festivus; his own version of the festive season. An on running gag involving Frank was his hatred of George Steinbrenner.

Jerry Stiller (Frank Constanza) Now

Image Source: USA Today
Yes, he's Ben's dad! Stiller's appearance in Seinfeld was truly a career resurgence after being part of a comedy duo with his wife for years and years. Immediately after Seinfeld, just as he was about to retire, he was cast with a starring role in The King of Queens with Kevin James; he wasn't done yet. He even starred alongside his son Ben in Zoolander (and its sequel), Heavyweights and Hot Pursuit. He also featured in Hairspray as the owner of a clothing store. After a legendary career, Stiller unfortunately passed away in May of 2020.

Estelle Harris (Estelle Constanza) Then

Image Source: Reddit
Estelle is the obnoxious, extremely loud mother of George and Wife to Frank Constanza. It seems to be a toxic relationship, they seem to hate each other but they're committed to sticking it out. She is disliked by mostly anyone that isn't a Constanza, but she is seen regularly flirting with Kramer, something Frank never liked.

Estelle Harris (Estelle Constanza) Now

Image Source: CNN
Following Seinfeld, Harris appeared as Grandma Addams in the Addams Family Reunion movie, and then was cast as Mrs. Potato Head in the Toy Story franchise, something she portrayed for two decades. She had a guest recuring role in the kids show The Suite Life of Zack & Cody and voiced Mama Gunda in Tarzan II. She actually retired in 2015 but returned for one final appearance in Toy Story 4. Harris unfortunately died aged 93 in 2022.

Barney Martin (Morty Seinfeld)

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Morty is Jerry's father in Seinfeld, and is seemingly very proud of Jerry for anything he does, always sticking up for him. He briefly worked at the J Peterman Catalog under Elaine but was later fired by Peterman for working too late (5:30 I wish). He was also the chairman at the Del Boca Vista but he lost the re-election after a failed plan with Kramer.

Barney Martin (Morty Seinfeld) Now

Image Source: Rotten Tomatoes
Martin began his career in 1956 and made a name for himself with supporting roles in The Producers and Arthur. He was also the original Amos Hart in Broadway's Chicago. He regularly guest appeared on shows and had similar roles to Seinfeld in Daddy Dearest and Sydney. Following Seinfeld, he only made a handful of appearances in Noah Knows Best and Center of the Universe before unfortunately passing away aged 82 in 2005.

Liz Sheridan (Helen Seinfeld) Then

Image Source: Entertainment Weekly
Helen is Morty's Wife and the father to Jerry; alongside Morty she is extremely proud of Jerry, always exclaiming her love for him. A running gag throughout the show is that whenever Morty is on the phone, Helen will join the line from another phone in the house and join the conversation. Helen, for some reason, also hates Newman, just like Jerry.

Liz Sheridan (Helen Seinfeld) Now

Image Source: Sky News
Liz made her name throughout the 60's and 70's appearing with supporting roles in a load of television movies and sitcoms like Kojak, The A-Team, Cagney & Lacey and Murder, She Wrote. Following Seinfeld, she didn't appear in a lot on our screens with small roles in Noah Knows Best, Now You Know and she also appeared in an episode of Numb3rs. One of her final appearances, before retiring from the industry, gained attention for containing herself in a sex scene! Liz Sheridan unfortunately died aged 93 in 2022.

Ruth Cohen (Ruthie Cohen) Then

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There isn't much to say about Ruthie, but she actually featured the most within the show after the main four characters. This is despite most of her speaking parts coming during season 8. She was the cashier at Monk's Cafe, and was only seen outside of the cafe in one episode of the show.

Ruth Cohen (Ruthie Cohen)

Image Source: Reddit
Ruth Jones has a whole reddit page dedicated to spotting her in uncredited appearances on shows; she has been spotted in Fresh Prince, Home Improvements, Golden Girls and Roseanne. Her last role before her unfortunate death in 2008 came in an uncredited role in NCIS.

Heidi Swedberg (Susan Ross) Then

Image Source: CNN
Susan first appeared in season four as an executive that Jerry and George pitched their show to. Despite Kramer throwing up on her and burning down her father's cabin, she begins dating George, although they broke up after he kissed her in an important meeting. They became engaged in season 7, although George spent the whole time trying to call it off. She died as a result of George's cheap toxic glue on the invitations.

Heidi Swedberg (Susan Ross) Now

Image Source: Ned Hardy
Prior to Seinfeld, Swedberg appeared in roles in Welcome Home and Kindergarten Cop. She also had guest roles in shows like Quantum Leap and Sisters, before joining Seinfeld. During this role she continued appearing in different roles like Murder, She Wrote and Star Trek. Following the show, she made a few appearances in film and tv; This includes Galaxy Quest, Roswell, Dragonfly, ER and Gilmore Girls. She last appeared in one episode of Hawthorne in 2010. She currently works in music as part of two groups 'Heidi Swedberg and the Suki Jump Band' and 'The Smoking Jackets'.

Larry David (George Steinbrenner) Then

Image Source: TVLine
George Steinbrenner was the actual owner of the Yankees during the shows run and he was caricatured across the show. We only ever see the back of the character and never his face, only hearing his voice. He was always made to make bad decisions such as cooking jerseys, trying to move the team to New Jersey and trading their best players. This often triggered George Costanza to shout at him.

Larry David (George Steinbrenner) Now

Image Source: The Hollywood Reporter
Larry David never actually appeared on screen with Lee Bear being the actual man on the screen. Larry only voiced the character. He co-created the show with Jerry Seinfeld produced the first seven seasons. He has since gained recognition for Curb Your Enthusiasm where he stars as a fictionalised version of himself, another show he wrote and produced until its end in 2021. He has made appearances in Entourage, Clear History and The Three Stooges. Since 2015 he has appeared on SNL playing a spoofed version of Bernie Sanders.

Len Lesser (Uncle Leo) Then

Image Source: The New York Times
Considering how eccentric the rest of the cast is, Uncle Leo is absolutely up there at the highest level. He is the Jerry's uncle, and also lives in NYC. He is a big talker and often tries to keep the conversation going more than is necessary; although when Jerry stops him, Leo will tell his mother and get him in trouble.

Len Lesser (Uncle Leo) Now

Image Source: Fox News
Lesser made appearances on our screens from 1955 although typically only for an episode or two. Popular shows include: The Wild Wild West, Kojak, Quincy M.E.  and Simon & Simon. Following Seinfeld, he appeared with guest appearances in Sabrina, The Teenage Witch, ER and Everybody Loves Raymond. He last appeared for one episode of Castle before he unfortunately died in 2009.

Think you know everything about Seinfeld? Let's find out! The parking garage ending wasn't planned

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The Parking Garage doesn't sound funny in theory when it was just a full episode of four grown human beings trying to find where they parked their car. But that's the beauty of Seinfeld - of course it was funny! When they finally find the car, the engine stalls - hilarious, but unplanned. The car was supposed to start normally!

Claire the waitress was supposed to be the big female lead - not Elaine!

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There's a reason that Elaine was missing from the pilot episode - she wasn't supposed to be in the show at all, and instead, the character of Claire the Waitress that we meet was supposed to go on and become the main female role. But the idea was crapped after they realised a minor character waitress always being round at your apartment would be weird.

Jerry Seinfeld was obsessed with the number nine

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Not only was actor Jerry Seinfeld obsessed with the number nine, but so much so that it made its way into the show! The show premiered in 1989 and was run at 9pm. The series was also decided to stop at season 9! Jerry has always had a soft spot for the number with no particular reason!

Elaine's father was supposed to be recurring

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Actor Lawrence Tierney gave such a good performance that he's memorable even now after only appearing in one episode! But he was originally supposed to have a much bigger recurring role... that was until the whole cast admitted they were scared of him, and he did weird things like pretend to use a prop knife to the sound effects of Psycho.

The real Kramer was paid a thousand bucks to use his name

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Seinfeld creator Larry David had a real life neighbor named Kenny Kramer, and the character of Kramer in the show is loosely based on him. And what did he get in return for letting the show use his name? A thousand bucks! Which isn't that much when you think how much the show made.

Constanza confronted Larry David about writing him out of the show

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There was one particular Seinfeld episode, out of all the other ones that George is most definitely in, that the character was included in, in season three titled, "The Pen". The actor then worried that his character was becoming less popular and he was slowly being faded out. He confronted Larry David about it, saying that if he was going to keep him out, "do it permanently". Larry made sure George was never missing from an episode again! Yeesh.

Jason Alexander's costumes were always small on purpose

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George's wardrobe has a very big focus on the show - both because the character himself is always going on about it, but also because of wardrobe decisions behind the scenes. It was decided his clothes should always be one size too small for the actor because then it looks like he's not very good at picking the right clothes, as well as being annoyed! Which you would be if your clothes were always too tight, let's be honest.

Susan Ross was killed off because the cast didn't gel with the actress

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As we know, comedy is all about timing, and although actress Heidi Swedberg was also trained in comedy, it was a bit of a different vibe to the rest of them. George's actor Alexander would try and work around her performance but the rest of the cast picked up on it, became frustrated, joked that they wanted to kill the character and, well... it happened.

Seinfeld made Julia Louis-Dreyfus cry

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All of the cast seem pretty close and it's true, so you might be wondering how Seinfeld even managed to make actress Julia cry when they were friends in real life. Well, it involves pregnancy hormones and being called fat... When Julia became pregnant, Jerry joked they should write that Julia gets fat that season. It didn't go down well.

The cast don't agree the show is "about nothing"

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The show got an unofficial-yet-official reputation as being "a show about nothing", based on the trivial everyday matters that were always the storyline focus. They made the joke in the show that it was about nothing, but the cast were surprised that fans actually took that to heart.

The Soup Nazi was a real person

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Despite his intimidating personality, the 'Soup Nazi' is one of the most popular characters on the show - and he's actually based on a real person, in true Larry David style. Albert Yeganeh ran a soup kitchen in New York City, and had a reputation for being very, very rude. And apparently he didn't take his portrayal on the show very well, especially the use of the word 'Nazi'...

Steve Buscemi actually auditioned for George!

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By now we can't really imagine anyone else playing George, but actor Steve Buscemi auditioning for it might come as a complete surprise! Although Steve is known for playing a weird variety of types, he didn't land the part of George - and surprisingly, even Alexander didn't want it at first...

An old friend of Seinfeld sued the show

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A man named Michael Constanza, an old friend of Jerry Seinfeld in real life, sued both him and Larry David because he thought his 'likeness' was used in the show! Though it's well known that George is supposed to be loosely based on Larry David himself. Constanza lost the legal battle but he wrote a book about how very much like George he is!

Larry David didn't want any of the characters to learn or grow

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One thing that can be said of most long-running sitcoms is that you see characters make mistakes, apologize, becoming closer with their friends and usually have some sort of character arc the audience will love. Larry David didn't want that! He wanted Seinfeld to be a realistically dark show about how sometimes bad things just happen and people do terrible things, too.

There was one episode about guns that never got made

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Seinfeld is known for being one of those shows that explores pretty much any topic, even if controversial, but they apparently drew the line at guns! One episode that was scrapped part way through the read-through because it wasn't particularly funny was one about Jerry and Elaine betting if one of them would buy a handgun.

Jason Alexander thought the show would fail

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Jason Alexander actually did love Seinfeld from the moment he got the script - he just didn't think anyone else would love it! He thought the target audience would be people who didn't even watch TV, despite thinking it was the best thing he'd read. How wrong he was!

The Farrelly Brothers were actually behind one of the most popular episodes

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The minds behind films like Dumb & Dumber and There's Something About Mary, this pair was actually responsible for one of the most popular episodes of the show! They wrote the season four episode 'The Virgin', a hit with fans where Jerry dates a woman who designs closets.

Jackie Chiles was supposed to get a spin off!

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If there was one popular recurring character on the whole show, it was Jackie Chiles! The actor really nailed this fast-thinking laywer, and he was so popular there were talks of him getting his own spin off show. It even began being written by Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld, but the pilot never got made, sadly!

People thought Elaine's dancing would ruin Julia Louis-Dreyfuss's career

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Elaine's questionable dancing is one of the most memorable and funniest quirks of the show - and originally, the idea was pitched to Larry David by another writer, but rejected. When David left the show for the eighth season, Elaine's dance moves were brought in but there were worries behind the scene whether it was actually a bad idea and could ruin her career. It didn't!

Jerry really doesn't like 'The Alternate Side' episode

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There has to be at least one episode that you're not a fan of when you're the lead actor of a long-running show, and for Jerry Seinfeld it's 'The Alternate Side', an episode that sees George moving the cars around in the block. But his favorite episode in comparison is 'The Marine Biologist'!

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