82 (passed away Sep. 25th, 2005)
Apr. 13th, 1923
New York City, New York, USA
5' 8 1/2"
Don Adams' Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles1999 - Inspector Gadget
1987 - Back to the Beach
1982 - Jimmy the Kid
1980 - The Nude Bomb
Guest TV Roles
Don Gibson Jr. (Voiced)
Of Irish-Hungarian heritage, New York-born Don Adams had a sister, Gloria, and a brother, Dick Yarmy. He served in the U.S. Marines in World War II and contracted malaria during the fighting on Guadalcanal island. After the war he began a career as a stand-up comic. He married singer Adelaide Adams and adopted her last name as his stage surname. They had seven children: Carolyn, Christine, Catherine, Cecily Adams, Stacey Adams (I), Sean, Beige. His television career began when he won the "Ted Mack & the Original Amateur Hour" (1948) talent contest. His most famous role, of course, is as bumbling, incompetent, clueless yet endearing secret agent Maxwell Smart in the classic sitcom/spy spoof "Get Smart" (1965), although he also had a career as a television director and a Broadway and theatrical dramatic actor.
- Buried at the beautifully restored Hollywood Forever Cemetery located at 6000 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood, California, USA. Plot 8, Northeast pond.
- Claims he changed his last name from Yarmy to Adams because he was tired of having to go last at auditions, which, he said (inaccurately), usually went in alphabetical order. In reality, he took his stage name from his first wife, singer Adelaide Adams, with whom he shared a bill on the nightclub circuit.
- According to former _"Get Smart" (1965)_ (qv), co-star, 'Barbara Feldon' (qv), Adams had an amazing memory that allowed him to take an unusual approach to filming.
- His two best known roles -- Maxwell Smart and Inspector Gadget -- were both James Bond parodies. _"Get Smart" (1965)_ (qv) parodied the secret agent stories, while Inspector Gadget featured the unseen villain The Claw, who is shown as an arm stroking his cat, an obvious reference to Bond villain Ernst Stavro Blofeld.
- His Agent 86 catchphrase, "Would you believe...?", became the slogan for commercials for the White Castle hamburger chain in 1992, in which he also acted.
- Father of 'Cecily Adams' (qv) and 'Stacey Adams (I)' (qv).
- In 1984, played as himself in Miller Lite Beer commercials, poking fun at his Maxwell Smart fame.
- One of his duties while serving in the Marine Corps was a drill instructor.