Bert Convy is not just remembered as an actor but also as an on-point TV personality. He also packed some punches as a singer and dancer. While that was the case, Convy was on an entirely different career trajectory, athletics before making the right turn in the right direction.
He is best known as the host of the syndicated game show Tattletales from 1975 to 1977. However, long before he added the game show host to his resume, he was already a renowned entertainer with experiences in stage, film, and television as well as had a stint as a recording artist. Learn more about him: bio, career journey and other key areas of his life.
Bert Convy’s Bio
The multi-talented entertainer was born on the 23rd of July, 1933 in St Louis Missouri, the US to Bernard Fleming Convy and Monica Convy (née Whalen). Of American nationality, he was named Bernard Whalen Convy. Seven years after his birth, he moved with his family to Los Angeles where he attended North Hollywood High School. He had a very active childhood and engaged in a number of activities such as sports. This was evident in high school where he showed elite athleticism. Little wonder he was offered a contract by the Philadelphia Phillies of the MLB at just the age of 17.
He had a two-season stint (1951-1952) in their minor league system, before ultimately deciding to pursue a career in showbiz, beginning as a singer before advancing into acting, production, directing, and hosting. He enrolled into the prestigious UCLA School of Theater, Film, and Television where he bagged a bachelor’s degree and joined the 1950s vocal band The Cheers while still in school.
Bert Convy got his start in acting, on stage in 1956 in the musical The Billy Barnes Revues where his talent as a singer and dancer were also highlighted. He then went on to the big screen with A Bucket of Blood (1959) and also featured on television, landing a number of guest roles in shows such as Perry Mason, 77 Sunset Strip, and Alfred Hitchcock Presents. Convy then moved to New York City and returned to Broadway in 1962, appearing in such shows as Fiddler on the Roof (1964), The Impossible Years (1965) and Cabaret (1966) where he created a fictionalized Christopher Isherwood character named Cliff.
While scaling the heights as a stage actor, Bert Convy also maintained his success on TV. He appeared in the CBS soap opera Love of Life as a rapist named Glenn Hamilton and featured in many other shows including Harrigan and Son, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Hawaii Five-O, The Snoop Sisters, Bewitched, The Partridge Family, Mission: Impossible, The Silent Force, The New Phil Silvers Show, Fantasy Island, Charlie’s Angels and Murder, She Wrote. Having established his feet in television, Convy went on to host different hit game shows such as Super Password, Match Game, Tattletales, and Win, Lose or Draw. He won an Emmy Award for Best Game Show Host in 1977 for his work on Tattletales.
Already a man of many talents, the success of the celebrity couple daytime show, Tattletale afforded him many opportunities. Convy launched a short-lived variety series named The Late Summer Early Fall Bert Convy Show in 1976. He also co-founded a production company known as Burt and Bert Productions with Burt Reynolds in the 80s. Their company produced the game shows, Win, Lose or Draw and the syndicated 3rd Degree.
He also landed more roles in films, TV, and on stage with credits that include Semi-Tough (1977) where he portrayed a caricature of Werner Erhard named Friedrich Bismark. Others are the musical Nine, Jennifer (1978), The Man in the Santa Claus Suit (1979), Hero at Large (1980), The Cannonball Run (1981), and the TV movies SST: Death Flight (1977) Hanging by a Thread and Racquet in 1979, Help Wanted: Male (1982) and Love Thy Neighbor in 1984.
In addition, Bert Convy also had several behind the scene roles on projects like the Goodspeed Opera House premiere of the musical Zapata where he doubled as a producer and director in 1980 and also directed the comedy Weekend Warriors in 1986. Along with his wife at the time, Anne Anderson, Convy created the 1983 short-lived family sitcom It’s Not Easy which took on parenthood in the modern age. It starred Ken Howard, Carlene Watkins, Convy, and famed comedienne Jayne Meadows.
Wife and Children
Bert Convy was married twice during his lifetime. His first union was to Anne Anderson with whom he tied the knot in 1959 and was married to until 1991 when they divorced. They had three children: Jennifer, Joshua, and Jonah. Convy married for a second time to Catherine Hills shortly after his divorce and a few months before his death.
Is He Dead or Still Alive?
Convy died on the 15th of July, 1991 in Brentwood, Los Angeles, California, U.S. He was diagnosed with brain cancer the previous year after he collapsed at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center while visiting his mother who has a stroke. Aged 57, he was laid to rest at Forest Lawn – Hollywood Hills Cemetery.