Kelsey Grammer is an American actor and producer best known for his 20-year portrayal of psychiatrist Dr. Frasier Crane, first in Cheers (1984-1993) and later in its spin-off sitcom Frasier, from 1993-2004.
Grammer won a number of Emmys and Golden Globes for his work on Frasier. He was the first American actor ever to be nominated for multiple Emmy awards for portraying the same character on three different television shows (Cheers, Frasier and Wings).
His $1.6-million per episode salary for Frasier was the highest in the history of American television at the time, and his 20-year run playing Dr. Frasier Crane tied a record set by James Arness in playing Marshall Matt Dillon on Gunsmoke from 1955-1975.
Grammer created Grammnet Productions, a TV production company which has produced such hit television shows as the Emmy-winning Medium, The Game and Girlfriends. His Grammnet producing credits include The Innocent, Kelsey Grammer Salutes Jack Benny, Fired Up, In Laws and Gary the Rat.
For PAX, he produced World Cup Comedy. For FOX, he starred in and produced Kelsey Grammer Presents: The Sketch Show. He also took on the roles of director and executive producer on the comedy pilot Alligator Point, for Lifetime.
Grammer has directed single episodes of Everybody Hates Chris, My Ex Life and Out of Practice. He also directed several episodes of Frasier, one of which earned him a DGA nomination. He also starred in and served as executive producer of the ABC comedy Hank.
Also accomplished as a voice-over artist, Grammer plays the character Sideshow Bob on The Simpsons, for which he won an Emmy for his work in the episode "The Italian Bob", in 2006.
He has also lent his voice to the feature films Toy Story 2, Anastasia and Teacher's Pet, to the television series Father of the Pride and Gary the Rat, and to the Emmy-nominated Animal Farm for TNT.
Grammer's other acting credits include MGM's remake of Fame, Paramount Pictures' Middle Men, Vivendi Universal's An American Carol, Disney's Swing Vote, FOX's blockbuster hit X-Men: The Last Stand, FOX's Back To You for which he also served as executive producer, A Christmas Carol for NBC, Benedict Arnold for A&E, Mr. St. Nick for ABC's Hallmark Hall of Fame, 15 Minutes for New Line Cinema, Down Periscope for 20th Century Fox and Even Money for Yari Film Group.
Grammer began acting in plays at Pine Crest Preparatory School in Fort Lauderdale, where his teenage stage success inspired him to apply to Juilliard. He developed an interest in Shakespeare and began his professional acting career at the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego.
Reminiscing, Grammer says, "When I was 21, I was painting offices for a famous director. As I stood at the top of the ladder, the casting director of the San Diego Shakespeare Festival looked up at me and said, 'You're an actor, aren't you?' - I don't know how he got this from my butt!"
The director offered him the chance to audition, and he spent three years performing Shakespeare and Shaw. He continued in regional theatre, and finally made his way to New York with roles in the off-Broadway productions Sunday in the Park with George, A Month in the Country and the Obie Award-winning Quartermaine's Terms.
He scored on Broadway in Macbeth and Othello.
Before long he appeared in two TV miniseries: first as Stephen Smith in Kennedy (1983), and next as Lieutenant Stewart in George Washington (1984). Grammer then landed the role of Dr. Frasier Crane in Cheers.
Originally, the show's creators wanted John Lithgow for a brief recurring role, but the actor was unavailable. Grammer's former Juilliard classmate Mandy Patinkin suggested him to the New York casting director and he got the job, parlaying six episodes into a career that would span two decades, after which he would return to the stage and receive critical acclaim as Professor Higgins in My Fair Lady.
He also performed the title role in Richard II and Lucio in Measure for Measure at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles.
In 2010, Grammer starred in La Cage aux Folles on Broadway for which he received rave reviews as nightclub owner Georges. His performance earned him a Tony nomination for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical.
From 2011-2012 he starred in and executive produced the political drama series Boss, which aired on the Starz network. He won a Golden Globe award for Best Actor in a Television Series - Drama for this role.
Grammer was born in St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands and was raised in New Jersey and Florida. He is the father of actress Spencer Grammer and the ex-husband of Camille Grammer.
Grammer's father was murdered in the Virgin Islands; his sister was abducted, raped and murdered in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and his brother was killed in a shark attack.