Philip Bruns
Philip Bruns.jpg
Veteran Actor Phil Bruns appears as tax man Calvin in two episodes of "Sanford and Son" in Season 4.
Vital Information
Born: (1931-05-02)May 2, 1931
Birthplace: Pipestone, Minnesota, U.S.
Died February 8, 2012(2012-02-08) (aged 80)
Deathplace: Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Years active: 1959–2012
Family/Personal information
Spouse(s): Laurie Franks
Character/series involvement
Appeared on/
Involved with:
Sanford and Son
Episodes appeared in: Season 4 episodes titled My Kingdom For a Horse" and "Going Out of Business"
Character(s) played: Calvin
Sanford and Son retro Wiki Script

Philip Bruns (May 2, 1931 – February 8, 2012) appeared on Sanford and Son as Calvin the tax man in the season 4 episodes titled My Kingdom For a Horse" "Going Out of Business" actor and writer, best remembered for portraying George Shumway, the father of Mary Hartman on the 1970s comedic series Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman with actor Graham Jarvis, who also made an appearance on Sanford and Son as Dr.Simmons in the Season 5 episode "The TV Addict".

Life and careerEdit

Born in Pipestone, Minnesota, Philip appeared as Morty Seinfeld in the long running NBC-TV sitcom Seinfeld, in a first-season episode entitled "The Stake Out", but was replaced in the role by fellow veteran character actor Barney Martin.

Philip also appeared in Columbo, Night Court, Airwolf, Just Shoot Me!, and M*A*S*H. He appeared in dozens of films, TV commercials, and on and Off-Broadway plays (winning an Obie award for "Mr. Simian" in the 1963-64 season). He also played the Warlock in Werner Liepolt's "The Young Master Dante" at The American Place Theater in 1968. Films in which Bruns appeared include The Great Waldo Pepper, Harry and Tonto, Flashdance, The Stunt Man, My Favorite Year, and Return of the Living Dead Part II.[1]

Bruns wrote The Character Actor's Do's, Don'ts And Anecdotes, which was published in early November 2008. Bruns' co-star in The Stunt Man and My Favorite Year, actor Peter O'Toole wrote the book's foreword. This is the charming and fascinating autobiography of one of America’s premier character actors, Phillip Bruns. From Shakespeare at the Old Vic in England to commercials, major films and television, Phillip Bruns has done it all with great success and now in his retirement he’s written a wonderful book full of exciting tales of his life and his experiences recounting his life as a young farm boy in Minnesota, as a Fulbright Scholar in England, then as a successful Broadway Theater actor, star of many television commercials, with over forty film credits and hundreds of appearances on TV sit-coms. Philip also helped to establish the largest private school library in the Bahamas.

Note: If you are interested in Phil's book please contact the following e-mail:


Up until his death, Bruns resided in Hollywood, California with his wife, former Broadway musical actress Laurie Franks. He died of natural causes on February 8, 2012, aged 80.


  1. Philip Bruns profile at


  • Calvin, "Going Out of Business," Sanford and Son, NBC, 1974
  • Calvin, "My Kingdom for a Horse" (also known as "First Night Out"), Sanford and Son, NBC, 1974

External linksEdit