Marvin Neil Simon was born on July 4, 1927, he was the second son of Irving Simon, a Jewish
travelling salesman. He grew up in New York City, (the Bronx actually). He joined the United States Army at the young age of 16, and served until 1946. The Armay was where he did his first writing, as he was a reporter for the army camp newspaper.
From there he went to work in the mail room at Warner Brothers. His brother Danny was already wroking there as a publicist. The two soon began writing scripts for radio and television. He wrote sketches for Phil Silvers, Gary Moore, Jerry Lewis, and many others. He and his brother separated and Neil began writing for the
New York theater scene.
The late 60s were a high point in his career, and the 1966-1967 season had 4 of his plays running on Broadway at the same time, Barefoot in the Park, The Odd Couple, Sweet Charity and The Star Spangled Girl. He soon hit a low point in 1973 when his wife passed away. He didn't really start writing big hits again until the 1983 release of Brighton Beach Memoirs, which tipped off another great stretch of work that ran all the way up to 1991.
Neil has won many awards for his writing, including three Tony Awards, a Golden Globe Award, and a Pulitzer Prize.
Neil Simon's Plays