Rodney Dangerfield, born Jacob Cohen, was an American comedian, and actor, known for the catchphrases "I don't get no respect" or "I get no respect" and his monologues on that theme. He is also famous for his 1980s film roles, notably in Caddyshack and Back To School.
Dangerfield was born on Long Island in the town of Babylon, the son of Jewish parents. His father was the vaudevillian performer Phil Roy. His ancestors came to the United States from Hungary. He would later say that his father "was never home ? he was out looking to make other kids," and that his mother "brought him up all wrong".
As a teenager, he got his start writing jokes for standup comics; he became one himself at 19 under the name Jack Roy. He struggled financially for nine years, at one point performing as a singing waiter, and also working as a performing acrobatic diver before giving up show business to take a job selling aluminum siding to support his wife and family. He later said that he was so little known then that "at the time I quit, I was the only one who knew I quit!"
In the early 1960s he started down what would be a long road toward rehabilitating his career, still working as a salesman by day. He came to realize that what he lacked was an "image" ? a well-defined on-stage persona that audiences could relate to and that would distinguish him from similar comics.