Estelle Reiner, Carl Reiner’s Wife: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Estelle Reiner and Carl Reiner

Getty Director and host Carl Reiner and his wife Estelle Reiner arrive at the 57th Annual DGA Awards Dinner on January 29, 2005 in Beverly Hills, California.

Carl Reiner died on June 29 at the age of 98. The prolific actor, director, and producer was beloved by the entertainment industry.

In his personal life, he was known as the dear friend of Mel Brooks, father of famed actor and director Rob Reiner, and husband of Estelle Reiner.

Here’s what you need to know about Carl Reiner’s wife Estelle Reiner:


1. Reiner Passed Away in 2008, at the Age of 94

Estelle Reiner died on October 24, 2008; she was 94 years old. The New York Times reported that she died of natural causes.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Reiner’s nephew George Shapiro remembered her as “the most loving, family oriented person, beside her own artistic skill. She had the same passion in her artwork, in her singing or in preparing a meal for her family.”

Estelle grew up in the Bronx, New York.


2. Reiner Was a Singer, Painter, & Actress

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As wife and mother to two of Hollywood’s biggest figures in comedy, it’s no surprise that Reiner had some great acting credits of her own through her career. Reiner is best known for delivering the iconic line “I’ll have what she’s having!” from her son Rob’s comedy When Harry Met Sally. According to IMDb, her other credits include To Be or Not to Be, Fatso, and Hot to Trot.

Reiner began her career as a jazz singer at the age of 65, and Leonard Feather praised her singing, reviewing that “Her bittersweet timbre suggests honey laced with vinegar. She has qualities many a seasoned pro would envy.”


3. Estelle & Carl Reiner Had 3 Children Together

Estelle and Carl Reiner are survived by their three children, actor and director Rob Reiner, writer and psychoanalyst Annie, and painter Lucas. He obituary lovingly remarked that “Her friends and family will remember her as a free thinker who never stopped searching, a courageous woman of extraordinary spirit and curiosity who lived life to the end.”

Rob Reiner confirmed his father’s passing in a tweet, writing “Last night my dad passed away. As I write this my heart is hurting. He was my guiding light.”


4. Estelle & Carl Reiner Were Married for 64 Years

Estelle and Carl Reiner were married on Christmas Eve in 1943 and stayed married until her passing in 2008.

According to Fabiosa, Carl Reiner revealed in an interview that Estelle believed the key to a long-lasting relationship is to “Marry someone who can stand you.”

Reiner agreed that their 64-year long marriage was successful in part because they were able to “stand” each other. He said, “That’s absolutely true! There are many, many reasons to break up but if you can stand the worst of what they do, why break up? You’re only going to get someone who will annoy you in another way so whatever little annoyances there are, you can stand that. We were able to stand each other very, very well.”


5. Reiner Was the First Woman to Work at Sperry Rand as an Isometric Draftsman During WWII

According to Estelle Reiner’s obituary, “during World War II she was the first woman isometric draftsman to work at Sperry Rand, making blueprints for assembly workers building submarines and airplanes.”

Estelle and Carl Reiner met during World War II, while Carl was performing in the Catskills. They were married while Carl was on a weekend pass from the Army.

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