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Steve Martin Reveals The Reason Behind His Estrangement From His Father

Steve Martin, 78, is the thing that’s buzzing in Hollywood right now, with the release of his Apple TV+ documentary.

The documentary revolved around Steve’s difficult relationship with his father and how it shaped his career, even going as far as to reveal that he later learnt to take his father’s criticisms as motivation.

Steve Martin – On Why His Father Wasn’t “Proud” Of His “Unconventional Act”

The comedic actor’s documentary “STEVE! (Martin) A Documentary in 2 Pieces”mainly explored his father’s reaction to his career choices.

“I always thought my father was a little embarrassed by me,” said Steve, who served as a narrator in the film. “He couldn’t quite be proud of an unconventional showbiz act that he didn’t quite understand.”

Steve Martin Reveals The Reason Behind His Estrangement From His Father

The “Only Murders in the Building” star, however, revealed that he soon found a better use for his father’s criticisms by turning them into motivation. “By that time, I had been so sort of alienated by my father that negative comments were actually my encouragement,” he said over a footage showing him and his father Glenn.

His early childhood was also explored in the documentary, with his sister Melinda Dobbs recalling that her brother received “no affection” from their father even as a child. Instead of receiving love and support, he was almost always met with anger and criticism.

At the same time, Steve insisted he had a “happy childhood,” albeit outside of the confines of his own home.

His father’s cold response to his career was also observed by his friend, musician John McEuen, who encountered it backstage after a show one night.

McEuen remembered sitting with Glenn when Steve came into the room, with the father promptly asking afterward, “You know what was wrong with that show?”

“Anyway, I sneak out. Because there was nothing wrong with that show,” McEuen said. In fact, his father once described him as “no Charlie Chaplin” after watching his 1979 movie “The Jerk.”

In the documentary, viewers saw how Steve’s life was mostly defined by his desire to have his father’s approval. Later on, he would learn to understand his father better and to even have sympathy for him.

STEVE! (Martin) A Documentary in 2 Pieces is available to stream now on Apple TV+

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Editorial credit: Everett Collection /

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