Actor Who Played Arguably the Most Iconic TV Character of the 1970s — the Phrase ‘Jumping the Shark’ Is Based on His Role — Resurfaces on NBC Sitcom

Mar 21, 2012  •  Post A Comment

The actor who became one of the most iconic characters in TV history is set to appear as the father of Maya Rudolph’s character on “Up All Night,” TV Guide reports.

Henry Winkler, best known as the Fonz on “Happy Days,” will be on Thursday’s episode of the NBC sitcom as Ava’s father, the story reports.

In the episode called “Daddy Daughter Time,” Winkler turns up as Robert Alexander, Ava’s father, who’s a beloved children’s author.

Also appearing in the episode is Sharon Osbourne, one of the hosts of CBS’s “The Talk.”

Winkler’s “Happy Days” character, the Fonz, or Fonzie, was ranked No. 4 by TV Guide on its list of the 50 Greatest TV Characters of All Time in 1999. The character was responsible for the expression “jumping the shark,” a phenomenon that grew out of an episode in which Fonzie pulled off a water-ski jump over a shark — an event that came to symbolize the point when many observers felt the sitcom had gone into decline.

NBC released a sneak peek of Winkler’s appearance on “Up All Night,” which can be seen below:

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