Don Adams

American Actor and Gameshow Host

Don Adams


Don Adams, celebrated for his comedic brilliance and immortalized as Maxwell Smart in “Get Smart,” expanded his repertoire into the realm of game shows with his hosting role on “Don Adams’ Screen Test.” This comprehensive biography explores Adams’ formative years, his triumphs in the entertainment industry, and his engaging tenure as the host of a unique game show that provided contestants with a taste of Hollywood’s screen tests.

Early Life:

Born on April 13, 1923, in New York City, Donald James Yarmy, later known as Don Adams, embarked on a journey that would lead him to become a comedic icon. Serving in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II, Adams honed not only his discipline but also his innate talent for comedy. Post-military service, he pursued a career in entertainment, setting the stage for his future success.

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Don Adams’ Screen Test:

“Don Adams’ Screen Test,” making its debut in 1975, stands as a testament to Adams’ multifaceted talents. As the host, Adams invited contestants to partake in mock Hollywood screen tests, offering them a unique opportunity to experience the highs and lows of the audition process. The show, with Adams at the helm, blended competition with humor, providing a distinctive and entertaining game show experience.

Adams, drawing on his extensive background as a seasoned comedian and actor, brought a charismatic and affable presence to the hosting role. 

Don Adams' Screen Test

His quick wit and comedic timing seamlessly guided contestants through improvised scenes, turning each screen test into a delightful performance. Adams’ ability to interact with participants, offering commentary and playful banter, transformed the show into a captivating exploration of Hollywood’s behind-the-scenes audition dynamics.

The format of “Don Adams’ Screen Test” allowed contestants to showcase their acting abilities, making it a rare game show that delved into the world of theatrical auditions. Adams’ unique approach as a host added a layer of authenticity to the series, making it both entertaining and educational for aspiring actors and intrigued viewers alike.

Comedic Legacy:

Don Adams’ comedic legacy reached its zenith with his portrayal of Maxwell Smart in “Get Smart.” A classic television series that ran from 1965 to 1970, “Get Smart” showcased Adams’ impeccable comedic timing, deadpan delivery, and physical comedy prowess. The character’s iconic catchphrase, “Would you believe…?” became emblematic of Adams’ wit and contributed significantly to the show’s enduring popularity.

In addition to “Get Smart,” Adams excelled as a stand-up comedian, displaying his ability to command laughter in live performances. His comedic versatility extended to various television shows and films, and he left an indelible mark as the voice of the animated character Inspector Gadget.


Don Adams, with his inimitable comedic style and versatility, not only graced television screens as Maxwell Smart but also enriched the world of game shows with “Don Adams’ Screen Test.” The show, marked by Adams’ charismatic hosting, offered a distinctive blend of competition and humor, allowing contestants to step into the shoes of aspiring actors in Hollywood.

Beyond the game show realm, Adams’ legacy as a comedic icon endures. His contributions to “Get Smart” and his success in stand-up comedy showcase a talent that transcends genres. “Don Adams’ Screen Test” remains a testament to his ability to entertain and engage audiences, solidifying his status as a beloved figure in the annals of comedy and entertainment. As fans continue to revisit his timeless performances, Don Adams’ legacy as a master of laughter lives on.