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At 98, Dick Van Dyke Becomes Oldest Person To Receive A Daytime Emmy Nomination

Photo Credit: Monty Brinton / CBS / Getty Images
Photo Credit: Monty Brinton / CBS / Getty Images

Dick Van Dyke has had a legendary career spanning almost 80 years, and the man keeps on surprising us. At 98 years old, he seems nowhere near ready to pump the breaks on taking on new work. Following his guest starring on the longtime-running soap opera Days of Our Lives, he has earned a Daytime Emmy nomination, making history as the oldest actor to receive such recognition.

Dick Van Dyke had a stellar performance on Days of Our Lives

Dick Van Dyke.
Dick Van Dyke attends the 43rd Annual Kennedy Center Honors on May 21, 2021. (Photo Credit: Paul Morigi / Getty Images)

Dick Van Dyke joined the cast of Days of Our Lives (1965) for a four-episode guest appearance on the soap opera, playing the character of Timothy Robicheaux. The arc began in September 2023 and saw him star alongside actors like Drake Hogestyn, whom he has been friends with off-screen. Thanks to that performance, Van Dyke earned himself an Emmy nomination.

This nomination, while historic, is not the first time Van Dyke has been acknowledged for his Daytime Emmy-qualifying work. In 1984, he won the Emmy for Outstanding Performer in Children’s Programming for his work in CBS Library: The Wrong Way Kid. In 2015, he was nominated again for the Emmy for Outstanding Performer in an Animated Program for his work in the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse: Mickey’s Pirate Adventure. This nomination marks his third over the course of his career.

He took a relaxed approach to finding jobs

Headshot of Dick Van Dyke.
Dick Van Dyke in May 1967. (Photo Credit: Larry Ellis / Express / Hulton Archive / Getty Images)

While the nomination is a remarkable one, it may not have happened at all had Van Dyke stuck with his generally relaxed approach to finding work. At 98, one would think he would have retired from the industry a long time ago, but he has continued to work on various projects, he just hasn’t actively been searching for them.

Back in 2023, Van Dyke explained his relaxed method, saying, “As a businessman, I’m not much good. I would do a movie and come home, and just sit down and wait for the phone to ring. I wasn’t aggressive. I was out of work a lot because I didn’t go out and look for it.” Thankfully, prior to this stint on the soap opera, he tried a different approach. “I said, ‘Don’t you have any parts for old people? Come on give me one,’” he shared, referring to a time when he was working out with his friend Hogestyn. “And he took me seriously and got me a part!” We, in part, have Hogestyn to thank for the historic Daytime Emmy nomination.

He was honored by CBS

Dick Van Dyke.
Dick Van Dyke at the 76th Annual Golden Globe Awards on January 6, 2019. (Photo Credit: Christopher Polk / NBCU Photo Bank / NBCUniversal / Getty Images)

During his time on Days of Our Lives, CBS honored Van Dyke with a two-hour-long tribute that aired during his December feature. In the tribute, archival footage from his over seven-decade-long career, which began in 1947, was shown, showcasing his versatility and skill as an actor. Seeing the tribute, he felt honored.

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“You think, ‘I don’t deserve this,’ but it’s difficult to say how I felt,” he explained. “I came home, and I said, ‘You know something? It’s going to be a couple of days before this actually sinks in that it happened.’ I never expected that kind of recognition. My whole life went before me. I didn’t realize I had done so many things while I was 75 years in show business.”

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Samantha Franco

Samantha Franco is a Freelance Content Writer who received her Bachelor of Arts degree in history from the University of Guelph, and her Master of Arts degree in history from the University of Western Ontario. Her research focused on Victorian, medical, and epidemiological history with a focus on childhood diseases. Stepping away from her academic career, Samantha previously worked as a Heritage Researcher and now writes content for multiple sites covering an array of historical topics.

In her spare time, Samantha enjoys reading, knitting, and hanging out with her dog, Chowder!