Jerzy Kosinski Novelist

Birthday June 14, 1933
Birthplace Poland
Death Date May 3, 1991 (age 57)
Birth Sign Gemini


Polish author who wrote The Painted Bird, which depicts the misadventures of a World War II refugee, and Steps, which won the National Book Award. He is also known for The Devil Tree (1973), Cockpit (1975), and Being There (1970).

Before Fame

Born Jzef Lewinkopf in Poland, he took on the name Jerzy Kosinski to escape Nazi persecution. After surviving the Holocaust with the aid of a Polish Catholic family (among others), he immigrated to the United States in 1957 and studied at Columbia University.


His novel, Being There, was adapted into an Academy Award-winning film in 1979.

Family Life

He was married to Mary Hayward Weir from 1962-1966. His second marriage, to Kiki von Fraunhofer, lasted until his suicide in 1991.

Associated With

Shirley MacLaine starred in the film adaptation of Kosinski's book, Being There.


Rome Flynn TV Actor
Vladimir Stojkovic Soccer Player