Jo Wilder Biography – Where is Joel Grey’s ex-wife today?

April 18, 2024
5 mins read

Who is Jo Wilder?

Jo was born in New York City, USA on 12 August 1938 – her zodiac sign is Leo, and she holds American nationality. She’s a retired actress and singer, with seven acting credits to her name, while she’s perhaps still known best for her portrayal of Sally in the 1958 romantic comedy movie “How to Marry a Millionaire”; it starred Merry Anders, Barbara Eden and Lori Nelson, and follows three women who have moved to a big city in search of wealthy men to marry.

Jo is also known for being a former wife of Joel Grey, a famous American actor, singer and photographer.

Early life and education

Jo was raised in New York City by her father Israel Bower, who passed away aged 90 in 2000, and her mother Clara Rockoff who died aged 62 in 1969. Because Jo hasn’t mentioned having any siblings, most of her fans believe her to be an only child.

She grew up being interested in a number of activities, including acting with her elementary school’s drama club, singing, and playing various sports with her peers. Jo studied at a local high school, at which she continued acting and singing, and she also began appearing in theatre plays.

Upon matriculating in 1956, she didn’t enroll at university, but began practicing acting at the Neighborhood Playhouse, under the mentorship of Sanford Meisner.


Career as an actress

Jo made her acting debut in the 1956 musical comedy series “Washington Square”, and the same year saw her play Phyllis in the episode “The New Year’s Party” of the comedy “Stanley”. It starred Buddy Hackett, Carol Burnett and Reedy Talton, and follows the life of a highly social news stand operator Stanley.

In 1958, Jo played Rita in the episode “The Joe Credo Case” of the crime drama “The Court of Last Resort”, and was in 1961 cast to play Alma Adamson in the episode “Hit and Miss” of the action crime drama “The Detectives”.

Jo portrayed Ruth in the 1965 episode “A Couple of Dozen Tiny Pills” of the drama “The Doctors and the Nurses”, and her final role was her portrayal of Actress in the 1965 episode “Youths and Maidens on an Evening Walk” of the crime drama “The Defenders”, created by Reginald Rose, and which starred E. G. Marshall, Robert Reed and Polly Rowles.

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It follows a father and his son as they’re working together as lawyers; the series aired from 1961 to 1965, and won 29 awards, including 14 Primetime Emmys, while it was nominated for 19 other awards.

Jo has since been staying away from the media’s attention, and it remains unknown which field she’s chosen to work in.

Other credits

Jo appeared in the 1957 episode “Vivian Blaine, George Jessel, Sophie Tucker” of the talk-show “Washington Square”.

She received special thanks for the 2017 episode “Jennifer Grey” of the documentary series “Who Do You Think You Are?”

Love life and marriage with Joel Grey

Jo prefers to keep the details of her love life to herself, and it’s only known that she was married to Joel Grey.


The two exchanged vows on 29 June 1958, in a private ceremony attended by many of their friends and family members; it’s believed that they had been introduced by a mutual friend at a party two years earlier.

Jo gave birth to their daughter Jennifer Grey on 26 March 1960, and their son James followed a couple of years later; Jennifer’s today a popular actress with close to 50 credits to her name, and James is a chef.

Jo and Joel divorced in 1982, but she hasn’t spoken of any other men whom she’s perhaps been with; in January 2015, Joel came out as gay.

As of June 2022, Jo seems to be single, was once married to Joel Grey, and has two children with him.

Hobbies and other interests

Jo was once passionate about travelling, and she’s been all around the world for both work and pleasure; her dream travel destination is Dubrovnik, Croatia. She nowadays prefers to stay at her home in Los Angeles, California.

She’s a huge lover of animals, and has had many pet dogs and cats, while she’s also donated money to multiple animal shelters, as well as to charity organizations which aim to improve the quality of life for underprivileged children.

She was physically highly active in her 20s and 30s, mostly because it was important for her career to stay in shape.

Jo has her own favorite actors and actresses, some of whom are Brad Pitt, Al Pacino and Amanda Seyfried, while a couple of her favorite movies include “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”, “Scarface”, and “Letters to Juliette”.

Age, height and net worth

Jo’s age is 83. She has long brown hair and brown eyes, her height is 5ft 5ins (1.65m) and she weighs around 120lbs (55kgs).

As of June 2022, her net worth stands at over $500,000, while her former husband Joel’s net worth has been estimated at over $10 million.


Who is her former husband Joel?

Joel David Katz was born in Cleveland, Ohio USA, on 11 April 1932 – his zodiac sign is Aries, and he holds American nationality. He’s appeared in more than 70 movies and TV series, while he’s perhaps still known best for his portrayal of the supporting character Master of Ceremonies in the 1972 musical movie “Cabaret”. It was directed by Bob Fosse, starred Liza Minnelli, Michael York and Helmut Griem, and follows a club entertainer who seduced two men during the Nazi uprising; the movie won 47 awards, including eight Oscars, while it was nominated for 18 other awards.

Joel was raised alongside his brother Ronald A. Katz in Cleveland, by their father Meyer Myron ‘Mickey’ Katz who was a comedian and musician, and their mother Goldie ‘Grace’ (nee Epstein) who was a housewife.

Joel became interested in acting while attending Alexander Hamilton High School, appearing in various plays performed both at the school and a local theatre. Upon matriculating in 1950, he chose not to pursue a college degree, but to work on his way up in the film industry.

Joel’s debut film appearance was in the 1952 romantic musical comedy “About Face”, while his debut TV series appearance was in the 1954 episode “Forty Weeks of Uncle Tom” of the drama “Ponds Theater”. He gained recognition in 1961, when cast to play Beagle in the popular romantic comedy film “Come September”, directed by Robert Mulligan, and which starred Rock Hudson, Gina Lollobrigida and Sandra Dee. It follows the people vacationing at an Italian villa, and the movie won two of the three awards for which it was nominated.


Some of Joel’s most notable performances in the ‘70s were perhaps in the 1974 mystery crime thriller movie “Man on a Swing”, and in 1976 the western comedy film “Buffalo Bill and the Indians, or Sitting Bull’s History Lesson” and the adventure crime comedy movie “The Seven-Per-Cent Solution”.

What marked the ‘80s for him was his portrayal of the main character Chiun in the 1985 action adventure comedy movie “Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins”, directed by Guy Hamilton, and which also starred Fred Ward and Wilford Brimley. It follows a police officer who has been proclaimed dead, so that he could be trained as a unique assassin in service of the US president; the movie was nominated for five awards, including an Oscar for Best Make-up.

Joel appeared in several hit movies in the ‘90s, such as the 1991 mystery science fiction drama “Kafka”, the ‘92 crime comedy drama “The Player”, and in 1999 the fantasy drama “A Christmas Carol”.

He has since appeared in around 20 movies and TV series, while his three most recent roles have been in the 2020 series “Backstage Babble”, the 2021 biographical musical movie “tick, tick… BOOM!”, and the 2022 episode “II” of the action thriller film “The Old Man”.

Joel has won seven awards, including a 1973 Oscar for Best Actor in a Supporting Role, for his performance in “Cabaret”; he’s been nominated for six other awards.

He’s also a professional photographer, and his first book of photographs – “Pictures I Had to Take” – came out in 2003; three years later, Joel released his second book of photographs “Looking Hard at Unexpected Things”, and has released two more books: “1.3 – Images from My Phone” in 2009, and “The Billboard Papers: Photographs by Joel Grey” in 2013.

Martha Clifford

As an Author at Net Worth Post, I guide a dedicated team in the art of revealing the stories behind the world's most influential personalities. Fueled by a relentless curiosity and a knack for uncovering hidden stories, I immerse myself in the intricacies of our subjects' lives, weaving together accurate data and compelling narratives. My involvement spans the entire editorial process, from the seed of research to the final flourish of publication, ensuring that every article not only educates but also captivates and motivates our audience.

At Net Worth Post, we are committed to providing thorough investigations into the net worth and life achievements of innovators across diverse sectors such as technology, culture, and social entrepreneurship. My method merges meticulous research with eloquent storytelling, designed to bridge the gap between our readers and the remarkable individuals who redefine our tomorrow. Through spotlighting their journeys to success, the hurdles they've surmounted, and their contributions to society, we aim to give our readers a deep and inspiring insight into the luminaries who are paving the way for progress and ingenuity in the modern era.

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