Harold Allen Ramis (born November 21, 1944) is an American actor, director, and writer, specializing in comedy. His best-known film acting roles are as Egon Spengler in Ghostbusters (1984) and Russell Ziskey in Stripes (1981); Ramis also co-wrote both films. As a writer/director, his films include the comedies Caddyshack (1980), Groundhog Day (1993), and Analyze This (1999). Ramis was the original head writer of the TV series SCTV (in which he also performed), and one of three writers to pen the screenplay for the film National Lampoon's Animal House (1978).
Ramis was born in Chicago, Illinois, the son of Ruth (née Cokee) and Nathan Ramis, shopkeepers who owned the store Ace Food & Liquor Mart on the city's far North Side. He had a Jewish upbringing, although in his adult life he does not practice any organized religion. He graduated from Nicolas Senn High School in Chicago, and, in 1966, from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, where he was as a member of the Alpha Xi chapter of Zeta Beta Tau fraternity.
Afterward, Ramis worked in a mental institution in St. Louis for seven months. He later said his time working there