The son of comedian Harvey Lembeck, Michael Lembeck started his career following his dad's footsteps as a comic character actor. The younger Lembeck made his TV movie debut in Gidget Grows Up. His subsequent small-screen gigs included Kaptain Kool in the Saturday morning extravaganza The Krofft Supershow (1977) and Max Horvath, the flight-steward husband of Julie Cooper (MacKenzie Phillips) in One Day at a Time (1979-84). He also played schoolteacher Peter Newman in the 1985 sitcom Foley Square, and, on a less comical note, was seen as Abbie Hoffman in the 1987 TV-movie special Conspiracy: The Trial of the Chicago 7. In the past decade, Michael Lembeck has concentrated on directing such weekly series as Hope and Gloria, Mad About You and Everybody Loves Raymond; in 1996, he won an Emmy for his direction of the hit series Friends.