Italian character actor Gigi Reder was best known for playing Fillini opposite Paolo Villaggio's title character in the long-running Fantozzi series. Having spent over 50 years in the film industry, Reder worked under such directors as Federico Fellini, Vittorio De Sica, and Alessandro Blasetti. Born and raised in Naples, Reder (born Luigi Schroeder) made his professional acting debut on-stage in 1950, performing alongside some of Italy's most famous stage actors, including Peppino de Filippo and Giorgio Albertazzi. He entered films opposite famed comedian Toto in Carlo Ludvico Brgaglia's 47 Morto Che Parla. Reder first teamed with Villaggio in Fantozzini (1975). Playing comically uneducated Fillini to Villaggio's domineering clerk made Reder a national star and led to the duo's appearing in eight more Fantozzi films through 1996. Villaggio and Reder would also work together on 34 other films, which included the series of Franchia comedies. In addition to the aforementioned films, two of Reder's more notable performances can be found in Luigi Comencini's Pane, Amore e Gelosia (1954) and Nanni Loy's Cafe Express (1980). Throughout his career, Reder continued to appear on-stage and occasionally performed on television, radio, and as a dubbing artist.