Lou Grant Actor Eddie Asner Passes Way Aged 91
Eddie Asner was the president of the Screen Actors Guild.
Eddie Asner, an actor who has seven Primetime Emmy Awards to his name, passed away aged 91. Asner’s official Twitter account posted, “We are sorry to say that our beloved patriarch passed away this morning peacefully. Words cannot express the sadness we feel. With a kiss on your head- Goodnight dad. We love you.”
Asner’s publicist also confirmed the news to Variety, adding that he died on Sunday and was surrounded by family.
Eddie Asner scored his first Broadway role in 1960 in Face of a Hero starring Jack Lemmon. However, he’d been working in television since 1957 after making his TV debut with the American anthology series Studio One. He went on to make appearances in several shows including The Outer Limits, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, and Decoy, before landing his role in the sitcom The Mary Tyler Moore Show.
On The Mary Tyler Moore Show, he played a TV newsroom head Lou Grant, the role he was best known for, and it got him three supporting actor Emmy awards. After the show ended, the character got his own show, titled Lou Grant which ran till 1982.
Asner also had a prolific voice acting carrier. He used to play the character George F. Babbitt in the radio theatre production of the novel Babbitt by Sinclair Lewis. He also voiced the Spider-Man animated series character Jonah Jameson in the 1990s, and the iconic Jabba the Hutt from the Star Wars franchise in the radio version. Eddie Asner was also the voice behind the character Carl Fredricksen in the Oscar-winning Pixar movie Up. Latest, he was part of a Netflix dark comedy Dead to Me, and Cobra Kai, and made a guest appearance on Modern Family.
Asner was also known for his activism, especially during his two terms as president of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG). He played an active role in the SAG strike of 1980, and voiced his opinion about causes like the movement to free political activist Mumia Abu-Jamal, the movement to establish a single-payer health care system in California, etc. He also endorsed Barack Obama during the 2008 US presidential elections.
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