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Tag: In Memoriam (53-65 of 90)

David Duchovny on Zalman King: 'He really had the soul of an artist'

When a pre-X-Files David Duchovny was hired by filmmaker Zalman King ( 9 1/2 Weeks, Wild Orchid, Two Moon Junction) for the Showtime series Red Shoe Diaries, he admits he was a bit on the inexperienced side. “As an actor I was terrible. I was green and I didn’t know it, and he didn’t tell me — which is good. I was blissfully ignorant of my own limitations,” laughs Duchovny. “Zalman just filled me with confidence. When he told me I was great, I believed it, and I started to make my way towards getting better as an actor. For a guy on his first or second job, I couldn’t have been luckier to have a man as generous as him.”

King, who died on Feb. 3 at the age of 70, left a lasting impression on Duchovny. “Zalman really had the soul of an artist,” says the Californication star. READ FULL STORY

'Seinfeld' actor Ian Abercrombie dead at 77

Ian Abercrombie, the actor best recognized for playing Elaine Benes’ boss on Seinfeld, has died. He was 77.

Abercrombie, who did voice work on the movie Rango this year, passed away in Hollywood on Thursday. He just finished work on the animated series Green Lantern for the Cartoon Network.

Abercrombie’s career spanned more than 50 years and included roles in flicks like Young Frankenstein and The Lost World: Jurassic Park. TV gigs included playing Mr. Pitt on Seinfeld, as well as parts on Wizards of Waverly Place, Desperate Housewives, Murphy Brown and L.A. Law.

He was born in Essex, England and began his career as a stage actor.

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Prolific film and TV actor James Farentino dies at 73

Actor James Farentino, who appeared in dozens of movies and television shows, died Tuesday in a Los Angeles hospital, according to a family spokesman. He was 73.

Farentino died of heart failure at Cedars-Sinai Hospital after a long illness, said the spokesman, Bob Palmer. READ FULL STORY

'Next Great Baker' contestant committed suicide

Sergeant Wesley Durden, a contestant on this season of TLC’s Next Great Baker, committed suicide after production wrapped, according to the Jacksonville Daily News.

The network delivered the news in a note after Monday’s episode, on which Durden was eliminated.

TLC further issued this statement: “TLC extends its deepest condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of Sgt. Wesley Durden, who died Oct. 24. He will be warmly remembered by the cast and crew of Next Great Baker.

Durden was a veteran paratrooper who had made it through two deployments in Iraq. He is survived by his wife, his 7-year-old son, and his two-year-old daughter.

Dan Frazer, Capt. McNeil on 'Kojak,' dies in NYC

Veteran film and television actor Dan Frazer, best known for his role as Captain Frank McNeil on the 1970s television series Kojak, has died in New York. He was 90.

Frazer’s daughter, Susanna Frazer, said Sunday her father died of cardiac arrest Dec. 16 at his home in Manhattan. She described him as a “very truthful, naturalistic actor.”

Frazer started playing character roles in various television series and films in the 1950s. His films include Cleopatra Jones, Take the Money and Run, Gideon’s Trumpet, and Deconstructing Harry. Besides Kojak, Frazer’s television appearances include Car 54, Where Are You, Route 66, Barney Miller, and Law & Order.

He was a member of The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and an adviser to The Workshop Theatre Co.

'M*A*S*H' actor Harry Morgan dies

Harry Morgan, the actor otherwise known as M*A*S*H‘s Colonel Potter, has passed away, according to The New York Times. Morgan, who died in his Los Angeles home, was 96 years old.

Though Morgan is most well-known for his role on M*A*S*H, he was a prolific actor on the big and small screen, starring in such TV programs as Dragnet, Pete and Gladys, and The D.A, and appearing in over 100 movies. But, still, Morgan had said that Potter was “the best part I ever had” — one that even won him an Emmy in 1980. The actor was so fond of the character, he even played Potter in AfterMASH, a spin-off only lasting two years.

Later in life, Morgan continued acting in television, guest starring on such shows as 3rd Rock From the Sun and Murder, She Wrote. The actor is survived by his wife and three sons.

Charlie Sheen mourns Patrice O'Neal: 'I will forever be inspired by his nobility, his grace and his epic talent'

Charlie Sheen released a statement via his Twitter in celebration of comedian Patrice O’Neal, who died unexpectedly today at the age of 41. The two met when O’Neal participated in Sheen’s Comedy Central Roast. O’Neal found himself the butt of many jokes about his long-term battle with diabetes. Today, Sheen took a more reverent tone, calling O’Neal “a brilliant man.” See Sheen’s full statement after the jump. READ FULL STORY

A sneak peek at tonight's 'Ridiculousness': One of Ryan Dunn's final TV appearances

As part of tonight’s multi-hour tribute to Ryan Dunn — who died in a drunk driving crash this past June — MTV is premiering a new episode of Rob Dyrdek’s Ridiculousness that would be one of Dunn’s final on-air performances. For the viral video round-up show, thrill seeker Dunn displayed his trademark spirit as he watched a particularly painful physical stunt with Ridiculousness regulars Chanel and Sterling “Steelo” Brim. See the preview after the jump. READ FULL STORY

MTV schedules Ryan Dunn tribute

MTV has put together a tribute to Jackass star Ryan Dunn, who was killed in a drunk driving car crash this June along with friend and Jackass crew member Zachary Hartwell. Airing Nov. 28, the one-hour program will focus on Dunn’s life growing up in Ohio and his rise to fame on Jackass. Co-stars Johnny Knoxville, Rob Dyrdek, Wee Man, Chris Pontius, Jeff Tremaine, and Bam Margera will tell stories about Dunn’s life, and the network will air footage of Dunn’s stunts for Jackass and Viva LA Bam that have never been seen before.

Directly before the broadcast at 10:30 p.m. EST, MTV will also premiere an all-new episode of Dyrdek’s Ridiculousness, guest starring Dunn in one of his final television appearances. A special encore presentation of Jackass 3.5 will follow “It’s a surreal thing to undertake, doing a tribute to our brother Ryan’s life,” said Knoxville, who is also executive producing the special with Spike Jonze and Derek Freda. “I still can’t believe he’s gone but we wouldn’t trust anyone else with this, so we are doing the best we can for Ryan, his family, friends, and everyone who loved him.”

Read more:
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PBS to premiere 'Steve Jobs - One Last Thing' doc on Nov. 2 -- EXCLUSIVE

PBS will take an unflinching, in-depth look at the influences on Steve Jobs’ character and career in the one-hour documentary Steve Jobs — One Last Thing, which is set to premiere Nov. 2 at 10 p.m. ET (check local listings). According to the announcement, the documentary features interviews with, among others: Ronald Wayne, co-founder of Apple with Jobs and Steve Wozniak; Ross Perot, who invested in NeXT Computer when Jobs was running out of money; Walt Mossberg, principal technology columnist for The Wall Street Journal, who interviewed Jobs every year from 2003-2010;, frontman and producer for The Black Eyed Peas, whose “I Gotta Feeling” currently ranks as the most downloaded iTunes song ever; Dean Hovey, designer of the original mouse for Apple; Robert Cringely, writer and host of the PBS series Triumph of the Nerds: The Rise of Accidental Empires; Robert Palladino, calligraphy professor at Reed College, whose classes Jobs credited with inspiring his typography design for the Mac; and Bill Fernandez, who introduced Jobs and Wozniak in Sunnyvale, where the three hung out in his father’s garage and tinkered with electronics. READ FULL STORY

TNT will air 'Pirates of Silicon Valley' tonight to honor Steve Jobs

The death of Apple co-founder and overall innovator Steve Jobs has prompted TNT to order a re-broadcast of their Emmy-nominated original film, Pirates of Silicon Valley.

The film, which airs tonight at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. ET, chronicles the race and rivalry between Apple Computer and Microsoft and stars ER actor Noah Wyle as Jobs. Anthony Michael Hall and Joey Slotnick also star as Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, respectively.

Originally aired in 1999, the movie earned five Emmy nominations, including one for Outstanding Made for Television Movie.

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Hugh Hefner: NBC's 'Playboy Club' should have been on cable


Playboy founder Hugh Hefner now says what TV insiders have been muttering for months: That NBC’s Playboy Club was better suited for a cable network than a broadcast channel.

NBC brass axed the show after three episodes yesterday, making Playboy Club the first canceled show of the fall. The publishing icon took to Twitter to give his brief postmortem: “I’m sorry NBC’s The Playboy Club didn’t find it’s audience,” he wrote, “It should have been on cable, aimed at a more adult audience.”

Even the PTC would agree with Hef on that one. There were a few reasons why the show didn’t work: READ FULL STORY

Arthur C. Nielsen Jr., ratings entrepreneur, dies

TV ratings pioneer Arthur C. Nielsen Jr., chairman of the A.C. Nielsen Company, died Monday from Alzheimer’s-related complications. He was 92. Nielsen’s father may have invented the system still used by the ratings metrics company, but Nielsen was the force that innovated its uses and, indeed, made “Nielsen” a household name. He joined the company in 1945 after serving in World War II.

Seeing the importance of computer technology during his service, he convinced his father to make the company an early investor in the building the first general-purpose computer, the Univac. This enterprising spirit helped Nielsen grow the his company’s income from less than $4 million a year when he was named president in 1957 to more than $680 million. Nielsen retired in 1983, and his company his since been purchased by Dutch publishing company VNU, but his name — and his legacy — are indelible.


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