R.I.P. Charles Durning, Jack Klugman, 'Thunderbirds' Creator Gerry Anderson

December 27, 2012


Sorry to remind everyone of mortality when we're all just trying to have a nice, light holiday week but, sadly, there are some late editions to the Who We Lost in 2012 montage.

charles-durning.jpgCharacter actor Charles Durning died on Christmas Eve in his Manhattan home, his daughter has confirmed to The New York Times. A decorated U.S. Army man drafted during World War II, Durning fought on Omaha Beach long before earning Academy Award nominations for supporting roles in The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas and To Be or Not To Be. He also memorably appeared in the films Dog Day Afternoon, Tootsie, The Sting, O Brother, Where Are Thou?, and State and Main, while in TV he earned Emmy nominations for Death of a Salesman, Homicide, Rescue Me, his regular role on Evening Shade, and more. All in all, he appeared in over 200 titles, and no one is happy to see him go except perhaps a jealous Brian Dennehy. He was 89.

Also on Monday, actor Jack Klugman reportedly passed away in his California home, says his son. Klugman most famously played and earned some Emmys as one half of television's The Odd Couple opposite Tony Randall, and long pre-dated the modern interest in televised coroners with an Emmy-nominated role on Quincy M.E. He also won Emmy for a 1964 guest role on The Defenders, and appeared on The Twilight Zone four times. In film, he perhaps most famously played one of the dozen titular roles in 12 Angry Men. He was 90.

Finally, yesterday brought the death of Gerry Anderson, the marionette-loving man responsible for Thunderbirds, Stingray, and, completely indirectly, Team America: World Police. Anderson had reportedly suffered from dementia, having already suffered and survived through Jonathan Frakes's 2004 attempt to adapt Thunderbirds into a Bill Paxton film. He was 83.

(Thanks, Phil)

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