Comedian Jerry Stiller, best known for his recurring role as George Costanza’s father on TV’s “Seinfeld,” has died aged 92, his actor son Ben has confirmed.
“I’m sad to say that my father passed away from natural causes,” Ben Stiller wrote on Twitter, calling him “a great dad and grandfather and dedicated husband.”
Stiller spent many years in a comic duo with wife Anne Meara, who died in 2015. His other roles included Arthur Spooner in TV sitcom “The King of Queens.”
Stiller appeared with son Ben in several film comedies, among them “Zoolander”, “Zoolander 2” and “The Heartbreak Kid.” He also had roles in both the original 1988 film of “Hairspray” and the musical adaptation that followed in 2007.
For many, though, he will be best remembered as Alexander’s on-screen father in Seinfeld, a role he played for six years. His role as the volatile and cantankerous Frank Costanza saw him nominated for a Primetime Emmy in 1997.
Actor Josh Gad, best known for voicing Olaf the snowman in Disney’s “Frozen,” was among those to pay tribute on social media.”Thank you Jerry for your brilliant comedic prowess,” he tweeted, saying there was “nobody who quite turned a phrase” like him.
Comedian Gilbert Gottfried, another Disney voice actor, also paid homage. “On stage or off he could put a smile on your face,” he wrote. Meanwhile Star Trek legend William Shatner, remembered Stiller as “a comedic genius, fellow actor & friend”, adding: “He will be missed.”