Jon Polito, a character actor best known for roles in several Coen Brothers films, including The Big Lebowski and Miller’s Crossing, died of cancer on Friday at the age of 65. Many of the actor’s former co-stars are now mourning and reacting to his death. See celebrity reactions below.
Eric Stonestreet, who worked with Polito when he recently guest starred on “Modern Family,” tweeted, “Very sad to hear of the passing of great actor and very funny and sweet man. Jon Polito. Google him. You loved him. RIP.” Meanwhile, Polito’s Blankman co-star David Alan Grier wrote, “Rest n peace Jon Polito. Amazing actor,” and his former TV co-star Richard Belzer expressed, “I worked with my dear friend, great actor Jon Polito who so magnificent on ‘Homicide: Life on the Street.’ RIP.”
Marcia Gay Harden referenced a line from her and Polito’s 1990 crime drama, Miller’s Crossing, saying, “Tipping the High Hat to my dear friend Jon Polito, who taught me all abt ETHICS & loyalty on #MillersCrossing RIP.” Curtis Armstrong, who starred alongside Polito in both The Chronicle and Locker 13, offered, “Oh, my….Jon Polito. What a sweet, lovely man and what a terrific actor. Bless you, Jon! I loved every minute we worked together! #RIP.”
Meanwhile, “Comedy Bang Bang” host Scott Aukerman recalled Polito’s recent appearance on the sketch show, writing, “One of the coolest days on Bang Bang recently was when Jon Polito guest starred… A great actor and cool dude! RIP.” Polito’s The Hudsucker Proxy co-star Richard Schiff said, “Oh, my….Jon Polito. What a sweet, lovely man and what a terrific actor. Bless you, Jon! I loved every minute we worked together! #RIP.” And Marg Helgenberger honored her late colleague by writing, “RIP Jon Polito. We had a lot of fun together working on an episode of #TalesFromTheCrypt 25 yrs ago. A great actor!”
Polito’s With Friends Like These co-star Michael McKean noted, “Jon Polito could go very broad & very subtle, often in the same scene (see Man Who Wasn’t There). A wonderful actor & a great guy, too.” And Michael Rapaport, who worked with Polito in the films Grilled and 29 Palms, said, “Jon Polito was a great actor and great person. Iconic performance in Cohen Brothers Barton Fink.”
Harvey Fierstein, who guest starred with Polito on an episode of “Murder, She Wrote,” conveyed, “Jon Polito was a very dear man.” And Tony Todd expressed, “Jon Polito amazing, new yorker w a raspier voice than mine. Absolute pleasure appearing with u in #TheCrow and #Homicidelifeonthestreets.”
The late actor’s Last Shot co-star W. Earl Brown tweeted, “I did a film w Jon Polito. He was hilarious and personable. His off-camera demeanor was nothing like the gruff characters he often played.” Catherine Mary Stewart, who appeared with Polito on the ’90s TV series “Hearts Are Wild,” said, “So sad for the passing of my friend and wonderful actor Jon Polito. He’ll be missed terribly.”
“RIP Jon Polito. He was the best of the best and I learned a lot from him. A true comic genius and a great guy. He will be missed,” posted Stonestreet’s “Modern Family” co-star Jesse Tyler Ferguson. And Seth Meyers tweeted, “‘Whatsa matter? Somebody hit you?’ RIP Jon Polito.”
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