Leah Remini, Kevin James, Jason Alexander and More Remember Jerry Stiller
Jerry Stiller’s former costars and famous friends took to social media after news of his death broke on Monday, May 11.
The 92-year-old actor’s son, Ben Stiller, announced via Twitter that Jerry died from natural causes.
“He was a great dad and grandfather, and the most dedicated husband to Anne for about 62 years,” the Zoolander star tweeted. “He will be greatly missed. Love you Dad.”
Jerry’s passing comes nearly five years after his wife, Anne Meara, died in May 2015. She was 85.
After years of performing alongside Meara on The Ed Sullivan Show and The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, Jerry started to work with Ben, now 54, on a series of films. He’s most well-known, however, for his roles as Frank Costanza on Seinfeld and Arthur Spooner on King of Queens.
“I was not the first father on Seinfeld. There was another father, whom I replaced,” Jerry recalled to Esquire in 2005. “I was out of work at the time. My manager had retired. I was close to 70 years old and I had nowhere to go. I get this chance on Seinfeld. I hadn’t even seen the show. The idea was for Estelle Harris, who was the screamer, to be the boss lady of the Costanza family. And I was supposed to be her Thurberesque husband. The part called for me to wear a bald wig to look like George and to act very meek. But after a couple of days I realized that acting meek was going to get me fired just like the last guy. On the fourth day, I said to Larry David, ‘This ain’t workin’. Can I do it my way?’”
Jerry earned an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series for his role as George Costanza’s (Jason Alexander) dad on the popular sitcom. After Seinfeld wrapped, Jerry landed a starring role alongside Kevin James and Leah Remini on the comedy The King of Queens. He played Remini’s dad, Arthur, for nine seasons. The show’s series finale aired n 2007.
Jerry is survived by Ben and daughter Amy, who is also an actress and comedy writer.
“You’ll always know if I’m in the audience when Ben or our daughter, Amy, is performing,” Jerry told Esquire in 2005. “I’m the one laughing loudest.”
Scroll through to read the sweet tributes to the late actor:
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