Ed Asner was an American actor as well as a voice artist who was famous for portraying the character of ‘Lou Grant’ in the sitcom “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” (1970-1977) and its spin-off drama TV series “Lou Grant” (1977-1982). He had also served as the President of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) from November 1981 to June 1985. In addition, he also appeared in the TV mini-series “Rich Man, Poor Man” (1976) and “Roots” (1977). His notable performances in films include Bart Jason in “El Dorado” (1967), Santa Claus in “Elf” (2003), and Carl Fredricksen in “Up” (2007). Besides his success in acting, he was also known for his political activism and philanthropy. During his lifetime, he was involved with several non-profit organizations including the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, Rosenberg Fund for Children, and Defenders of Wildlife among others. In 2020, he had a recurring role as James Staghorne Sr. on “Briarpatch”.
Actor, Ed Asner dies at 91
Ed Asner, famous for playing fictional TV newsman Lou Grant died at the age of 91. The actor, whose roles also included voicing the lead in the Pixar film Up, passed away “peacefully” on Sunday morning, his family said. “Words cannot express the sadness we feel. With a kiss on your head – goodnight dad. We love you.” Comedy actor Ben Stiller added: “Sending love to the great Ed Asner’s family. An icon because he was such a beautiful, funny, and totally honest actor. No one like him.”
Cause of Death
Ed Asner dies at his home in the Tarzana neighborhood of Los Angeles on 29th August 2021, at the age of 91. His death cause is due to natural causes.
- Being an American actor and a president of the Screen Actors Guild.
- For playing Lou Grant during the 1970s and early 1980s, on both The Mary Tyler Moore Show and its spin-off series Lou Grant,
What Ethnicity was Ed Asner?
Ed Asner was born with the birth name of Eddie Asner on 15th November 1929. His born place was in Kansas City, Missouri, the United States whereas he was residing in Los Angeles, California, United States. He held American nationality and he came from Mixed ethnicity. He was of Ashkenazi Jewish (Russian and Lithuanian) descent. His race was White. Scorpio was his Zodiac sign and he was a follower of the Christianity religion. He lastly celebrated his 91st birthday as of 2020. He was born to his father, Morris David Asner (Entrepreneur, Shop and Junkyard Owner) (d. May 1957) and his mother Elizabeth ‘Lizzie’ Asner (née Seliger) (d. January 1967). He had four siblings; Benjamin James Asner (Older Brother) (d. 1986), Eve Asner (Older Sister) (d. 2014), Esther Edelman (Older Sister) (d. 2014), Labe Asner (Older Brother) (d. 2017). He was raised in an Orthodox Jewish family and given the Hebrew name Yitzhak.
About his education, Ed graduated from Wyandotte High School in Kansas City, Kansas. He had then attended The University of Chicago where he studied journalism. He also served with the U.S. Army Signal Corps from 1951 to 1953 and appeared in plays that toured Army bases in Europe.
Ed Asner Career Timeline and Life Story
- Ed Asner, at the beginning of his career, made frequent guest appearances with the successor to Compass, “The Second City”.
- Then, he played Jonathan Jeremiah Peachum in the Off-Broadway revival of “Threepenny Opera”, as well as in “Face of a Hero” alongside Jack Lemmon in 1960.
- He made his TV debut in 1957 on “Studio One”.
- He played Detective Sgt. Thomas Siroleo in the 1963 episode of ‘The Outer Limits’ titled “It Crawled Out of the Woodwork” and the reprehensible ex-premier Brynov in the 1965 ‘Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea’ episode “The Exile.”
- He made his film debut in 1962, in the Elvis Presley vehicle “Kid Galahad”.
- He guest-starred in TV series including the syndicated crime drama “Decoy” as well as in “Route 66” in the year 1962.
- He was cast on Jack Lord’s ABC drama series “Stoney Burke” and in the series finale of CBS’s “The Reporter”.
- He also appeared on “Mr. Novak”, “Mission: Impossible”, “The Outer Limits”, “The Fugitive”, and “The Invaders”. He also played a minor character in the children’s television show “W.I.T.C.H.”
- In the year 1963, he appeared as George Johnson on “The Virginian” in the episode “Echo of Another Day”.
- He was best known for his character Lou Grant on “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” in the year 1970.
- In the year 1977, after Moore’s series ended, Asner’s character was given his own show, “Lou Grant” (1977-82). The Lou Grant series was an hour-long award-winning drama about newspaper journalism (for his role as Grant, Asner was one of only two actors to win an Emmy Award for a sitcom and a drama for the same role, with the second being Uzo Aduba).
- He also made appearances as Lou Grant on two other shows: “Rhoda” and “Roseanne”.
- Moreover, he appeared in “Thunder Alley”, “The Bronx Zoo”, and “Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip”.
- He also starred in one episode of the western series “Dead Man’s Gun” (1997), as well as portraying art smuggler August March in an episode of the original “Hawaii Five-O” (1975) and reprised the role in the “Hawaii Five-0” (2012) remake.
- He also appeared as a veteran streetwise officer in an episode of the 1973 version of “Police Story”.
- He was acclaimed for his role in the ABC miniseries “Roots” as Captain Davies which earned Asner an Emmy Award.
- He appeared in the miniseries “Rich Man, Poor Man” (1976) and also played a former pontiff in the lead role of “Papa Giovanni: Ioannes XXIII” (Pope John XXIII 2002), an Italian television film for RAI.
- He also provided the voices for Joshua on “Joshua and the Battle of Jericho” (1986) for Hanna-Barbera, J. Jonah Jameson on the 1990s animated television series “Spider-Man” (1994-98); Hoggish Greedly on “Captain Planet and the Planeteers” (1990-95); Hudson on “Gargoyles” (1994-96); Jabba the Hutt on the radio version of “Star Wars”; Master Vrook from “Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic” and its sequel; Roland Daggett on “Batman: The Animated Series” (1992-94); Cosgrove on “Freakazoid!”; Ed Wuncler on “The Boondocks” (2005-14); and Granny Goodness in various DC Comics animated series.
- He also provided the voice of famed American orator Edward Everett in the 2017 documentary film “The Gettysburg Address”.
- He provided the voice of Carl Fredricksen in the Academy Award-winning Pixar film “Up” (2009).
- He appeared in the mid-to a late-2000s decade in a recurring segment on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno”, entitled “Does This Impress Ed Asner?”
- He was also cast in a Country Music Television comedy pilot, “Regular Joe”.
- In July 2010, he completed recording sessions for “Shattered Hopes: The True Story of the Amityville Murders”; a documentary on the 1974 DeFeo murders in Amityville, New York.
- In 2010, he played the title role in “FDR”, a stage production about the life of Franklin Delano Roosevelt.
- In January 2011, he took a supporting role on CMT’s first original sitcom “Working Class.”
- He then made an appearance in the independent comedy feature “Not Another B Movie”, and had a role as billionaire Warren Buffett in HBO’s economic drama “Too Big to Fail” (2011).
- In the year 2013, he guest-starred as Mr. Finger in “The Crazy Ones”.
- He provided voice-over narration for many documentaries and films about social activism, including “Tiger by the Tail”, a documentary film detailing the efforts of Eric Mann and the Campaign to keep General Motors’ Van Nuys assembly plant running.
- He recorded for a public radio show and podcast, “Playing On Air”, appearing in Warren Leight’s ‘The Final Interrogation of Ceaucescu’s Dog’ with Jesse Eisenberg, and Mike Reiss’s New York Story.
- He was the voice-over narrator for the 2016 documentary “Behind the Fear: The Hidden Story of HIV”, directed by Nicole Zwiren, a controversial study on the AIDS debate.
- A 2014 documentary titled “My Friend Ed”, directed by Sharon Baker was focused on the actor’s life and career which won Best Short Documentary at the New York City Independent Film Festival.
- In the year 2018, he was cast in the Netflix dark comedy, “Dead to Me”, which premiered on 3rd May 2019. In the year 2018, he portrayed Johnny Lawrence’s step-father, Sid Weinberg, in a guest role on the series “Cobra Kai”.
- In 2020, he guest-starred in an episode of “Modern Family” and in 2021 played himself in a sketch on “Let’s Be Real”.
- Ed Asner was also political activist who played a prominent role in the 1980 SAG strike. He was also active in a variety of other causes, such as the movement to free Mumia Abu-Jamal and the movement to establish California One Care, single-payer health care in California, for which he created a television advertisement. He endorsed Barack Obama during the 2008 United States presidential election. He was formerly a member of the Democratic Socialist Organizing Committee (DSOC) and was a member of DSOC’s successor, the Democratic Socialists of America.
- He endorsed Democratic candidate Marcy Winograd in the 2011 California’s 36th congressional district special election.
- He also voiced support for 9/11 conspiracy theories. In the year 2004, he signed a statement released by the conspiracy theorist organization 9/11 Truth that called for a new investigation into the September 11 attacks. He also narrated the documentary film The Oil Factor: Behind the War on Terror.
Awards and Achievements
Ed Asner was the most honored male performer in the history of the Primetime Emmy Awards, having won seven – five for portraying Lou Grant (three as Supporting Actor in a Comedy Television Series on The Mary Tyler Moore Show and two as Lead Actor in a Dramatic Television Series on spin-off Lou Grant). His other Emmys were for performances in two television miniseries: Rich Man, Poor Man (1976), where he won for Outstanding Lead Actor for a Single Performance in a TV series, and Roots (1977), for which he won for Outstanding Single Performance by a Supporting Actor in a TV series. In 2001, Asner was the recipient of the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award.
Who is Ed Asner’s Wife?
Ed Asner was a married man. Firstly, he married his first wife, Nancy Sykes on 23rd March 1959. Ed began dating Nancy Sykes in 1957. They have 3 children together; twins named Matthew Asner (Film Producer) and Liza Asner, and another daughter named Kathryn ‘Kate’ Asner (b. September 17, 1966) (Actress). They later split in 1988. Through his brief relationship with Carol Jean Vogelman, he has a son named Charles Edward Vogelman (b. 1987). He then started dating film producer Cindy Gilmore in the year 1990 and they got engaged in the year 1991. The couple got married on 2nd August 1998. They filed for divorce in the year 2015. After that, there is no news and rumors about his dating anyone. His sexual orientation was straight and he was not gay.
How much was Ed Asner Net Worth?
Ed Asner was an award-winning actor whose net worth was estimated to have $10 Million. He had made a huge amount of money by appearing in numerous movies and TV shows. He had been featured in a TV commercial for the solar energy equipment supplier Verengo Solar (2012). Whereas it is unknown how much Asner actually made on each of his individual projects, the popularity of the projects in which he participated, like “Up” and “The Mary Tyler Moore Show”. As a recent 2015 report by Deadline suggests, Asner made no salary while serving as the president of the Screen Actors Guild, though he likely would have accepted reimbursed expenses that amounted to thousands of dollars. In 2019, Asner’s old ranch-style home in Studio City, California sold for $1.955 million. Asner first purchased the property, which consists of vaulted ceilings, French doors, a luxurious pool, and other lavish accessories, for $540,000 in 1996, according to the Los Angeles Times. At present, it is unclear who will inherit Asner’s fortune. He was living a luxurious lifestyle prior to his death.
How tall was Ed Asner?
Ed Asner was a handsome actor who had a height of 5 ft 7 in or 170 cm. Her balanced weight consisted of 80 Kg or 176.5 lbs. His hair color was gray and his eye color was green. He had an affable smile with a puffy face and he had a gravelly voice. His other body measurements are unavailable at a moment. His body type was average.