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RIP Peter Boyle

Silent Bob

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:eh: Another sad entry in our growing list of Hollywood great obituaries.



Peter Boyle



Peter Boyle, the hulking, snappish actor who started out his career as a tough but gained fame for his comedic roles as the Monster in Young Frankenstein and the irascible father on Everybody Loves Raymond, died yesterday in New York; he was 71. In news reports on Wednesday morning, Boyle's publicist stated that the actor passed away at New York Presbyterian Hospital after suffering from from multiple myeloma and heart disease. (The actor had suffered a stroke in 1990, and a heart attack in 1999.) A Christian Brothers monk who taught drama before turning to acting himself, Boyle honed his craft with both the Second City Chicago ensemble and famed acting teacher Uta Hagen. Bit roles soon gave way to a starring role in the Vietnam-era drama Joe, where he played a misanthropic factory worker; in the early '70s, he also had supporting roles in The Friends of Eddie Coyle, The Candidate, and Steelyard Blues. Boyle overcame his rather ominous appearance and brooding presence with a phenomenal comic turn in Mel Brooks's Young Frankenstein, where as the Monster he was the he perfect foil to the manic actors surrounding him, including Marty Feldman and Madeline Kahn, and stood out in two memorable scenes: one where he stumbled across a blind man (Gene Hackman) living alone in a cottage, and a show-stopping musical number with Gene Wilder, where the two performed a hilarious version of "Putting on the Ritz."


Boyle continued in character actor roles throughout his career, appearing in hard-hitting dramas, raucous comedies, and action flicks alike; very few actors could claim a range that put them in films as disparate as Taxi Driver and While You Were Sleeping throughout their career. Winning an Emmy for a guest turn on the sci-fi series The X-Files in 1996, Boyle was cast that year as cantankerous patriarch Frank Barone in the Ray Romano sitcom Everybody Loves Raymond. The show made him a household name and comedy television fixture, earning him seven Emmy nominations but never a win. In stark contrast to his TV role, his chilling turn as a racist former cop in 2001's Monster's Ball demonstrated that Boyle could still play intense drama as well as light-hearted comedy. Most recently, he appeared in The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause and the upcoming drama Shadows of Atticus. Boyle is survived by his wife, Loraine Alterman (whom he met on the set of Young Frankenstein), and their two daughters.



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