April 16, 2020: Tony award-winning actor Brian Dennehy, known for his roles in films including “First Blood”, “Cocoon” and “Tommy Boy,” died at the age of 81.
Actress Elizabeth Dennehy, his daughter confirmed his death on Twitter Thursday. “It is with heavy hearts we announce that our father, Brian passed away last night from natural causes, not Covid-related,”. “Larger than life, generous to a fault, a proud and devoted father and grandfather, he will be missed by his wife Jennifer, family and many friends.”
Brian Dennehy won his first Tony Award in 1999 for his performance in the leading role of Willy Loman in the revival of the Arthur Miller classic, “Death of a Salesman” for which he also won a Laurence Olivier Award for the production’s London run. His second Tony Award in 2003 was for his role as James Tyrone in the Eugene O’Neill revival “Long Day’s Journey Into Night”.
April through June 2012, he played the role of Larry Slade in the Eugene O’Neill play The Iceman Cometh at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago, which he reprised in 2015 when the production, with most of the Goodman Theater production cast, was revived at the BAM Harvey Theater in Brooklyn, NY.
Brian Dennehy, began his television acting career with guest roles on shows like M*A*S*H”,”Kojak”, “Lou Grant,” and “Dallas.” Later he landed a recurring role on “Dynasty.”
His breakout movie role was as Sheriff Teasle opposite Sylvester Stallone in the 1982 Rambo film, “First Blood.” His most notable comedic role was playing Big Tom Callahan in the 1995 Chris Farley film “Tommy Boy.” Other notable films roles included appearing in “Gorky Park,” “Silverado,” and “F/X” and its sequel.
The actor won his first Tony in 1999 for his performance in the leading role of Willy Loman in the revival of the Arthur Miller classic, “Death of a Salesman.” He won a second Tony for his role as James Tyrone in the Eugene O’Neill revival “Long Day’s Journey Into Night” in 2003.
Dennehy is survived by his wife, Jennifer Arnott, and his five children Elizabeth, Kathleen, Sarah, Cormack, and Deirdre.