King Kaiser has left the building. Oscar-nominated screenwriter and actor Joseph Bologna passed away over the weekend. He was 82. The multi-talented actor played the Sid Caesar-ish character in the classic comedy My Favorite Year. Bologna was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer three years ago and took a turn for the worse over the last few months.
His 60-year career included many popular films that he helped write and/or starred in Transylvania 6-5000, Blame It On Rio, Big Daddy, Ice Age: The Meltdown and the musical Rags to Riches. As a writer, he was credited for Woman of the Year, Lovers and Other Strangers, Paradise and Good Penny. He was also a recipient of the Night of 100 Stars Oscar Gala Lifetime Achievement Award for his work in Hollywood.
Bologna was also part of the DC Universe, as he voiced the character of Dan Turpin in Superman: The Animated Series in 1997-1998. He would lend his talents to 12 episodes plus the Batman Superman Movie: World’s Finest.
His wife of 52 years, Renée Taylor, released this statement:
“He had a beautiful life and a beautiful death having fully and gratefully experienced three years since being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer at Cedars Sinai. His team of doctors, who prolonged his life, were Dr. Roger Lerner and Dr. David Hoffman of Cedars Sinai, in Beverly Hills. For the last six months during the cancer’s most aggressive stage, Dr. Vincent Chung and Dr. Stefanie Mooney of City of Hope gave him back a wonderful quality of life by creating a personalized treatment and palliative care plan, so that he could receive a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Night of 100 Stars on February 26, of this year, take a month-long trip to his favorite place, Italy, with his family in June, and attend the 35th Anniversary celebration of My Favorite Year, on July 27th.”
Bologna’s last project is the upcoming Tango Shalom, which he wrote and starred in with his wife. His daughter Zizi Bologna is the film’s music supervisor and his son Gabriel Bologna is the director.