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      Dick Latessa

      Dick Latessa

      Highest Rated: 73% The Great New Wonderful (2005)

      Lowest Rated: 22% Stigmata (1999)

      Birthday: Sep 15, 1929

      Birthplace: Cleveland, Ohio, USA

      Actor Dick Latessa was a staple of Broadway musicals and comedies for more than four decades, including his Tony-winning turn in "Hairspray" and numerous productions of Neil Simon's comedies. Born Richard Robert Latessa on September 15, 1929 in Cleveland, Ohio, he took dance lessons as a young man, but harbored no interest in a performing career until his late 20s, when a musical performance at a theater in Cleveland inspired to audition for a role. Latessa left the Midwest for New York in 1959; there, he appeared in Off-Broadway and touring productions until making his Broadway debut opposite Tom Bosley in the 1968 musical "The Education of H*Y*M*A*N K*A*P*L*A*N." Latessa also began his screen acting career during this period with guest roles on series like "Get Smart" (NBC/CBS, 1965-1970) and "Ironside" (NBC, 1967-1975) and a year-long run on "The Edge of Night" (ABC/CBS, 1956-1984). But Broadway remained his most consistent and heralded showcase, most notably in musicals like the 1971 Broadway production of "Follies" and the plays of Neil Simon, including the original Broadway runs of "Chapter Two" (1977-1979) "I Ought to Be in Pictures" (1980-1981) and "Brighton Beach Memoirs" (1983-1986). Latessa continued to log numerous appearances on television series and the occasional in the 1980s and '90s, including "The Substance of Fire" (1996) and "The Sopranos" (HBO, 1999-2007) before creating the role of the eccentric but affectionate Wilbur Turnblad opposite Harvey Fierstein in the original Broadway run of "Hairspray in 2002. Latessa remained with the show for more than 1,000 performances and won both the Tony and Drama Desk Awards for his performance. His prolific stage and screen career continued into the new millennium with appearances in the 2010 Broadway revival of Simon's "Promises, Promises" and "The Lyons" in 2012. The latter proved to be his final stage role, while an appearance in the Bravo comedy series "Odd Mom Out" (2015- ) in 2015 marked his last turn on television. Latessa died of heart failure on December 19, 2016 at the age of 87; news of his passing drew heartfelt tributes from the city's theater community.

      Highest rated movies

      The Great New Wonderful poster
      The Great New Wonderful
      Alfie poster Alfie The Event poster
      The Event
      The Last New Yorker poster
      The Last New Yorker
      Stigmata poster Stigmata

      Filmography

      Movies

      Credit
      No Score Yet 50% A Buddy Story Grandfather (Character) - 2010
      36% 29% The Last New Yorker Ruben (Character) $6.6K 2006
      73% 45% The Great New Wonderful Jerry (Character) $150.1K 2005
      48% 51% Alfie Joe (Character) $13.4M 2004
      44% 52% The Event Uncle Leo (Character) $35.5K 2003
      22% 63% Stigmata Father Gianni Delmonico (Character) $50.0M 1999
      No Score Yet 33% Thicker Than Blood Ciccilone (Character) - 1998
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Rockabye Malcolm Sterling (Character) - 1986
      No Score Yet 60% Izzy and Moe Lt. Murphy (Character) - 1985
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Pudd'nhead Wilson Creech (Character) - 1984

      TV

      Credit
      78% 89% Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Judge Marcus Ridiger (Guest Star) 2010
      93% 91% The Good Wife Judge Horace Dunn (Guest Star) 2009
      79% No Score Yet Brotherhood Walter (Guest Star) 2007
      40% 100% The Black Donnellys Unknown (Guest Star) 2007
      No Score Yet 96% Law & Order Unknown (Guest Star) 1990 1993 1997 2002-2003
      25% No Score Yet Talk to Me Unknown (Guest Star) 2000
      No Score Yet No Score Yet Soul Man Unknown (Guest Star) 1998
      No Score Yet No Score Yet True Blue Detective Mike Duffy (Character) 1989-1990
      No Score Yet 50% Get Smart Unknown (Guest Star) 1968