“Comedian and actor Dom DeLuise has passed away at the age of 75, according to TMZ.com and Entertainment Tonight. He is reported to have died in his sleep around 6 P.M. on Monday at a Los Angeles hospital.
At press time, a representative for DeLuise could not immediately be reached for confirmation.
Throughout the 1960s, DeLuise appeared in various television programs, including a variety show with Carol Burnett and Bob Newhart, and spent many years on “The Dean Martin Show.” In 1968, his own program, “The Dom DeLuise Show,” debuted on CBS. For several years in the early ’90s, DeLuise hosted “Candid Camera.”
DeLuise’s first notable film role was in Oscar-winning director Sidney Lumet’s 1964 movie, “Fail Safe.” But DeLuise’s film career took off with the help of Mel Brooks, who cast him in “The Twelve Chairs,” “Blazing Saddles” and “History of the World: Part I”; in the latter, which he had a memorable and hilarious turn as the lascivious, wine-guzzling Emperor Nero. He appeared with Gene Wilder in “The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes’ Smarter Brother” and “The World’s Greatest Lover.”
DeLuise was a frequent co-star of Burt Reynolds, appearing in films like “The End,” “Smokey and the Bandit II” and “The Cannonball Run.” He also supplied his vocal talents to animated films such as “An American Tail” and “All Dogs Go to Heaven.” DeLuise made his directorial debut in 1973 with “Hot Stuff.”
Reynolds released a statement to ET on Tuesday morning (May 5). “I was thinking the other day about this. As you get older you think about this more and more, I was dreading this moment. Dom always made everyone feel better when he was around. I never heard him say an unkind word about anyone. I will miss him very much,” Reynolds said in the statement.
Aside from film and TV, DeLuise is known for his work in the kitchen and has published several cookbooks, including “Eat This…It’ll Make You Feel Better!” As an author, he’s also published numerous children’s books.
DeLouise was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1933. He attended the School of Performing Arts in Manhattan and Tufts University.
He was married to the comedian and actress Carol Arthur. They have three sons, Peter, Michael and David.”