Bruno Kirby, 57, dies

16

August

Kirby Bruno Kirby, one of the most underexposed but certainly not under-appreciated actors of his generation, died Monday in Los Angeles from complications related to leukemia. He was 57.

Some of his best movie roles came in the 80s and early 90s:

Where the Buffalo Roam (1980): Kirby plays Hunter Thompson's editor, based not so loosely on Jann Wenner of Rolling Stone.

This is Spinal Tap (1984): A quick cameo but big laughs as the band's limo driver. (Podcast)

Good Morning Vietnam (1987): A breakthrough role playing 2nd Lt. Steven Hauk, the straight man to Robin Williams. "Sir, in my heart, I know I'm funny." (46th funniest movie?)

When Harry Met Sally (1989): Another great job as Jess, Billy Crystal's best friend and love interest of Carrie Fischer. "You made a woman meow?" (Movie trivia | podcast)

The Freshman (1990): Maybe his best supporting role, playing Victor Ray, opposite Marlon Brando and Matthew Broderick, in the most underrated movie of the early 90s. "You know how big this is? Bacio di tutti baci... the kiss of all kisses."

City Slickers (1991): Maybe Billy Crystal brought out the best in Kirby, who reprises his best-friend role in this classic. "I like your a--. Can I wear it as a hat?"

"Bruno's spirit will continue to live on not only in his rich body of film and television work but also through the lives of individuals he has touched throughout his life," his wife, Lynn Sellers, said in a statement today.

[Publicity photo; click to enlarge]

[Last modified: Wednesday, June 9, 2010 2:19pm]

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