LOS ANGELES (AP) — Gavin MacLeod, the veteran supporting actor who achieved stardom as Murray Slaughter, the sardonic TV information author on “The Mary Tyler Moore Present,” earlier than occurring to even larger fame because the cheerful Capt. Stubing on “The Love Boat,” has died. He was 90.
MacLeod died early Saturday, his nephew, Mark See, advised Selection. MacLeod’s well being had been poor lately however no explanation for dying was given, the commerce publication reported.
Recognized to sitcom followers for his bald head and vast smile, MacLeod toiled in close to anonymity for greater than a decade, showing on dozens of TV exhibits and in a number of motion pictures earlier than touchdown his “Mary Tyler Moore” function in 1970.
He had initially examined for Moore’s TV boss, Lou Grant, an element that went to Ed Asner. Realizing he wasn’t proper for enjoying the blustery, short-tempered TV newsroom chief, MacLeod requested if he might attempt as an alternative for the wisecracking TV information author, his jokes usually on the expense of the dimwitted anchorman Ted Baxter.
“The Mary Tyler Moore Present” was a smash from the beginning and stays a basic of scenario comedies. It produced two spinoffs, “Rhoda” and “Phyllis,” starring Valerie Harper and Cloris Leachman, who had portrayed Mary’s neighbors.
It was nonetheless top-rated when Moore, who performed information producer Mary Richards, determined to finish it after seven seasons.
MacLeod moved on to “The Love Boat,” a romantic comedy wherein visitor stars, starting from Gene Kelly to Janet Jackson, would come aboard for a cruise and fall in love with each other.
Though scorned by critics, the sequence proved immensely standard, lasting 11 seasons and spinning off a number of TV motion pictures, together with two wherein MacLeod remained on the cruise ship’s helm. It additionally resulted in his being employed as a TV pitchman for Princess Cruise Traces.
“The critics hated it. They referred to as it senseless TV, however we grew to become goodwill ambassadors,” he advised the Los Angeles Occasions in 2013.
Amongst his remaining TV credit have been “Touched by An Angel,” “JAG” and “The King of Queens.”
MacLeod’s lighthearted display persona was in distinction to his personal life. In his 2013 memoir, “This Is Your Captain Talking,” MacLeod acknowledged that he had struggled with alcoholism within the Nineteen Sixties and ’70s. He additionally wrote that dropping his hair at an early age made it laborious for him to seek out work as an actor.
“I went throughout city in search of an agent, however nobody was inquisitive about representing a younger man with a bald head,” he wrote. “I knew what I wanted to do. I wanted to purchase myself a hairpiece.” A toupee modified his luck “fairly shortly.” By center age, he didn’t want the toupee.
MacLeod, whose given title was Allan See, took his first title from a French film and his final from a drama trainer at New York’s Ithaca School who had inspired him to pursue an performing profession.
After faculty, the Mount Kisco, New York-native grew to become a supporting participant in “A Hatful of Rain” and different Broadway performs, and in such movies as “I Wish to Stay!” and “Operation Petticoat.”
He made visitor appearances on TV exhibits all through the Nineteen Sixties, together with “Hogan’s Heroes,” “Hawaii 5-O” and “The Dick Van Dyke Present.” He additionally appeared on “McHale’s Navy” from 1962 to 1964 as seaman Joseph “Completely happy” Haines.
One main function he auditioned for: Archie Bunker in “All within the Household.” However he shortly realized that the character, immortalized by Carol O’Conner, was fallacious for him. “Instantly I assumed, ‘This isn’t the script for me. The character is an excessive amount of of a bigot.’ I can’t say these items,” MacLeod wrote in his memoir.
Different film credit included “Kelly’s Heroes,” “The Sand Pebbles” and “The Sword of Ali Baba.”
MacLeod had 4 youngsters along with his first spouse, Joan Rootvik, whom he divorced in 1972. He was the son of an alcoholic and his consuming issues helped result in a second divorce, to Patti Steele. However after MacLeod stop consuming, he and Steele remarried in 1985.
The couple later hosted a Christian radio present referred to as “Again on Course: A Ministry for Marriages.”
The late AP Leisure Author Bob Thomas contributed biographical materials to this story.