Known for many roles on the big and small screens, actor George Segal has passed away. The veteran actor died at age 87 on Tuesday morning due to complications from bypass surgery.
Among his notable roles were his work in the film Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and more recently, starring roles in the popular TV sitcoms Just Shoot Me! and The Goldbergs.
Following Segal’s passing, many fans, family, friends, and colleagues paid tribute to the Academy Award-nominated actor.
George Segal’s early career included stage and screen
While many fans know George Segal for recently playing “Pops” on ABC’s sitcom The Goldbergs, he also starred in dramatic roles, including one that earned him an Oscar nomination.
George Segal was born in New York City in 1934 and was the youngest of four children. After attending college and the army, his acting career began in the 1950s as Segal studied at the Actors Studio in the Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood of New York City. His first experience in acting came in 1965 as he was an understudy in an off-Broadway production of The Iceman Cometh starring Jason Robards.
He’d continue working in Broadway into the early 1960’s with parts in Antony and Cleopatra, Gideon, and Rattle of a Simple Man.
A film contract with Columbia Pictures arrived in the early 1960s and won him a Golden Globe Award for New Star of the Year. That award was for his role as Dr. Tony “Shiv” Parelli in the medical drama, The New Interns.
It was his role as Nick in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? that brought him even more career praise. Segal was nominated for the Best Supporting Actor award at both the Golden Globes and the Academy Awards in 1967 for his work in the film. Seven years later, he’d go on to win Best Actor in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy at the Golden Globes for his work in A Touch of Class.
Segal’s resume included notable roles in sitcoms
While his earlier career included dramatic roles, Segal appeared in notable comedy films in the late 1980s into the mid-1990s. Those included Look Who’s Talking and its sequel starring John Travolta and The Cable Guy starring Jim Carey.
Several big roles on TV sitcoms became Segal’s most notable parts in the years that followed. From 1997 into 2003, Segal played the role of Jack Gallo on the popular sitcom Just Shoot Me!, also starring David Spade, Wendie Mallick, and Laura San Giacomo.
He’d make another major splash in the sitcom world appearing on the throwback 1980s-themed The Goldbergs. Segal portrayed Albert “Pops” Solomon on the sitcom which premiered in 2013 and has now run for eight seasons on ABC.
Segal survived by his wife, two daughters
Based on an obituary via The Guardian, Segal is survived by his wife Sonia, and two daughters from his first marriage, Polly and Elizabeth.
Segal married his high school sweetheart, Sonia Schultz Greenbaum, in 1998. Segal was married twice previously, with a 27-year marriage to producer/writer Marion Sobel that ended in 1983 and a marriage to Linda Rogoff in 1983. Rogoff passed away in 1996.
According to CNN’s report, Segal’s wife Sonia announced her husband’s passing via a statement released on Tuesday, March 23.
“The family is devastated to announce that this morning George Segal passed away due to complications from bypass surgery,” she said in a statement provided by Sony Television.
Barbara Streisand, David Spade, Goldbergs creator pay tribute to George Segal
Following the news of Segal’s passing, many fans, friends, and colleagues paid tribute to the actor through social media. That included singer and actress Barbara Streisand, who appeared in The Owl and the Pussycat film with Segal.
“So sorry to hear about George Segal’s passing. We had such fun making Owl and the Pussycat. May he Rest In Peace,” Streisand tweeted, also included a photo of her with Segal at an event.
Segal’s Just Shoot Me! co-star David Spade tweeted a photo of the cast along with a message in memory of the late actor.
“Rough news. Legendary #ripgeorge,” Spade wrote in his tweet.
Segal’s more recent castmate, Wendi McLendon-Covey, who plays the part of his daughter Beverly Goldberg on ABC’s The Goldbergs, shared a photo of herself with him, along with a heartfelt message.
“Didn’t know the last time I saw you would be the last time I see you,” McLendon-Covey said in the caption for her Instagram post.
Following the news of Segal’s death, Adam F. Goldberg, the creator and executive producer for ABC’s The Goldbergs also paid tribute to his sitcom’s star.
“Today we lost a legend. It was a true honor being a small part of George Segal’s amazing legacy. By pure fate, I ended up casting the perfect person to play Pops. Just like my grandfather, George was a kid at heart with a magical spark. I think these memories say it all…,” Goldberg tweeted along with a collage of images featuring Segal.
Among others paying their respects and sharing online tributes for George Segal included Bob Saget, Ben Stiller, Morgan Fairchild, Marlee Matlin, Jason Alexander, Elizabeth Banks, and writer/director Edgar Wright.
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