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Emmy-Award Winning Actor and Playwright Joseph Bologna, Dead at 82

Joseph Bologna, legendary actor, writer, and director has died at age 82. He is best known for his role in “My Favorite Year” and his extensive collaboration on the screen and stage with wife Renee Taylor. He lost his 3-year-long struggled with pancreatic cancer, in the City of Hope in Duare, California. This was just two days before his 52nd wedding anniversary.

One month before his death, he was able to attend the 35th anniversary screening of “My Favorite year” in Los Angeles. He played King Kaiser, the TV star in a comedy, which was inspired by Mel Brooks’ experiences as a young TV writer.

As US Magazine reports:

“He had a beautiful life and a beautiful death having fully and gratefully experienced three years since being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer at Cedars Sinai,” Taylor said in a statement, via Entertainment Weekly. “His team of doctors, who prolonged his life, were Dr. Roger Lerner and Dr. David Hoffman of Cedars Sinai, in Beverly Hills. For the last six months during the cancer’s most aggressive stage, Dr. Vincent Chung and Dr. Stefanie Mooney of City of Hope gave him back a wonderful quality of life by creating a personalized treatment and palliative care plan, so that he could receive a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Night of 100 Stars on February 26, of this year, take a month-long trip to his favorite place, Italy, with his family in June, and attend the 35th Anniversary celebration of My Favorite Year, on July 27th.”

Bologna spent much of his career working alongside his wife, with whom he wrote 22 plays, the 1971 hit film Made for Each Other, as well as 1996’s Love Is All There Is, which marked one of Angelina Jolie’s first roles in a feature film.

Bologna and Taylor won an Emmy award for writing Marlo Thomas TV special Acts of Love and Other Comedies. The late multihyphenate, who was nominated for an Oscar for 1970’s Love and Other Strangers, also acted in a variety of television roles, including Top of the Heap and Rags to Riches.

Bologna’s final piece of work, which he wrote and starred in, is Tango Shalom. It is currently in post production. Co-starring Taylor and Karina Smirnoff, while Bologna’s daughter, Zizi, serves as the music supervisor and his son, Gabriel, directed it.

What a tragic loss of a Hollywood legend. Let us pray for Bologna’s family during this difficult time. Rest in peace.

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