Character actor Joe Mantell, best known for his Oscar-nominated role in 1955's "Marty," died after a long illness Thursday at the age of 94.
It was Mantell who gave Ernest Bognine the iconic line, “Well, what do you feel like doin’ tonight?” — and did the same with Rod Steiger in the original 1953 television version.
Initially a stage actor, Mantell made his big screen debut as a newsboy in Joseph H. Lewis' 1949 “The Undercover Man.” He also played the lead in “Guilty Witness” on “Alfred Hitchcock Presents” and worked with Jerry Lewis in the film “The Sad Sack.”
In the 1960s, he had a recurring part on the CBS series “Pete and Gladys” and starred in two episodes of Rod Serling‘s “The Twilight Zone,” playing a small-time criminal with a guilty conscience in “Nervous Man in a Four Dollar Room” and a promoter representing a mechanic boxer in “Steel.”
In “Nervous Man,” he lectured a mirror — “You talkin’ to me? You talkin’ to me? Oh yeah. Yeah, sure you are” — years before Robert De Niro did the same in “Taxi Driver.”
He also appeared in Hitchcock’s “The Birds” and Jack Nicholson's partner in “Chinatown” and its sequel, "The Two Jakes."
He is survived by his wife Mary, daughters Jeannie and Cathy, son Robert, daughter-in-law Glei, and grandchildren Liam and Kyler. A private service is planned for Sunday.