Actor, writer and comic Robert Breck Denny Jr., who was a member of The Groundlings Theatre in Los Angeles, died this week in Santa Barbara, California, his family said Friday.
Denny died of a rare spontaneous splenic artery rupture, which has a 40% fatality rate, according to Oxford Academic’s Journal of Surgical Case Reports.
The Groundlings Sunday Company shared this statement with TheWrap: “Our hearts are heavy with the loss of Breck Denny, a senior member of our Sunday Company, who passed away unexpectedly on Monday. He has been a part of the Groundlings community for many years, was a fantastic performer, and was one of the nicest, funniest people you’d ever meet. He will be missed immensely, and our thoughts go out to his family and friends.”
The comedy troupe also paid tribute to Denny on Instagram with a series of videos, writing, “This is a hard post, an awful devastating post to make. We lost one of our cast members, our brother. The talented funny insanely unique Breck Denny. We will miss you so much but you are our family forever. Ohana means family. Rest In Peace Do-Man.”
Denny’s many TV credits include guest appearances on “The Shrink Next Door,” “Ratched,” and “Curb Your Enthusiasm.”
He graduated from New York University with a creative writing degree and went into comedy writing and acting, according to his Groundlings bio. His play “Nickel Dickers” won Encore! Producer’s Award at the 2018 Hollywood Fringe Festival.
He also wrote, produced and and starred in the 2019 short film “The Last Piece,” directed by Will Lowell, and starred in the digital series “The Friendless Five.”
His commercial work also includes spots for Ford, Progressive, and Mike’s Hard Lemonade.
Denny is survived by fiancée Emily Levitan, Director of Original Series at Netflix. The couple announced their engagement in July 2021 on Instagram.
His parents, Robert Breck Denny Sr. and Ninna Denny; sisters Liza Oneglia, Carter Denny Adams and Louise Denny Considine, have requested, in lieu of flowers, that donations be made to The Groundlings Theatre & School in Los Angeles or Kieve Wavus Education and donating blood to Vitalant in California or the Red Cross in other states.