Jack Larson, Jimmy Olsen on ’50s Superman TV Show, Dead at 87

The actor also worked as librettist for composer Virgil Thomson and producer for his Oscar-nominated life partner, James Bridges

Last Updated: September 21, 2015 @ 6:49 AM

Jack Larson, who first rose to fame as Clark Kent’s bow-tied sidekick Jimmy Olsen on the 1950s syndicated TV series “Adventures of Superman,” died Sunday in Brentwood, Calif., at age 87.

Daunted by his early TV fame, he mostly shunned acting after the series ended due to star George Reeves’ sudden death in 1959.

He wrote several plays as well as librettos for operas, including one for composer Virgil Thompson (“Lord Byron”).

Larson, a California native, was also a pioneering figure in gay Hollywood. He was a longtime companion of actor Montgomery Clift and later of James Bridges, the Oscar-nominated writer-director of “The Paper Chase” and “China Syndrome,” who died in 1993.

Larson also helped produce several of Bridges’ later films, including “Mike’s Murder,” “Perfect” with John Travolta and Jamie Lee Curtis and “Bright Lights, Big City” with Michael J. Fox.