Marvin Kaplan, who was best known for starring in the sitcom “Alice” and for voice work on the animated series “Top Cat,” died in his sleep Thursday morning in Burbank, California. He was 89.
His death was announced in a statement by Theatre West, the oldest continually operating theater company in Los Angeles, of which he was a longtime member.
“It is with a sad and heavy heart to inform you our very own Marvin Kaplan passed away today at 5AM in his sleep,” the statement read. “There will be a memorial at the theatre, in addition to any other service held for him. We will send out more information as we receive it.
“We loved Marvin. He will truly be missed.”
Born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1927, Kaplan got his first role as the court reporter in “Adam’s Rib” in 1949, alongside Katherine Hepburn (who discovered him), Spencer Tracy and Judy Holliday.
He went on to play a phone lineman named Henry Beesmeyer who frequented Mel’s diner in the hit comedy “Alice” from 1977 to the series’ end in 1985.
Later, he worked as a voice actor on shows like “Garfield and Friends” and “Johnny Bravo,” and he had a role on the Ted Danson sitcom “Becker.”