Jon Polito, Veteran Coen Brothers Character Actor, Dead At 65

He appeared in five films directed by the duo.
Jon Polito as a guest star on ABC's "Desperate Housewives" circa 2005.
Jon Polito as a guest star on ABC's "Desperate Housewives" circa 2005.

Jon Polito, an actor best known for his collaborations with the Coen Brothers, died on Thursday night after an eight-year battle with multiple myeloma, TMZ was first to report. He was 65 years old.

According to the gossip site, Polito slipped into a coma almost a week prior to his death after suffering complications from a recent surgery, as well as issues stemming from arthritis.

Over the course of his 35 years in the film industry, Polito starred in almost 100 films and found extensive television work in roles for series such as “Homicide: Life on the Street” and, more recently, “Modern Family.”

“Jon was a born actor and will be deeply missed by his legion of friends, fans, family and of course his long time partner, Darryl Armbruster to whom I send my condolences,” “Homicide” director John McNaughton wrote on Facebook. He concluded: “R.I.P. old pal.”

Polito’s true legacy, however, lies in his work with the Coen Brothers, with whom he worked on five films: “Miller’s Crossing” (1990), “Barton Fink” (1991), “The Hudsucker Proxy” (1994), “The Big Lebowski” (1998) and “The Man Who Wasn’t There” (2001).

 The actor is survived by his longtime partner, Darryl Armbruster.

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that Polito had melanoma for eight years. He had multiple myeloma.



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