John Mahoney, best known as Martin Crane, father to Frasier and Niles on NBC’s long-running sitcom Frasier, passed away Sunday at the age of 77.
Mahoney was born in England in 1940 and moved to the United States as a young man. He began a career in stage acting in the late ’70s, then had a number of small TV and movie parts in the ’80s before his first major film role in 1987’s Barry Levinson-directed Tin Men.
Mahoney’s most memorable film role was perhaps Jim Court, upstanding-but-damning-secret-keeping father to Diane (Ione Skye) in Say Anything… His other major pre-Frasier credits include Moonstruck, Frantic, Eight Men Out, Barton Fink, and In the Line of Fire.
Then in 1993 came Frasier, in which he played a loving and patient father to two very different sons and one very cute Jack Russell Terrier. The show ran for 264 episodes until 2004, during which Mahoney earned two nominations each from the Emmys and Golden Globes.
Mahoney also appeared in the likes of The Hudsucker Proxy, Reality Bites, Primal Fear, Antz, The Iron Giant, Dan in Real Life, and Flipped. He was also a recurring guest star on the TV Land sitcom Hot in Cleveland.
Friends, co-stars, and fans chimed in with their remembrances on Twitter:
John singing at my wedding. Watch Moonstruck, Say Anything and/or Frasier or anything you can with him in it and raise a glass to John. Remember him well. pic.twitter.com/Tj3i5B4x13
— Peri Gilpin (@GilpinPeri) February 6, 2018
Great actor – lovely kind human -any time you saw him you left feeling better – RIP John … https://t.co/jHXPHm1dEb
— John Cusack (@johncusack) February 5, 2018
It is with our deepest sorrow that we share the news that ensemble member of 39 years John Mahoney passed away. Tonight’s opening night performance of You Got Older has been cancelled. We are instead inviting all to gather in Front Bar this evening. All are welcome to join us. pic.twitter.com/k8yrrR7ICA
— Steppenwolf Theatre (@SteppenwolfThtr) February 6, 2018
The great John Mahoney passed away today at age 77. I've not known a kinder man nor more brilliant actor. We were all blessed to have spent 11 glorious years together. pic.twitter.com/hn3SZwuEy4
— Jeff Greenberg (@JeffGreenbergCD) February 5, 2018
John Mahoney was 37 when he started acting.
Go do that thing you’re thinking about. #RIP
— John Ross Bowie (@JohnRossBowie) February 6, 2018