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Robert Michael Morris Dies: ‘The Comeback’ Actor Was 77

Deadline logo Deadline 5/30/2017 Denise Petski
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Playwright, director, teacher and actor Robert Michael Morris, best known for playing the lovable Mickey Dean on HBO’s The Comeback, died Tuesday. He was 77. The cause of death was not immediately known.

Morris began his acting career as a member of the Catholic University Repertory Company before shifting his focus to academics. After many years as a theater teacher in high schools and colleges across the U.S., he moved back to New York City where he worked in commercials and off-Broadway, most notably in the NY production of Cary Churchill Cloud Nine directed by Tommy Tune.

He was again drawn back to teaching when he received a call from Michael Patrick King (one of his former college students) to audition for the role in 2005’s The Comeback, a part King and Lisa Kudrow wrote with him in mind. After his success on the first season of the HBO comedy series, he appeared in numerous other television shows including Will & Grace, Arrested Development, How I Met Your Mother and 2 Broke Girls. When The Comeback was revived by HBO in 2014, he reprised his signature role co-starring opposite Kudrow as Valerie Cherish’s hairdresser and “guard dog.”

King said of Morris’ passing: “Robert Michael Morris was an inspiration to write for and to be around. His creativity was only matched by the joy and gratefulness he felt for each day he got to live his life as an artist.”

Morris most recently guest-starred as Stan Hoister on The Middle.

Related Gallery: In Memoriam 2017 (Provided by Photo Services) File- This Oct. 13, 2011, file photo shows Greg Allman performing at the Americana Music Association awards show in Nashville, Tenn. Allman has canceled planned live shows until late October due to “serious health issues.” In a statement released Friday, Aug. 5, 2016, the 68-year-old Allman says he’s currently under his doctor’s care at a facility. No more details were provided.(AP Photo/Joe Howell, File) In Memoriam 2017: Stars We've Lost This Year


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