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Alan Arkin, Oscar-winning from Little Miss Sunshine dies at 89.

Angeles (Associated Press) – Alan Arkin, a witty character actor who showed his range in comedy and drama while earning four Academy Award nominations and an Oscar in 2007 for “Little Miss Sunshine,” has passed away. He was 89.

Through the actor’s publicist on Friday, his sons Adam, Matthew, and Anthony provided confirmation of their father’s passing. In a statement, they claimed that their father “was a uniquely talented force of nature, both as an artist and a man.”

A member of Chicago’s renowned Second City comedy group, Alan Arkin achieved early film success with the Cold War parody “The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming” and reached his professional height in his later years when he won the best supporting actor Oscar for the unexpected 2006 hit “Little Miss Sunshine.” His first Oscar nomination, for “The Russians are Coming,” came more than 40 years after his nomination for his role as a cunning Hollywood producer in the Oscar-winning film “Argo.”

Alan Arkin

He received two Emmy nods for his role in the Netflix comedy series “The Kominsky Method,” which he played with Michael Douglas in recent years.

Alan Arkin reportedly made light of the fact that character actors don’t have to strip off for their roles in an interview with The Associated Press. Although he wasn’t a sex icon or a big star, he did appear in more than 100 TV shows and films. His hallmarks were likeability, relatability, and total engrossment in his roles, no matter how unusual, whether he was playing a Russian submarine officer in “The Russians Are Coming” who finds it difficult to communicate with the similarly uneasy Americans, or standing out as the foul-mouthed, drug-addicted grandfather in “Little Miss Sunshine.”

Director of “The Russians are Coming,” Norman Jewison, once remarked that Alan “has never had an identifiable screen personality because he just disappears into his characters.” He can even modify his appearance, and his accents are flawless. … He has never been taken seriously, in part because he has never put his own achievement first.

Alan Arkin was chosen by Carl Reiner to play the youthful protagonist in the 1963 Broadway comedy “Enter Laughing,” which was based on Reiner’s semi-autobiographical book, while still a member of Second City.

He received positive reviews and Jewison’s attention as he was getting ready to helm a comedy about a Russian submarine that causes chaos when it gets too close to a small New England town in 1966. Arkin demonstrated his ability to play a villain in his next significant movie, albeit grudgingly. In the movie “Wait Until Dark,” Audrey Hepburn played a blind woman who is being held captive by a ruthless drug dealer who believes there is a heroin shipment stashed in her flat.

He remembers how challenging it was to terrorize Hepburn’s character in an interview from 1998.


It was “just awful,” he claimed. It was difficult to be cruel to her because she was a beautiful person.


Arkin’s status in Hollywood was further enhanced by 1968’s “The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter,” in which he portrayed a sensitive man who was deaf and mute. The same year, he played the clumsy French investigator in “Inspector Clouseau,” but the movie was overshadowed by Peter Sellers’ portrayal of Clouseau in The “Pink Panther” films.

When Mike Nichols, a fellow Second City graduate, gave Arkin the lead role as Rossarian, the victim of wartime red tape in the 1970 film “Catch-22,” based on Joseph Heller’s best-selling novel, Arkin’s reputation as a character actor continued to flourish. Over the years, Arkin had appearances in beloved films like “Edward Scissorhands,” where he played Johnny Depp’s neighbor, and in the movie adaptation of David Mamet’s “Glengarry Glen Ross,” where he played a tenacious real estate salesman. In the 1998 movie “The Slums of Beverly Hills,” he and Reiner portrayed two brothers, one struggling and the other successful.

“I used to believe that my work was quite diverse. However, I came to the realization that for the first twenty years or so, the majority of the characters I played were outsiders, strangers to their surroundings, or foreigners in some other way,” he told The Associated Press in 2007.

“That started to change as I began to feel more at ease with myself. A few days ago, I received one of the kindest comments I’ve ever received. They expressed the opinion that my characters were frequently the moral core and heart of a movie. Even though I didn’t really grasp it, I liked it and it made me happy.

Other recent credits include the TV series “The Kominsky Method” and the 2017 remake of “Going in Style,” which starred fellow Oscar winners Michael Caine and Morgan Freeman.


Along with Little Murders, a dark comedy by Jules Feiffer from 1971, Arkin also helmed “The Sunshine Boys,” a play by Neil Simon from 1972 about quarreling former vaudeville colleagues. In addition to playing a night court judge in Sidney Lumet’s drama series “100 Centre Street” on A&E, Arkin also made appearances in the ill-fated shows “Fay” and “Harry” on television. He has produced a number of children’s novels.

He was raised in Los Angeles with his family, which includes two younger brothers, after being born in the borough of Brooklyn in New York City. His parents were hired as teachers but were sacked because of their Communist beliefs during the post-World War II Red Scare.

“We were dirt poor, so I couldn’t afford to go to the movies very often,” he told the AP in 1998. But since watching films was the most important thing in my life, I went whenever I could.
He pursued acting studies at Bennington College in Vermont after receiving a scholarship from the once-all-girls school, California State University, Los Angeles, and Los Angeles City College.

He wed Jeremy Yaffe, a classmate, and the couple produced two sons, Adam and Matthew.
Following his divorce from Yaffe in 1961, Arkin wed the actress-writer Barbara Dana, with whom he had a son named Anthony. All three sons pursued acting careers; Adam starred in the television program “Chicago Hope.”

In 1998, Alan Arkin admitted, “It was certainly nothing that I pushed them into.” “As long as it allowed them to grow, I couldn’t care less what they did,” he said.


As an organizer and performer for The Tarriers, a group that briefly rode the folk music revival wave of the late 1950s, Arkin launched his career in entertainment. Later, he began performing on stage, always in tragic parts and off-Broadway.

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Amelia Jhon

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