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Orthodox Jewish-Raised Charles Grodin, Beloved Comedic Actor, Dies at 86

Beloved comedic actor, iconic talk show guest and host Charles Grodin passed away this week in Connecticut. Raised in Pittsburgh in an Orthodox Jewish family, Grodin became famous for memorable roles in The Heartbreak Kid, Midnight Run, The Great Muppet Caper, Heaven Can Wait, Beethoven and many more. Grodin also wrote several books and plays and was acclaimed for his off-screen personality, and the banter he shared with all-time great hosts like Johnny Carson and David Letterman was legendary. In an interview with a Jewish newspaper, Grodin once said, “…my rabbi would be proud of me. I’m very active with prisoner issues, with kids in crisis. I try to live by religious principles, even if I don’t do the ritual.” Most apropos to this week’s news, he was also quoted as saying, “If I ever detect any anti-Semitism, then I become more Jewish.” Read more here and here.

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