Longtime stage comedian and television actor Phil Leeds died of pneumonia Sunday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. He was 82.
An entertainer for more than 55 years, Leeds began working as a stand-up comic in the early 1920s in his native New York.
In 1942, he landed a role with Betty Garrett in the Broadway musical revue “Of V We Sing.” After serving as a member of the Army’s Special Services Unit in the South Pacific during World War II, Leeds returned to New York and performed in numerous Broadway shows.
He starred in 1958’s “Romanoff and Juliet” with Peter Ustinov and “Nobody Loves an Albatross” with Robert Preston in 1963. Additionally, he toured nightclubs, working alongside Harry Belafonte, Barbra Streisand, Mike Nichols and Elaine May.
In the early 1970s, he performed with Jose Ferrer in “The Sunshine Boys” in San Francisco and soon moved to Los Angeles for Joseph Papp’s “Two Gentlemen of Verona.”
Leeds then became involved in TV, guest starring on “All in the Family,” “The Golden Girls” and “Roseanne.” More recently, he appeared on “The Larry Sanders Show,” “Everybody Loves Raymond,” “The Closer” and “Ally McBeal.”
He also worked on many feature films, including “Rosemary’s Baby” (1968), “Beaches” (1988) and “Ghost” (1990).
A private memorial service will take place in Beverly Hills on Wednesday. He leaves no immediate survivors.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to the Actors Fund of America, 1501 Broadway, New York, N.Y. 10036.