John Vernon

Actor

John Vernon, a stage-trained character actor who played cunning villains in film and TV and made his comedy mark as Dean Wormer in “National Lampoon’s Animal House,” has died. He was 72.

Vernon died at home in his sleep Tuesday following complications from Jan. 16 heart surgery, his daughter, actress Kate Vernon, said Thursday.

Born in 1932 in Montreal, Vernon studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. He did repertory work in England and was heard off-screen as the voice of Big Brother in the 1956 film “1984.”

He reprised his role in “National Lampoon’s Animal House” in the TV spinoff “Delta House” (1979). Other comedy roles followed, including the part of Mr. Big in the film “I’m Gonna Git You Sucka” in 1988.

More Scene

  • HBO's 'SUCCESSION

    Why Brian Cox Says Wealthy Family Drama 'Succession' Is Both Timeless and Timely

    John Vernon, a stage-trained character actor who played cunning villains in film and TV and made his comedy mark as Dean Wormer in “National Lampoon’s Animal House,” has died. He was 72. Vernon died at home in his sleep Tuesday following complications from Jan. 16 heart surgery, his daughter, actress Kate Vernon, said Thursday. Born […]

  • Gracie Awards

    Rita Moreno Celebrates Female Empowerment at Gracie Awards: 'It's About Damn Time'

    John Vernon, a stage-trained character actor who played cunning villains in film and TV and made his comedy mark as Dean Wormer in “National Lampoon’s Animal House,” has died. He was 72. Vernon died at home in his sleep Tuesday following complications from Jan. 16 heart surgery, his daughter, actress Kate Vernon, said Thursday. Born […]

  • global women's rights awards

    Nina Shaw, Laura Dern Stress Importance of Intersectionality in Time’s Up Movement

    John Vernon, a stage-trained character actor who played cunning villains in film and TV and made his comedy mark as Dean Wormer in “National Lampoon’s Animal House,” has died. He was 72. Vernon died at home in his sleep Tuesday following complications from Jan. 16 heart surgery, his daughter, actress Kate Vernon, said Thursday. Born […]

  • 'The Tale' FYC event

    Laura Dern on Impact of 'The Tale' During #MeToo: 'There Is Restorative Justice Here'

    John Vernon, a stage-trained character actor who played cunning villains in film and TV and made his comedy mark as Dean Wormer in “National Lampoon’s Animal House,” has died. He was 72. Vernon died at home in his sleep Tuesday following complications from Jan. 16 heart surgery, his daughter, actress Kate Vernon, said Thursday. Born […]

  • LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 19:

    'Stranger Things' Team Offers Glimpses Into Season 3 at Netflix FYSee

    John Vernon, a stage-trained character actor who played cunning villains in film and TV and made his comedy mark as Dean Wormer in “National Lampoon’s Animal House,” has died. He was 72. Vernon died at home in his sleep Tuesday following complications from Jan. 16 heart surgery, his daughter, actress Kate Vernon, said Thursday. Born […]

  • 'Pose' TV show premiere

    Ryan Murphy Wants 'Pose' to Be 'Uplifting' for LGBTQ Community in Trump Era

    John Vernon, a stage-trained character actor who played cunning villains in film and TV and made his comedy mark as Dean Wormer in “National Lampoon’s Animal House,” has died. He was 72. Vernon died at home in his sleep Tuesday following complications from Jan. 16 heart surgery, his daughter, actress Kate Vernon, said Thursday. Born […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content