Argentine actor Esteban Mellino, best known for his performances as the comical Professor Diogenes Lambetain, died June 9 of a heart attack in Buenos Aires. He was 63.
Born in Buenos Aires, he entered acting after abandoning medical and psychology studies. He landed his first stage roles in the 1960s and went on to perform in dozens of plays, several of which he wrote himself like “Angeles y Loco,” “La nube” and “Salven a Sebastian.”
On TV, he popularized Professor Lambetain in “Badia y Cia” and the comedies “El humor de Cafe Fashion” and “Fashion VIP,” a character he created in the 1980s for legit productions like “La Barra de Lambetain” and “Que merengue Lambetain.”
In 2001, he took “Angeles y Loco” to the big screen in his directorial debut with “Loco, posee la formula de la felicidad” (Crazy, He Has the Formula for Happiness). He starred alongside Fabian Gianola, Roberto Carnaghi and Jorge Luz. He also performed in films like the drama “Las barras bravas” and popular comedy “Los Matamonstruos en la mansion del terror.”
After an appearance in the hit boxer-executive romance telenovela “Sos mi vida” (You are the One) on broadcaster Artear-Canal 13 in 2006, Mellino made had his last film role in the 2007 comedy “Mas que un hombre” (More than a Man) directed by Dady Brieva and Gerardo Vallina.
He also wrote poetry, ran a magazine and composed music, including for Alma y Vida, a rock and jazz band formed in the 1970s by his brother Carlos. Mellino also founded and directed an organization for helping street kids, handicapped children, soup kitchens and schools.