John Heard, best known as Peter McAllister in the “Home Alone” movies who appeared in a wide range of TV and film roles, has died at 71 in Palo Alto, Calif.
He was found dead in a hotel where he was reportedly recovering after undergoing back surgery. The Santa Clara Medical Examiner’s office confirmed his death.
In the 1990 “Home Alone,” Heard stars as the father who forgets his son, played by Macauley Culkin, when making a business trip to France. After “Home Alone” became a big hit, Heard returned to star in “Home Alone 2: Lost in New York.”
He also appeared in “Cat People,” “After Hours,” “Big,” “Beaches,” 1992 boxing film “Gladiator,” and on TV in “Miami Vice” and “The Sopranos,” for which he won an Emmy nomination for outstanding guest actor.
Born in Washington, D.C., Heard started out acting off-Broadway. His first major role came in the romantic comedy “Chilly Scenes of Winter” in 1979.
His memorable roles in the 1980s included starring in “Cutter’s Way,” playing Nastassja Kinski’s lover in the 1983 remake of “Cat People,” and starring alongside “Home Alone” actor Daniel Stern in 1984’s “C.H.U.D.” In Martin Scorsese’s “After Hours,” he played the bartender Tom Schorr. His other films during that period included “The Trip to Bountiful,” “Heaven Help Us” and “The Milagro Beanfield War.”
In 1988, he starred as Elizabeth Perkins’ jilted boyfriend in “Big” and co-starred with Bette Midler in “Beaches.”
His other roles included “Gladiator,” “Awakenings,” “Radio Flyer,” and “The Pelican Brief,” in which he played an FBI agent.
On television, he played Commander Barry Garner on “Battlestar Galactica” and had recurring roles on “CSI: Miami” and “Prison Break.” More recently he had numerous guest roles on shows including “Modern Family,” “NCIS: Los Angeles” and “MacGuyver.”
Heard was married to actress Margot Kidder – for just six days — and had a son from a relationship with actress Melissa Leo. He is also survived by a daughter from a later marriage. His son Max died in December, 2016.