Friday, February 3, 2012

Dachshund Lover Ben Gazzara Passes

Ben Gazzara enjoys the view of Dachshund Royalty, Suzanne Pleshette, in the film A Rage To Live, 1965.

Our hearts are with the family and friends of Dachshund Lover Ben Gazzara, who passed today at 81 after a battle with pancreatic cancer.  Mr. Gazzara was an American film, stage, and Emmy award winning television actor, and television director whose long career included playing Brick in the original “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” on Broadway.  Via the New York Times:

Mr. Gazzara studied with Lee Strasberg at the Actors Studio in Manhattan, where the careers of stars like Marlon Brando and Rod Steiger were shaped, and like them he had a visceral presence. It earned him regular work across half a century, not only onstage — his last Broadway appearance was in the revival of “Awake and Sing!” in 2006 — but in dozens of movies and all sorts of television shows, including the starring role in the 1960s series “Run for Your Life.”
If Mr. Gazzara never achieved Brando’s stature, that was partly because of a certain laissez-faire approach to his career: an early suspicion of film, a reluctance to go after desirable roles.
“When I became hot, so to speak, in the theater, I got a lot of offers,” he said in a 1998 interview on “Charlie Rose.” “I won’t tell you the pictures I turned down because you would say, ‘You are a fool.’ And I was a fool.”

With his third wife, former fashion model Elke Gazzara, Mr. Gazzara would adopt a Dachshund named 'Maxi' from their daughter.  Maxi had such an incredible life that Elke would soon chronicle her in the 2007 book 'Madison Avenue Maxi.'  The book detailed Maxi's worldwide jet-setting lifestyle, including meeting such notaries as Roman Polanski, Gena Rowlands, John Voigt, Danielle Steele, Gay Talese, Peter Bogdanovich, New York's mayor Michael Bloomberg, and Frank Gehry.

Elke, Ben, and 'Maxi' Gazzara


Doris said...

I really enjoyed "Run for your life" a 60's tv show in a similar vein to the fugitive.

Anonymous said...

RIP Ben Gazzara...thank you for sharing your life with Maxi!

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