We get it: you like to have control of your own internet experience. He also found time to put in three years of small college football as a QB. He said, like in a movie, 'Are you sitting down?' Hilariously, though, the writers made his demise rather humorous as they revealed he had another wife who looked just like Carla on the show. He played Rhea Perlman's husband, Eddie LeBec, on "Cheers," and won the best guest actor Emmy in 1990 and 1991 for his portrayal of the character Jerry Gold on "Murphy Brown." About that Lone Ranger story: Thomas was a radio host with big hair in Charlotte in the early 70s, and he and his producer offered to give Moore wearing his crime-fighter costume and mask for an appearance at a car dealership a ride to the airport. photos, (1982) after making a comment during a radio show in which he made fun of Rhea Perlman's looks. He worked at stations in Panama City; Pensacola, Fla.; Knoxville, Tenn.; Nashville; Jacksonville, Fla.; and Charlotte, N.C., where he earned nicknames like The Mouth of the South, The Scorpion and The Prince of Darkness.. Plus, nobody could throw a football like Jay. He first told the story in 1998 and returned almost every year to tell it again until Letterman retired. This story has been shared 4,038 times. Thomas appeared on nine episodes altogether. Triangle of Sadness Ending Explained: Does Abigail Kill Yaya? What We Know, How to Watch Donald Trump's 2023 CPAC Speech: Live Stream Information, What Time Is Chris Rock's Netflix Special On Tonight? All Rights Reserved. Rhea Perlman's on-screen hockey player husband was played by Jay Thomas, a somewhat lesser-known (at least these days) actor who probably should've considered himself lucky to act alongside Rhea. He was a regular guest on "The Late Show with David Letterman.". Actor Jay Thomas, best known for his roles in the classic sitcoms "Murphy Brown" and "Cheers," has died at age 69. . Not Rheathey were talking about Carla. Well, it may have stemmed from a radio spot by Thomas where he was asked to talk about his role on the show. In 2006, one of the "Cheers" writers, Ken Levine, explained the behind the scenes drama of Thomas' departure from the series in a blog post. 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CBR Senior Writer Brian Cronin has been writing professionally about comic books for over fifteen years now at CBR (primarily with his Comics Should Be Good series of columns, including Comic Book Legends Revealed). Click the AdBlock Plus button on your browser and select Enabled on this site. Soon after, rather than being added as a cast member like Bebe Neuwirth (who also made recurring appearances in seasons 6 and 7 before being officially joining the cast in Season 8), Thomas was done for good. My e-mail address is [email protected]. Although grew up in the south he most played "New Yorky" characters. Jay Thomas died on Thursday at 69 after a battle with cancer. Jay was one of a kind, never at a loss for words and filled with so much fun and wonderfully wacky thoughts and behavior," his agent, Don Buchwald, said. Most recently, he appeared in the Showtime series Ray Donovan. He was on the cast of Mork and Mindy for a time (20 episodes in total between 1979 and 1981). Biological father of musician and songwriter, The Jay Thomas Show was heard for a number of years on Sirius Satellite Radio Monday through Fridays, 3:00PM to 6:00PM on Sirius Stars Too, Channel 108. Reared in New Orleans, he was always active in sports and performing. On the latter, his character winds up appearing in an ice show and gets killed by a Zamboni. Long said, We never fought. He was 69. Thomas often played loud, sleazy types: He recurred on ShowtimesRay DonovanasMarty Grossman, the operator of a salacious TMZ-like website. Actor Jay Thomas has died at 69. And, according to the co-creator of the series, Thomas could have appeared on even more episodes of the popular show if he hadn't insulted Perlman during a radio show. Cocktail waitress Carla Tortelli, played by Rhea Perlman, meets ice hockey player Eddie LeBec (Jay Thomas) in Season 5 and the two continue to date on-and-off for a while. He was 69. Emmy-winning actor JAY THOMAS is best known to audiences as doomed hockey star Eddie LeBec on "Cheers" and tabloid talker Jerry Gold on "Murphy Brown," but he's also a show business renaissance man, having worked as a stand-up comic, disc jockey, sportscaster and reality show host. Long was a superstar on the program for years, but, ultimately, she was not long for the show as many expected when it first hit the small screen. Thomas played the obnoxious TV talk-show host Jerry Gold (and Candice Bergens on-again, off-again boyfriend) on CBSMurphy Brown from 1989-98 winning a pair of Emmys after his stint as Rhea Perlmans husband Eddie LeBec, a French-Canadian goalie with the Boston Bruins, on NBCsCheers. He crossed the family." He has written two books about comics for Penguin-Random House Was Superman a Spy? Fans of the program still flock to various streaming services to rewatch their favorite episodes from the show. Thomas chased the vehicle, then confronted the other driver who denied anything had happened and told him he was going to call the cops. — -- Actor Jay Thomas has died, ABC News has confirmed. And it has nothing to do with Rhea. Discovery Company. In this weeks installment, Was Superman a Spy? TV URBAN LEGEND: Jay Thomas' character on Cheers was killed off because he called Rhea Perlman ugly. Actor Jay Thomas, best known for his roles in the classic sitcoms "Murphy Brown" and "Cheers," has died, according to his publicist. Don Buchwald, his longtime agent and friend, said Thomas died at his. ", Naturally, Perlman didn't react well to Thomas' comments, and the writers decided to get rid of Eddie by killing him off. Levine also notes that this episode ended up earning them an Emmy nod, making the whole situation a win for everyone involved except Thomas, of course. As it turns out, though, one notable actor dealt with some off-screen drama that affected her character's arc. So, the decision was made to write him out of the show, to the dismay of the fans as folks seemed to like the on-screen chemistry of Thomas and Perlman. Jay Thomas, the good-natured comic actor who starred on the sitcoms Murphy Brown and Cheers, died Thursday. 'Mandalorian' Funko Pops up to 77% Off Baby Yoda and More for Season 3, Who Plays the Armorer in 'The Mandalorian'? In the late '80s, actor Jay Thomas appeared on several episodes of Cheers as the love interestand eventual husband ofCarla Tortelli, who was played by Rhea Perlman. Thanks Brian Raftery's excellent Cheers oral history in GQ for the Perlman, Thomas and Levine quotes. Levine continues, "we needed (a) some comic spin for the story, and (b) something to discredit Eddie so the audience would ultimately be glad he was out of Carla's life. He was on the cast of Mork and Mindy for a time (20 episodes in total between 1979 and 1981). He was a delightful character. Thomas. The post, titled "The kiss of death for Eddie LeBec" reports that Jay Thomas made some negative comments about the show and about Perlman on his radio show: A caller asked him what his experience working on "Cheers" was like, Levine explained in the post, and Thomas "said something to the effect of 'It's brutal. I have to kiss Rhea Perlman. 24/7 coverage of breaking news and live events. I don't see it, so I'm willing to believe that, at the very least, Thomas' insult of Perlman was a notable cause in his removal from the show. Sometimes they are true but sometimes it is a matter of wishful thinking and they didn't get the job for other, more traditional reasons (the actor wasn't good enough for the role, there wasn't enough money in the budget to add another regular, etc.). So why do I lean toward it being true? I mean, he got angry once, pretty late in the game about something that I wish he had told me about long before, because I made every effort to change it. I loved Jay Thomas as Eddie LeBec," she said. In 2013, John McEnroe filled in for Thomas, who was recovering from surgery. He and Letterman also took turns throwing a football, trying to dislodge a meatball from the top of a Christmas tree. 2023 The Hollywood Reporter, LLC. Appearing as an annual Christmas guest alongside Letterman has been fun, hesaid in 2014. Jay Thomas and Rhea Perlman were in an on-screen matchup. 2,911, This story has been shared 2,493 times. He was replaced by a young hayseed named Woody Boys, played by Woody Harrelson (amazingly enough, the character was named Woody before Harrelson was cast), who improbably became even more popular than Coach! videos, Thomas TV career started in the early 80s, and he quickly amassed a number of credits. Turn on desktop notifications for breaking stories about interest? Click the AdBlock Plus button on your browser and select Disable on Observer.com. That was it for Eddie LeBec. CNN Jay Thomas, a comic and character actor whose credits include roles on "Cheers" and "Murphy Brown," has died after a battle with cancer, according to his publicist Tom Estey. Finally, and most importantly, Kirstie Alley successfully replaced the female lead Shelley Long (who played Diane) after Season 5. He was 69. The actor, who went on to have a recurring role onMurphy Brown,added, "Look, I made jokes about kissing Murphy Brown [too]. And, according to the. She heard this interview and Eddie was written off the show. Jay Thomas, the good-natured comic actor who starred on the sitcoms Murphy Brown and Cheers, died Thursday. 3,505, This story has been shared 2,911 times. And Other Comic Book Legends Revealed author Brian Cronin tackles whether the character played by Jay Thomas on Cheers was killed off because the actor insulted Rhea Perlman. Be sure to check out my Entertainment Urban Legends Revealed for more urban legends about the worlds of TV, Movies and Music! More recently, he appeared as tabloid journalist Marty Grossman on "Ray Donovan. Maybe we should have. quotes, These became such a distraction that management changed his duties to mowing the lawn on the grounds. "Cheers" is one of the most famous sitcoms of all-time, and has maintained its relevance over the years, following its series finale in 1993. Now obviously, when you have a cast as large as Cheers, while they were able to add characters more easily than other shows, it was still not an easy thing to do, so there were plenty of reasons why the show would not be willing to add Thomas to the actual cast. It is very difficult to work your way into a hit TV show after it has become a hit. Jay Thomas was never seen on Cheers again. He had a few small roles during the early 1980s, popping up on big shows like Family Ties and The Golden Girls, and in 1987 (in the middle of Season 5) he joined Cheers as Boston Bruins goalie Eddie LeBec. In the late '80s, actor Jay Thomas appeared on several episodes of Cheers as the love interestand eventual husband ofCarla Tortelli, who was played by Rhea Perlman. When NYC beckoned Jay continued his eclectic career as a top rated morning DJ, comic at the Improve in NYC, and began an active off Broadway acting career, that saw him mix drama and comedy. His character was not just dropped but killed off - death by . He will be dearly missed by so many, Estey said in a statement to CNN. I loved Jay, Letterman told CNN in a statement. jay thomas, Other Works His departure ended up being a bit more complicated, however, as viewers were a fan of Carla and Eddie as a couple. By the way I used to ride the elevator with Jay as he was heading to his morning show at Power / Magic, whatever the hell it was. It resulted in him getting his own show in Seattle years later. Cheers: Heres Why Jay Thomas Left the Show. Well, it may have stemmed from a radio spot by Thomas where he was asked to talk about his role on the show. 1,091. One of the greatest strengths of the classic show is itsensemble cast, who portrayed the gang of compelling characters from the ladies' man bartender Sam Malone (Ted Danson) to his on-and-off academic girlfriend Diane Chambers (Shelley Long) who are still celebrated today. Jay Thomas and Rhea Perlman were in Cheers (1982) together.. About. Eventually, Carla finds out she is pregnant with Eddie's twins, and the pair decide to get married. 1,313, This story has been shared 1,267 times. Jay Thomas the storyteller kept a story alive year after year, and Jay Thomas the actor gave sitcom fans a story to tell year after year. However, Jay would try out his stand-up comic routines on the rest of the staff. Levine and his writing partner David Isaacs killed Eddie off-screen in a freak Zamboni accident, and then revealed at his funeral that hed been a polygamist all along. Thomas also starred on his own sitcom, playing an egotistical sportswriter opposite Susan Dey and then Annie Potts on CBSLove and War, a 1992-95 series created by Murphy Browns Diane English. 2023 Cable News Network. Jay Thomas and Rhea Perlman were in an on-screen matchup.. On Screen Matchups. He recalled: I'm doing Cheers, having the greatest time of my life, and one day I get a phone call from Jimmy. "Since he was no longer on the show, Eddie also had to go. Here's an amusing post-script. I loved Jay Thomas as Eddie LeBec. 1,267, This story has been shared 1,120 times. READ THIS NEXT:Kissing Brad Pitt Was "Disgusting," This Co-Star Said. Sign up for THR news straight to your inbox every day. All the latest gaming news, game reviews and trailers. | Then on to LA radio as the #1 jock at Power 106, The Ensemble Theater Group, and recurring on "Cheers" as Carla's ice hockey playing husband. Thomas began his career in entertainment as a radio DJ before trying his hand at stand-up comedy and acting. Subscribe to our newsletter for new stories, tips & events. The Behind-The-Scenes Drama On Cheers That Had Jay Thomas Written Off The Show. While obviously one of the most amazing things that can happen to an actor working in television is to be part of a show that turns out to be a major hit (look at the ways that, say, the cast of Friends went from an assortment of mostly no-names, and "Hey, that's the girl from the Bruce Springsteeen video!" to write in with your suggestions for future installments! (1987 -. He said something to the effect of Its brutal. Updated [January 2005]. For more celebrity news delivered right to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter. However, Jay Thomas, who played ice hockey player Eddie Lebec on the show, was killed off not too long after marrying one of the main characters in the show to Carla. See Always had a smile and a kind word for me, a lowly board op at KIQQ. "I'm doingCheers, having the greatest time of my life, and one day I get a phone call from Jimmy [Burrows]," Thomas said. Actor Jay Thomas, who cut his teeth in the entertainment business as a legendary DJ for Charlotte radio station Big WAYS in the 1970s, has died at 69. . Survivors include his wife Sally and sons Sam, Max and J.T. Kelsey Grammer, who played Frasier Crane, was also not a lock to remain on the show long-term. Why did the show write him, and even have him die? But there was a point where they [thought] maybe we would live together, and I didn't like the idea of Carla being with somebody because that would make you feel like [you're] not part of the people in the bar. He got his start on television in 1979 as Remo DaVinci, the co-owner of a New York deli, on ABCsMork & Mindy. In addition, Levine wrote about the incident on his amazing blog here, explaining how he came up with the episode where they killed off Eddie. In a statement, Thomas' friend and agent. 1,836, This story has been shared 1,686 times. He starred in his own TV shows "Married People" with Beth Armstrong and "Love and War" with Susan Dey and later Annie Potts. And he goes, "Look, we're not going to have you back on the show. "Jay was one of a kind, never at a loss for words and filled with so. Rhea Perlman and Jay Thomas - Dating, Gossip, News, Photos list. Eventually, she became pregnant with twins, and the pair got married. Thomas went on to have a recurring role on Murphy Brown and then a starring role on the sitcom Love and War (from Murphy Brown creator Diane English). Thomas. How Playwright Sam Hunter Processed His Own Trauma, Netflix's 'Money Shot' Documentary Trailer Shines A Harsh Light On Pornhub, The "Most Trafficked Website In The World", 'The Skinny Shot' on Hulu Is An Ozempic "Documentary" That Plays More Like A Commercial, Where Is Estonia Located? Kissing Brad Pitt Was "Disgusting," This Co-Star Said. "I knew they were deciding [about] whether to add me or Bebe [Neuwirth] to the cast full-time, and I thought he was calling with good news. She said, "I want him off the show.". Those curious viewers would be right because it sounds like Thomas's off-set behavior led to him getting kicked off the show. CNN Sans & 2016 Cable News Network. Maybe Tina Fey, maybe. Instead, his character was killed off-screen in Season 8. But odds are if you know Jay Thomas, who passed away today at the age of 69, you know him from his recurring role on Cheers as Carla Tortelli's hockey-playing husband Eddie LeBec. He guest starred in an episode of "Hung" on HBO. and more from FamousFix.com, See What Thomas had to say about kissing his co-star did not go over well with others involved in the show, and they retaliated in a very creative way. Both Rhea Perlman and James Burrows deny it had anything to do with writing off Eddie. First off, we needed a funny demise. In the same oral history, Levine claimed that Perlman was upset about Thomas' radio show comment. 3,913, This story has been shared 3,885 times. She said, 'I want him off the show,'" Levine claimed. And my joke what that I got combat's pay to kiss her." According to the book (via Page Six), a listener called in to Thomas' show and asked what it was like being part of Cheers, to which Thomas responded, "It's brutal. 1,917, This story has been shared 1,836 times. I have to kiss Rhea Perlman.. on CBS' Murphy Brown from 1989-98 winning a pair of Emmys after his stint as Rhea Perlman's husband Eddie LeBec, a French-Canadian goalie with the . '", Thomas explained of what he said on the radio show, "[Listeners] would go, 'What's it like to kiss Carla?' 2,179, This story has been shared 1,917 times. Thomas' best known-roles were on the small screen. A notable exception was Cheers. "Rhea came up to my office and she was furiousI'd never seen her like this. 2,429, This story has been shared 2,179 times. Rhea was listening to the show and his character was killed off by a 'Zamboni incident' a few episodes later. But he didn't consider himself lucky, and in fact, complained about Rhea while he was working on the show. I became that guy. As you can imagine, important people heard that interview and were not happy about it. Official Sites. He also hosted a radio show in Los Angeles and, most recently, had a daily gig with SiriusXM. 17 Things 'Cheers' Fans Never Knew. He insulted Rhea, which meant he insulted all of us. The answer was at the funeral Carla learned that he was a polygamist, and had a second wife (who looked just like Carla).. Subscribe for full access to The Hollywood Reporter. After kicking off his TV career with a supporting role in Robin Williams Mork & Mindy,Thomas became the go-to guy for sitcoms needing a pinch hitter (Family Tiesone week,The Golden Girls the next). Sitcom vet Jay Thomas, best known for his recurring roles on Cheers and Murphy Brown, has died. His first TV role was in "Mork and Mindy". He is most remembered for Mr. Holland's Opus. 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Perlman was onCheersthroughout its 11-season run and won four Emmy awards for her work. He became a sports announcer and DJ in college. and one book, 100 Things X-Men Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die, from Triumph Books. videos . Start Time, How To Watch. A native of Kermit, Texas, who was raised in New Orleans, Thomas got his start in radio as a high school football announcer for the Rutherford High Rams in Panama City, Fla. During the panel discussion for the 200th episode of Cheers that aired in Season 9, Thomas heckled the cast and crew (presumably as a joke) over being written off the show. "Jay was fired unceremoniously," Burrows writes in his book. Ive always wanted to be one of those guys on late-night talk shows who everybody wants to see. 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Well, Ken Levine, longtime TV comedy writer, producer and creative consultant on Cheers, backs up Thomas' version of events, noting: Rhea came up to my office and she was furious I'd never seen her like this. Jay now hosts a daily talk show on Sirius "Stars" channel and is selling high end real estate in Santa Barbara. Why did the show write him, and even have him die? But if that's what cost me my job, my wife will probably say, 'Hey [expletive], I told you so.'". In addition to his work on TV, many know Thomas from his annual holiday season appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman, where hed retell what Letterman once called the greatest talk show story of all time.. 2,493, This story has been shared 2,429 times. Originally intended for just a short story arc, Diane's new boyfriend, Kelsey Grammer's Frasier Crane, ended up sticking with the show for the rest of its run (plus 11 more seasons in his own spinoff series). 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He features legends about entertainment and sports at his website, Legends Revealed and other pop culture features at Pop Culture References. When this actor insulted his co-star, he evidently couldn't foresee the consequences he would face. Like on Carson, when [Don] Rickles would come out. Jay Thomas, the good-natured . In our world, you don't wind up sleeping with the fishes; you die a violent yet comedic death.". Following his comment, Thomas was not simply written out of the showhe was written off the show through his character meeting a painful, embarrassing end. (@norm.of.cheers), Where everybody knows ur name (@welcome.to.cheers) . Heres how show writer Ken Levine tells it, per his blog: He was terrific in the episodes, he and Rhea made a very cute couple and so he was brought back periodically as her boyfriend. He briefly played professional football in the old World Football League. The episode Death Takes a Holiday on Icegot rid of Eddie for good (as Deciders Joe Reid recalled in a recent list). He played Rhea Perlman's husband, Eddie LeBec, on "Cheers," and won the best guest actor Emmy in 1990 and 1991 for his portrayal of the character . Your effort and contribution in providing this feedback is much Feel free (heck, I implore you!) Kevin Levine, a former writer on Cheers, wrote that Thomas said on the spot, said something to the effect of Its brutal. Explore the latest videos from hashtags: #rheaperlman . WhenCheers came back for Season Eight, Eddie was nowhere to be seen. Thomas and the producer had just gotten stoned, he said. He earned that promotion.. Cheers was an iconic show of the time, but it certainly had a lot going on behind the scenes. As it turns out, though, one notable actor dealt with some off-screen drama that affected her character's arc. On the big screen he was featured in "Mr. Holland's Opus", "A Smile Like Yours", and "Santa Claus" 2 and 3. Jay Thomas Rhea Perlman and Jay Thomas in Cheers (1982) Close 36 of 47 Jay Thomas36 of 47 Rhea Perlmanand Jay Thomasin Cheers (1982) PeopleRhea Perlman, Jay Thomas TitlesCheers Photo by NBC/NBC via Getty Images - NBC Universal, Inc. In an oral history of Cheers published by GQ in 2012, Thomas, Perlman, and writer Ken Levine spoke about Thomas being written out of the show. All Rights Reserved. Thomas was 69. Actor Jay Thomas, who won two Emmys for his guest role on Murphy Brown, died Thursday after a battle with cancer, The Daily News reports. Thomas is survived by wife, Sally, and his three sons.
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