Famous Actor From ‘Elf’ Dead At Age 81

Scott Gries/Getty Images

Leena Nasir Entertainment Reporter
Font Size:

Famous actor Michael Lerner died April 8 at the age of 81.

Lerner was best known for his roles in “Elf,” “Godzilla,” and  “X-Men: Days of Future Past. His death was confirmed by his nephew, Sam Lerner on social media. Sam posted a touching message to Lerner on Instagram, writing, “We lost a legend last night.” Lerner’s exact cause of death has not been revealed, according to Variety.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Sam Lerner (@samlerner)

“It’s hard to put into words how brilliant my uncle Michael was, and how influential he was to me,” Sam wrote.

He credited Lerner for sparking his own career in the world of entertainment.

“His stories always inspired me and made me fall in love with acting,” he said.

“He was the coolest, most confident, talented guy, and the fact that he was my blood will always make me feel special,” Sam wrote to Instagram.

“Everyone that knows him knows how insane he was— in the best way. I’m so lucky I got to spend so much time with him, and we’re all lucky we can continue to watch his work for the rest of time.”

He concluded his tribute by writing, “RIP Michael, enjoy your unlimited Cuban cigars, comfy chairs, and endless movie marathon 💖”

Lerner made a significant contribution to the entertainment industry. He was nominated for best supporting actor for his performance in the 1991 comedy “Barton Fink,” and acted in “Newsies,” “Blank Check,” “No Escape” and “Celebrity,” as well as “Ashby,” and “Harlem Nights,” according to Variety.

Some of his more recognizable work came from his role in “The Mod Squad,” “A Serious man,” “The Brady Bunch,” “The Good Guys,” “MASH,’ “The Odd Couple,” “Starsky and Hutch,” and “The Rockford Files,” according to TMZ. (RELATED: Coolio’s Cause Of Death Revealed)

He also starred in “Barnaby Jones,” “Hill Street Blues,” “Clueless,” “Glee,” and “Law & Order: SVU,” according to TMZ

He’s survived by his famous brother, Ken, and his extended family.