Kevin Conway dies: ‘Red Ryder’ and ‘Elephant Man’ Star Was 77

Kevin Conway dies: 'Red Ryder' and 'Elephant Man' Star Was 77
Kevin Conway dies: 'Red Ryder' and 'Elephant Man' Star Was 77

Kevin Conway, a veteran actor known for his work in Gettysburg, Thirteen Days and Invincible, among others, died Wednesday of a heart attack, his publicist told Deadline. He was 77.

Born in 1942 in New York City, Conway worked in sales before pursuing an acting career at the age of 24. Training at the HB Studio, Conway honed his craft working on stage, appearing in the off-Broadway productions of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, The Elephant Man, and When You Comin’ Back, Red Ryder?. On Broadway, he appeared opposite James Earl Jones in Of Mice and Men and also starred in live productions of Indians, Moonchildren, and Dinner at Eight. Of course, Conway’s talent exhibited on the stage led to his career working in movies and television as well, eventually bringing dozens of performances to both the big and small screens.

Conway’s first major movie role came in 1972 when he appeared in the sci-fi movie Slaughterhouse-Five. A plethora of other movie roles would follow in the coming decades, notably including his roles as the insane mailman in the 1988 comedy Funny Farm and as Buster Kilrain in Gettysburg. Among many other credits, some other great movie roles for Conway includes parts in movies like Invincible, Thirteen Days, The Quick and the Dead, and Black Knight. Conway’s movie work also included a stint as a director, as the actor also helmed the 1987 movie The Sun and the Moon.

During the course of his career, Conway worked a lot on television as well. He also served as the Control Voice on the rebooted Outer Limits from 1995 to 2002. Other recurring roles saw Conway as Jonas Stern on the political drama The Good Wife and as the abusive father of Ryan and Cyril O’Reily on the HBO prison series Oz . Conway also appeared in notable guest roles on shows like Star Trek: The Next Generation, JAG, Law and Order: Criminal Intent, Homicide: Life on the Street, and The Black Donnellys. He is also known for his acclaimed role as Roger Chillingworth in the television movie The Scarlet Letter, a role which was later taken over by Robert Duvall.

More recently, Conway had been working as a narrator, providing his voice for shows like Prairie Dog Manor, Unmasked, and Who Killed Jane Doe?. A veteran of the stage and both the big and small screens, Hollywood has lost another fantastic performer with the passing of Conway. Wherever you remember him from the best, chances are you really enjoyed his work as an actor. Always a fantastic performer, every role played by Conway is memorable in its own way, and these movie and TV roles will keep his legacy alive forever. Our condolences go to the family and close friends of Conway at this time. This news comes to us from Deadline.


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