Orson Bean, of Dr. Quinn and Desperate Housewives, Dead at 91

Orson Bean Dead

Veteran actor and comedian Orson Bean died on Friday night after being struck by a car while crossing a street in Venice, Calif. He was 91.

An Army vet who was stationed in postwar Japan in the mid-1940s, Bean (born Dallas Frederick Burrows) began his entertainment career as a magician, before segueing into stand-up comedy. Starting in the 1950s, he was a regular panelist on To Tell the Truth. He also appeared on other game shows as well as Johnny Carson’s The Tonight Show (on which he would be a guest more than 200 times).

Bean’s TV acting credits include (but are by no means limited to) Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman and its spin-off Fernwood 2Nite, The Facts of Life, Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman, Normal Ohio, 7th Heaven and Desperate Housewives. Most recently, he appeared in a November 2018 episode of Superstore and the latest season of Grace and Frankie (which dropped Jan. 15).

Among his many stage credits, he earned a Tony Award nomination in 1961 for the musical  Subways Are for Sleeping and enjoyed a long run in the comedy Never Too Late. His film roles included Being John Malkovich and The Equalizer 2.

Bean’s survivors include his third wife/Dr. Quinn co-star Alley Mills, whom he wed in 1993.

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