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James Caan, Star of The Godfather and NBC's Las Vegas, Dead at 82

James Caan Dead

Veteran Hollywood actor James Caan, who had memorable roles in The Godfather and Misery, has passed away at the age of 82.

The actor’s official Twitter account announced the news on Thursday: “It is with great sadness that we inform you of the passing of Jimmy on the evening of July 6. The family appreciates the outpouring of love and heartfelt condolences and asks that you continue to respect their privacy during this difficult time.”

With a career that spanned seven decades, Caan started out with TV roles on The Untouchables, Naked City and Route 66 in the 1960s. He also starred opposite Billy Dee Williams as doomed football player Brian Piccolo in the 1971 TV movie Brian’s Song, earning an Emmy nomination. His most famous role came a year later, when he played hotheaded gangster Sonny Corleone in the Oscar-winning classic The Godfather. His other film credits include Misery (alongside Kathy Bates), Elf, The Gambler, Thief, Rollerball and Honeymoon in Vegas.

On the TV side, Caan most notably starred as casino boss Ed Deline on NBC’s Las Vegas, which ran from 2003 to 2008. Subsequent roles included Chicago mobster Sy Berman on Starz’s Magic City, the curmudgeonly Terry “The Cannon” Gannon on ABC’s short-lived comedy Back in the Game and Tony Archer in a 2012 episode of CBS’ Hawaii Five-0 reboot, alongside his son (and series star) Scott Caan.

He most recently starred alongside Jon Voight and Teri Polo in the 2020 Hallmark Movies & Mysteries original movie JL Family Ranch: The Wedding Gift.

Caan’s Las Vegas costar Josh Duhamel took to Instagram to memorialize his colleague: “I just want to take a minute to remember Jimmy Caan: one of the kindest, coolest, funniest people I’ve ever met, one of my mentors. And you’ll be missed, Jimmy Caan. I love you.” Their Las Vegas costar Molly Sims added her own memories: “Today we lost an incredible actor, man and friend… You made those around you better, and you were the best TV dad I could’ve had. You will be so missed.”

Maggie Lawson, who costarred with Caan on Back in the Game, paid tribute as well: “We laughed. We sparred. You taught me so much. Thank you for the lessons and the memories. I’ll miss you. RIP James Caan.”

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