Ed Asner, Our Beloved Carl from Up and Much More, Passes at 91

Ed Asner, Our Beloved Carl from Up and Much More, Passes at 91

The seven-time Emmy winner was funny on ‘The Mary Tyler Moore Show’ and serious on his own newspaper drama, then delighted movie audiences with ‘Up.’

Edward Asner, the tough guy with the soft side who starred as the irascible newsroom boss Lou Grant on the legendary sitcom The Mary Tyler Moore Show and on his own hard-hitting TV drama, died Sunday, his publicist announced. He was 91.

Asner received three of his record seven Emmy Awards (in 1971, ’72 and ’75) for playing the producer of the WJM-TV evening news on CBS’ The Mary Tyler Moore Show, then reeled in two more trophies (1978, ’80) after his out-of-work character was hired as city editor of the Los Angeles Tribune newspaper on CBS’ Lou Grant.

He’s one of only two actors (Uzo Aduba is the other) to win a comedy and drama Emmy for the same role on different shows.

Asner also received Emmys for his performances on two renowned ABC miniseries: 1976’s Rich Man, Poor Man, in which he played an embittered German immigrant, and 1977’s Roots, as the sea captain who brought Kunta Kinte to America.

Asner then attracted a new generation of fans when he voiced Carl Fredricksen, a 78-year-old widower who ties thousands of balloons to his house to fulfill a dream of seeing South America, in the Oscar best picture nominee Up (2009).

Asner also served two terms as president of the Screen Actors Guild, from 1981-85, and sparred often with Charlton Heston, a noted conservative who preceded him as head of the guild. He received the SAG Life Achievement Award in 2002.

He reflected on his long career with THR‘s Scott Feinberg very recently.

Asner’s portrayal of a ill-tempered, comedic police chief in the 1971 Erle Stanley Gardner NBC telefilm They Call It Murder led to the role that changed his life. MTM Enterprises head Grant Tinker saw Asner’s work in the dailies and recommended him for the role of the gruff Grant on the new Mary Tyler Moore Show, starring Tinker’s wife.

Ed Asner has a very impressive career with a variety of rolls, but Disney fans adore him as Carl Fredericksen from the Pixar film UP. This was the announcement on Twitter earlier today.

Our deepest sympathy to Ed Asner’s family and all who love him. He will be missed.


*The Hollywood Reporter

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Michele Atwood is the Owner/Editor of The Main Street Mouse and it’s subsidiaries and author of the books “Moving to Main Street U.S.A.” “How Many Sleeps Till Disney?” and “How Many Sleeps Till Disneyland?” Michele also contributes Disney news to the Joe Kelley Morning Show on 107.3 WDBO in Orlando. She and her family made the move from Michigan to the Orlando area to pursue their Disney dreams. Michele is a life long Disney fan, and has two sons who have followed suit, each going on their first Disney trip before their first birthday’s. Part of the goal Michele has for The Main Street Mouse is not only to keep members informed, but to create somewhat of a Disney Family by relating to others through personal experiences and opinions. Also, Michele is making it a priority to share stories of inspiration and hope to other Disney Fans in an effort to share the Magic and hopefully make a difference in the lives of others. ~ I enjoy writing personal perspective blogs, doing TMSM Meet Ups for our readers, and keeping the constant interaction going with others, sharing the Disney Magic to people when they can’t be at their Happy Place.

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