Richard Belzer, comic turned iconic TV cop on “Law & Order: SVU,” is lifeless at 78

Richard Belzer, comic turned iconic TV cop on “Law & Order: SVU,” is lifeless at 78


Richard Belzer, the comic and actor greatest recognized for his position as Detective John Munch on the “Law & Order” franchise, has died at 78, Bill Scheft, a longtime household buddy, confirmed to CBS News on Sunday.

Scheft mentioned Belzer handed away surrounded by household in Beaulieu-sur-Mer, within the south of France. 

Mariska Hargitay and Richard Belzer on
Mariska Hargitay, left, as Sgt. Olivia Benson, and Richard Belzer as Special Investigator John Munch in an episode of “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.”

Michael Parmelee/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal through Getty Images


Belzer, a slapstick comedian with a faithful following, received his performing begin within the 1974 movie “The Groove Tube.” He was additionally featured in early episodes of “Saturday Night Live.” 

But Belzer’s most memorable position was Detective John Munch, which he performed on “Homicide: Life on the Street” from 1993 to 1999. Belzer continued the position on the “Law & Order” collection, showing within the present’s first episode in 1993. “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” debuted in 1999, with Belzer’s starring position lasting till 2016 — a whopping 326 episodes, in keeping with IMDb

With his sharp, darkish fits and glasses, Belzer reduce an imposing however approachable determine, making the usually cynical however dedicated detective a TV icon. The position garnered him a 2008 People’s Choice Award for Favorite Scene Stealing Star.

“I beloved this man a lot,” wrote Laraine Newman, a comic and SNL unique forged member, on Twitter. “One of the funniest individuals ever.” 

The actor and comic Henry Winkler quote tweeted Newman to additionally memorialize Belzer. “Rest in peace Richard,” Winkler wrote.

Belzer’s former SVU co-star, Mariska Hargitay, wrote on Instagram, “Goodbye my expensive, expensive buddy. I’ll miss you, your distinctive gentle, and your singular tackle this unusual world.”

“How fortunate the angels are to have you ever. I can hear them laughing already,” the actress added.

Wolf Entertainment, the manufacturing firm of Dick Wolf, who has produced everything of the “Law & Order” franchise, additionally launched an announcement from Wolf himself.

“Richard Belzer’s Detective John Munch is certainly one of tv’s iconic characters,” wrote Wolf.

“Richard introduced humor and pleasure into all of our lives, was the consummate skilled, and we are going to all miss him very a lot,” Wolf added.

Belzer’s different credit embrace the dramedy movie “Santorini Blue,” “Scarface,” and “Man on the Moon,” a biographical movie concerning the late comic Andy Kaufman. 

Belzer is survived by his spouse, actress Harlee McBride, and his stepdaughters, Jessica and Bree.



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