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|Born||Robert Józef Porzuczek
December 13, 1930
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Died||December 8, 2008
Washington, D.C., U.S.
|Cause of death||Heart procedure|
|Resting place||Rock Creek Cemetery, Washington, D.C., U.S.|
|Other names||Robert Józef Porzuczek
Robert Józef Prosky
|Spouse(s)||Ida Hove (1960–2008; his death)|
Robert Prosky (December 13, 1930 – December 8, 2008) was an American actor and comedian.
Prosky, a Polish American, was born Robert Joseph Porzuczek in the Manayunk neighborhood of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to Helen (Kuhn) and Joseph Porzuczek. His father was a grocer and butcher. He was raised in a working-class neighborhood and studied at the American Theatre Wing, later graduating from Temple University. He performed at Old Academy Players, a small theater in the East Falls section of Philadelphia, adjacent to Manayunk.
Prosky appeared in Thief, Christine, Hanky Panky, The Natural, Hoffa, Broadcast News, Things Change, The Great Outdoors, Loose Cannons, Rudy, Mrs. Doubtfire, Green Card, and Dead Man Walking. In addition to appearing in films, Prosky appeared as a regular on Hill Street Blues, Danny, and Veronica's Closet. He was considered for the role of Martin Crane in Frasier and later made a guest appearance in the series as a reclusive writer. He portrayed Rebecca Howe's father on Cheers. Prosky also portrayed Jake "the Snake" Connolly on a 2-part 1991 episode of Coach.
He also appeared as Will Darnell, the man who owned the auto repair shop where Arnie Cunningham (Keith Gordon) rebuilds the possessed car "Christine" in the film John Carpenter's Christine based on Stephen King's novel. Prior to his film and television career, he appeared in numerous productions at the Arena Stage in Washington, D.C., most notably as Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman. Prosky often performed at Arena Stage with over 100 stage credits to his name at that theatre alone. He also originated the role of Shelly Levene in David Mamet's Pulitzer Prize-winning play Glengarry Glen Ross. He was also a board member of the Cape May Stage in Cape May, New Jersey.
In 1960, he married Ida Hove, who survived him, along with three sons, Stefan, John and Andrew Prosky. Andrew and John Prosky are also actors.
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On December 8, 2008, Prosky died at age 77, 5 days before his 78th birthday, from complications following a heart procedure. At the time of his death, he was living in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Washington, D.C.
- Thief (1981) - Leo
- World War III (1982) - General Rudenski
- Hanky Panky (1982) - Hiram Calder
- Monsignor (1982) - Bishop Walkman
- The Lords of Discipline (1983)- LTC Thomas "The Bear" Berrineau
- John Carpenter's Christine (1983) - Will Darnell
- The Keep (1983) - Father Fonescu
- The Natural (1984) - The Judge (team owner)
- Hill Street Blues (TV series) (1984–1987) - Sgt. Stan Jablonski
- Outrageous Fortune (1987) - Stanislav Korzenowski
- Big Shots (1987) - Keegan
- Broadcast News (1987) - Ernie Merriman
- The Murder of Mary Phagan (1988) (Miniseries) - Thomas Edward Watson
- The Great Outdoors (1988) - Wally
- Things Change (1988) - Joseph 'Don Giuseppe' Vincent
- The Heist (1989) - Dancer
- Loose Cannons (1990) - Von Metz
- Gremlins 2: The New Batch (1990) - Grandpa Fred
- Funny About Love (1990) - E.T.
- Green Card (1990) - Brontë's Lawyer
- Coach (1991) - Jake "The Snake" Connolly
- Age Isn't Everything (1991) - Grandpa Irving
- Far and Away (1992) - Daniel Christie
- Hoffa (1992) - Billy Flynn
- Last Action Hero (1993) - Nick
- Rudy (1993) - Father Cavanaugh
- Mrs. Doubtfire (1993) - Jonathan Lundy
- Miracle on 34th Street (1994) - Judge Henry Harper
- The Scarlet Letter (1995) - Horace Stonehall
- Dead Man Walking (1995) - Hilton Barber
- The Chamber (1996) - E. Garner Goodman
- Mad City (1997) - Lou Potts
- Veronica's Closet (1997) (TV series) (1997–1998) - Pat Chase
- The Lake (1998) - Herb
- Dudley Do-Right (1999) - Inspector Fenwick
- Eye See You (2002) - McKenzie
- Death to Smoochy (2002) - Network Chairman (uncredited)
- Suits on the Loose (2005) - Bishop Hollister
- The Skeptic (2008) - Father Wymond
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|1971||Moonchildren (American premiere)||Mr. Willis||Arena Stage, Washington, D.C./later moved to Broadway in 1972|
|1975||The Dybbuk||Rabbi Az ielke||Arena Stage, Washington, D.C./with Dianne Wiest|
|1983||A View from the Bridge||Alfieri||New York City|
|1984||Glengarry Glen Ross||Shelly Levene||John Golden Theatre, New York City/Tony Award Nomination/ Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Ensemble|
|1988||A Walk in the Woods||Andrei Botvinnik||Booth Theatre, New York City/Tony Award Nomination|
|1996||Camping with Henry and Tom||Thomas Edison||Lucille Lortel Theatre, New York City|
|2002||An American Daughter||Alan Hughes||Arena Stage, Washington, D.C.|
|2004||Democracy||Herbert Wehner||Brooks Atkinson Theatre, New York City|
|2006||Awake and Sing!||Jacob||Arena Stage, Washington, D.C.|
|2008||The Price||Solomon||Walnut Street Theatre, Philadelphia; Theater J, Washington, DC / A joint production|
- Robert Prosky at the Internet Movie Database
- Robert Prosky at the TCM Movie Database
- Robert Prosky at AllMovie
- Robert Prosky at Find a Grave
- AP Obituary in The Philadelphia Inquirer