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Tayback in 1976
January 6, 1930|
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
|Died||May 25, 1990
Glendale, California, U.S.
|Cause of death||Heart attack|
|Occupation||Film, television actor|
|Spouse(s)||Sheila McKay Barnard (1962-1990; by his death)|
Victor "Vic" Tayback (January 6, 1930 – May 25, 1990) was an American actor, known for his role as diner owner Mel Sharples in the 1974 film Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore and in its television adaptation, Alice, which ran from 1976 to 1985.
Life and career
Tayback was born in Brooklyn, New York City, New York, the son of Helen (née Hanood) and Najeeb James Tayback. His parents were immigrants from Aleppo, Syria. Tayback moved with his family to Burbank, California, during his teenage years and attended Burbank High School. He ended up living in the area for the rest of his life, eventually moving to nearby Glendale, California, where he resided until his death.
A life member of The Actors Studio, Tayback was a familiar face on television in the 1960s and 70s, appearing on numerous shows as a character actor. Two notable appearances were in the "Et tu, Archie?" fourth season episode of All in the Family as Archie's old friend, Joe Tucker, and as the 1920s style gangster-boss 'Jojo Krako' in the Star Trek episode "A Piece of the Action".
Tayback's most famous role was diner owner Mel Sharples in both the 1974 movie Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore and in the television series, Alice, which ran from 1976 to 1985. He was the only actor of the original film to reprise his role in the series.
- Five Minutes to Live (1961)
- With Six You Get Eggroll (1968)
- Bullitt (1968)
- Blood and Lace (1971)
- Emperor of the North Pole (1973)
- The Blue Knight (1973)
- The Don Is Dead (1973)
- Papillon (1973)
- Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (1974)
- The Gambler (1974)
- Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore (1974)
- Report to the Commissioner (1975)
- Lepke (1975)
- The Black Bird (1975)
- No Deposit, No Return (1976)
- The Big Bus (1976)
- Special Delivery (1976)
- Mansion of the Doomed (1976)
- The Shaggy D.A. (1976)
- The Choirboys (1977)
- The Cheap Detective (1978)
- Treasure Island (1985)
- Weekend Warriors (1986)
- The Underachievers (1987)
- Loverboy (1989)
- Beverly Hills Bodysnatchers (1989)
- Alice as Mel Sharples
- Griff as Captain Barney Marcus. Series starred Lorne Greene in title role and Ben Murphy
- Khan! as Lt. Gubbins
- All Dogs Go to Heaven as Carface Caruthers (replaced by Ernest Borgnine in All Dogs Go to Heaven 2)
- F Troop (Episode: "Corporal Agarn's Farewell To The Troops") as Bill Colton
- Buckskin (Episode: "The Battle of Gabe Pruitt") as Claude
- The Love Boat (Multiple)
- Hawaii Five-O (Episode: "Bones of Contention")
- Rawhide (Episode: "The Gray Rock Hotel")
- Alfred Hitchcock Presents (Episode: "A Man with a Problem")
- All in the Family (Episode: "Et Tu, Archie?") as Joe Tucker
- Arnie (Episode: "Boom or Bust") as Sergeant
- Star Trek (Episode: "A Piece of the Action") as Jojo Krako
- Barney Miller (Episode: "Stakeout") as Mr. Savocheck
- Bewitched (Episode: "The Good Fairy Strikes Again") as Officer #1
- Columbo (Episode: "Suitable for Framing") as Sam Franklin
- Get Smart (Episode: "Appointment in Sahara") as Jamal
- MacGyver (Episode: "Jenny's Chance") as George Henderson
- The Mary Tyler Moore Show (Episode: "Second Story Story") as Officer Jackson
- The Monkees (Episodes: "Your Friendly Neighborhood Kidnappers", "Son of a Gypsy" and "Art for Monkees' Sake")
- Tales from the Darkside (Episodes: "The New Man", (as Alan Coombs) and "Basher Malone" (as Tippy Ryan) Season 4, 1988)
- Daniel Boone (Episode: "Onatha") as Hongas
- T. J. Hooker (Episode: "Hooker's War") as Lt. Pete Benedict
- Emergency! (Episode: "Boot") as truck driver.
- The Bold Ones: The New Doctors (Episode: "Is This Operation Necessary?" (1972) as Frank Wells
- The Practice (Episode: "The Choice") (1976) as Frankie Nyles
- The Eddie Capra Mysteries (Episode: "How Do I Kill Thee?") (1978) as Logan
- Flo (Episode: "What Are Friends For?") (1981) as Mel Sharples
- Adderly as Gregorin (1987)
- Crazy Like a Fox (1986)
- Murder, She Wrote (Episode: "One Good Bid Deserves a Murder") (1986) as Sal Domino
- Finder of Lost Loves (Episode: "Maxwell Ltd: Finder of Lost Loves Pilot") as Thomas Velasco (1984)
- Hotel (Episode: "Relative Loss") as Wallace Egan (1983)
- Fantasy Island (Multiple)
- Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman (Episode: 29, Season: 1)
- The Man From U.N.C.L.E. (Episode: "The Re-Collectors Affair") as "Sargent" (1965)
- Alice (Ep: "Alice Faces the Music")
Tayback also appeared in TV commercials including one for Aqua Velva after-shave lotion as a spectator in the stands who shouts at then-Cincinnati Reds third baseman Pete Rose "Hey, Pete Rose! What does a man really want in an after-shave lotion?" Another humorous commercial portrayed Tayback as the annoyed owner of a new 1968 American Motors Javelin, saying "Get away from that car!" to a gang of toughs admiring the new muscle car.
Tayback died of a heart attack in 1990 and was interred at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Los Angeles. Tayback was survived by his wife Sheila, whom he married in 1962. They had one son, Christopher Tayback, who briefly acted before attending law school.
- "Vic Tayback Biography (1930-1990)". Filmreference.com. Retrieved 2011-05-06.
- "Archives: Chicago Tribune". Pqasb.pqarchiver.com. Retrieved 2011-05-06.
- Garfield, David (1980). "Appendix: Life Members of The Actors Studio as of January 1980". A Player's Place: The Story of The Actors Studio. New York: MacMillan Publishing Co., Inc. p. 280. ISBN 0-02-542650-8.
- Film co-star Diane Ladd joined Alice mid-series playing a different character, and Alfred Lutter reprised his film role as Tommy for the pilot episode only.