Charles Grodin Fondly Remembered by ‘Beethoven’ Co-Star Patricia Heaton: ‘A Lovely, Lovely Man’

Actor Charles Grodin died this week at age 86 of bone marrow cancer. Known for his straight-faced performances in movies such as Heaven Can Wait, Midnight Run, and Dave, Grodin also helmed a CNBC talk program and made frequent appearances on late night shows.

Patricia Heaton, who appeared in Grodin’s 1992 film Beethoven, remembered her co-star fondly this week.

Writer, director, film and stage actor Charles Grodin, shown here in 2004, has died.
Writer, director, film and stage actor Charles Grodin, shown here in 2004, has died |
Kim Kulish/Corbis via Getty Images

Grodin died this week at age 86

The actor died this week at his home in Connecticut from bone marrow cancer and is being remembered for his contributions to film and television.

Comedian Steve Martin tweeted, “So said to hear. One of the funniest people I ever met.”

Actor Albert Brooks posted his regrets at the news of Grodin’s death: “R.I.P. Charles Grodin. A brilliant comedy actor. I had the wonderful experience of working with him in my first feature Real Life and he was amazing. Rest In Peace, Chuck.”

And Miss Piggy, with whom Grodin starred in The Great Muppet Caper tweeted her condolences saying, “My beloved Charles Grodin was a fabulous friend to moi onscreen and off. Debonair, handsome, talented, charming – and great taste! I’ll miss him dearly.”

Heaton paid tribute to Grodin

Former Everybody Loves Raymond star Patricia Heaton appeared in the late actor’s 1982 comedy Beethoven. In the role of Brie a venture capitalist, she along with her husband Brad, played by David Duchovny, attempted to rip off the company of Grodin’s character, George Newton.

Heaton said of Grodin on Instagram this week, “Charles Grodin was a lovely, lovely man. Also very talented. And hilarious. #RIPCharlesGrodin”

RELATED: Charles Grodin’s Most Underrated Movie Roles

The film about a benignly destructive St. Bernard and the family who loved him (except at first for Grodin) was a box office success, grossing $147.2 million worldwide. The movie’s sequel, Beethoven’s 2nd, also achieved similar success with a global gross of $118.2 million.

‘Beethoven’ didn’t receive many positive reviews

While the film was a firm success at the box office, it didn’t score such high marks from critics when it was released in 1982.

Film critic Roger Ebert wasn’t entirely enamored of the film that year saying, “This is not the sort of entertainment I scour the movie pages for, hoping desperately for a new film about a cute dog. Nor did I find anything particularly new in Beethoven, although I concede that the filmmakers secured an admirable dog for the title role, and that Charles Grodin, who is almost always amusing, has what fun can be had playing the grumpy dad.”

Patricia Heaton and David Duchovny in ‘Beethoven’

The New York Times, while not giving the film two thumbs up by any means, validated Grodin’s performance and the movie’s appeal to young viewers.

Beethoven is no classic, but it’s a sunny, energetic children’s film with a good notion of what young audiences like,” the outlet said at that time. “That includes a gruff, lovable Dad (Charles Grodin) who takes a lot of pratfalls, a wide range of mess-minded sight gags and, of course, a shaggy dog story, complete with huge, drooling shaggy dog.”