'Home Alone' Actor John Heard Found Dead in Palo Alto Hotel - NBC Bay Area
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'Home Alone' Actor John Heard Found Dead in Palo Alto Hotel

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    John Heard, the actor famously known for playing the father in the "Home Alone" movie series and a corrupt detective in "The Sopranos," was found dead in a Palo Alto hotel Friday, according to the Santa Clara County Medical Examiner-Coroner's Office. He was 71. Marianne Favro reports.

    (Published Saturday, July 22, 2017)

    John Heard, the actor famously known for playing the father in the "Home Alone" movie series and a corrupt detective in "The Sopranos," was found dead in a Palo Alto hotel Friday, according to the Santa Clara County Medical Examiner-Coroner's Office. He was 71.

    Heard's cause of death is not yet known at this time. An autopsy was completed Saturday morning, but further testing, including toxicology, is needed to determine the exact cause, according to officials.

    Based on a preliminary investigation, officials said there is no evidence of foul play.

    Dominic Mancini, a talent agent representing Heard, talked to Heard last week and was told that the actor was slated to have a medical procedure done on his back. Mancini later tried to call Heard, but he wasn't able to reach him.

    "I will miss John," Mancini said in a statement. "He was truly one of a kind and an amazing talent. His blend of comedy and quirkiness was unmatched."

    Heard played Peter McCallister, the father of Kevin, played by Macaulay Culkin, in "Home Alone" and "Home Alone 2: Lost in New York." He said in later interviews that he sought a movie with kids in it so his son, age 5 at the time, could come to the set and have someone to play with.

    After it became a big hit, he was reluctant to revisit the role but his agent convinced him the money was too good to pass up.

    "I didn't want to be the 'Home Alone' dad for the rest of my life," he told Yahoo News in 2013.

    He was born March 7, 1946, in Washington, D.C. and grew up performing in local theater. One of his memorable early roles was as a disabled Vietnam War veteran in the 1981 film "Cutter's Way."

    He was active in film for the next decade, playing Tom Hanks' rival in "Big," actress Geraldine Page's son in "The Trip to Bountiful" and in the movies "The Pelican Brief," ''Beaches," ''Gladiator," ''Rambling Rose" and "After Hours."

    He earned an Emmy nomination for playing Vin Makazian in "The Sopranos." Television also kept him busy. He acted in "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," ''Elementary," ''Prison Break," ''Modern Family" and "Entourage." One of his favorite jobs came in the original "Sharknado" television movie in 2013.

    "I knew it was going to be a cult classic," he told the Baltimore Media Blog last year. "It's just ridiculous. I thought it would replace people calling me the 'Home Alone' dad."

    Fellow actor Michael McKean paid tribute on Twitter Saturday: "RIP John Heard. Never not good."

    Heard was married and divorced three times, including briefly to actress Margot Kidder. He had three children.

    "John will be very much missed by his family, friends, and his many fans," Tammy Hunt, a manager respenting Heard, said. "John was one of those people that you meet and know immediately that he is one of a kind. A true professional and dear gentleman.

    The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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