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SYFY WIRE The Twilight Zone

Richard Erdman, star of Twilight Zone and Community, dies at 93

By Jacob Oller
richard erdman the twilight zone

Richard Erdman, prolific and longtime character actor of film and TV, has died according to a report by Variety. He was 93.

Erdman had nearly 200 film credits to his name (like Stalag 17, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, and Perry Mason, to name just a few) since beginning his career in the 1940s, but became a genre staple early with his performance in one of the more memorable episodes of The Twilight Zone.

“A Kind of Stopwatch,” from 1963, saw Erdman star as a man that can stop time with a magical watch — but who is so boring and awful that the watch's abilities only serve to punish his personality defects. The range needed to go from that performance to countless one-off guest-star slots and ‘80s cartoon voice-acting gigs continued to serve him when he landed his most famous modern role: Leonard from Community.

The perpetual student was a walking punchline who still managed to steal scenes, which was a testament to Erdman’s unwavering talents.

Film historian Alan K. Rode paid tribute to his friend and helped break the news on Twitter:

Erdman’s Community costars also paid tribute to the beloved actor:

Erdman’s last role was on an episode of Dr. Ken as a fictionalized version of himself.