Ian Abercrombie, a busy character actor who gained recognition as Elaine Benes’ (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) eccentric boss Mr. Pitt on NBC’s Seinfeld, died Thursday in Hollywood. He was 77.
Abercrombie seemed to be always working, appearing in scores of films, TV shows and theater productions during his 50-year-plus career in show business. The British actor made his American stage debut in 1955 in a production of Stalag 17 opposite Jason Robards, played the Wise Man in Sam Raimi’s comedy-horror film Army of Darkness (1972)
and was 800-year-old wizard Professor Crumbs on Disney Channel hit Wizards of Waverly Place.
Abercrombie also had a recurring role as Palpatine/Darth Sidious on George Lucas’ animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars, did voice work on animation hit Rango this year and, just before his death, completed his work on the latest episode of the Green Lantern animated series for Cartoon Network.