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Ed Lauter, Veteran Character Actor, Dead From Mesothelioma At 74

Ed Lauter may not be a name known to many but anyone who sees his face will immediately recognize the character actor.

Ed Lauter is “that guy” from that movie.

Ed Lauter died Wendesday, at the age of 74, from mesothelioma, his publicist told the Associated Press.

A veteran of more than 200 projects, Ed Lauter referred to himself as a “turn actor,” a character that shows up at a pinch point and turns the story line in a dynamic new direction, in a 2010 interview with Shock Cinema.

In the interview, Lauter listed The Longest Yard among his favorite roles. Ed Lauter played the brutal prison guard, Captain Knauer, calling it the role that “put me on the map.” Lauter also worked on Family Plot, the final film from famed director Alfred Hitchcock. Ed Lauter later brought to life Joe Camber, owner of the eponymous killer dog in Stephen King’s Cujo.

Ed Lauter’s more recent work includes Trouble With The Curve, The Artist, and the show Shameless.

Embodying hard-nosed, tough characters in almost every project, Ed Lauter’s roles always had an impact on the film. In much the same way, his performance always impacted audiences.

“But sometimes people don’t know my name. They’ll say, ‘Oh, yeah! There’s that guy,” Ed Lauter laughed in the Shock Cinema interview.

What was your favorite performance by Ed Lauter? How many roles do you remember from Ed Lauter? What actors are comparable to Ed Lauter?