Dom DeLuise (1933–2009)

Legendary actor Dom DeLuise – who starred in such classics as “Spaceballs” (as Pizza the Hut) and “Blazing Saddles” – died in his sleep last night in a Los Angeles hospital.

Our Dom DeLuise Photo Gallery

DeLuise may be best know for his collaborations with Burt Reynolds (Smokey and the ‘Bandit II’, ‘Cannonball Run I and II’ ‘The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas’)

“I have been dreading this moment,” Reynolds said through his publicist. “Dom always made everyone feel better when he was around and I will miss him very much.”

DeLuise who was also known for his culinary work – and indulging in the fruits of such labor – authored two cookbooks and was a staple on morning TV shows firing up his latest dish.

“He was a naturally funny man,” film critic Leonard Maltin told The L.A. Times today. “He didn’t need a script to be funny, but smart people like Mel Brooks knew how to give him just the right setting and showcase.”

The Brooklyn-born DeLuise, who also directed the 1979 film “Hot Stuff,” was 75.

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He’s also done a great deal of voice work for animated movies. Here are some free Fancast films in which he stars.

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The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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