Character actor Lee Wallace, known for appearing as Mayors in a number of feature films including The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (1974) and Tim Burton's Batman, has passed away. The Hollywood Reporter brings word of Wallace's passing which occurred on Sunday, December 20 in New York. Wallace's family announced that he passed after a "long illness." Born July 15, 1930, Wallace was 90 years old and he is survived by son Paul and his family in Northern California. Our deepest condolences to his family and friends during this tragic and difficult time, especially so close to the holidays.
Though only appearing in a few scenes' Wallace's Mayor character from Burton's 1989 feature film sees him share the screen with Pat Hingle's Commissioner Gordon, Billy Dee Williams' Harvey Dent, and yes, even Michael Keaton's Bruce Wayne for a brief scene at Wayne Manor (pictured below, seen on the left). Wallace's involvement as the mayor in Batman raised a few eyebrows at the time due to how similar he looked to former New York City mayor Ed Koch. His appearance as the mayor in "Pelham One Two Three" would arrive a few years before Koch's election to the position, but was an interesting coincidence since the film is a mainstay of New York set feature films.
Wallace would also play the Mayor in the 1983 drama Daniel from director Sidney Lumet which starred Timothy Hutton, Mandy Patinkin, Ed Asner, and Ellen Barkin. His other feature film credits include Used People, War and Love, Private Benjamin, The Hot Rock, Thieves, Diary of the Dead (1976), and The Happy Hooker.
He would also appear on television in his career as well including gust spots on Kojak, Lou Grant, Mrs. Columbo, Ryan's Hope, American Playhouse, The Equalizer, Kate & Allie, Law & Order and other shows.
Film and television were not his only forrays as an actor however as he also appeared on the stage throughout his career as well. THR notes that he was also a "regular performer with the Williamstown Theatre Festival in Massachusetts" and began his tenure there in the mid 1960s and at one point starred opposite Glenn Close in a stage production of Uncle Vanya for the Yale Repertory Theatre in the 1980s.
On Broadway Wilson starred in a variety of shows from the 1960s through the 1990s including A Teaspoon Every Four Hours, The Secret Affairs of Mildred Wild, Molly, Zalmen or The Madness of God, Some of My Best Friends, Grind, The Cemetery Club, and The Apple Doesn't Fall... (which was directed by none other than Star Trek's Leonard Nimoy).
Rest in peace.