‘General Hospital’s’ Mob Boss, Jack Axelrod, Passed Away at 93

Jack Axelrod, the guest star on the series “Grey’s Anatomy,” has died at the age of 93. The actor who played the role of mob boss Victor Jerome on “General Hospital” died on November 28 due to natural causes in Los Angeles, his agent Jennifer Garland told Variety.

Garland also mentioned, “I had the pleasure of spending a lot of time with him in his last years, as he had no immediate family,” to Entertainment Weekly after the death of the well-known veteran actor who starred in numerous shows and films like Grey’s Anatomy, Hancook, and others.

Who is Jack Axelrod?

The veteran actor was born in Los Angeles on January 25, 1939. Before stepping into acting, he had served as a corporal in the U.S. Army, followed by being stationed in Germany from February 1953 to February 1955.

Jack Axelrod
Jack Axelrod played the role of Banquo from Macbeth in an off-Broadway production of the play (Credits: Zoom news)

Later, Axelrod majored in architecture at UC Berkeley and got licensed to be an architect in the state of Washington.

While Axelrod was working as an architect, he pursued acting as his career in 1969 after he portrayed the role of Banquo in the famous Shakespeare play “Macbeth” in an off-Broadway production of the play. Following this, in the next year, he appeared off-Broadway in “Gandhi.” The play was to be followed to Broadway, but it couldn’t make it as it got closed on the opening night.

Axelrod took his passion for acting forward by taking a six-year acting course from the drama school Herbert Berghof Studio in New York City along with a German actress, Uta Hagen. He made his feature film debut through “Bananas,” Woody Allen’s 1971 comedy.

Later, the actor made fame through a series of works for continuous years that included “Vice” (2000), “Road to Redemption” (2001), “Hancock” (2008), “Little Fockers” (2010), “Super 8” (2011), “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” (2011), “J. Edgar” (2011), and “The Lone Ranger” (2013).

Jack Axelrod in movie Bananas
Jack Axelrod first got featured in the movie “Bananas” in 1971 (Credits: Rotten Tomatoes)

He also portrayed the role of Victor Jerome on the ABC soap show “General Hospital” from 1987 to 1989 for 40 episodes of the soap. The roles that made him more popular were Electrolarynx Guy on “My Name Is Earl” and Charlie Yost of the semi-comatose state at Seattle Grace in the series “Grey’s Anatomy.”.

The additional roles that rely on his television credits include his appearance in “Dallas,” “Hill Street Blues,” “Dynasty,” “Outlaws,” “Night Court,” “Knots Landing,” “Everybody Loves Raymond,” “Alias,” “Frasier,” “Malcolm in the Middle,” “Scrubs,” “Starving,” “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia,” “Hot in Cleveland,” “Baskets,” “Speechless,” “Ray Donovan,” “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” and “Modern Family.” 

Jack Axelrod in movie Halloween
Halloween movie featuring Jack Axelrod was released in 2005 (credits: IMDb)

After playing numerous roles and attaining popularity through his long series of works in his lifetime, Axelrod retired in the year 2020 at the age of 90.

During the 3 years of his life before he passed away in November 2023, he kept himself busy enjoying his “no television lifestyle” and spent his time on his hobbies. His agent also mentioned, “We spent much time outdoors, where Jack loved to sketch, read news articles, and recite Shakespearean sonnets.”

Apart from spending his life indulging in career opportunities that include serving in the army, architecture, and acting, he was also a member of the theatre faculty at different colleges, which include the University of Wisconsin, Boston University, the University of Michigan, Penn State, Temple University, Cal Arts, and Brandeis University.

Jack Axelrod
He has made several guest appearances in shows like Dallas, Dynasty, Boy Meets World, Murphy Brown, Private Practice, Dexter, and Shameless. (Credits: Dallas Tv)

To contribute his experience and skills to the youth and upcoming generation that are on the path to acting careers, he has been an instructor for some colleges as well. Axelrod acted as a great instructor at the Aaron Speiser acting studio in Los Angeles.

The death of long-established actor Jack Axelrod is a loss for the industry, and such a talent will be missed. The work and contribution of the actor will act as guides for the upcoming generations.

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