Bob Newhart also honored his late “Newart” costar, saying Scolari’s “passing at 66 is way too early.”
Lena Dunham penned a heartfelt tribute to Peter Scolari, her “Girls” on-screen father who passed away Friday at the age of 66.
The veteran actor, who grew to fame alongside Tom Hanks in the sitcom “Bosom Buddies” and starred in “Newhart,” died following a two-year battle from cancer.
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“The shyest extrovert, the most dramatic comedian, the most humble icon,” Lena began. “You had lived enough life to know that a TV show was just a TV show, but also to appreciate just what it meant to be allowed to play pretend for a living – and you never let us forget that this job was a privilege.”
She went on to say Scolari was as grateful to be part of a summer stock production in a barn as he was to be nominated for an Emmy, which he won in 2016 for his role of Tad Horvath on “Girls.”
“You bragged nonstop about your kids, you had the best stories – like when you did ‘Circus of the Stars’ and ‘that’s when I learned to walk a tightrope, there’s not much to it’ – and when we told you that you would be coming out of the closet on the show you said ‘thank you, you can trust me with this.'”
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She concluded, “I couldn’t have been raised up by a better TV ‘papa.’ Thank you, Scolari, for every chat between set ups, every hug onscreen and off and every ‘Oh, Jeez.’ We will miss you so much.”
Bob Newhart also sent out a tweet in Scolari’s honor on Friday afternoon. “I knew that Peter was sick, but his death comes as a great shock. We were friends for over 40 years,” he wrote. “Julia and Peter were an essential part of the success of ‘Newhart.’ He was a fantastic person & a joy to work with. He will be sorely missed, his passing at 66 is way too early.”
Scolari also graced the small screen in “Muphy Brown,” “The Good Fight,” “The West Wing” and most recently as Bishop Thomas Marx on the supernatural drama “Evil.”
“Evil” star Katja Herbers also tweeted out her condolences, saying Scolari “was absolutely wonderful. What an incredible loss.” She retweeted series co-creator Michael King’s tribute as well.
An alum of the Great White Way as well, the New York native had roles in “Hairspray,” “Sly Fox,” “Magic/Bird,” “Bronx Bombers,” and “Wicked.”
He is survived by his wife, Tracy Shayne, and children Nicholas, Joseph, Keaton, and Cali.
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