Allen Garfield, actor in “Nashville” and “The Conversation”, dies at 80 from coronavirus


Mr. Garfield grew up in New Jersey and started out as a boxer and sports writer. While covering sports for the Newark Star-Ledger, he studied night theater and was eventually accepted by the Actors Studio and studied with Lee Strasberg.

Mr. Garfield has become a supporting actor in some of the best films of the 1970s, including “Bananas” by Woody Allen; “The candidate” opposite Robert Redford; “The Conversation” by Francis Ford Coppola; and Robert Altman’s “Nashville” as husband and manager of Ronee Blakley country star Barbara Jean.

He also appeared in Billy Wilder’s remake of “The Front Page” (1974), the ambulance comedy “Mother, Jugs & Speed” (1976) and “The Brink‚Äôs Job” (1978).

Garfield has often played talkative and anxious characters – vendors, corrupt businessmen and sweaty politicians. They were universally authentic, so much so that Mr. Garfield was often underestimated. In “The Conversation”, he plays Bernie Moran, expert in delusional surveillance, rival to the character of Gene Hackman. Coppola again threw it in “One From the Heart” (1981) and “The Cotton Club” (1984).

Garfield was the furious police chief of 1987’s Beverly Hills Cop II, which launched an explosive tirade against Eddie Murphy, Judge Reinhold and John Ashton before being fired himself. He suffered several blows, including a little before the shooting of “The Ninth Gate” by Roman Polanski in 1999.

Allen Goorwitz was born in Newark on November 22, 1939. A complete list of survivors was not immediately available.


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