Felix Silla, who played Cousin Itt in the original 1960s TV version of The Addams Family, died this Friday in Las Vegas.
The 3’11 actor and stuntman “was 84 years old and suffered from pancreatic cancer, according to TMZ.
His old friend Gil Gerard, who co-starred with him on the Buck Rogers TV show in the 25th century, has confirmed the news of Felix’s death.
Dear Gone: Felix Silla, who played Cousin Itt in the original 1960s TV version of The Addams Family, died this Friday in Las Vegas; photographed in 2013
Icon Status: The 3’11 ” actor and stuntman was 84 and suffered from pancreatic cancer, according to TMZ; he is represented as Cousin Itt
Although Felix wore the prosthesis for Cousin Itt throughout the series from 1964 to 1966, the voice was given uncredited by Tony Magro.
Felix also portrayed an Ewok in the 1983 Star Wars film Return Of The Jedi and a robot on Buck Rogers in the 25th century from 1979 to 1981.
Born in a village in southern Italy in 1937, he immigrated to America as a teenager in the 1950s and established himself as a circus act.
He was versatile – trapeze artist, tumbler, bareback rider – and ended up with the Ringling Brothers And Barnum & Bailey Circus.
As seen in 1965: Born in a village in southern Italy in 1937, emigrated to America as a teenager in the 1950s and established himself as a circus act
While in Los Angeles on tour with the Ringling Brothers, he turned to Hollywood and was eventually spotted by MGM to be a dub for a child.
His first gig in that position was the 1963 romantic comedy A Ticklish Affair, he told Weird Review, and he quickly forged a steady career as a stuntman.
His interview process for Cousin Itt in the mid-1960s didn’t even involve an actor, he told the Los Angeles Times in 2014.
These two guys were sitting at a table. They look at me and say, “You have the job. And I say, “Is that it?” Don’t I even need to audition? They say, “No, just come on Monday,” Felix recalled in the interview.
Spot it in the costume: Although Felix wore the prosthesis for Cousin Itt throughout the series from 1964 to 1966, the voice was given uncredited by Tony Magro
Engulfed: “Producer imagined him in a nightmare,” Felix joked about his character, comparing his “hot and heavy” costume to “carrying a brick”
Although the show is based on cartoons from Charles Addams newspapers, the character of Cousin Itt was an invention of the television series.
“A producer imagined him in a nightmare,” Felix joked of his character, comparing his “hot and heavy” costume to “carrying a brick.”
While playing Cousin Itt, he was completely obscured behind his costume which was essentially a mountain of hair accessorized with a bowler hat and sunglasses.
“All the guys on set were smoking. They just dropped their buttocks and stepped on them. The producers were worried that I might step on a smoldering cigarette and ignite. They gave me synthetic hair, which was flame retardant, ”says Felix.
Precautions: He revealed to the Los Angeles Times that his furry suit must be “flame retardant” because of all the cigarettes smoked on set.
Following The Addams Family, he played the villain in The Black Bird, a 1975 comedy sequel to The Maltese Falcon starring George Segal.
His character Litvak, whom he called his “favorite role,” struts around in a Nazi uniform and is protected by a phalanx of tall Hawaiian bodyguards.
“So it was a comedy, it was a lot of dialogue, but it really didn’t do much for me because they came out as – with an X rated movie,” he said. explained years later.
As his career progressed, he continued to voice over for children, including for the character Short Round in Indiana Jones and Steven Spielberg’s The Temple Of Doom.
“Favorite Role”: After the Addams Family, he played the villain in The Black Bird, a 1975 comedy sequel to The Maltese Falcon starring George Segal
Flashback: Felix also portrayed an Ewok in the 1983 Star Wars movie Return Of The Jedi and a robot on Buck Rogers in the 25th century (pictured) from 1979 to 1981
Felix remembers Steven spreading his right thumb and index finger an inch apart and said, “You know, Felix, if you were much smaller, I would throw you like ET in the remake.” ”
In fact, Felix had done stunts for the original ET as well as in famous films such as The Towering Inferno and Batman Returns.
Along with his career, he married another little person called Sue who gave him three children and remained his wife for 55 years until her death this week.
For the fans: Felix is pictured in 2018 at the Chiller Theater Expo in Parsippany, New Jersey