Actor Abe Vigoda, pictured in 2006, is best known for his performances in "The Godfather" and on "Barney Miller." (Stephen Chernin/AP)

Scoop: Abe Vigoda, beloved Fish, really has died, at age 94

Perhaps TMZ said it best: Actor Abe Vigoda has died — and it’s not a hoax.

The legendary actor best known for his roles in “The Godfather” and on TV’s “Barney Miller” died under hospice care at the age of 94.

Vigoda’s daughter, Carol Vigoda Fuchs, told The Associated Press that her dad died Tuesday morning in his sleep at Fuchs’ home in Woodland Park, N.J.

The cause of death was old age. “This man was never sick,” Fuchs said.

Yet Vigoda’s death had been falsely reported countless times, dating back to 1982.

Vigoda, who appeared in “The Godfather” and also “The Godfather Part II,” continued doing the voice for his character, Tessio, in “Godfather” video games as late as 2007.

But his most famous role on TV was as Detective Phil Fish on the ‘80s sitcom “Barney Miller” … which once worked the infamous hoax reports of Abe’s death into a storyline. Vigoda also was the grandfather in “Look Who’s Talking.”

He was married to Beatrice Schy from 1968 until 1992, when she died.


Gender inequality is alive and well– of course, in Hollywood — and particularly in Disney movies.

The Washington Post and People report that linguists Carmen Fought and Karen Eisenhauer found that in nearly every Disney film, male characters speak a far greater percentage of the dialogue than the female characters do.

Interestingly, things have not changed for the better as time progresses. The occurrence is especially bad in what’s considered Disney’s renaissance. In “The Little Mermaid,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Aladdin,” “Pocahontas” and “Mulan,” the guys claimed 70 percent of the dialogue.

“There’s one isolated princess trying to get someone to marry her, but there are no women doing any other things,” said Fought, a professor at Pitzer College in Claremont.

More than 50 years ago, the ratio was more in favor of the gals: In “Sleeping Beauty,” women deliver about 70 percent of the lines, and “Cinderella,” 60 percent. “Snow White” is about 50-50.

There have been more recent improvements, sort of. In “Tangled,” women have 52 percent of the lines, and in “Brave,” a film about a mother-daughter relationship, they had 74 percent, according to the scholars’ preliminary research.

But in the blockbuster “Frozen,” event though it’s about two sister princesses, men claim 59 percent of the lines.


The hot Broadway musical “Hamilton,” by Lin-Manuel Miranda (based on Ron Chernow’s biography of Founding Father Alexander Hamilton) opens its national tour at the Orpheum Theatre in The City in March 2017.


Actress Rosamund Pike is 37. … Comedian Patton Oswalt is 47. … Rapper Tricky is 48. … Actor Alan Cumming is 51. … Actress Bridget Fonda is 52. … Singer Margo Timmins of Cowboy Junkies is 55. … Actress Mimi Rogers is 60. … Dancer Mikhail Baryshnikov is 68. … Actor James Cromwell is 76.

— Staff, wire report

Got scoops or Bay Area celebrity gossip? Email

Abe VigodaBarney MillerCarmen Fougth Karen EisenhauerdialogueDisneyfishGodfatherTessiowomen

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at

Just Posted

Anti-eviction demonstrators rally outside San Francisco Superior Court. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Report: Unpaid rent due to COVID-19 could be up to $32.7M per month

A new city report that attempts to quantify how much rent has… Continue reading

Music venues around The City have largely been unable to reopen due to ongoing pandemic health orders. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SF to cut $2.5M in fees to help 300 nightlife venues

San Francisco will cut $2.5 million in fees for hundreds of entertainment… Continue reading

Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett departs the U.S. Capitol on October 21, 2020 in Washington, DC. President Donald Trump nominated Barrett to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg after Ginsburg’s death. (Photo by Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images)
GOP senators confirm Amy Coney Barrett to Supreme Court in partisan vote

By Jennifer Haberkorn Los Angeles Times The Senate on Monday confirmed Judge… Continue reading

Curator Tim Burgard looks over a section of the galleries comprising “The de Young Open,” a huge, varied collection of work by Bay Area artists. (Photo courtesy Gary Sexton/Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco)
Bay Area artists jam-pack vivid ‘de Young Open’

Huge exhibition — with works for sale — showcases diversity, supports community

SF Board of Education vice president Gabriela Lopez and commissioner Alison Collins listen at a news conference condemning recent racist and social media attacks targeted at them and the two student representatives on Monday, Oct. 26, 2020. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Online attacks on school board members denounced by city officials

City officials on Monday condemned the targeting of school board members, both… Continue reading

Most Read