Larry Drake — who won an Emmy for portraying mentally-challenged office clerk Benny on “L.A. Law” — passed away in his Hollywood Hills home at the age of 66!
And the beloved actor died feeling that showbiz had turned its back on the aging actor!
Larry received critical acclaim for his groundbreaking work as Benny, and then showed his range by playing a smooth villain opposite Liam Neeson in 1990’s “Darkman.”
But he hadn’t been able to get work since 2009 — and blamed Hollywood’s prejudice against fat people.
“Larry gained a lot of weight later in life,” said a fellow acting teacher, who was close to the former star as he was forced from the cameras and began leading a class at the Stephen Book Acting Workshop.
“Larry would make jokes about the horrified looks that he would get from casting directors.
“He was always big, of course, but he’d gotten heavy enough that he felt Hollywood would only cast him as a freak!”
The actor was able to get some work as a voice artist on video games, but the actor — who’d recently been in ill health — mostly enjoyed the spotlight amongst his students in his final days.
“Larry taught improvisation, and the students loved him,” said his fellow teacher.
“It’s just a shame that Hollywood doesn’t know what to do with talent like that as they get older!”