Dean Stockwell is dead at 85 from natural causes.

Dean Stockwell, the award-winning actor who was best known for playing Admiral "Al" Calavicci on the popular sci-fi series Quantum Leap, died on Sunday from natural causes. He was 85. The actor's representatives confirmed the news to Variety and other outlets on Monday.

Representatives for Stockwell didn't immediately respond to EW's request for confirmation of his death.

Born Robert Dean Stockwell in 1936, the actor had a long and prominent career that spanned both film and television, with roles in features like Air Force One and David Lynch's Dune. He began his career as a child actor in the 1940s, performing on Broadway and working under Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in films alongside Frank Sinatra, Gene Kelly, and Gregory Peck. In 1948, he achieved fame in the form of a cult star with the sleeper hit The Boy With the Green Hair.

Stockwell continued to act in television, Broadway, and film until he decided to make a career change and leave Hollywood. He was famously drawn back in by a phone call from Harry Dean Stanton, who convinced him to return and join him on the film Paris, Texas. The role reignited his career leading to memorable appearances in films like Blue Velvet, Dune, The Rainmaker, and Married to the Mob which earned Stockell a 1989 supporting actor Oscar nomination.

In 1989, he became a household name when he starred opposite Scott Bakula as Admiral "Al" Calavicci on the quirky NBC series Quantum Leap. The show ran for five seasons, earning Stockwell multiple Emmy and Golden Globe nominations as well as a Golden Globe win in 1990. In 1992, he received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his achievements.

Multiple television projects followed, including shows like Battlestar Galactica; JAG, The Tony Danza Show and NCIS: New Orleans.

Stockwell officially retired from acting in 2015 and spent the last few years creating and exhibiting art under his full name.

  • One of my favorite Stockwell performances was in the 1959 film "Compulsion", a fictional take on the Leopold and Loeb murders. Talented actor. RIP.
    – Helbent IV
    Nov 10, 2021 at 0:38
  • I'll be honest. The only other thing I knew him from was his turn as a private investigator in Mr. Wrong.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Nov 10, 2021 at 2:17
  • 6
    Quantum Leap's Al would be his most defining role in the SFF world (his role as Dr Yueh in Dune isn't terribly long because of what happens to the character), but I found his role as Battlestar Galactica's Number One (Brother Cavil for a while until he was outed) to be iconoclastic.
    – Machavity
    Nov 10, 2021 at 13:53
  • remember the tooth @Machavity - remember the tooth
    – NKCampbell
    Nov 11, 2021 at 18:20


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