Walter Olkewicz, the gentle giant who stole scenes in “Twin Peaks”, “Seinfeld” and “Grace Under Fire”, has died at the age of 72.
The veteran character actor died Tuesday morning at his Los Angeles home, his son, Zak Olkewicz, confirmed to the Hollywood Reporter.
The co-star in Steven Spielberg’s cult film “1941” and Joel Schumacher’s hit John Grisham adaptation “The Client” died after a 20-year health battle that included a series of knee surgeries that caused infections, resulting in disabilities that forced him out of the Entertainment industry.
“He was a good man who pushed his love of creativity and art into everything he did,”
Olkewicz was born on May 14, 1948 in Bayonne, NJ, and attended Bayonne High School, St. Louis. Mary of the Plains College in Kansas and Colorado State University, before making her feature film debut in 1976’s “Futureworld” opposite Peter Fonda and Blythe Danner.
“Seinfeld” fans know him as Nick the cable guy from a 1996 classic episode – but Olkewicz is perhaps best known as the shadowy Jacques Renault in David Lynch’s ABC series “Twin Peaks” in 1990 as well as in the 1992 feature film “Twin” Peaks : Fire Walk With Me. ”
Olkewicz repeated his role for Lynch’s 2017 Showtime reboot, which would be his last role on screen. “It was his first role in almost 15 years, and he did it all behind a bar to cover up the fact that he could not stand,” his son told the Hollywood Reporter.
In addition to his recurring roles on “Grace Under Fire” and “Who’s the Boss,” the actor’s countless TV credits include guest appearances in classic series such as “ER,” The Rockford Files, “” Taxi, “” Barney Miller, “” Cheers. ” “Newhart,” “Falcon Crest,” “Family Ties,” “Married … With Children,” “Moonlighting,” “LA Law” and “Murder, She Wrote.”
He is survived by his son Zak, daughter-in-law Katrina Rennells and grandchildren Sadie and Declan Robert.