entertainment 3 months ago

Mark Blum, ‘Desperately Seeking Susan’ Star, Dies From Coronavirus Complications

Variety — Dave McNary

Actor Mark Blum, who appeared in “Desperately Seeking Susan,” “Crocodile Dundee” and the TV series “You,” has died due to complications from coronavirus. He was 69.

The Playwrights Horizons theater group and SAG-AFTRA executive vice president Rebecca Damon confirmed the news on Thursday.

Blum, a New Jersey native who started acting during the 1970s, won an Obie Award for his performance in the Playwrights Horizons production of Albert Innaurato’s “Gus and Al” during the 1988-89 season. He’s also appeared on Broadway in Neil Simon’s “Lost in Yonkers,” Gore Vidal’s “The Best Man” and Richard Greenberg’s “The Assembled Parties.”

Blum played the husband of Rosanna Arquette’s character, Roberta Glass, in 1985’s “Desperately Seeking Susan” and Paul Hogan’s rival in 1986’s “Crocodile Dundee.” His other feature credits include “Lovesick,” “Just Between Friends,” “Blind Date” and “The Presidio.”

Blum has a recurring role on the first season of the Lifetime series “You.” His other TV credits include “Sweet Surrender,” “Capital News,” “Frasier,” “NYPD Blue,” “Mozart in the Jungle” and “Coin Heist.”

“This is a painful loss to our SAG-AFTRA family,” said SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris. “Mark Blum understood that all performers working in this industry share the same employers and that our strength depends on our unity. He was a visionary. Mark will be deeply missed, and our hearts go out to his wife, Janet Zarish, his friends and all of his loved ones.”

Blum ls survived by his wife and fellow actor Zarish, whose credits include “Law & Order,” “Seinfeld” and “Blue Bloods.”

“With love and heavy hearts, Playwrights Horizons pays tribute to Mark Blum, a dear longtime friend and a consummate artist who passed this week. Thank you, Mark, for all you brought to our theater, and to theaters and audiences across the world. We will miss you,” Playwrights Horizons said in a tweet.

Blum served on the Screen Actors Guild and SAG-AFTRA national boards between 2007 and 2013.

“On a personal note — I always appreciated Mark’s clear perception of complex situations,” Damon tweeted. “He always spoke the truth and did a great service in informing members of our community about the ins and outs of the union whenever he had the opportunity. Mark was smart, funny, and a true actor’s actor. He will be deeply missed.”

Sign up for Variety’s Newsletter. For the latest news, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.