Robert Morse, Tony-winning Mad Men star, dies at 90

Robert Morse
(Image credit: Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)

Robert Morse, the Tony-winning actor who starred as Bert Cooper on Mad Men, has died. He was 90.

Morse's death was confirmed Thursday by writer and producer Larry Karaszewski, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Morse played Bert, founding partner of the Sterling Cooper advertising agency, on AMC's Mad Men for seven seasons. The role earned him five Emmy nominations for guest actor in a drama series. Perhaps his most memorable scene saw him sing and dance to "The Best Things in Life Are Free" while appearing as a vision following his character's death.

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"It's just obvious that [Mad Men creator] Matt Weiner really paid homage to me with this episode," he told Vanity Fair at the time. "I get misty-eyed thinking about it."

That, of course, was far from his first musical rodeo. Prior to Mad Men, Morse starred on Broadway in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, and his role as J. Pierrepont Finch earned him a Tony for Best Actor in a Musical. He reprised the role in the 1967 film version of the musical.

Later, Morse earned another Tony for playing Truman Capote in Tru, a role that also won him an Emmy via a filmed performance of the play. His other Tony nominations were for Take Me Along, Sugar, and Say, Darling.

More recently, Morse played journalist Dominick Dunne in American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson, and he lent his voice to animated shows like Teen Titans Go! and The Legend of Korra.

"A huge talent and a beautiful spirit," Karaszewski tweeted Thursday. "Sending love to his son Charlie & daughter Allyn."

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Brendan Morrow

Brendan is a staff writer at The Week. A graduate of Hofstra University with a degree in journalism, he also writes about horror films for Bloody Disgusting and has previously contributed to The Cheat Sheet, Heavy, WhatCulture, and more. He lives in New York City surrounded by Star Wars posters.