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Rest in peace

Jerry Stiller, veteran comedian and Seinfeld's Frank Costanza, dies at 92

Jerry Stiller, the veteran comedian whose career had a second act when he was hired to plan Frank Costanza on Seinfeld in 1993, has died at age 92, his son, Ben Stiller, announced early Monday.

Stiller and his wife, Anne Meara, gained fame as a comedy duo in the 1950s, appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show 36 times, touring the night club circuit, boosting the sales of Blue Nun wine, and appearing in movies, TV shows, and stage productions together. Meara died in 2015. Stiller was not the first choice to play George Costanza's (Jason Alexander) father on Seinfeld, he told Esquire in 2005. The role was written as a bland husband to Estelle Harris' Estelle Costanza, but when that fell flat, the 70-year-old actor suggested punching it up. It worked, as these outtakes show, and Stiller created some of Seinfeld's most memorable scenes, winning an Emmy for the role in 1997.

Stiller went on to star as another overwrought father in King of Queens. Along with Ben Stiller, a comedy star in his own right, Stiller is survived by daughter Amy Stiller, who is also an actor.