Mel Winkler, a character actor with numerous TV, film and stage credits as well as being a recognizable voice behind characters on the animated series The New Batman Adventures and Oswald, died in his sleep of unknown causes Thursday at his home in Hollywood. He was 78.
His death was announced by family spokesperson Courtney Benson.
Winkler made his Broadway stage debut in 1968’s The Great White Hope, appearing in several productions thereafter before taking the role of Seth Holly in 1988’s Joe Turner’s Come and Gone by August Wilson. His final Broadway role was in 1997’s Proposals, written by Neil Simon and directed by Joe Mantello.
Winkler appeared in such films as Doc Hollywood (1991), All the Right Moves (1983) and Devil in a Blue Dress (1995). After a 1969 stint on daytime’s The Doctors, he appeared steadily in episodic TV roles from the 1970s through the early 2000s, including such series as The Cosby Show, The Young Riders, Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, Star Trek: Voyager, Touched by an Angel, NYPD Blue, The Hughleys and The Shield.
As a voice actor, Winkler played Lucius Fox in The New Batman Adventures (1997) and Johnny Snowman in Oswald (2001). He voiced the guardian mask Aku Aku in the Crash Bandicoot series of video games in the early 2000s.
Born in St Louis, Winkler is survived by sons Maury and Mark; and four granddaughters.