Murphy Brown’s ten-season star Charles Kimbrough passed away on January 11 at the age of 86.
According to sources, the actor’s son, Jim Kimbrough, stated that his father had died in Culver City, California, of natural causes.
Kimbrough had a fruitful career in film and television and was well-known in the theatre world for his work there. He was also nominated for an Emmy and a Tony Award.
“[We] grieve the passing of Charles Kimbrough, a client and friend for over 30 years,” Kimbrough’s representative Donna Massetti said in a statement. He was a delight to watch on stage or in front of the camera.
The Murphy Brown anchorman Jim Dial was unquestionably Kimbrough’s most well-known role; he played the character in all 247 of the show’s episodes during its 1988–1998 run and returned to the position for three episodes of the show’s 2018 reincarnation.
The news of #CharlesKimbrough’s (“Murphy Brown’s” Jim Dial) passing saddens me enormously. He and his marvelous lady, “Alice’s” #BethHowland, made room for me at their table at a CBS press event years ago — and we had a lovely evening. May both wonderful people Rest In Peace. pic.twitter.com/2mqY64gMBu
— Jay Bobbin (@JayBobbin1) February 5, 2023
For his work on Murphy Brown, Charles received an Emmy nomination in 1990 for outstanding supporting actor in a comedy series, while his performance as Harry in Company earned him a Tony Award nomination for best featured actor in 1971.
LKimbrough, a native of Minnesota, also provided the gargoyle Victor’s voice in Disney’s popular 1996 film The Hunchback of Notre Dame. For the 2002 prequel and several later video games, he performed the voice role once more.
Charles Kimbrough, an actor who was nominated for an Emmy Award for portraying a comically rigid news anchor on the hit sitcom “Murphy Brown,” has died at 86. https://t.co/PCISl5xaOu
— The New York Times (@nytimes) February 5, 2023
Fox claims that the actor’s wife, Beth Howland, who portrayed Vera, the diner server, in the CBS comedy Alice, passed away in 2016.
Charles said to The Wall Street Journal back in 2012: “Unfortunately, I’m pretty good at playing jackasses of some sort. As an actress, I’ve always felt a little self-conscious, which I suppose occasionally comes across as arrogance.
When I was 30 years old, I started giving off a vibe at an audition that made people picture me wearing a three-piece suit or holding an attaché case.
“When I walked in, the director would cheer up if there was a stiff-guy role. I didn’t want that response, to be honest. I was distressed.
Kimbrough was a well-known personality on Broadway before making his way into the TV and film industries. He co-starred in the 1995 off-Broadway production of Sylvia with Sarah Jessica Parker.
Charles Kimbrough, may you rest in peace and thank you for the memories!