'Godfather,' 'Misery,' 'Elf' star James Caan dies at 82

James Caan has died at age 82. File Photo by Phil McCarten/UPI
1 of 5 | James Caan has died at age 82. File Photo by Phil McCarten/UPI | License Photo

July 7 (UPI) -- The family of James Caan confirmed on Thursday that the actor died Wednesday night. The family tweeted on Caan's official Twitter account and his publicist confirmed to UPI.

"The family appreciates the outpouring of love and heartfelt condolences and asks that you continue to respect their privacy during this difficult time," the tweet read.

Caan was 82. He became a staple of '70s cinema after paying his dues in episodic television in the '60s.

Caan starred as Brian Piccolo in the 1971 TV movie tearjerker Brian's Song, and as Sonny Corleone in The Godfather. The '70s also saw Caan star in the sequel Funny Lady and the sci-fi actioner Rollerball.

The '80s saw Caan star in Michael Mann's Thief and the alien buddy cop movie Alien Nation. Caan reunited with Godfather director Francis Ford Coppola in Gardens of Stone.


The '90s brought Caan a resurgence of sorts. 1990's Misery cast him as Kathy Bates' captive and he played comic book mobster Spaldoni in Dick Tracy.

The comedy Honeymoon in Vegas showed Caan's lighter side, though still playing a tough guy who tricks a man (Nicolas Cage) into gambling his fiance (Sarah Jessica Parker). Supporting roles in movies like The Program, Flesh and Bone, Eraser and Bottle Rocket filled out a diverse decade.

Caan joined the TV series Las Vegas in 2003 and stayed for four of the show's five seasons. He continued to act in movies like Elf, Get Smart, That's My Boy and TV series Magic City and Back in the Game.

Moments from James Caan's career

Josh Duhamel and James Caan (R), of the NBC TV series "Las Vegas," catch up at the 2003- 2004 NBC TV Upfronts held on May 12, 2003 in New York City. File Photo by rlw/ep/Ezio Petersen UPI | License Photo

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