Tony Rosato (1954 - 2017)

Tony Rosato, a Canadian comic actor and a former cast member of both "Saturday Night Live" and "SCTV," died Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2017, of a suspected heart attack, according to multiple news sources. He was 62.

Rosato's ex-agent, Larry Goldhar, confirmed the death. An autopsy is pending, he said.


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Rosato was born Dec. 26, 1954, in Naples, Italy, and immigrated to Canada with his family when he was 4.

After graduating from the Oakwood Collegiate Institute, he intended to become a chiropractor but dropped out of the University of Toronto after he started performing improvisational comedy at The Second City.

Rosato, fellow Canadian Martin Short, and Robin Duke are the only three performers to have been cast members of both "Saturday Night Live" and "Second City TV," or "SCTV," the comedy spinoff of Second City that was intended to compete with "SNL" during the mid-1970s. 

On "SCTV," Rosato played the chef Marcello – the character was always drunk when presenting cooking lessons with disastrous but hilarious results.

After "SCTV," Rosato and Duke were added to the cast of "Saturday Night Live" in 1981. Rosato left after one year, however, because of a contract renewal dispute.

Rosato moved on to do voice-over acting work. In 1990, he played the Nintendo character Luigi on the TV show "The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3." He provided the voices for characters on dozens of other cartoon shows.

In 2005, an as-yet-undiagnosed case of the mental disorder known as Capgras delusion caused Rosato to believe that his wife, Leah, and their infant daughter had been replaced by impostors. Charged with criminally harassing his wife, he spent two years in jail awaiting trial and then two more in a mental institution, where his condition was finally treated.

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