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Kenneth Mars

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Kenneth Mars in Mel Brooks' film
GRENADA HILLS, Calif. (AP) - Kenneth Mars, a Mel Brooks collaborator who played a Hitler-worshipping playwright in "The Producers" and an earnest police inspector with a malfunctioning artificial arm in "Young Frankenstein," has died. He was 75.

In a statement Monday, Mars' family said the actor died Saturday of pancreatic cancer at his home in Grenada Hills.

In Brooks' 1968 romp "The Producers," Mars co-starred as Franz Liebkind, a Nazi enthusiast whose play, "Springtime for Hitler," is the basis for a scheme by two conniving showmen (Zero Mostel and Gene Wilder) to bilk investors by putting on a surefire Broadway flop.

Brooks cast Mars again in 1974's "Young Frankenstein" as the constable poking around the castle grounds on the trail of mad scientist Wilder's monster.

Copyright © 2011 The Associated Press
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