Mark Margolis Dead at 83, Breaking Bad Star

Mark Margolis Dead at 83, Breaking Bad Star.

Mark Margolis, the veteran actor who played the iconic villain Hector Salamanca in Breaking Bad and its spin-off Better Call Saul, has passed away at the age of 83.

He died on Thursday at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City after a short illness, according to his publicist.

Margolis was a prolific character actor who appeared in more than 60 films and dozens of TV shows over his five-decade career.

He was known for his collaborations with directors Brian De Palma and Darren Aronofsky, as well as his memorable roles in Scarface, The Wrestler, and American Horror Story: Asylum.

But it was his portrayal of Hector “Tio” Salamanca, the former drug lord who communicated only through a bell attached to his wheelchair, that earned him widespread acclaim and an Emmy nomination in 2012.

He reprised the role in Better Call Saul, where he showed the backstory and downfall of his character.

In this article, we will pay tribute to Mark Margolis and his legacy as one of the most versatile and respected actors in Hollywood.

We will also look at some of the reactions and condolences from his co-stars, fans, and friends.

An image of Mark Margolis From Breaking Bad Dead at 83
Mark Margolis Dead at 83.
Courtesy: (geo.tv)

Early Life and Career

Mark Margolis was born on November 26, 1939, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Mark moved to New York City at a young age to pursue acting and studied under the legendary Stella Adler.

He made his Broadway debut in 1968 in Infidel Caesar and went on to appear in more than 50 off-Broadway plays, including Uncle Sam and The Golem.

He made his film debut in 1976 in The Opening of Misty Beethoven, a pornographic parody of Pygmalion.

Then landed his breakthrough role in 1983 as Alberto “The Shadow” Rodriguez, the ruthless bodyguard of Tony Montana (Al Pacino) in Scarface.

He also appeared in other De Palma films such as Body Double, The Untouchables, and Carlito’s Way.

Collaboration with Darren Aronofsky

Margolis became a frequent collaborator of director Darren Aronofsky, who cast him in all of his films except for Mother!.

He played Mr. Rabinowitz, the protagonist’s mentor and former teacher in Pi (1998), Father Avila, a priest who tries to help a drug addict in Requiem for a Dream (2000), Father Horvak, a priest who counsels a wrestler in The Wrestler (2008), Samyaza, a fallen angel in Noah (2014), and Thomas Leroy, a ballet director in Black Swan (2010).

Margolis said that working with Aronofsky was “a joy” and that he was “a brilliant director”. Aronofsky praised Margolis as “a master actor” and “a dear friend”.

Role as Hector Salamanca

Margolis achieved cult status for his role as Hector Salamanca in Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul.

He first appeared in the second season of Breaking Bad as the uncle of Tuco Salamanca (Raymond Cruz), a violent drug dealer who clashes with Walter White (Bryan Cranston) and Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul).

He later became a key figure in the rivalry between Gus Fring (Giancarlo Esposito) and the Salamanca family.

Margolis delivered a powerful performance as Hector despite having no dialogue except for grunts and bell rings.

He conveyed his character’s emotions and thoughts through his facial expressions and body language.

He also showed Hector’s backstory and personality in Better Call Saul, where he was still able to walk and talk.

Margolis said that playing Hector was “a challenge” but also “a lot of fun”. He said that he had to do a lot of research on stroke victims and people with limited mobility.

He also said that he enjoyed working with the cast and crew of both shows, especially Esposito, whom he called “a wonderful actor” and “a gentleman”.

Margolis’ performance as Hector earned him critical acclaim and an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series in 2012.

He lost to Jeremy Davies for Justified.

Reactions and Condolences

Margolis’ death was met with sadness and shock by his co-stars, fans, and friends.

Many of them took to social media to express their grief and pay tribute to him.

Bryan Cranston wrote on Twitter: “I’m saddened today by the news that our dear Mark Margolis has passed away. A truly gifted actor who brought depth and nuance to every role he played.

He was a joy to work with on Breaking Bad. My thoughts are with his family and friends.”

Giancarlo Esposito wrote on Instagram: “Rest In Peace my friend Mark Margolis.

You were a brilliant actor and a beautiful human being. I will always remember our time together on Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul.

You gave us one of the most memorable characters in TV history. You will be missed.”

Bob Odenkirk, who plays Jimmy McGill/Saul Goodman in Better Call Saul, wrote on Twitter: “Mark Margolis was a legend.

He brought so much to every scene he was in.

He was a master of his craft and a joy to be around.

I’m honored to have shared the screen with him.

My condolences to his family and loved ones.”

Thomas Schnauz, a writer and producer on Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul, wrote on Twitter: “Incredibly sad news.

Mark made me laugh every time we were together on set.

I was lucky to have his character Tio walk and talk and teach his nephews a lesson in my very first ep of Breaking Bad.

My love to his family and many, many friends.”

Vince Gilligan, the creator of Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul, wrote on Twitter: “Mark Margolis was a treasure.

Mark was one of the finest actors I’ve ever had the privilege to work with.

He brought Hector Salamanca to life with such grace and dignity.

He was a true artist and a wonderful person. I will miss him terribly.”

Many fans also expressed their admiration and condolences for Margolis on social media.

Some of them used the hashtag #DingDingDing to honor his character’s signature bell sound.

Conclusion

Mark Margolis was a remarkable actor who left an indelible mark on the film and TV industry.

Margolis was known for his versatility, professionalism, and charisma.

He played a wide range of roles, from villains to mentors, from priests to angels, from drug lords to ballet directors.

He was especially beloved for his role as Hector Salamanca, one of the most iconic characters in TV history.

Margolis’ death is a huge loss for the entertainment world and for his fans.

He will be remembered as a talented and generous actor who enriched every project he was involved in.

He will be sorely missed by his family, friends, colleagues, and admirers.

Mark Margolis Dead at 83.

Rest in peace, Mark Margolis. You were a legend.

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