American comedian Don Rickles, whose entertainment career spanned more than 60 years, has died, according to his publicist. He was 90 years old. Rickles died on Thursday of kidney failure at his Los Angeles home.
The stage comedian headlined casinos in Las Vegas and frequently appeared on late-night television talk shows.
Sarcastically nicknamed “Mr Warmth,” Rickles was known for his sharp-tongue, comedic insults, mocking celebrities like Frank Sinatra and Bob Hope.
He burnished his reputation for skewering stars during appearances on the NBC programme The Dean Martin Celebrity Roasts, which ran during the mid-1970s until the mid-1980s.
President Ronald Reagan, Lucille Ball, Kirk Douglas and Sammy Davis Jr were among the celebrities he took aim at.
He also made frequent appearances on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.
Rickles was also featured in moves including the 1970 film Kelly’s Heroes with Clint Eastwood and Martin Scorsese’s 1995 film Casino.
He voiced the beloved character of Mr Potato Head in Disney’s Toy Story films.
“I can’t please the world. When you’re standing out there doing comedy, not everybody thinks you’re funny. But in my case, I’ve gained a great deal of respect for my age to still be going,” he said in 2012.
Comedian Billy Crystal called Rickles’ death a “giant loss”.
Actor George Takei tweeted: “Don Rickles, you kept us laughing for so many years. We will miss you dearly. Thanks for the zingers. You were one of a kind.”
Rickles, who was born in Queens, New York, is survived by his wife of 52 years, Barbara; his daughter, Mindy Mann; and two grandchildren, Ethan and Harrison Mann.
He would have turned 91 on May 8.