A veteran television actor who was best known for his role on the CBS drama “Lou Grant” has died. The Spokesman-Review in Spokane, Wash., reports that Jack Bannon died Wednesday in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. He was 77.
Bannon is fondly remembered for his regular role as affable assistant city editor Art Donovan on “Lou Grant,” the Emmy-winning “Mary Tyler Moore Show” spinoff that aired from 1977-1982.
Bannon had an active career in television before moving in 1995 to Coeur d’Alene with his wife, Ellen Travolta, the sister of John Travolta. Before “Lou Grant” he had multiple appearances on “The Beverly Hillbillies,” “Petticoat Junction,” “Daniel Boone,” “Mannix” and many other shows.
His later TV work included guest spots on “Santa Barbara,” “Dynasty,” “Night Court” and “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman.” After relocating to Idaho, he continued acting in local theater productions.
“Bannon was an active player on local stages, including more than two decades in the company of Coeur d’Alene Summer Theatre,” the Spokesman-Review reports. “There, he was Don Quixote in ‘Man of La Mancha,’ Henry Higgins in ‘My Fair Lady,’ Horace Vandergelder twice in ‘Hello, Dolly,’ Daddy Warbucks in ‘Annie,’ and the narrator of ‘Into the Woods.’ At Spokane Civic Theatre, he portrayed the stage manager in ‘Our Town,’ and at the former Interplayers he starred in ‘Art,’ ‘The Fantasticks’ and ‘Bus Stop,’ among others.”
Here’s a clip of Jack Bannon and Ellen Travolta talking about their theater work in Coeur d’Alene …