On July 8, 2022, news broke that legendary actor Gregory Itzin who was known for his roles in "NCIS" and "24," had died. After the death of the actor, his son Wilke who is also an actor, paid an emotional tribute to his late father with a post on his social media.
Gregory Martin Itzin was born in Washington DC on April 20, 1948, to parents Evelyn Loretta and Martin Joseph Itzin. The young boy was in sixth grade when his family moved to Burlington, Wisconsin, where his father became a mayor.
Itzin's career goal was to become a theater actor, and he studied at the American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco with the hopes of achieving that.
Gregory Itzin arrives at the 2019 Festival of Arts Celebrity Benefit Event on August 24, 2019 in Laguna Beach, California. | Source: Getty Images
But instead, he spent most of his life as a character actor in films and television series. The renowned actor was known for his outstanding acting talents and, in 1994, even received a Tony nomination for his role in "The Kentucky Cycle."
His most notable and probably most recognized role in the movie industry came when he portrayed President Charles Logan in the action series "24." After that career-defining role, Itzin also starred in the series "NCIS."
ITZIN'S MOVIE CAREER
Gregory Itzin attends the SAG-AFTRA Foundation 10 Annual L.A. Golf Classic at Lakeside Golf Club on June 10, 2019 in Burbank, California. | Source: Getty Images
Itzin spent most of his career as a talented actor who was bound to show up in any series sooner or later. However, with more than four decades of work and dedication to the movie industry. In 1993 Itzin made his first appearance in the series "Star Trek" before he left and later returned to the series franchise.
The talented actor played five different characters in Enterprise, Voyager, and Deep Space Nine. One of his most surprising film roles was when he made a cameo in the legendary series "Friends," portraying the character Theodore Hannigan. His character played the father of Phoebe Buffay (Lisa Kudrow).
Itzin's arguably most prominent role came as the character Charles Logan in the series "24." The actor portrayed one of the main villains, first occupying the Vice Presidential role and then becoming the President in the fifth season.
Gregory Itzin, Eva Dolezalva and Wilk Itzin attend "Carte Blanche" Cast Party at Chateau Marmont on August 2, 2017 in Los Angeles, CA. | Source: Getty Images
After making his debut in the fourth season, his performance in the series earned him two Emmy awards nominations. Another one of his famous roles was his performance in the series "NCIS." The actor starred in the series' first ever episode in 2003 as FBI director Charlie.
He reprised his role as Director Charlie in the third episode of season one before leaving the series. Nonetheless, in 2020, he returned to the series during the 17th season as the character Spencer Downing.
Itzin has also starred in some top-rated series like "The Mentalist," "Murder One," "The OC," CSI, and Boston Legal. The actor, the father of his two kids, Wilke and Julia Itzin, was also an art lover.
Actor Gregory Itzin attends the Festival of Arts Celebrity Benefit Concert and Pageant on August 23, 2014 in Laguna Beach, California. | Source: Getty Images
Wilke followed in his father's footsteps and is a professional actor. He has starred in movies like "Snap" and "True Detector." However, not much is known about his sister Julia.
Itzin spent his last days in the Midwest with his family, including his sister Pamela. Also present were his niece and great-niece Deidre and Claire, nephews Aaron and Cole, and his son and grandson.
ITZIN'S HEALTH PROBLEMS AND DEATH
Itzin suffered a significant health scare in 2015 when he had a heart attack during a Shakespeare performance. However, once he got better, the actor returned to the movie scene until his eventual death on July 8, 2022.
His son Wilke, who is also an actor and former "24" producer Jon Cassar, announced the news of his death. However, the cause of his death was not revealed. After Itzin's death, his son Wilke shared a touching tribute on social media to the late veteran actor. He wrote:
"It is hard to put into words the life of a man lived to its fullest. My dad was known in the world as a phenomenal actor with a body of work that would trump most famous actors' resumes.
Actor Gregory Itzin attends Broadway's "Enron" meet the cast at New 42nd Street Studios on March 26, 2010 in New York City. | Source: Getty Images
Wilke lauded his father's extensive television legacy appearing on famous series like "Friends," "Airplane," "Star Trek," and more.
He also disclosed that many people knew the late actor due to his outstanding performances on stage and that he remembered watching and being in awe of his father performing the show "Shipwrecked" by Donald Marguiles.
Wilke declared that his father loved theater so much that even on his dying breath, he could recite Shakespeare as if he wrote it himself. In conclusion, he confessed he would never feel like they had enough time together and that he loved his later father.
Wilke also does not know what he would do without his father, who was loved by all and would be missed terribly by his family. Another special tribute to the late actor came from Jon Cassar, who was an executive producer and director on "24."
"My friend Greg Itzin passed away today. He was one of the most talented actors I had the honor to work with, but more than that, he was an all-around great guy.
on Cassar speaks at "The Orville" Panel during 2019 Comic-Con International at San Diego Convention Center on July 20, 2019 in San Diego, California. | Source: Getty Images
Cassar declared that the late actor would be missed by his' 24' family, who had nothing but love & respect for him. He concluded that Itzin had made his mark, and it was time for him to rest in peace.
Before his death, Itzin spoke about his work on "24" and how proud he felt to have starred on the show. The late actor disclosed the status and power of the series in how the world perceives America. "Nuthouse" castmate Molly Hagan praised Itzin for his extraordinary talent on social media. She wrote:
"The great actor Gregory Itzin has passed. My heart goes out to Judie and his kids. Funny, kind, extraordinarily talented, and a true Mensch. I first met Greg when he played the hilarious obsequious assistant manager in THE NUTT HOUSE. I'll never forget our time together."
Actor Gregory Itzin arrives to the Screen Actors Guild Foundation's 3rd Annual L.A. Golf Classic at Lakeside Golf Club on June 11, 2012 in Burbank, California. | Source: Getty Images
Other colleagues who shared their tribute and respect for the late actor included Itzin's "Covert Affairs" co-star Sendhil Ramamurthy who also expressed grief over the death of the talented actor.
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