Willie Garson, a prolific character actor best known for his role as Stanford Blatch in the Sex and the City franchise, has passed away at the age of 57. The news was first broken in a tweet by actor Rob Morrow, and has since been confirmed by Garson’s family (via TVLine). The cause of death is currently unknown at this time, although TMZ reports that the actor had been battling cancer. Garson’s career spanned four decades, and also included memorable roles as Mozzie in White Collar, Ralph in Little Manhattan, Martin Lloyd in Stargate SG-1, and Gerald Hirsch on Hawaii Five-0.
Born in Highland Park, New Jersey on February 20, 1964, Garson studied fine arts at both Wesleyan University and Yale Drama School. He began acting with brief stints on Cheers, Newhart, and It’s a Living, before playing Carl on a seven-episode run on Mr. Belvedere. Prior to Sex and the City, his biggest television roles included Ask Harriet, NYPD Blue, and Boy Meets World, as well as film appearances in There’s Something About Mary and Mars Atacks!. He played Stanford Blatch, the best friend of Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker), across twenty-seven episodes of Sex and the City, as well as its two subsequent films. He was expected to reprise his role in the upcoming HBO Max revival, And Just Like That…, which is poised to debut later this year.
His most recent work included Gerard Hirsch on Hawaii Five-0, Steve Lomeli on Supergirl, and multiple voices on three episodes of Big Mouth.
“As far as playing something close to myself that has different benefits. I get to create more of it,” Garson said in a 2011 interview with DailyActor. “It becomes more collaborative. So everything has a benefit to it. I just like to make each character as different as possible from the one I played for. That’s what keeps it alive and it keeps doing this for a profession, interesting. So, I hope to be doing it for a good, long time and I hope to just keep making them as different as possible. I don’t want anyone say, ‘That’s so similar to blah, blah, blah.'”
“Michael Cain, whose one of my favorite actors, he just said in his new book, ‘If you’re watching me in a movie or a TV show and you say, ‘Oh my God, that Willie Garson is a great actor,’ than I’m not really doing my job really well,'” Garson added. “I want each character to have a life of its own and that becomes the joy whether it’s something far away from me or whether it’s something close to me. Mozzie is close to me but he’s certainly not me. So that’s the joy, it’s what can I bring to it? So I like all of them.”
Our thoughts are with Garson’s family, friends, and fans at this time.”